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“Suicide Squad Isekai” Episode 4 Recap

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For July 4, we get a special patriotic treat of American supervillains wrecking havoc in a Japanese cartoon. Let’s recap the events of this episode and what worked and didn’t work:

The episode begins with a flashback of Joker and Harley in the DC Universe dealing with rival criminals. The Joker asks Harley what the best way to deal with rats is. Is this scene an irrelevant throwaway or could it be foreshadowing of something that happens later on? So we do know the Joker will at least appear in flashback scenes even if he won’t appear in the main story.

After this brief flashback, we return to the present day and we learn that the kingdom does not grant the Suicide Squad with the heroes’ treatment despite thwarting the enemy. Instead, they are still confined to a sell and shackled. The Suicide Squad of course complains about their predicament. Princess Fione comes to them and tells them the queen has summoned them to another meeting. Harley Quinn confronts her for staring at her in the last episode. The show has heavily implied some sort of connection between these two characters and the next flashback scene establishes exactly what kind of character Fione is.

The flashback reveals that little Fione was the rebellious princess making friends with commoners and people deemed “beneath her” like the chimney sweep boy. The queen chides her for getting herself dirty and mingling with a filthy peasant boy. Instead, the queen expects her to honor the royal mission. It is still very unclear based on this scene what the narrative is trying to do with Fione’s character as the narrative seems to imply her to be a Harley doppelganger, but every scene she’s in seems to imply she’s a sweet, cuddly Disney princess character archetype.

The next scene, the war room scene, has some very important reveals. The queen summons the Suicide Squad to the war room in order to discuss the next battle and the characters finally ask for some exposition the audience has been curious about, such as who these factions are and why they are fighting. We learn that the two factions are the Kingdom and the Empire, which are two of the most generic names out there for warring fantasy kingdoms. They never explain why they are fighting, but the show does establish that the beastmen were originally on the Kingdom’s side before defecting to the Empire. Rick Flag believes that Ratcatcher was using mind control on the beastmen and that was why they defected. He also reveals that Ratcatcher’s Suicide Squad somehow disarmed the bombs, giving them an advantage over Harley’s Suicide Squad. Again, the series teases the idea that which side is good and which side is evil is quite ambiguous as the Suicide Squad point out that the Kingdom has been treating them like garbage despite all they have done for them and maybe the Empire has a legitimate reason for not liking the Kingdom.

The next scene has the Suicide Squad in a camp being lazy while the Kingdom’s army prepares for war. Harley Quinn chews out Princess Fione telling her that her Disney princess routine is an act and that she’s really full of anger and hatred deep inside. Now, we get concrete foreshadowing of the possibility of Fione becoming this world’s equivalent of Harley Quinn if Harley is correct in her assumption. The concept of a stereotypical fantasy princess becoming a psycho seems like an interesting character arc.

The next scene is what should be the big battle scene, but this scene was actually very brief and anticlimactic. Deadshot snipes the magic stick Ratcatcher used to control the beastmen and the beastmen stop following his orders. We learn that the answer to the Joker’s question at the beginning of the question is have the rats turn on each other. So that is the payoff of that scene.

The final scene has Princess Fione tell the queen that the Kingdom won the battle against the empire and the latter is…. unhappy about that announcement. That reveal is our cliffhanger. The queen was always portrayed as someone less than moral considering her disregard for starving peasants in episode 2, but this reveal indicates that there is something sinister about this war and it appears the queen has no desire for it to end. Both Fione and the queen now have established themselves as potentially interesting characters if the shows follow up to what is being foreshadowed in a way that pays off.

This episode had none of the madcap violence or hilarious scenes of episodes 1-3, and Ratcatcher ended up being a pathetic non-thread, which might be disappointing to some but the foreshadowing of potentially interesting future plotlines gives hope that this was just a setup episode for future Suicide Squad mayhem to come.