After what was a relatively slow episode last week, Episode 5 picks up the destructive energy Episodes 1-3 had, as Peacemaker (John Cena) and company investigate and infiltrate a bottling factory where it is believed the butterflies’ food is made.
The team is initially very divided, with Peacemaker still sore that John Economos (Steve Agee), the team’s tech guy, put his father, August (Robert Patrick), in prison. Vigilante (Freddie Stroma) is also officially a full-time part of the team. When it’s time to take the facility out, Peacemaker is paired with Adebayo (Danielle Brooks), whom he vibes with and is the only member of the team he trusts, and Harcourt (Jennifer Holland) goes in with Vigilante, while Economos stays behind in the van coordinating everyone.
Without spoiling the episode, Economos comes in clutch, and earns back the respect of the team, and their success serves as a major bonding moment. For the first time since the show started, the team is really starting to come together, which will no doubt be key going forward as we learn the full extent of the butterfly threat and who the true villain of Season 1 is (Is it Waller? Clemson Murn? August? Someone we haven’t met yet?).
August also gets significant screen time this episode, as he tries to convince Detective Sophie Song (Annie Chang) and her partner, Larry Fitzgibbon (Lochlyn Munro), that his fingerprints do not match what was found on the crime scene. Murn’s associate, Caspar Locke (Christopher Heyerdahl), gets installed as their new chief and tries to shut it down, but the episode ends with Song going over his head to get a search warrant for Peacemaker. Based on the preview for next episode, it seems like this will lead to a tense standoff.
Overall, Episode 5 feels like it was able to recapture the show’s momentum it lost a little of in Episode 4. With only three more episodes left, it feels like — and I really hope — like we’re about to go down a rollercoaster where James Gunn was allowed to do just about whatever he wanted. And that’s really what makes Peacemaker special — the amount of creative freedom that Gunn was given, and how he uses it to constantly subvert your expectations.
It makes it really difficult to put “Peacemaker” the show in a box. On one hand, it’s a crude, R-rated comedy. On another, it’s a dramatic comic book show with plenty of action. It’s silly and ridiculous, yet it has an emotional core because, while its characters are ridiculous, they take themselves seriously. But I can undoubtedly say that it’s unique.
“Peacemaker” Season 1: Episode 5 “Monkey Dory” gets an 8.5/10