In our latest "Where to Start" we will take a look at DC's dirty dozen: Task Force X, better known by it's nickname "Suicide Squad". To get you good and ready for the movie we will do a quick look at the history of the team and then follow up with a few lists of current and classic stories every DC villains fan should check out!
The Suicide Squad has been a long standing element in the DC universe. The first version of it appeared in 1959's "The Brave and the Bold #25", but the real Squad as we know it today was actually created by John Ostrander in 1987's comic "Legends #2".
The Squad, or Task Force X which is the official name, is a government program that forces incarcerated super villains from Belle Reve Penitentiary to go on black ops missions in which the government wants full deniability... and what is a better way out of a failed mission than just blaming it on escaped super villains?
Led by warden Amanda Waller and outfitted with mirco bombs implanted in their necks, the changing members of the Squad are getting dropped into suicide missions, with the odds always stacked firmly against them and they almost never come home with the whole team alive.
Maybe some of you hope that Joker is a member of the Squad, but he only works against them in some stories, like he will in the film as well. His connection with the Squad is more about his connection with Harley herself.
The movie version of the Squad will primarily draw its influences from the New 52 incarnation of the Squad, where Harley Quinn was first introduced as a regular member. So for people interested in Harley and the modern team, the New 52 version is the best place to start Keep an eye out on King Shark (now best known from his appearances on he Flash TV show), he is hilarious:
The first New 52 Suicide Squad storyline will then be followed up by the "New Suicide Squad" here, which still features main characters Harley and Deadshot, but also a few new members:
For a few side stories with some of the Squad members you can get these:
If you love the concept of DC bad guys working together in a team, I would also recommend the great "Secret Six" stories. It features a group of super villains (Deadshot, Catman and Bane among others) teaming up to be a mercenary team for hire. It is very in the spirit of the Suicide Squad, but in a more darkly comedic take written by Gail Simone.
There is also a New 52 incarnation of that team but without Deadshot (because he is part of the Suicide Squad again):
BONUS: Check out the amazing animated movie "Batman: Assault on Arkham" to see a really cool Suicide Squad film, before the live action movie hits theatres! Batman only features in a smaller way into this. This is a Batman movie in name only, as the Squad is the actual focus of the film. It also has Joker facing off against the Squad, who has to get something incredibly dangerous from Arkham Asylum and is based on the Arkham videogame universe. Very worth a watch:
If you wanna have a look at the classic Suicide Squad stuff, take a look below.
At first there is the original Squad form the late 50s/early 60s:
For the original John Ostrander run of the first "real" Suicide Squad, you can check that out here:
With Suicide Squad coming closer and closer now, we also have a huge selection of amazing Suicide Squad related merchandise, which you can check out below and on archonia.com