Amanda Waller Has Become The Biggest Villain In The DC Universe

Contains spoilers for "Dawn of DC: Primer" #1

Amanda Waller has moved on from Task Force X and set her sights on much bigger targets, as the main face behind the Suicide Squad is coming after the greatest heroes in the DC Universe — and assembling an army to do so.

Since debuting in "Legends" #1Waller has made it her prerogative to accomplish dangerous tasks at hand, regardless of how deadly things get. She has always had lofty ambitions as the government agent running the Suicide Squad with little regard for the safety of the ever-changing DC team of villains. Her goal to protect the Earth at any cost, stone-cold decision-making, and unrelenting nature have led to many deaths, including those of her Task Force X recruits and innocent bystanders. Demanding, violent, and never one to give an inch to any of the villains she has employed with bombs in their necks, Waller has earned her stubborn reputation. Unfortunately for Earth's heroes, she is done fighting for the side of good. In "Dawn of DC: Primer" #1, Waller takes one further step towards villainy and becomes the unlikely new big bad of the planet.

Amanda Waller is going after the greatest heroes in the DC Universe

"Dawn of DC: Primer" #1 by Joshua Williamson, Leandro Fernandez, Daniela Miwa, and Troy Peteri from DC Comics, part of the Dawn of DC Initiative, follows the events of "Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths." Despite the heroes saving the day during the event, Task Force X leader Amanda Waller doesn't believe metahumans having unchecked power is the solution to peace. It's once again highlighted she spoke with the Council of Light, a mysterious organization of big players in the DC Universe (seen in "Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths" #7), which was last seen permitting Waller to take down the heroes by any means necessary.

Operating outside her usual parameters, Waller meets with a large group of villains. Calling their recent team-up with Deathstroke in "Dark Crisis" a mistake, Waller tells the villains they should have come to her instead. However, she receives immediate pushback at her request, with the villain knowing full well how poorly she treated members of the Suicide Squad. When Waller tells the villains to accept or say goodbye to the offer, someone pulls a gun on her. However, Waller shows her dominance by quickly putting a bullet through their head. 

The remaining villains stand around the pool of blood, stunned, with Waller asking them if they have any more objections. She then reveals her offer: A promise of a total pardon and clear records for anyone who kills a superhero. The issue ends with a group picture of the greatest heroes on Earth and beyond — including Superman, Shazam, Nightwing, Batman, Flash, Aquaman, and more — with targets painted on their heads. Waller promises to "let them have their day in the sun, while I stay in the shadows and aim for their heads." 

Amanda Waller has assembled her own team

Amanda Waller has already assembled her own team of villains before recruiting more of them in "Dawn of DC: Primer" #1. Her most trusted team consists of villains from across the DC Multiverse. The roster includes Prime-Earth's Peacewrecker, a female version of the peace-seeking anti-hero named Peacemaker, a Yellow Lantern ring-wielding version of Batman who appears to be a mix of several characters with unknown powers, and a version of Bloodsport who has an even more frightening appearance. The team seems to be Waller's own personal Suicide Squad. She has used them to build power across different timelines while dealing with the Council of Light.

In "Dawn of DC: Primer" #1, Peacemaker and Peacewrecker are among the villains who land on Lazarus Island following the magical events that transformed heroes and villains in the recent "Lazarus Planet" event. Despite the island still being under quarantine and having protection from gun-toting drones, Peacemaker is able to find what Waller was looking for — a piece of the Helmet of Fate. However, it doesn't appear to be the usual helm wielded by Doctor Fate. Instead, it's referred to as the Helmet of Hate. 

While Peacemaker could be giving the Helmet of Fate a joke name, the black helmet may also be something new. If that's true, Waller has landed a mysterious, dark version of one of the most powerful and dangerous artifacts in the DC Universe. It could be a major coup for Waller's attempts to take down heroes. Although, even if it's just the regular Helmet of Fate, it's still an incredible power to gain should she control it.

Who is Amanda Waller working for?

Amanda Waller is working for something much bigger than she previously ever has. In "Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths," Waller stood before a group called the Council of Light, initially offering a plan to incarcerate all metahumans and the greatest heroes in the DC Universe in a world without the Justice League. However, the organization believed Waller's scope was too narrow. So instead, they granted her permission to eliminate metahumans from the world.

If the Council of Light seems familiar, readers might have seen the group, referred to as "The Light," debut on the "Young Justice" animated series. The secretive organization operated in the shadows and strived to show the world that evolution was necessary and that the universe's most powerful heroes prevented humankind from doing so. The Council of Light comprised some of the deadliest villains in comics, with the immortal Vandal Savage leading the team. Other team members included his daughter Ishtar, Lex Luthor, Klarion the Witch Boy, Deathstroke, and Ra's al Ghul. 

The constantly changing Council of Light appeared in all four seasons of "Young Justice" and often sparred with the superteam. The comic's council members haven't been revealed, but based on the show's iterations of the villainous group and what readers know based on the current whereabouts of certain villains, it wouldn't be surprising to see Savage lead the comic version of the team. Regardless of whoever is in charge, Waller getting permission to kill metahumans and heroes makes her the current big bad of the DC Universe.

Readers can see Waller's plan unfold against DC's greatest heroes in "Dawn of DC: Primer" #1 by Joshua Williamson, Leandro Fernandez, Daniela Miwa, and Troy Peteri from DC Comics, which is in comic book stores and available via online retailers now.