“Suicide Squad” Was Tested On “Arrow” First

A few years ago the second and arguably best season of The CW’s “Arrow” put the focus on Slade Wilson/Deathstroke (Manu Bennett) and his vendetta against Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) which saw a city under siege and key characters brutally killed.

One of the side plots though was the introduction of both Amanda Waller (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) and the Suicide Squad. That version considered a different line-up than this year’s film – Deadshot (Michael Rowe), Bronze Tiger (Michael Jai White) and Shrapnel (Sean Maher). Captain Boomerang (Nick E. Tarabay) did pop up later, and there was an amusing cameo by Harley Quinn in one scene.

Then, within a year, they were all pretty much killed off with the widely reported rumor being that Warners’ film division ordered it because they didn’t want confusion with David Ayer’s film. In a new interview with Vulture, “Arrow” executive producer Greg Berlanti talked about The CW’s DC universe of which he was a key architect and the DCEU links.

The most revealing quotes revolve around the Suicide Squad on the show. While Berlanti doesn’t confirm or deny the dismantling of the squad report, he does indicate it was the film guys who actually suggested they use the Squad in the first place to test the waters:

“They said to us a year and a half before they started developing Suicide Squad, ‘Will you guys put [a version of] the Suicide Squad in your show? Because we want to have it as a film at some point.’ It also happened with Geoff [Johns, DC Comics president] when Geoff and Andrew [Kreisberg] and I were creating ‘Flash’. They were both really huge fans of Cisco Ramon, [also known as] Vibe. I had written a Vibe comic [in 2013] to try and bring him back. They said, ‘Could we please have Vibe on the show?'”

He was also asked how much attention they pay to what Marvel’s doing with its shows and films, to which Berlanti says they do talk about how they show superpowers:

“For instance, we were in the middle of postproduction on Flash when Bryan Singer did that sequence with Quicksilver. We were talking about that in terms of our version of Flash.”

Finally came one surprise reveal – back in 2005, Berlanti pitched an “Iron Man” film which was much darker than the Jon Favreau-helmed version we got:

“There was that movie with Nic Cage where he’s a gunrunner. Lord of War. Marvel wanted that feeling. Tony [Stark] was an alcoholic in it by then. My pitch certainly wasn’t as good as the eventual film. So everyone made the right choice.”

You can read the full interview over on Vulture.