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Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Deadpool: 'The Good, The Bad & The Ugly' Part 1


*Contains Spoilers*

As anyone who regularly reads my blog will know, Deadpool is a character that fascinates me; a mixed-up mess of light and dark, the Merc with a Mouth wisecracks pop culture references with the same vigour as he shoots bullets, hacks with blades, and regenerates his own body parts from the near-constant battering/dismembering they take.

Wade Wilson's character and history are rich with mystery and contradictions; he 'volunteered' (even that is ambiguous) for Weapon X (the clandestine program that gave Wolverine his adamantium skeleton) in order to cure his cancer; but it didn't go entirely smoothly. The experiment left the already-mentally unstable Wade a physically-ravaged fruit-loop, and the program washed him out.

This is illustrated bleakly by Deadpool's new artist Declan Shalvey in Deadpool #15, the first part of the 5-part 'The Good, The Bad and The Ugly'--a story which sees Deadpool out to take on a mysterious outfit headed by a figure known as 'Butler', who--it turns out, for years--have been knocking him out and harvesting his regenerating organs.


This was preluded in Deadpool #14, but the feel of the art here is very different from Scott Koblish & Val Staples' colorful work there. As promised, Marvel NOW! Deadpool writers Brian Posehn and Gerry Duggan's run on Deadpool has been getting darker--and things go a fair bit further down that deep hole in Deadpool #15.

If one side of Deadpool is the cartoony, gag-spewing 'Bugs Bunny' part, this arc is clearly going to be visiting his more disturbed & disturbing side. In this first chapter alone, Wade cuts a hole in his own disfigured leg to implant a mysterious chip there; takes up temporary residence at a murder scene (revealed here to be a regular activity); and loses himself in action movie-type fantasy--belying that Deadpool is out of his depth against his unseen new foe. Throughout the issue, while Wade's humor is there, it plays second fiddle to something seldom seen from the seemingly unkillable Merc with a Mouth; fear.


As someone who has been a huge fan of Deadpool for a long time, I've followed him through the various takes on the Merc with a Mouth, hungry to get deeper into his mind. There are big questions unanswered about Wade Wilson; and while retaining some mystery is important to the character's appeal, it's an area I want to touch on if I land the opportunity to pitch for Deadpool myself at some point. My pitch is already written and waiting for when I'm hopefully high enough profile to make one. It's now made malleable by 'The Good, The Bad and The Ugly,' and I'm intrigued to see what impact the arc will have on my own ideas.


Meanwhile, I haven't forgotten that Wade's 'lighter' (albeit unhinged) side is also one of the reasons we love him, and that's something I'm gonna be spoofing when my Deadpool-parodying character Wayne Winston joins my Marvel-spoofing super-team The Almighties. How do you parody a character as crazy and comedic as Deadpool? The answer isn't what you'd expect... That's a ways off, though; Deadpool #15 is out now, and you can check out a Preview here!

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