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The Suicide Squad’s Original Ending Death Would’ve Made The Movie Worse

The Suicide Squad kills off lots of characters, but there was one James Gunn planned to kill and changed his mind, which would’ve made the film worse.

James Gunn’s original ending for The Suicide Squad would’ve seen a different character dying, and their death would’ve made the movie worse as a result. The Suicide Squad has a lot of character deaths; right from the off, it isn’t shy about killing most of the members of the new Task Force X. From the first action sequence up to the final battle against Starro, characters are killed in a variety of ways, with the eponymous team eventually whittled down to just a few survivors.

Many of The Suicide Squad‘s deaths come early on and are designed for a quick impact rather than a lasting one, but Gunn isn’t shy about delivering the occasional gut-punch either. As the film enters the third act, characters that the audience has come to love throughout the film such as Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) and Polka-Dot Man (David Dastmalchian) are offed in particularly emotional moments. But even for the director, there was one character Gunn planned to kill and then couldn’t bring himself to: Ratcatcher 2 (Daniela Melchior).

Related: The Suicide Squad Shows How The DCEU Is Avoiding The MCU’s Limitations

According to Gunn, he originally pitched the ending where Ratcatcher 2 died rather than Polka-Dot Man, but changed his mind because: “She was so sweet, it felt like it was too dark.” It’s a slight surprise that Gunn changed his mind, since he’s never backed away from killing beloved characters even before The Suicide Squad (see: Groot and Yondu in the Guardians of the Galaxy movies), but it was the right choice. Ratcatcher 2 is the very heart of the movie. Despite not being as flashy as Peacemaker or as battle-savvy as Bloodsport, she’s the character that makes it all work. Ratcatcher 2’s clear goodness and sweetness balances out much of the carnage and chaos around her. She’s not only a better person than most members of Task Force X, but she also makes her teammates better as a result (most notably Idris Elba’s Bloodsport). Having her die would’ve been the wrong choice, much more so if her demise were to be as shocking or as gruesome as all the deaths that came before.

Ratcatcher II wielding her light up while surrounded by Starro's infected in James Gunn's The Suicide Squad

In part, that’s simply the nature of The Suicide Squad, but Ratcatcher 2 dying would’ve undermined the more optimistic ending of the movie. There’s always going to be a certain nihilism when there’s a team of the most violent DC villains signing up to be potentially blown up, but Ratcatcher 2’s arc, personality, and backstory are a key factor in balancing that out. It’s through her lens that there’s a necessary sweetness to the movie, and her message about how people see and treat rats (which can then be applied on a much larger scale) gives the movie a degree of morality and rightness too. Ultimately, Ratcatcher 2 offers a greater sense of hope and a path forward to being something better, and killing her off would’ve ruined that.

More recently, James Gunn provided more details about Ratcatcher 2’s death in his original plans for The Suicide Squad. In a new interview with CinemaBlendhe revealed that “Waller blew up her head” after she successfully smuggled the information about Project Starfish. He also described how Bloodsport would end up shooting Waller in the heart with a combustible bullet” in retaliation. These new details add a new layer of chaos to Gunn’s cut material, but even though the chaotic nature of The Suicide Squad was a big part of what helped the movie succeed, there’s always a point where it’s simply too much. The movie’s surprisingly sweet moments balanced out the violence perfectly and gave the story more spirit than anybody expected. In the same interview with Cinemablend, James Gunn admitted that Bloodsport petting the rat… that, to me, was the perfect ending for the movie.” After Task Force X’s grueling battle against Starro and among themselves, ending the movie on a high note was undeniably an appropriate conclusion.

Ratcatcher 2 dying would’ve been a case of shock impact over narrative; that’s not to say Polka-Dot Man was a bad character, but a heroic death very clearly fits his entire arc and what he’s been through far more than it would’ve done Ratcatcher 2. If any of the team deserved to live it was her, and while killing a beloved character can work because it hurts more, in this case, it’s hard to imagine what it would’ve added to the story. The Suicide Squad is already gory, bloodthirsty, and sadistic, gleefully killing people off, but it all tonally fits the weird, wild, and yet somewhat loveable tone that Gunn pulls off, whereas Ratcatcher 2’s death would’ve simply felt cruel, casting a cloud over everything around it.

Next: The Suicide Squad: King Shark Didn’t Have A Bomb – Theory Explained

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