The bulk of the Flash’s enemies can be seen in the supervillain group known as the Rogues. This team is led by one of Barry Allen’s most consistent enemies, Leonard Snart, A.K.A Captain Cold. What makes this group of villains stand out amongst the rest? Well, to sum it up in a short description, they are the most colorful villains, not only in Flash’s rogues gallery, but in the entire DC Universe. I don’t just mean that literally either. I do mean that figuratively as well and if you don’t know what I mean, go read some of Silver Age comics where they battle the Flash. That was during a time when DC was at its most campiest.
For instance, for those who have been keeping up with the DC Cinematic Universe, you’ll know Captain Boomerang. In both Suicide Squad movies, he had a more modern appearance that resembled his comic book counterpart’s costume in the New 52 era. If you like the way it looks, go look up how his original costume looked in the Silver Age and you’ll see something totally different. It was very campy, but you know what? It was also appropriate for that time period in comics. The same goes for every member who made up the Rogues back in the day.
But if you’re unfamiliar with their history, I’ll just say that they’re vastly different from how other supervillain teams operate. The best way that they’re written is when they act like blue-collar workers just trying to get a big score. Their “work” is going out to rob a bank, make their escape, and then they’ll head over to Keystone Saloon for some drinks to celebrate. They just do it casually as if they all got off a twelve hour shift and need to take a load off. Does it sound ridiculous? A little bit, but that’s exactly why the Rogues have become so popular over the years since the Silver Age of comics.
That’s a big part of the reason why I believe the Rogues could be the new DC series James Gunn is working on. Now keep in mind, this is just me speculating. I base this off of nothing but my desire to see this team of criminals brought to live-action. We have seen a version of this in the CW Flash series, but it was never expanded on. I think the closest thing we got the Rogues was Captain Cold teaming up with Heat Wave in the Legends of Tomorrow series. That’s a series I never really kept up with, but that’s okay. I believe the DCEU can do what the CW shows wouldn’t capitalize on. We’ve seen enough shows focus on the heroes, so why not give the bad guys the center stage?
For the case of the Rogues, a series could work well for them, because they’re not your typical bad guys. Yes, they commit crimes and they’re willing to go above and beyond to steal what they want. However, the one line they will not cross is taking the life of an innocent. That is one of the few rules that the Rogues have to follow and to them, it’s the base of their own moral code. Yes, this group of criminals has a moral code they follow. A bit ironic, but keep in mind, the Rogues are not like most of Batman’s villains. They are all completely sane, have no desire to rule or destroy Central City, and surprisingly enough, they view each other as family.
If you’re a fan of those movies about groups of bank robbers or career criminals, that’s usually how they act. Their group is their family and despite their commitment to a life of crime, they all have each other’s backs. This sums up the way the Rogues operate and on top of their loyalty to each other, their moral code is enforced by their leader, Captain Cold. If anyone steps out of line, Cold will punish them. He actually killed Owen Mercer, the son of the deceased Captain Boomerang, for feeding multiple victims to his father’s zombified corpse. These victims included women and some children, which is beyond unforgivable. Captain Cold, disgusted by Mercer’s actions, threw him inside the pit where he was throwing the victims, and allowed him to be devoured by the zombified Digger Harkness.
Another example is when Captain Cold brutally beat Evan McCullough, the second Mirror Master, after he discovered McCullough was doing drugs. Needless to say, Captain Cold follows his moral code to the extreme and has no problem enforcing it if any of the Rogues step out of line. Not all of the Rogues see eye-to-eye with Cold’s methods, especially Heat Wave, who he occasionally clashes with. Their personalities are about as opposite as the guns they carry. And how does their moral code apply to fighting the Flash? Well, they have had opportunities to kill Barry Allen before, but Captain Cold will always stop that from happening.
In the eyes of Captain Cold, if the Rogues kill the Flash, that will only make them a target for the Justice League. Understandably so, that is heat the Rogues want to avoid, so they will try to avoid killing the Flash at all cost. Of course, not all members of the Rogues agree with this and this is where things can get interesting in a series. When it comes to showing the character development of a whole group, you know there is going to be conflict among them. After seeing what James Gunn did with the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Suicide Squad, I think he’s the perfect guy to show us how the Rogues interact with each other. He can show us how they respond to bad situations, along with their best moments, and their mutual respect for the Flash.
Personally, I would just be excited to all the members of the Rogues in live-action form. We’ve seen these versions in the Flash series, but I think James Gunn can give his own unique take on them. This includes Captain Cold, his sister, Lisa Snart, A.K.A Golden Glider, Mick Rory, A.K.A Heat Wave, Sam Scudder, A.K.A Mirror Master, Mark Mardon, A.K.A Weather Wizard, and James Jesse, A.K.A the Trickster. All of these villains are colorful in their abilities and their personalities. To put it more accurately, none of them have powers and rely on gadgets, something James Gunn can have fun working with. Perhaps he can even give us the story arc when the Rogues actually gained powers that reflected their gadgets? That would be a big step in their characterization and would be fun to see unfold.
Like I said, this is only a prediction, but I do believe the Rogues are the right characters for James Gunn to work with. And since Captain Boomerang is dead in the DCEU, that could already set up a storyline for the Rogues. Maybe this could lead them to seeking a replacement in their ranks, such as Owen Mercer? And I doubt we’ll be seeing the Rogues in the Flash movie, so the best way to have them debut in the DCEU is a series. What are your thoughts, DC fans?