Regardless of your feelings on the film Suicide Squad, the characters were pretty cool. One of the coolest was Deadshot. Deadshot is a mercenary in the DC universe who is the man who never misses. He’s a hitman whose skills are top notch, with the ability to shoot so well he can ricochet bullets into a moving target. Throughout the movie Deadshot is equipped with a variety of different ones, one being a highly customized AR-15.
We’ve decided to break down the AR-15 that Deadshot utilizes part by part.
So with any AR-15, it all starts with the lower. In the United States, the lower is the actual firearm portion of a rifle. The lower receiver is just a chunk of aluminum, but it is also the portion of the firearm that is serialized. This means every other part of the AR-15 can be shipped directly to your door, and you can buy them anywhere without the need for a 4473. You don’t need an FFL to be a dealer in other AR-15 parts than the lower receiver. It’s very simple to tell that Deadshot’s lower receiver is nothing fancy.
It’s a 7075 T6 aluminum forged lower. It’s the most common type of lower out there and is what people think when we say stripped lower. Like almost everything on this rifle, it's highly customized from a vanity perspective. The lower is finished entirely in red, and likely cerakoted for that dark red finish. On the magwell is a simple crosshair and circle that is basically Deadshot’s symbol.
The Upper receiver is a simple flat top AR-15 upper receiver. It’s equipped with a brass deflector and a forward assist. It’s likely a 7075 T6 upper that’s remarkably common. The upper receiver is entirely mostly matte black and features a gold forward assist and gold charging handle. Both appear to be mil spec in nature, and simply coated gold to stand out.
Deadshot utilizes a simple and effective Magpul CTR stock. The CTR stock is likely the second most common AR-15 style stock out there. A lot of companies like S&W, Palmetto State Armory, and Colt all offer their M4 style rifles equipped with Magpul stocks. There is some confusion regarding this stock with meaning outright claiming it to be a MOE Carbine stock. These two stocks look a lot alike, and both utilize an A-Frame design with a nearly identical adjustment lever.
There are a few differences, but the biggest is the fact the Magpul CTR stock features a QU mount for QD sling attachments. The Magpul MOE Carbine stock does not feature QD slots. The CTR is a bit more of a robust stock, and also a more modern variant. The CTR allows the user to use a removable cheek risers, but Deadshot doesn’t use them. The CTR is a very comfortable stock with a nice sloping cheek weld, and the user has multiple sling attachment options outside of the QD sling.
The CTR is a great choice for any rifle and is both good looking and functional for assassins like Deadshot. Of course, it’s also painted red to fit with the overall Deadshot theme.
So the Handguard here is one of the most interesting portions of the rifle. It’s completely custom unfortunately and not one you’ll be able to find commercially, unfortunately. However, we can still go over it and break it down. The handguard does feature a monolithic top rail that runs down the entire upper portion of the handguard. The handguard also features a small section of rail system near the magwell Deadshot uses to attach a foregrip.
The handguard is another semi-vanity piece. I really appreciate the minimalist design that Deadshot likes. He doesn’t need tons of rail space to attach a half dozen accessories. This likely leaves the handguard extremely lightweight, and easy to use. There is, of course, the cool factor of the entire thing. Down the side it features the inscription, “I am the Light, The Way,” which seems to be a modified variant of John 14:6 which proclaims, “I am the Way and the Light.”
This semi-biblical inscription seems to follow a theme of assassins and Biblical references in popular media. We have Agent 47 from the Hitman series being propelled back into action in Hitman 2 to rescue a priest with multiple levels taking place in a church. Films like the Boondock Saints that use God as a motivator, and characters like Jules in Pulp Fiction quoting fictional Bible verses. It’s common enough to have its own page on Tv Tropes, http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/HolyHitman
The Muzzle device seems to be another fictional and stylish piece of gear. The muzzle device appears to potentially be a small suppressor, but it doesn’t act as one in the movie. It honestly looks like a means to protect the handguard from muzzle blast. Depending on the barrel length the blast from the gun could damage the handguard so it may be acting as a flash can. Although it may also just look cool. While the actual muzzle device doesn’t seem to be real, it really resembles a CQC 1 Suppressor from Elite Iron, found here.
