Is the mainstream movie version of Suicide Squad divisive? I don’t follow too closely the on-line ramblings of… well, just about anything… because despite the theoretical beauty of being in contact with anybody with similar interests anywhere in the world anytime of the day most of all ya’all is bat shit crazy! I do recall guys calling on-line for the destruction of rottentomatoes because the aggregate site was posting negative reviews of the movie. These people are a prime example of the new information age; information with no ability to critically sort it. Or more specifically – Rottentomatoes just collects the reviews and has no control over the content.
Simply put people screamed to kill the messenger.
It’s a sad irony of the way the world works that trollish loudmouths can simultaneously call attention to and discredit themselves and not get laughed off the stage.
But I don’t want to talk politics…
Of course on the flip side, shortly thereafter, a large portion of the fan community responded to Suicide Squad with outrage too! “Not enough Joker!”, “Joker fuckin Sucked!”, “I feel cheated!”, “Margot Robbie has a nice rack and iz (sic) hot but not az(sic) hot as Charlize Theron”, “This mainstream adaptation of a comic series and characters I am moderately interested in didn’t happen exactly as I pictured it. So, therefore, I am dismissive of the efforts of the cast and crew and herein retracting my support of the material and registering my disappointment with the public at large.”
So a movie that seemed to have virulent haters across the board, both fans and critics and at best could muster a “Meh” somehow managed to pull in over $325 million domestically.
Hard to believe that irony was declared dead, like 15 years ago.
But I don’t want to talk politics…
Stepping into this maelstrom of faceless incoherent hate with one hand on his camera and the other hand firmly wrapped around… the zeitgeist… was Axel Braun. Operating with an award winning streak that would put Spielberg to shame (if, you know, Spielberg made smut. I’m talking comparatively here guys!) an enviable budget by porn standards (anything over $256) and the idea of “Hey wouldn’t it be cool if there was a three way between The Riddler, Killer Frost, and Poison Ivy?” Axel took on his parody of the worst heroes ever.
But did he succeed?
I’ll start out by saying that you don’t hear much grousing about this version of the squad. That might be due to the fact that it’s porn but as far as the term “high profile/expectations” can be applied to adult product it could be applied to Suicide Squad. Axel has built his career on his porn parodies and the eye for detail, both in production and script, that exists in them. Even with his time away from superheroes to tackle fairy tales Axel has come back strong.
This version, weirdly enough, both parallels and improves on the shortcomings of the Warner Brothers Box office wrecking version.
For starters the story is a bit more coherent. Braun (working without his regular co-writer on these projects, Mark Logan) makes the smart decision to heist the story from the direct to video animated movie Batman: Assault on Arkham. I’m not hating; Braun is smart enough to know the right stuff to nick as in his Batman V Superman parody. Modifying the Assault on Arkham story makes sense from many standpoints including budget restrictions, talent pool and the fact that Assault on Arkham is a story as compared to people running around a city killing faceless monsters for two hours. The plot and several scenes are taken directly from B:AoA and the Suicide Squad porn parody benefits greatly because of the choice. The plot goes like this: Amanda Waller pulls together Assault Team X to break into Arkham. Ostensibly to get info the confined Riddler has. Double crosses, chaos, and anal follows. Wild cards like the twisted toxic dynamic between Harley and the clown prince of crime and the inevitable appearance of Batman keeps things tense. Even Axel can’t command the budget required to blow shit up real good. So focusing on the interactions between these messed up characters is the right card to play.
As in the mainstream version it’s Harley’s show; Kleio Valentien reprises her role as Harley Quinn completely committing once again. Performing as Harley has to be a tightrope walk; the character could easily become shrill if not handled correctly. Throw in sex scenes coupled with not enough time and money and the whole thing could fall apart quicker than a super villain’s lair in the climactic battle scene. But Valentien deftly manages the off the leash chaos of Harley Quinn; flitting between playful, psychotic, wrathful and sexy usually in the same scene. A standout scene (that doesn’t include her taking her clothes off) is a confrontation with her ex – The Joker. After trying, kinda, to shoot him in his cell Harley tells the Joker she’s been banging Batman and that Mr. J doesn’t even compare. She goes over the top in describing her pleasure and manages to do something very few can: rattle the hell out of the Joker. Kleio sells it like a boss.
