The first three episodes of Peacemaker made their debut on Thursday, showcasing a whole new corner of the DC Comics universe. In addition to continuing the story of Christopher Smith / Peacemaker (John Cena), the series features a number of surprising characters, many of whom have ties to the pages of DC. Among them is Adrian Chase / Vigilante (Freddie Stroma), a fellow antihero who views Peacemaker as his best friend, and who has a violent outlook about the world. If the first three episodes are any indication, Peacemaker‘s approach to Vigilante is a lot more lighthearted than Adrian Chase might traditionally be portrayed in the comics — and while speaking to ComicBook.com ahead of the series premiere, Stroma acknowledged as much.
“Basically, I realized pretty early on that this is a departure from the Adrian Chase that the DC world knows,” Stroma explained in our interview, which you can check out below. “My brother’s actually given me fifty Vigilante comics. I’m on #12 right now, and I can’t draw any comparisons. This is a completely different character. So, I knew that research into Adrian is more out of respect for the character. As for the actual playing of the role, it’s what was on the page that James wrote. It’s a completely different character. So that’s kind of the direction I went in with that.”
Given the nature of the DC universe, as well as Peacemaker creator James Gunn hoping to do additional seasons of the series, there’s always the question of whether or not Vigilante could more closely resemble his comic counterpart in later appearances.
“I don’t know,” Stroma explained. “There would have to be some serious changes, just from the Vigilante I played, with his morals. At least with Adrian, and what I really loved about the first comics is just his — maybe this is in a lot of comics, and I’m new to this, but just the whole struggle with the role of being a vigilante. ‘Should you be judge, jury, and executioner?’ Or Electrocutioner, which I read not too long ago. And where he stands on that. He’s constantly asking these questions of, ‘What is justice?’ I don’t think the Vigilante I’m playing has entered any of those conversations. So I don’t know. Maybe. Who knows? I don’t know.”
Peacemaker stars Cena, Danielle Brooks as Leota Adebayo, Robert Patrick as Auggie Smith, Jennifer Holland as Emilia Harcourt, Steve Agee as John Economos, Christopher Heyerdahl as Captain Locke, Chukwudi Iwuji as Clemson Murn, Lochlyn Munro as Larry Fitzgibbon, Annie Chang as Sophie Song, Elizabeth Faith Ludlow as Keeya, and Rizwan Manji as Jamil.
New episodes of Peacemaker debut on Thursdays exclusively on HBO Max.