HBO Max Rips Off John Byrne and Marvel For Suicide Squad's Peacemaker

In a surprise move, HBO Max announced a TV spinoff prequel series for Suicide Squad, namely Peacemaker, starring John Cena, reprising his role from the movie. And they used this image to do promote the series' existence.

HBO Max Rips Off John Byrne and Marvel For Suicide Squad's Peacemaker
Peacemaker promo key art (Image: WarnerMedia)

But it was a rather familiar face to some, and one that Bleeding Cool reader Andrew Czekalski recognised immediately. He tipped off Bleeding Cool, it's from a headshot of Captain America drawn by John Byrne for Marvel Comics.

HBO Max Rips Off John Byrne and Marvel For Suicide Squad's Peacemaker
Ca[ptain America art by John Byrne.
Man, don't HBO Max have their own comic book artwork from DC Comics? Can't they use some actual artwork from Peacemaker comic books? Or Suicide Squad?

UPDATE: On his message boards, Byrne has replied "They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and I have been flattered punishingly hard over the years."

Here's more on the show.

"Peacemaker is an opportunity to delve into current world issues through the lens of this superhero/supervillain/and world's biggest douchebag," Said Gunn. "I'm excited to expand The Suicide Squad and bring this character from the DC film universe to the full breadth of a series. And of course, to be able to work again with John, Peter, and my friends at Warner Bros. is the icing on the cake." Gunn and The Suicide Squad producer Peter Safran will serve as executive producers, with Cena as co-executive producer. Peacemaker will be produced by Gunn's Troll Court Entertainment and The Safran Company in association with Warner Bros. Television. The project is scheduled to begin production in early 2021, prior to Gunn's work on Marvel Studios' next Guardians of the Galaxy film.

Peacemaker will explore the origins of the character that Cena will play in the upcoming film, a man who believes in peace at any cost — no matter how many people he has to kill to get it. "I have said before that it has been a tremendous honor and an incredible opportunity to be part of The Suicide Squad and to work with James on what is going to be a fantastic movie," said Cena. "I am unbelievably excited to have the chance to team up with him again for Peacemaker. We can't wait for fans to see this."

About Rich Johnston

Founder of Bleeding Cool. The longest-serving digital news reporter in the world, since 1992. Author of The Flying Friar, Holed Up, The Avengefuls, Doctor Who: Room With A Deja Vu, The Many Murders Of Miss Cranbourne, Chase Variant. Lives in South-West London, works from Blacks on Dean Street, shops at Piranha Comics. Father of two. Political cartoonist.

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