Tommy Pistol taps into his reliable source of improvisational humor to generate a sinister, creepy as fuck Joker that is equal parts Arkham Asylum and Jared Leto minus the offset shenanigans and pretense. The master of chaos thinks he owns Harley till she flips it on him exposing a neurotic freak underneath all his bluster. Tommy looks like he’s having a blast as his energy simmers and explodes and dances around like a thing possessed. Just what you’d want from the Joker.
Anna Bell Peaks looks the perfect Killer Frost; voluptuous and chilly, rocking blue hair and filling her one piece suit with sex. I’ll admit to being extremely biased when it comes to Anna Bell; I’m an… enthusiastic… fan of her work. Playing Killer Frost is a new direction for her (she hasn’t done a lot of Acting with her performing) and she has the charisma to hold her own against the likes of Asa Akira and Kleio. She coaxes Poison Ivy (Katy Kiss doing a pretty good less vampish interpretation) into helping her pump the Riddler for information and… well, it’s porn, you know.
Owen Gray nails the attitude of the Riddler from the Assault on Arkham movie. The Riddler is another character that comes dangerously close to getting in his own way. Gorshin, Carrey, and Cory Michael Smith all go for one degree or another of the manic reading. Even John Glover got kooky. I’m not saying Gray (and by extension Matthew Gray Gubler from Batman:AoA) is better, just different. And different is interesting especially when done as an alternative to the obvious choice. Here is a guy that is confident he’s the smartest dude in the room packaged with an obsessive need to prove it.
Seth Gamble makes the most of what he’s given as Captain Boomerang including a nice hot dust-up with the always beautiful Riley Steele (as Enchantress) and a scene that ends with him getting more than the cold shoulder from Killer Frost.
Asa Akira isn’t given much to do as Kitana except bang Deadshot played with a minimum of presence by Lexington Steele (no relation to Riley as far as I know) and have a scene with Harley at the beginning to kick things off. It’s a shame Asa gets shorted in screen time but she’s in just about every third vivid and/or wicked production. So catch her in something else.
Suicide Squad, the mainstream movie, might be considered a successful failure. By making a lot of smart choices; relying on the charisma and sexiness of its performers, working (ok, adapting) a coherent story, focusing on what can be realistically achieved, and squeezing as much value as possible out of its budget; Suicide Squad the Axel Braun parody satisfies in unexpected ways. It also satisfies in wholly expected ways that include Kleio, Asa and Anna Bell naked.
This is fapdollars well spent.
STUFF TANGENTIALLY RELATED TO THE MAIN ARTICLE BUT COULDN’T BE WORKED IN ORGANICALLY
I’m back sorry I was gone for so long.
I thought that Suicide Squad (mainstream) was just OK. My expectations were dampened considerably once the reviews started rolling in. Still it was no Catwoman for godsake!
Axel’s movies keep a pretty good continuity of actors playing the same characters and storyline from film to film. Just another attention to detail that makes these movies worth the effort.
In a weird turn of serendipity I had actually watched Batman: Assault on Arkham for the first time mere hours before I sat down with Suicide Squad tABP.
In AoA a mope by the name of KGBeast gets his head blown off to show Waller ain’t bluffing. Flagg gets those honors in the parody. Poor Alec Knight doesn’t even get to do porn stuff.
In Batman AoA Harley and Deadshot have a fling as opposed to Batman. She still throws it in Joker’s face but it doesn’t cut as deep.
Axel has had an unprecedented winning streak at the AVNs. Looking at the plethora of noms Suicide Squad has racked up it’s a good bet that streak will continue.
Anna Bell Peaks is currently my favorite performer.
It has nothing to do with her being an accountant before getting into porn but that is a funny aside.
Suicide Squad didn’t have a non-sex version which is out of the ordinary.
It also took me a lot longer to finish watching the parody.
The Killer Frost/Poison Ivy/Riddler scene is one of the reasons I’m ok with not getting a non-sex version of the movie.
Well, glad to be back with a new year and a hell of a lot of parodies backed up. Next up might be some Wood Rocket stuff or should I save the Guardians of the Galaxy parody for closer to Vol:2 coming out?