During an actor roundtable in 2011, Davis pointed out that black women in movies are "are always overly sanctified. Overly nurturing, overly sympathetic. And to find that place where you're messy is very difficult." Instead of her "dignified" portrayal of a strong black woman in The Help, she wanted to talk about the role as "Terry." Which strong, black woman was Terry? The kind strong enough to beat an entire family to death with a baseball bat.
In a 2002 episode of Law & Order: Criminal Intent (the third most successful series in the franchise), Davis plays villain of the week Terry Randolph, a corrupt, drug-dealing retired cop who murders a city comptroller's family after he threatens to take away her pension. Davis' episode, "Badge," is so bad and forgettable that the writers later asked her to come back for a recurring role in Special Victims Unit, safe in the knowledge no one would remember Terry.
But Davis remembers her fondly, admitting "I appreciated killing a whole family with a baseball bat" -- something black actresses don't get to do very often. We're left to conclude that years later, when she randomly killed a room full of her underlings as Amanda Waller in Suicide Squad, that wasn't in the script. That was merely Davis living her dream.