January Official DC Book Club: Peacemaker '87!

The new year is in full swing, and it’s time for the DC Book Club to make its 2022 debut! With HBO Max’s Peacemaker recently kicking off, it only made sense for the DC Book Club to follow suit…let’s give peace a chance!

That’s right: this month is all about Peacemaker! From January 17th to February 11th, we’ll be diving into the 4-issue Peacemaker '87 Series! The series is FREE to read for all registered DCUI members, so give them a read and join the discussions in this thread!

Read as Peacemaker takes on hordes of baddies across Europe, and confront some of his deepest demons. Will our peace-loving vigilante hero come out on top? Only one way to find out…


For this Book Club, we’ll be going through each book week by week:

Peacemaker 1
Jan. 17-23

Peacemaker 2
Jan. 24-30

Peacemaker 3
Jan. 31-Feb. 6

Peacemaker 4
Feb. 7-13

Here are some thought starter/discussion questions to kick things off!

Peacemaker 1 Discussion Questions
  1. What is your opinion on Peacemaker’s “kill to keep the peace” approach to fighting terrorism? Do you think the tradeoff is worth the resulting sense of peace?

  2. How do you feel about Peacemaker’s relationship with his father? How do you think his father’s past influenced the way Peacemaker executes his missions?

  3. Can Peacemaker ever truly do penance for the crimes of his father? Is this endeavor worthwhile, or folly?

  4. Do you think Peacemaker can overcome his inner demons, and strengthen himself to be a better soldier? Do you agree with Dr. Bridgette D’ Abo that he is “an accident waiting to happen”?

  5. How do you feel about Peacemaker’s struggle with living up to perceptions? Is this relatable at all?

Peacemaker 2 Discussion Questions
  1. What was your perception of Peacemaker before you started reading the series? Has it changed?
  2. Do you think that Peacemaker uses the ghost of his father as a scapegoat to avoid the guilt of killing to make peace?
  3. How do you think so many co-ordinated terrorist attacks across the globe would be received in modern day instead of the late 80s?
  4. What purpose do you think the regular ‘umms’ and ‘ahhs’ from Dr. Lyton serve in the comic?
  5. The excerpt at the back of the issue mentions that there were actually 2 members of the Peacemaker program left when it was finally deactivated. Do you think this story would be improved or spoiled if Peacemaker had the other member of the program as his partner?
Peacemaker 3 Discussion Questions
  1. In the early pages of Peacemaker #3, it seems as though our hero consistently struggles with external dialogue distracting him as he fights–particularly when the dialogue has to do with his “performance” and how he is perceived in combat. How/why do you think Peacemaker struggles with his self-image? Do you think this is a weakness of his?

  2. Overall, do you think Peacemaker’s vision of his father is helping fuel his desire to fight terrorism? Or do you think this is a truly a curse, that will only impede his fight for peace?

  3. During one particular “conversation” with his father, Peacemaker seems to struggle with the idea that his father is actually a figment of his imagination. What do you think is Peacemaker’s perception of this vision?

  4. It seems like the stigma around suicide is a key element of this series’ plot development. Why do you think Peacemaker struggles so much with that stigma, in regards to his father?

  5. In the final pages of this issue, Peacemaker is called a “madman”, and seems to cackle maniacally as he kills an enemy. Do you think Peacemaker is indeed a madman? Has he lost his grip on reality?

BONUS QUESTION: If you’ve been watching HBO’s Peacemaker show, how do you think the on-screen character compares to Peacemaker in this series?

Peacemaker 4 Discussion Questions
  1. We see that Peacemaker continues to struggle with the hallucination of his late father by his side. During one of these conversations, Wolfgang “reminds” Peacemaker that he has just as big a part in this war as those he’s fighting against. Do you think that this particular bit of conversation derives from Peacemaker casting doubt on his own role? Is he truly an icon of peace at this point, still hoping to be the hero that saves the day, or has the mental torment triggered a response to execute mercilessly in hopes of quelling Wolfgang’s dialogue by any means possible?
  2. Do you think Peacemaker is haunted by these visions because he craves his father’s attention on him in any way he can, which is why Wolfgang wasn’t necessarily expelled when he “jumped” from the plane? Moreover, do you think Peacemaker is still trying to prove to his father that he can make him proud, or is it more so that he’s trying to prove him wrong?
  3. On page 12, we see a man dead on the ground with a collapsed sign that reads “PEACE” while Peacemaker shouts “I’ll give them death … more than any of them bargained for!” and guns down the surrounding soldiers. How do you feel about this clashing imagery? Additionally, by “avenging” them, do you believe Peacemaker is contributing to the protestor’s wishes for real peace?
  4. Do you believe that Peacemaker is aware that his father’s ghost still looms in the back of his mind, or does it seem more like Wolfgang is creating a completely different persona in Peacemaker’s conscience when he’s shown to be toasting to the thought of them being “reunited”?
  5. Overall, it’s implied that Peacemaker may have depended on this psychosis to aid him in carrying out his mission as “No sane man could’ve done what had to be done out there.” Do you think this relates to Peacemaker’s hesitation to perform certain contract kills in the HBO series as he may yet be too “sane”? Would you consider the latter a desperation to cling to his humanity?

