James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad has become a major hit for the DCEU, likewise praised by both fans and critics. Several characters appear in it and we have already talked about some of them here, comparing them to other characters from the same or a different universe. One of them, Peacemaker, is played by John Cena, who – in a behind-the-scenes trailer – described his character to “be like a douchey Captain America”. This, of course, sparked a debate online and we at Fiction Horizon decided to settle the score. Enjoy!
Although Peacemaker and Captain America have a similar array of powers, Captain America would win this one. This is because he has superhuman strength, better weapons and more experience, while Peacemaker is just a regular human diplomat-turned-mercenary.
Our comparison is going to be divided into three sections. The first is going to bring an overview of the two characters, after which we are going to compare their powers, including their signature weapons. Finally, we’re going to bring you a detailed analysis of the two characters to determine which one would win in a direct clash.
Peacemaker and his powers
Peacemaker, at least the first iteration of the character, is Christopher Smith, 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.
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.
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. 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.
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.
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.
Captain America and his powers
Captain America, whose real name is Steven Grant “Steve” Rogers, is a fictional comic book character created by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby in 1941 for Timely Comics, which later became Marvel Comics. Initially created as a propaganda character during the Second World War, “Cap” was immediately a great success (the first issue of the series sold almost a million copies and the following ones remained on these levels, surpassing magazines such as Time) and became the publisher’s most popular character.
His popularity dropped after the war, which led to his in-universe disappearance for several years, until he was reinvented as a proper superhero, without any propaganda elements.
During the Second World War, the young Steve Rogers wanted to enlist to serve his homeland in war. Discarded on the draft visit due to his frail physique, he was allowed to participate in a secret experiment called “Project: Rebirth”, aimed at creating an army of super soldiers. Through a chemical preparation made by Dr. Abraham Erskine, Rogers’ physical and mental condition was enormously developed.
The death of the inventor of the trial, killed by an infiltrated Nazi spy, meant that Steve Rogers remained the only person to take advantage of the benefits of the super soldier serum, thus becoming a unique specimen. Enlisted for secret missions beyond enemy lines, the meek Steve Rogers thus became Captain America, wearing a stars and stripes costume that explicitly resembled the American flag.
Initially, he was provided with a triangular-rectangle shield always in theme with his uniform, but later he replaced it with a circular one, practically indestructible, given to him by President Roosevelt himself. Steve learned to use the shield as a defense and attack weapon, which soon became the symbol of the hero all over the world.
As a symbol to counter the rise of the Hitler Youth, the government gave him a young “sidekick” named James Buchanan Barnes, better known as Bucky. Towards the end of the war, Cap and Bucky travel to Great Britain to stop Baron Zemo, a Nazi scientist who is there with the task of bombing London by a V2; the two heroes are unable to prevent it from taking off but launch in pursuit: the plane explodes while it was flying over the English Channel, and Cap crashes into the sea trying to divert its course, while Bucky dies in the explosion.
In the sixties Steve Rogers comes back to life thanks to the involuntary help of Namor who, still furious with the Avengers after the defeat suffered by allying with the Hulk, goes to the Arctic Ocean, where he finds Eskimos bowing in front of a block of ice, believing it to be a totem pole.
Namor, who considers the gesture outrageous, becomes furious and throws the iceberg away. The block begins to thaw under the effect of the hot currents, revealing a man inside in a state of suspended animation.
Giant-Man manages to grab the man and drag him into the Avengers submarine, where they identify him as Captain America, surviving thanks to the super soldier’s serum, which had prevented the crystallization of organic fluids. Steve Rogers thus becomes part of the group of heroes, of which he becomes one of the recognized leaders.
Comparing the powers of Peacemaker and Captain America
Our second section will contain a comparison of the two characters’ powers. It won’t be a direct comparison as much as a listing of their powers abilities, which is going to serve as a basis for our analysis in section three of our article. Now, let us begin.
When powers are concerned, Peacemaker is, pretty much, a regular guy. He’s something like Batman in that aspect, a character at the peak of his abilities, but not a superhuman or a metahuman. He doesn’t really have any special powers, but he is very strong, very durable, and has an array of different weapons at his disposal. He also uses body armor, a flight pack, a communications helmet, and a variety of different, yet advanced military weapons.
Firstly, Captain America’s battle experience and training make him an expert tactician and an excellent field commander, as his teammates frequently respect his orders in battle. Rogers’ senses and reflexes are remarkably keen. He has mixed Aikido, Boxing, Judo, Karate, Jujutsu, Kickboxing, and gymnastics in his own unique fighting style and is a master of multiple martial arts.
Years of practice with his nearly indestructible shield allow him to aim and throw it with near-unerring precision. His ability with his shield is such that he can attack multiple targets in succession with a single throw or even trigger a boomerang, such as a return of a throw to attack an enemy from behind. Instead, other skilled combatants regard him as one of the best melee combatants in the Marvel Universe, limited only by his human physique.
Although the super soldier’s serum is an important part of his strength, Rogers has shown himself still capable enough against stronger opponents, even when the serum has been deactivated reverting him to his pre-Captain America physique.
A simple overview of these characters’ powers reveals that they are, in a lot of ways, similar and that they rely on the same types of powers. Still, as far as it stands from this short comparison, Captain America seems to have the advantage here. Let us test that.
Peacemaker vs Captain America: Who would win?
And now for the most important and interesting section of our article – the analysis. Here, we are going to use what we have found out about these two characters and analyze how all these facts would (or would not) help them in a fight against each other. Let us continue.
In terms of their powers and abilities, we have already deduced that the Peacemaker and Captain America are quite similar. In that aspect, John Cena’s comment about Peacemaker being a “douchey Captain America” makes a lot of sense. They both fight for the same values, but while Peacemaker has no limits and is basically a potential mass murderer, Captain America has important ideals and he tends to act in accordance with them.
Still, while they both rely on very similar powers and abilities, the levels of their powers are quite different. Namely, Captain America has superhuman powers he received through the super soldier serum. He doesn’t have any special non-human abilities, but his physical abilities have been increased to superhuman levels. On the other hand, Peacemaker is just at the peak of human conditioning and has no additional powers. He is a better marksman than Captain America, but Cap’s shield would be more than enough to deflect Peacemaker’s bullets.
This comparison is a pretty easy one, as Captain America is clearly the more powerful among the two. That is why we declare Cap the winner in this one, but John Cena’s comment is still spot on!
And that’s it for today. We hope you had fun reading this and that we have given you all the information you were looking for. See you next time and don’t forget to follow us!