While a lot of the press surrounding Suicide Squad has been less than ideal, two new characters in particular have shone through: Will Smith’s Deadshot, and Margot Robbie’s Harley Quinn.
So what does a studio do next when they’ve managed to bring two of their characters into the mainstream consciousness? Plaster their faces into any product their developing, of course!
Injustice 2, the sequel to the popular fighting game based on DC universe characters, is currently in development, and in the wake of Suicide Squad’s release, developer NetherRealm is eager to show off two characters that will feature in the game.
While Harley Quinn was present in the first game as well, it’s no surprise that she features heavily in a trailer at this time.
Deadshot, though, is a brand new addition to the roster of characters that will appear in the game, and has actually been announced before many of the familiar faces which made the cut for the first game, such as Green Lantern and the Joker.
This trailer does invite a certain amount of cynicism – it’s clear that DC are doing their best to cross-promote popular characters and to capitalize on the current buzz surrounding the Suicide Squad.
What’s interesting, though, is just how tight DC wants to keep its properties tied together. The first Injustice game felt very much like a continuation of the aesthetic of Man of Steel, and the game’s reception was arguably influential in getting Harley Quinn out to a wider audience in preparation for the Suicide Squad movie.
As such, it’s possible to a certain extent to look at footage for Injustice 2, and make some educated guesses about what might be on the cards for the future of the DC movie universe. The question worth asking is whether Deadshot’s appearance in the trailer is actually reactionary, or whether it hints that DC has more work lined up for Will Smith in the future.
The trailer’s release comes alongside the announcement that Cyborg will be appearing in The Flash movie. More blink-and-you-miss-it DC crossovers aren’t that unexpected at this point, but it does beg the question: will Deadshot turn up in another DCEU movie?
If Zack Snyder can kill off and resurrect Superman all in the space of a few minutes, anything’s possible for the series.
Or, of course, Deadshot’s in the Injustice 2 trailer just because he’s cool.
That’s probably more likely in retrospect.