As always, what would a DC Book Club be without some awesome digital perks? Check out these awesome Peacemaker wallpapers and bookmarks!

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Printable Bookmarks


Can’t get enough Peacemaker? Show off your peace-loving style with EXCLUSIVE Peacemaker merch and apparel! Head over to the DC Shop, and upgrade your wardrobe!

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Wonder if John Cena ever heard of Peacemaker before he ever got the part. I sure didn’t! :slightly_smiling_face:

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Same here - and I hope he gets asked that on Podly: The Official Peacemaker Podcast if he is a guest later this season.

Since the only knowledge of the character I have is from The Suicide Squad, Peacemaker and the recent Suicide Squad run that has him involved this will be a fun trip back to the 80s to read some of the classic Peacemaker tales with all y’all. Inspired by the soundtrack of Peacemaker I might have to put on some hair metal/sleaze metal while I read these. I think The Quireboys sounds about right!

Looking forward to this and forgive me if I can’t wait until January 17th to start. I’m off to read Peacemaker 1 now!

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I’m so elated to hear that it’s called “Podly”. :joy:

I’m also on board with you and @Reaganfan78 – I only know him from the movie, so I’m excited to dive into this too!

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I am sorry, and no offense… but I don’t think I can read this garbage again.

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This is on my to-read list! I’ll try to read along with everyone, but I’m in like 3 different comics right now lol

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you didn’t like it?

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Nay. Find the 5 or so Charlton issues from the 60’s. Those are weird, but cool in their way.

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I had heard of and sort of read him before The Suicide Squad, but more by what he influenced than anything.

For those that don’t know, when Alan Moore was first thinking up Watchmen, it was originally going to use the characters from Charlton Comics. But DC asked him not to use the characters, because they had just acquired the rights to the characters and wanted to introduce them into the main DC Universe and felt that would be harder to do with Moore deconstructing them. So Moore opted to make original characters that were heavily influenced by these Charleton characters, and the character that was going to be Peacemaker became The Comedian.

We would later get a version of that story in Multiversity. One of the stories in that series, Pax Americana, was Grant Morrison doing a Watchmen style story with the original Charleton characters, including Peacemaker.

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Oh, and looking forward to reading this mini – I’ve been wanting to since the release of TSS, but it’ll help to talk about it with everyone. :slight_smile:

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Just got done reading issue #1 and…that was something! Quite the departure from the goofy, violent oaf we’ve come to know and love in recent months. So much to digest and discuss - looking forward to this starting on Monday.

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Glad you enjoyed the first read–definitely looking forward to discussing this one as well!

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Not that big a fan of Pax Americana but the direction of the comic is off the charts

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  1. I’m ok with it if he’s doing that to fight terrorism. Honestly, is it any different than the objective of the militaries around the world? What is the role of the military if not to defend the peace of their nation and citizens at any cost? Look at the actions the United States military have taken around the world to protect the peace on their soil or for their allies. Ultimately, if you know someone is intent on killing innocent people then I’m ok with you stopping that person at any cost.

But that gets to another issue - you then become a killer and “innocent people” is subjective so is someone then justified for stopping you from killing people you feel you are justified in killing!

  1. Not knowing anything about Peacemaker’s father before the show, and certainly not knowing this version of events…yikes! To have a father that was a Nazi officer during World War II, to have him be responsible for the execution of over 50,000 people AND to have him be considered someone who took pleasure in what he did…YIKES!