Not a big surprise that Magpul makes another appearance in this Build Breakdown. When you make as much high-quality gear as Magpul at the frequency they do, it’s bound to show up all the time. The Foregrip is the Magpul Rail Vertical Grip, or RVG for short. The RVG is a simple, and effective grip that fills the hand remarkably well. It’s also only as long as it needs to be and nothing more. As someone who hates finger grooves on anything, I love the smooth grip on the RVG.
It was pretty hard actually to find what foregrip Deadshot uses. The grip itself is always being used when Deadshot is using his rifle. When he’s not using his rifle, the dark nature of the movie makes it hard to figure out the grip itself. A poster at AR15.com was kind enough to post several photos from the WB exhibit of Suicide Squad’s guns, and that confirmed it was the RVG.
A foregrip is likely a practical consideration for the actor, since that handguard may not be absorbing any of the heat from firing the rifle. That handguard likely got very hot as hundreds or even thousands of blanks were fired through the rifle. The use of the RVG would keep Will Smith from burning his hand, and allow him to utilize the weapon comfortably.
Rear Pistol Grip
Again, another Magpul item, which still isn’t a bad thing. A lot of people get Magpul fatigue, but they make quality gear, that’s affordable and easy to find. It’s not a surprise an armorer would be willing to toss one on Deadshot’s rifle, or in the fictional universe, Deadshot would likely want a grip, friendly for glove use.
The Magpul MOE Grip is aggressively textured around the entire device and one of the most comfortable grips on the market, especially when wearing gloves. Those little ridges in the grip make it quite ‘sticky’ and comfortable in the hand. Even without ridges, this is an outstanding grip, way better than the standard AR-15 A2 style ‘nub’ grip.
The Magpul MOE grip also offers storage in the grip that’s perfect for a small bottle of oil, or the Gerber short stack tool.
Personally, I keep mine full of Skittles for an emergency sugar rush and tasty treat!
Deadshot forgoes iron sights entirely on his rifle but does have a main optic and backup sight. His primary optic is the Trijicon ACOG, one of my personal favorite optics. You can read my review of it here (INSERT LINK TO ACOG ARTICLE) The secondary optic is a Trijicon RMR, an excellent miniature red dot sight.
The ACOG is a 4 power combat optic that utilizes a bullet drop compensating reticle to compensate for extended ranges effectively. The ACOG utilizes a combination of fiber optics and tritium to generate battery-free illumination system. ACOG’s are brilliant optics and the current choice of the United States Marine Corps and are present in some Army Units. The ACOG is extremely durable and can take a beating. As an assassin, Deadshot likely wants something that isn’t going to fail when things get rough, and the ACOG is unlikely to fail.
The secondary optic is the Trijicon RMR. The RMR or Rugged Miniaturized Red Dot was one of the first effective mini red dots. These tiny optics are designed to weigh almost nothing and to be nearly invisible. The Trijicon RMR is an excellent addition to the ACOG. Since the ACOG is a fixed power optic, it's not the easiest to use in extreme close quarters. Deadshot mounts it above his ACOG to ensure he can easily and rapidly transition to his red dot when he wants to.
Trijicon actually produces and sells this setup. It’s proven to be popular among both competition and tactical shooters. Deadshot, of course, has his setup stylized quite heavily.
We are still aren’t done naming Magpul gear. Deadshot uses P-Mags with Taran Tactical baseplates. The Taran Tactical P-Mag baseplates add 5 additional rounds to your P-Mags for a total of 35 rounds. P-Mags are really what drove Magpul into the limelight. P-Mags were some of the first high quality, durable polymer magazines that functioned reliably and correctly. P-Mags are of course polymer, which makes them more durable to some degree.
Unlike aluminum, they don’t dent or bend when put under pressure. This means they can be dropped dozens of times, over and over without any damage occurring. P-Mags are popular around the world with professional military and police forces. The gun that killed Osama Bin Laden (LINK HERE) was rocking Magpul mags.
