On September 8, Geoff Johns told The Wall Street Journal that Magic Mike star Joe Manganiello will star as Deathstoke in Batman. Johns didn’t say if Deathstroke will be in Justice League and also said that the earliest Batman will hit theaters is 2018. Manganiello also confirmed the news on Twitter.
Since Deathstroke was introduced in New Teen Titans in 1980, he has become a major villain in the DC Comics Universe. However, he has never appeared on the big screen before.
Here’s a look at who the character is and news about the upcoming Batman movie.
1. Slade Is the World’s Best Assassin & Became Known as Deathstroke The Terminator
Slade Wilson first appeared in New Teen Titans #2, published in 1980, by MArv Wolfman and George Perez. He was initially a villain for the Teen Titans, known as Deathstroke the Terminator.
When Wilson was 16 years old, he enlisted in the U.S. Army, and eventually made it to the rank of Major. He met Captain Adeline Kane and the two fell in love and welcomed a son, named Grant. Later, Slade joined a medical experiment that hoped to increase his skills as a soldier. When he woke up, he gained his incredible powers and when he found that he couldn’t advance his military career, he became a hunter and assassin.
When his young son Joey was kidnapped, he told Adeline that he could save her. But when Joey was severely injured, Adeline became angry and shot Wilson, injuring his eye. The black half of his mask covers the injured eye. He was a villain for the Teen Titans because Grant became the villain The Ravager, who was supposed to kill the Titans. When Grant’s enhancements killed him, Wilson decided to seek revenge against the Titans.
After being a Titans villain for much of his early stories, Deathstroke migrated to other DC Comics stories and became a major Batman and Green Arrow villain.
2. Deathstroke’s Powers Include Incredible Strength & Intelligence
The medical experiment left Deathstroke with a wide array of superpowers, including strength and intelligence. He can use 90 percent of his brain (an idea based on the myth that humans only use 10 percent of their brain).
He’s also an expert marksman and uses his strength to enhance his sills in martial arts, boxing, jujitsu and karate. These skills make him a worthy adversary for Batman and Green Arrow. We can expect some great fight scenes in the Affleck movie.
3. He Appeared In the TV Series ‘Arrow,’ but Isn’t Expected to Come Back Due to the Movies
“I think Deathstroke had a lot of possibilities with Arrow but, I think they took it in the wrong direction,’ Bennett said. “I think they should have honoured the Marv Wolfman character who was literally unstoppable. I read the DC comic books and thought Deathstroke was so bad arse because they make it that nobody can stop him. He’s not even super-powered, he is just a mercenary.”
The interview sparked speculation that Deathstroke wouldn’t appear on the show again because Warner Bros. wants to use him in a movie. Today’s tweet from Affleck confirms that.
Slade also appeared in the Teen Titans animated series that aired from 2003 to 2006.
4. Deadpool Is Really a Deathstroke Knock Off, but Rob Liefeld Sees No Similarities
Deadpool co-creator Rob Liefield has admitted that he is a fan of the DC Comics character and Teen Titans. In 2011, when Liefield was given the opportunity to write the Deathstroke character, he told comic Book Resources that he’s “always been in awe of Hawkman and Deathstroke.”
In the same interview though, Liefield insisted that the two characters are nothing alike, which is true. Deathstroke is deadly serious, but Deadpool has humor on his side. He explained:
No likenesses for me. While ruthless, there is certain nobility to Slade. He tried to have a normal family at one point, and believed in honor amongst thieves. Wade, while canny, is an insane person. The similarities are they both shoot guns and wield swords.
5. He Won’t Be the Only Batman Villain Appearing in Affleck’s Solo Movie
Deathstroke isn’t expected to be the only villain appearing in Affleck’s Batman movie. In May, Birth.Movies.Death. reported that Affleck was going to try to squeeze in as many as possible. Obviously, many of them will be as cameos, so we can’t even be sure if Deathstroke will be the main bad guy or just one of the characters in a cameo. CBR suspects that the video also means that Deathstroke will appear in Justice League.
TheWrap is reporting that Deathstroke will be the main villain. With a backstory like his, Deathstroke should make for a perfect movie villain. However, Affleck’s tweet included no text – just the video.