'Suicide Squad' and How I've Turned the Villain-as-Hero Concept on Its Ear
Hollywood loves portraying bad guys as protagonists but there are certain people it would never make into heroes.
Suicide Squad reviews might not be positive but current assessments forecast the movie to have a strong financial opening. And this film about a group of lawbreakers is a reminder that Hollywood loves portraying bad guysas protagonists. Meanwhile, I've flipped this concept on Hollywood by taking a type of person itabsolutely hates and making him into the hero of my fiction.

Read my column at Hollywood in Toto on Mortal Gods: Ignition and Preacher in case you're worried this is going to be a diatribe against Hollywood. Like I write in my HiT column about Preacher, I'm not endorsing Suicide Squad but if you want to watch it go ahead.

At the same time, I'm writing stories I want to see and the focus of this column is on how my likes differ from Hollywood. So I encourage you to read my fiction, regardless of what you think about what Hollywood produces. . . .

Making criminals and murderers protagonists, or at least likable characters, is a rather common occurrence in the entertainment industry. For instance, think of Pulp Fiction (or every other gangster movie ever made), the TV series Dexter, anything with Hannibal Lecter in it, and even horror movies. (Sure, Hannibal Lecter and the title monsters of horror movies are at times portrayed as the antagonists, but they end up being the characters audiences pay--and often cheer--to see.)

So I've taken this concept and turned it on its ear. I'm creating characters based on people that Hollywood hates--that you would not see portrayed positively--and I am making them into heroes, or sympathetic characters, in my fiction. . . .

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Posted August 3 2016 by Paul Hair
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Paul Hair is an author and national security/intelligence expert.