The biggest downside to these magazines is they don’t drop free when you push the magazine release button. However, the aluminum magazine base plates are incredibly durable and add some weight to the magazines. This allows them to drop free almost always when used.
Like all Deadshot’s gear, they are customized and are painted red with gold baseplates to match his rifle.
Deadshot rocks an ambi safety and it’s honestly hard to find a solid picture of the safety up close and in high definition. I believe it to be the Battle Arms Development Ambidextrous Safety Selector aka the BAD-ASS. This ambi safety is highly customizable, and there are multiple options for the actual selector switch. It appears to be using the standard or possibly the standard thin switch.
An ambi design does allow Deadshot to transition between shoulders with ease, and if you are a man who never misses you better have mastered off-hand shooting. The Battle Arms gear is rock solid and well reputed, and it's surprisingly affordable.
Bolt Carrier Group
Now, this is purely conjectured in terms of what actual bolt carrier group Deadshot is rocking and rolling. It’s impossible without actually seeing the bolt by itself to know who specifically makes it. However, it’s gold in color which points to it likely being TiN or titanium nitride bolt carrier group. These BCGs are a lot like nickel boron in the way they are naturally frictionless and insanely easy to clean.
They also run supremely well when it comes to running dirty, and blanks are dirty as sin. Since they were operating with blanks a Titanium Nitride BCG would be both cool looking and functional.
It’s rare to see a shooter use a sling in a movie and was one of my biggest gripes about movies like Lone Survivor; there wasn’t a sling to be found. However, as Deadshot, a sling is absolutely necessary for both movie magic and tactical application. Deadshot has a rifle; two wrist-mounted guns, and of course his standard Glocks. When he transitions to the wrist guns his rifle has to go somewhere right?
It’s pretty hard to figure out the exact model, but it's a Magpul sling to be sure. This was pointed out by an IMFDB user who was able to read the tag that was labeled Magpul. It’s likely the MS3. Told you we wouldn’t see the last of Magpul. Well, actually this is the last you’ll see of Magpul.
The MS3 is a high-quality sling that can be effortlessly converted between one point and two point. It's also fitted with the MS1 slider that is insanely handy to easily adjust the sling’s overall length. This is generally necessary when wearing armor, which Deadshot wears quite a bit of.
So this isn’t necessarily a part of the build but bears mentioning. I’ve seen lots of people out there asking about it, so I want to talk about Deadshot’s mag carrier. It’s a thigh rig system and is sporting 3 magazines. This carrier is called the Revolution and is made and sold by Blade Tech and uses three removable polymer mag pouches fitted to a thigh rig. Blade-Tech makes some amazing gear, and this is no different. The Blade-Tech Revolution is an excellent piece of gear and really makes reload simple and effective.
It also looks cool, and Deadshot is all about the style.
- Rainier Arms AR-15 Forged Lower Receiver ($130)
- Seekins Precision Forged 223 Upper ($228)
- Magpul CTR Stock – MIL SPEC ($57)
- * Elite Iron CQC 1 Suppressor ($775)
- Magpul RVG Rail Vertical Grip, MAG412-, by Magpul Industries ($24)
- Magpul MOE Grip ($19)
- Gerber Short Stack AR-15 Maintenance Tool ($54)
- Trijicon TA31RMR ACOG 4×32 Scope, Dual Illuminated Red Crosshair .223 Ballistic Reticle, 3.25 MOA RMR Sight ($1557)
- Magpul 30 Round PMAG GEN M3 ($15)
- Battle Arms Development – Ambidextrous Safety Selector (BAD-ASS) for the AR15 ($60)
- F-1 Firearms DuraBolt direct impingement full auto rated M16/M4 bolt carrier groups BCG-GOLD ($262)
- Magpul MS3 Single QD Sling Gen2 ($56)
- Blade Tech Industries Revolution Triple Thigh Rig Vertical Fits AR-15 Magazine Pouch ($73)
* Items may have been out of stock or discontinued at the time of this writing.