The character designs for Suicide Squad were already pretty divisive in the fan community when the movie launched back in August, but if the early concepts are any indication, the furor could have been a bit worse. As reported on The Onion's AVClub and others, a graphic costume illustrator shared some of their work on Imgur, giving a rare inside look at the process from page to screen.
Keep in mind that these concepts are just that -- a bunch of experiments created in the pursuit of finding that perfect movie-ready idea. So while Jared Leto on the top-right looks more like the hairless host of a Hot Topic game show than the trashy edgelord we saw in the movie, we don't know the exact circumstances and timeline of that behind-the-scenes photo.
That being said, some of Joker's proposed costume accessories were even more garish than the final product.
The worst part about these shorts isn't the colors or that one of the desperately edgy pairs reads "Wicked" on the butt. It's the brand parody. The "HAHA Special" logo is a clear rip on "TWINS Special." You can stop looking for the joke here, because that's literally all there is.
Joker's tryhard tattoos might be the most reviled part of the final design, but believe it or not, some of the ink was almost sillier than the "Damaged" tattoo on his forehead.
Whereas in theaters we saw a cacophony of Ha Ha Has on Joker's left shoulder, they completely cover his torso here, creating a wifebeater out of obnoxious cackles. There are some other groan-worthy details too, like the "CUT HERE" around his neck, and what appears to be the entire script to Bee Movie on his left arm.
Harley didn't fare much better. But at least a few of the initial examples looked interesting.
If you saw these makeup tests in a YouTube tutorial, a Halloween Party or a fictional Glamour photoshoot, they'd fit right in. They might not fly in a feature-lengthy movie, but they're kinda neat all the same.
The same cannot be said for some of the other designs.
The faces are extremely off-putting here, but try to ignore them, because that's typical concept face-pasting -- and there's so much more going on here. Right off the bat, both Harleys seem to have painted (tattooed?) an old timey, 1940s comic book Joker on their torso. Judging by the positioning of the face, we're going to go ahead and guess that the nipples are supposed to be the eyes. The whole "twisted diary" thing she's got scrawled all over her clothes and body reeks of a middle-schoolers bored scribbles. We can also see a lot of tally marks in various places, which potentially would have counted Harley's kills. That's an especially odd addition considering a) It doesn't really fit Harley's character and b) The concept already kind of belongs to Victor Zsaz, another Batman villain.
By far the cringiest parts of these designs is this tattoo:
Yep, that does in fact say "LET ME TELL YOU A SEXRET." That's not even a pun -- that's someone accidentally typing with an X instead of a C because they're right nect to eaxh other on the keyboard. You know, except this is a tattoo above someone's vagina.
If you went out on Halloween night this year, you might have seen a lot of preteen Harley Quinns bouncing around the streets. Just be thankful stores weren't selling costumes based on these designs.