Despite this it appears that Christopher loved his father and seeing his Dad kill himself, knowing why he did so and having that be end of the relationship - it’s obvious that it continues to impact him and his father is essentially a partner in his missions. He’s conducting himself in an attempt to please his father despite it being clear that his father is nothing more than a distorted echo in his head which will never be satisfied OR will only be satisfied when Peacemaker becomes the same level of monster that he was, which would destroy Christopher for becoming the man he reviles.

It’s a very complex relationship because clearly he loved his dad and looked up to him. Like all children he is desperate for his parents approval and by seeing his dad die when he was just five Christopher was placed in a state of arrested development, emotionally, in his relationship with his dad and he’s still there today.

  1. Yes he can, but not in this way. If he’s going to approach his work as “peace, at any cost” and literally killing people to keep the peace he’s nothing more than repeating what his dad did. His dad killed people for a cause he believed in and Christopher is doing the same.

Is it a worthwhile endeavor - absolutely. But he’s taking the wrong approach. He needs to have a strict no kill policy in his missions and he needs to, like Hawkman in the Robert Venditti storyline, save as many lives as his father took. That’s a worthwhile endeavor but that’s not what Peacemaker is doing.

  1. He can but, again, he’s going about it the wrong way. He needs to undergo psychological therapy, knowingly, and dedicate himself to improving. He needs to vow to never kill another person. This would all prevent him from becoming a better soldier in any military on earth but he’d be a better human.

Dr. Bridgette D’ Abo is 100% correct. This guy is a powder keg and the fuse is not only lit, there’s hardly any fuse left. The guy has a perverted version of a Nazi officer in his head during every mission and he’s conducting himself to try and please that voice. Then, when he’s done, he beats himself up about not being there earlier, not being better and lamenting the lives lost even if they weren’t his fault.

He’s going to snap and it’s going to be ugly. I’m guessing we won’t have to wait long to see it.

  1. His struggle is relatable to almost all of us. We’re all our harshest critic and few things hurt more than disappointing the people you love. For Christopher he is trying to live up to an impossible ideal and he cannot forgive himself for his past actions, he fears turning into his father and yet his attempts to distance himself and redeem himself only make him closer to his father.

I feel for Christopher in this story. He’s a sympathetic character who is being manipulated by people who are exploiting his scars for their interests. They took a broken man and made him the worst possible version of himself for their objective and he not only doesn’t realize that he thinks they’re trying to help him. It’s tragic and his struggle to live up to the expectations he places on himself is absolutely relatable.

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Peacemaker 1, just finished it.

  1. What is your opinion on Peacemaker’s “kill to keep the peace” approach to fighting terrorism? Do you think the tradeoff is worth the resulting sense of peace?

Unfortunately it is the method that is tried and true in this world of ours, a strong military keeps the peace, or you have to fight those who are not interested in keeping the peace, so not just his motto, but most of the Western Worlds motto.

  1. How do you feel about Peacemaker’s relationship with his father? How do you think his father’s past influenced the way Peacemaker executes his missions?

It’s messed up, but understandably so, after seeing your loving father commit suicide and then to have to live with it along with the pressure placed on by his fathers past deeds. I think it tends to lead him to believe that violence is the best option and a dead opponent is the best solution.

  1. Can Peacemaker ever truly do penance for the crimes of his father? Is this endeavor worthwhile, or folly?

No one can do penance for another’s acts, especially if that person is dead. Any endeavor where you try to help others and promote a better world is worthwhile, wether this method is worthwhile is a different question.

  1. Do you think Peacemaker can overcome his inner demons, and strengthen himself to be a better soldier? Do you agree with Dr. Bridgette D’ Abo that he is “an accident waiting to happen”?

No by entering into a world of violence, all he does his reinforce his inner demons, and yes, I do believe based on the path he has chosen, he is a ticking bomb so to speak.

  1. How do you feel about Peacemaker’s struggle with living up to perceptions? Is this relatable at all?
    I think it is a struggle we all face whether we try to live up to others or self imposed perceptions. I think it is one of the easiest ways to make a character relatable in a short time period.
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Solid observation here–and probably is exactly what Peacemaker grapples with in this first issue.

Sounds a lot like someone else we know…

This popped into my head as well, I think it would be an interesting angle, albeit a complicated one, for Peacemaker to take in his work.

Agreed! I think it also grounds the character of Peacemaker…it brings him from an aggressive (but effective) soldier who fights terrorism on a global scale, to a man who is challenged by self-sabotage–like so many people.

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  1. What is your opinion on Peacemaker’s “kill to keep the peace” approach to fighting terrorism? Do you think the tradeoff is worth the resulting sense of peace?

