King Shark raising his hand and pointing at it in The Suicide Squad.

I Can’t Believe I Love The Suicide Squad’s King Shark So Much Despite My Overwhelming Fear of Sharks

I hate sharks but I love you, Nanaue.

Recommended Videos

“King Shark” may be how we know him, but his real name is Nanaue, and I loved him in The Suicide Squad, a real shock to my shark-hating system. Going into movies that heavily feature sharks is hit or miss for me, but for whatever reason, King Shark became the love of my life. I didn’t care how afraid of him I’d be because he had fun little shorts on and I knew he’d so us all no harm. So, color me shocked when I maybe loved him most of all.

So what was it about Nanaue that made me care about a creature I’ve despised my entire life? Well, let’s get into James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad.

**Spoilers for The Suicide Squad lie within.**

First of all, I want to start by saying that Nanaue is a cat. Sure, he looks like a shark and “nom nom”s like a shark, but then he hides like a cat does and is fiercely protective of his friends. Very cat-like behavior. The demigod is there to basically go into a feeding frenzy when the Squad needs him to, but he also has one of the most interesting arcs and relationships in the entire movie.

When we first meet Nanaue, it’s clear that he wants people to take him seriously. He’s reading a book upside down and wants to prove that he knows what his hand is, and the only one who doesn’t roll their eyes is Cleo Cazo. Ratcatcher 2 is charmed by Nanaue, even though he does try to eat her when he’s hungry. But Cleo realizes what Nanaue needs and asks if he would eat a friend.

He wouldn’t, because he’s a good boy, but he also doesn’t think he has friends, and as the movie goes on, he continues to learn that the Squad cares about him—granted, some just because they need him for the mission, but Cleo is constantly worried about his wellbeing to the point that when she thinks he’s dead and sees him walking up to the remaining team, she runs and hugs him.

By some miracle, Nanaue is a perfect look at loneliness and how we feel when we don’t think anyone cares about us, and Cleo is the reverse of that. She cares so much about his safety and, honestly, the safety of the Squad as a whole, and it’s oddly sweet to see this friendship blossom and grow throughout the movie.

Sure, those “dumb friends” that King Shark sees in the tank are no friends at all (they do try to eat him), but he learns that he, at least, has Cleo on his side. And somehow, I sat there and watched an entire movie where a demigod who is half-shark had character growth, and I didn’t have a panic attack. (Trust me, any other shark movie? I would have. Somehow, I survived this.)

Like, when you stop and think about it, King Shark is a character who thought that if they gave him a fake mustache, he could walk around a city and it’d be fine, and that’s incredibly sweet. WHAT IS HAPPENING TO ME?

Nanaue, I probably can’t watch Jaws without crying or go into an aquarium for too long, but you did help me learn to love the beasts I’ve hated my entire life, and I love you oh so very much. Anyway, GIVE NANAUE HIS MUSTACHE! HE DESERVES IT.

(image: Warner Bros.)

Want more stories like this? Become a subscriber and support the site!  

 —The Mary Sue has a strict comment policy that forbids, but is not limited to, personal insults toward anyone, hate speech, and trolling.—


The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
related content
Read Article The Wildest New Animated Movie Is a Musical About Sperm and Reproduction
Still from Sprermageddon by Tommy Wirkola. 2 sperm talking
Still from Sprermageddon by Tommy Wirkola. 2 sperm talking
Still from Sprermageddon by Tommy Wirkola. 2 sperm talking
Read Article Disney Has Found Its Live-Action Moana
Catherine Laga'aia opposite Moana in the animated film 'Moana'
Catherine Laga'aia opposite Moana in the animated film 'Moana'
Catherine Laga'aia opposite Moana in the animated film 'Moana'
Read Article ‘Inside Out 2’ Review: We All Need Joy in Our Lives
Joy and Anxiety standing next to each other
Joy and Anxiety standing next to each other
Joy and Anxiety standing next to each other
Read Article Glen Powell’s Best Rom-Com Is ANOTHER Netflix Movie Where He Plays a Lovable Dork
Glen Powell as Charlie in Set It Up is wearing a suit and is on the phone
Glen Powell as Charlie in Set It Up is wearing a suit and is on the phone
Glen Powell as Charlie in Set It Up is wearing a suit and is on the phone
Read Article ‘Paddington 3’ Is Finally Happening
Paddington looking at a pop-up book of London in Paddington 2 (StudioCanal)
Paddington looking at a pop-up book of London in Paddington 2 (StudioCanal)
Paddington looking at a pop-up book of London in Paddington 2 (StudioCanal)
Related Content
Read Article The Wildest New Animated Movie Is a Musical About Sperm and Reproduction
Still from Sprermageddon by Tommy Wirkola. 2 sperm talking
Read Article Disney Has Found Its Live-Action Moana
Catherine Laga'aia opposite Moana in the animated film 'Moana'
Read Article ‘Inside Out 2’ Review: We All Need Joy in Our Lives
Joy and Anxiety standing next to each other
Read Article Glen Powell’s Best Rom-Com Is ANOTHER Netflix Movie Where He Plays a Lovable Dork
Glen Powell as Charlie in Set It Up is wearing a suit and is on the phone
Read Article ‘Paddington 3’ Is Finally Happening
Paddington looking at a pop-up book of London in Paddington 2 (StudioCanal)
Author
Rachel Leishman
Rachel Leishman (She/Her) is an Assistant Editor at the Mary Sue. She's been a writer professionally since 2016 but was always obsessed with movies and television and writing about them growing up. A lover of Spider-Man and Wanda Maximoff's biggest defender, she has interests in all things nerdy and a cat named Benjamin Wyatt the cat. If you want to talk classic rock music or all things Harrison Ford, she's your girl but her interests span far and wide. Yes, she knows she looks like Florence Pugh. She has multiple podcasts, normally has opinions on any bit of pop culture, and can tell you can actors entire filmography off the top of her head. Her work at the Mary Sue often includes Star Wars, Marvel, DC, movie reviews, and interviews.