Suicide Squad comes out in less than a month, so we're diving into the comic book history of its main characters to prepare for their live-action adventure and discover some of their essential storylines. Here's everything you need to know about the mastermind behind it all: Amanda "The Wall" Waller.
Who Is Amanda Waller?
Amanda Waller is an unyielding, high-level U.S. Government agent who is perhaps best known for her role in A.R.G.U.S. (Advanced Research Group Uniting Super-Humans), overseeing Belle Reve prison and running Task Force X. This task force, also given the street name of the Suicide Squad, is a team of supervillains running clandestine missions for the government in exchange for reduced prison sentences.
She has also had a hand in a handful of other teams: Checkmate, Agency, the Shadow Fighters, and the Secret Six. Universally feared, Waller is one of the most ruthless women in espionage and politics. With a noticeable rivalry between her and the Batman, their relationship is made up of the bitterness they have for each others' methods of executing the job at hand.
After her family was murdered, Waller went on to receive her doctorate in political science and became a congressional aide during which time she first heard about the two early incarnations of the Suicide Squad. Taking components from each of those teams, this hardened warden of Belle Reve prison proposed to the White House the third incarnation that was approved and she was put in charge of running.
The Many Faces Of Amanda Waller
Not only has this character been reimagined in the comics when DC's New 52 released, but Amanda Waller may have had more screen time than any of DC's villains short of the Joker and Lex Luthor. She's been in animated form for Justice League Unlimited, Young Justice, along with other animated movie adaptations — not to mention video games and web series. More impressively, she has also had three live-action incarnations: Smallville, Green Lantern, and Arrow, which makes her appearance in Suicide Squad the fourth live-action version of this character.
Each time we see Waller, be it in comics or on screen, we get a variety of differences from acting as a savage government dictator to more of a soldier that isn't afraid to get her hands dirty. While much of what the movie will be pulling from is directly from the comics, you can be sure that Viola Davis and David Ayers will have their own take on the character.
Major Storylines For Amanda Waller
Even outside of the must-read Suicide Squad titles, Amanda Waller is a heavy presence in the DC Universe. While Checkmate Volume 2 Issue 1 gives us a bit of background info on Waller, Suicide Squad: Amanda Waller Issue 1 — a tale that takes place before Suicide Squad Volume 4 Issue 24 —is a story line called "Sacrifices in the Storm" in which Waller is stripped of the groups formerly at her disposal. When a life threatening enemy comes knocking at her door, she is forced to stop him all by herself, proving how lethal she is both physically and strategically.
Suicide Squad is in theaters August 5.