Peacemaker is kind of like DC’s Punisher where both feel they need to play judge, jury, and executioner to maintain peace. I think that Peacemaker’s strategy works because you don’t have to worry about villains escaping from prison if they are dead. Plus our U.S. military kills to keep peace for our country.

  1. How do you feel about Peacemaker’s relationship with his father? How do you think his father’s past influenced the way Peacemaker executes his missions?

Peacemaker’s father is a Nazi who murders massive amounts of people and takes joy in it. Christopher watching his father shoot himself when he was only a kid is traumatizing because he looked up to him. When Peacemaker executes his missions he has to be careful to not steer out of control so he doesn’t become a genocidal maniac like his father.

  1. Can Peacemaker ever truly do penance for the crimes of his father? Is this endeavor worthwhile, or folly?

If Peacemaker can take down villains like the Nazi his father was then that can make up for his father’s crimes.

  1. Do you think Peacemaker can overcome his inner demons, and strengthen himself to be a better soldier? Do you agree with Dr. Bridgette D’ Abo that he is “an accident waiting to happen”?

I agree with Bridgette that he is an accident waiting to happen. He is too delusional and mentally unstable to handle.

  1. How do you feel about Peacemaker’s struggle with living up to perceptions? Is this relatable at all?

Peacemaker is trying to be a patriotic hero but struggles dealing with his terrible past burdens. He is in a constant mental struggle that is relatable with a lot of people and I don’t know if he will ever be free of his father’s sins.

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What is your opinion on Peacemaker’s “kill to keep the peace” approach to fighting terrorism? Do you think the tradeoff is worth the resulting sense of peace?

On one hand, I can understand his methods. When you see in this issue a group of crazed people heartlessly mowing down innocent beach-goers just for being in the way of their actual target, it’s hard to feel sympathetic to someone like Peacemaker coming and stopping them. Delivering an eye for an eye.

On the other hand, the kind of terrorism we see in this issue is rather rare, and it’s even rarer that the fight against terrorism only hits the people responsible for said terrorism. One doesn’t need to look too deeply to see how the global War on Terror has harmed far more innocents than actual terrorists.

This question reminded me of the movie The Kingdom – it’s been ages since I’ve seen it, though I remember it being pretty good, its ending is what always stuck with me. It followed a group of intelligence agents going into the Middle East to investigate their building in America being bombed by a terrorist organization. I’ll post the clip, but without going into spoilers, it highlights how no matter how hard one might try to fight terrorism, the fight will always generate more.

How do you feel about Peacemaker’s relationship with his father? How do you think his father’s past influenced the way Peacemaker executes his missions?

First off – wow. I figured that Peacemaker would probably have a darker past than what we initially see, but Y I K E S. It makes his Neo-Nazi dad on the show look like a cuddly teddy bear in comparison (as of right now, who knows what he did as the White Dragon in the show universe).

I think it certainly contributes to Peacemaker’s manic drive and need to fight mass murderers and terrorists. It’s interesting that his drive isn’t to save people directly, it’s incidental to his mission of killing the killers. It’s like every kill is him trying to stop his father from doing what he did, which is conflicting because according to Bridgette, he still loves his father.

Can Peacemaker ever truly do penance for the crimes of his father? Is this endeavor worthwhile, or folly?

No, because those are not his crimes. While we don’t have as much information about it, if anything Christopher needs to atone for his own crimes in Vietnam.

Do you think Peacemaker can overcome his inner demons, and strengthen himself to be a better soldier? Do you agree with Dr. Bridgette D’ Abo that he is “an accident waiting to happen”?

I agree that he’s definitely an accident waiting to happen, and I agree that Christopher can’t overcome his inner demons while still operating as Peacemaker. His method of atoning with his mindset feels far more self-destructive than any of the other driven, obsessed vigilantes in superhero stories, which is really saying something.

How do you feel about Peacemaker’s struggle with living up to perceptions? Is this relatable at all?

Definitely. I think a lot of people try to deal with the mistakes caused by our family and our past. Of course for most people it’s nowhere near as insane as what Christopher is dealing with, but that’s the thing about superhero stories – they take the struggles of normal, everyday life and blow them up into high concepts, high stakes and melodrama.

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Amazing film, haven’t t seen it in years!

Fair point here!

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Love that insight. Well said, well observed. I agree. He doesn’t want peace, he wants to kill bad people.

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