Thursday, 8 November 2012

New Beginnings - Deadpool #1 (MARVEL NOW)

We recently saw him tear the Marvel Universe a new one but this week due to the Marvel Marketing Machine, we have Deadpool relaunching from issue #1 as part of Marvel Now.

Many of you will know the Merc with a Mouth as he has now spanned (just) over 20 years of comic service, especially due to his wise cracking and loud approach to life. He’s the joker in the pack but with a killer edge. Although he may be completely unhinged and schizophrenic, he’s still completely deadly with a healing factor to boot.

Now all of the above is known to fans and regular visitors to the MU but in the case of this issue, brought to us by Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn, there is no back story. This is an issue one which takes great strides from the word go. The reason why? Well it’s all explained on the back page in typical Deadpool crayon signed style. This is NOT a reboot. (which I've been teling people for weeks now! *head desk* Relaunch, not reboot! BF)

Hitting the ground retrospectively running we are quickly given the reason why we need Deadpool.

After a madman (in a S.H.I.E.L.D. uniform) is found to be resurrecting dead presidents to revive a failing America (which is ironically timed almost perfectly with the American Presidential Elections), Captain America is openly seen decapitating a former head of state. The resulting media backlash means it is decided that things cannot continue. You can’t have the most famous boy scout killing historical figures and founding fathers, even if they are zombies hell bent on destroying the nation. S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent Preston is tasked with finding a way to covertly fix the problem.

The answer virtually falls into her lap.

After finishing off a giant lizard in grotesque style, Deadpool is faced with a wheelchair bound necrotic FDR. Without being able to resist his natural urges, Wade can only engage whilst letting the jokes fly at the same time. In beating FDR he earns himself the job of clearing up the rest of the undead former Commander-In-Chiefs, because he’s not the hero they want but he is “the scumbag they need”.

The writing is a lot of fun and displays the flair for humour that you would expect from two comedians.  Brian Posehn is an actor, writer and comic that many of you will recognise as Brian Spukowski from The Sarah Silverman Program. His co-writer is Gerry Duggan, a film and TV writer who works on Attack Of The Show.

A lot of it is very tongue in cheek but I do miss the monologue that follows Wade as he engages with everyone, including the reader. This seems to be played down a lot and reserved for people in the comic. He certainly doesn't break the fourth wall. He also seems a little more with it than the normal Deadpool rather than the borderline psychotic we saw in arcs such as the Dark Angel Saga in Uncanny X-Force, but then this is clearly artistic license being exercised. Underneath it all he’s still the confused killer we love, and I’m sure more will come through in time. Rumours are he'll have new voices in his head soon enough.

I’m usually fairly set on how I feel about the artwork in comics but this time Tony Moore has me stumped a little. Overall it is consistent and follows the same set of personal rules of drawing throughout, but what I find odd is that some things have fantastic definition and linework - leading to depth and detail - while others simply don’t. A good example is the second page where the fifth panel loses all detail and looks almost 2000AD-esque. This keeps happening throughout and occasionally goes the other way too where the definition smooths out all the lines (third page with Cap) and an almost Ramos-style (*shudder* BF) comes in. Big jaw, soft lines and smooth skin...

It doesn’t take anything away from the story but I didn’t feel it enhanced it as other artists have done for me in the past.

That said this is still a cracking issue and a great story to pick up. A good start in my eyes for Marvel Now.

Matt Puddy is wondering what to expect from Bendis' X-Men...

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