Wild Dog co-creator Terry Beatty was not happy when he saw the new Wild Dog costume for Season 6 of Arrow.
Beatty who originally designed Wild Dog’s costume and co-created the character with Max Allan Collins in 1987 took a break from his “vacation slide show” to address the new costume design.
Beatty first expressed his displeasure of Arrow using Wild Dog in name and costume only for Season 5:
THIS, ladies and gentlemen is what the powers that be at the ARROW TV show have decided is Wild Dog’s new “improved” look. Yup — THIS is Wild Dog. Since the costume and name were all that survived from the comic book to begin with, this is now literally Wild Dog in name only.
Beatty added, “This change erases any trace of the original Collins/Beatty concept for the character. I would not be surprised if his name gets changed before too long, as well.”
He then went on to criticize the new look:
Whatever was unique about his “street level” costume has been replaced with the current standard issue dark armored uniform — a generic “third Imperial Guard from the left/Death-Blood-Stroke-Stryke/Image big gun” look. Sigh….
He did wish Wild Dog actor Rick Gonzalez luck in the role and complimented him saying, “I will tip my hat to Rick Gonzalez, who I feel has done a fine job in the role and has a strong screen presence. I wish him luck in going forward with this and whatever else he does down the line.”
Read his full post below:
Home and taking a break from boring you with my “vacation slide show” until tomorrow some time — but I suppose I have…
Wild Dog in the Comics
Wild Dog first appeared in his own mini-series Wild Dog. Wild Dog or Jack Wheeler was a star collegiate football player before he being injured. After dropping out of college, he joined the Marine Corps and served a tour of duty. After returning stateside, he got engaged to his fiance Claire Smith and opened his own auto garage. However, Claire would be gunned down by the mafia. Her surname was Carmonti and she was the daughter of a recently slain mob boss.
Seeking revenge Wild Dog would go on to become a vigilante killing criminals, domestic terrorists, and members of the mob. As a vigilante he wore an old football jersey with a laughing dog and a hockey mask.
Arrow did a pretty good job of capturing the character’s comic book outfit in Season 5.
Wild Dog on Arrow
However, instead of Jack Wheeler, Wild Dog is Rene Ramirez. Like the comic version he is an ex-marine, but that’s where the similarities end. Ramirez’s wife is killed by her drug dealer, sending him into an alcoholic depression. His life continues to tailspin when Child Protective Services take his daughter away. It’s not until he sees the Green Arrow on TV that he is inspired to become the vigilante Wild Dog. He is eventually recruited by Green Arrow to join his team.
I have to agree with Beatty, the new Season 6 Wild Dog costume looks generic and boring. It’s a mash-up of Spartan’s helmet with Atom’s suit. It doesn’t have any character to it. They even removed the trademark laughing dog from his chest. It would be like Marvel removing the skull from Punisher. Why would you do that? Or if we want to get even closer to home it would be like changing the Green Arrow’s costume to black and then equipping him with run of the mill black arrows. The character’s name is Wild Dog, put the dog on his suit for crying out loud!
Hopefully the folks at The CW and Arrow will take notice and make some drastic changes to this costume or at least digitally add in the laughing dog.