James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad was a massive hit for the DCEU and has been lauded by both fans and critics alike. The film has several breakout characters, with John Cena’s Peacemaker being one of them. The character has entered the spotlight also because he’s going to star in his own spin-off TV series and to honor that, we have decided to tell you everything you need to know about the Peacemaker’s helmet.
Peacemaker’s helmet is an oddly shaped chrome helmet that he constantly wears. It hides his identity and is also bulletproof, thereby protecting his head and face. In the comics, it is also able to fire a sonic boom that deafens those affected by it.
The rest of this article is going to explore the Peacemaker’s helmet as an object and as a weapon. It is a relatively well-known piece of DC equipment, although it is not as notable as some of Batman’s gadgets of the Lantern Rings, for example. We have gathered all the available information and we are going to present them in the article.
Why Does Peacemaker Have a Helmet?
The Christopher Smith iteration of the Peacemaker that appeared in Gunn’s The Suicide Squad is also the most famous iteration of the character to date. In order to fully explain the meaning of his helmet, we first have to say something about the character, as he is not one of DC’s most famous villains.
Christopher Smith is in reality a pacifist diplomat so committed to peace that he was willing to use force as a superhero to further the cause. He first appeared in Fightin’ 5 #40 (1966), created by Joe Gill and Pat Boyette. Several other characters took on the mantle later, but they are not important at the moment.
Peacemaker is mentally ill. He believes that the spirit of his father continually haunts him and criticizes his every move, even when he tries to live out his past.
For a time, Peacemaker served as an agent of the United States government under the auspices of Checkmate, a special forces unit, who hunts down terrorists until his own behavior becomes too extreme. He finally crashes a helicopter to destroy the tanks controlled by the supervillain Eclipso and is reported dead.
At one point, his soul appears in the kingdom of Purgatory in the Day of Judgment series. A team of heroes has appeared to recruit the soul of Hal Jordan. The guardians of Purgatory don’t like this and Peacemaker, along with other dead vigilantes, rallies and provides enough distraction for the group to be able to return to Earth.
Peacemaker later appears in the Watchmen sequel, Doomsday Clock, participating in the battle on Mars against Doctor Manhattan. Peacemaker later returns as a member of the Suicide Squad, breaking into Arkham Asylum to bring in The Talon a few minutes before the Joker Incident.
By becoming a particularly deadly vigilante who would kill at the slightest warning, he begins to believe that the ghosts of the people he killed, or who were killed in his vicinity, are gathered inside his helmet and can offer him advice and comments.
He uses a variety of non-lethal special weapons and also founds the Pax Institute. Most of the villains he faces are dictators and warlords. Smith later learns that his efforts for peace through violence were the result of a serious mental illness caused by the shame of having a Nazi death camp commander for his father.
The Purpose and Meaning of Peacemaker’s Helmet
As you can see, Peacemaker’s helmet is both a utensil and is connected to his mental illness, as we have explained in the text above. The main purpose of the helmet is, of course, the protection of Christopher Smith, both his identity and his head.
The helmet is, as we have gathered, made out of a strong metal, revealed to be chrome in The Suicide Squad, while the comics never truly specified it.
The second obvious reason for it is the protection of Peacemaker’s head. Namely, such a strong metallic helmet is bound to protect his head from physical harm and even bullets. Sure, he does leave some open spots, but you can’t really put one in his head, right?
These two main aspects actually make some sense, as they are in line with the general idea of a superhero mask; they protect both the character’s identity and their head from injuries.
In the comic books, the helmet also has an offensive aspect that has not been explored in the DCEU yet. Namely, the helmet can fire a strong sonic boom that can deafen – albeit momentarily – those who are affected by it.
The helmet is, as we’ve established, also tied to his mental illness. Peacemaker is severely ill and he uses that illness to his advantage, as it makes him unpredictable. Still, the guy actually believes that his victims are gathering in his helmet and are communicating with him and tormenting him.
There’s also one additional aspect of his helmet that we’d like to discuss, and that is the design. In the movie, Gunn put a dove symbol (a symbol of peace) on the helmet, which had a symbolic meaning for Smith, while in the original comic books, the helmet had no such symbol; the dove symbol was actually part of Peacemaker’s costume and was conveniently positioned on his chest.
Gunn kept that aspect in the movie, but also added the symbol on the helmet.