Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Deadpool, Volume 5: The Wedding of Deadpool Review (Gerry Duggan, Brian Posehn)

(If you’ve just been reading the Marvel NOW! Deadpool, you might well be wondering where the hell Deadpool’s wedding came from - after all, there wasn’t any indication of this in the previous four volumes! The missing link lies in Deadpool: The Gauntlet, which, helpfully, at the time of writing has yet to be published in trade, and should’ve really been Volume 5 seeing as it was written by Duggan/Posehn as well. 

Anyway, if you want the whole story, check that out before reading this - let’s say it’s Volume 4.5. If you don’t want to bother, the Cliffnotes version is that the bride’s name is Shiklah and she’s the queen of the Monster Metropolis under NYC. Dracula wanted her, Deadpool fought and beat him, she fell for Wade, now they’re getting hitched. Done and done!) 

Here’s what I thought when I first heard Deadpool was getting married: a Hangover-type story with Marvel characters, say, Wade, Logan and Steve Rogers on a lads’ night out in Vegas, encountering various Marvel characters, good and bad, along the way and getting into drunken superhero escapades. To me, that sounds like fun. Sadly, that’s not the direction the forces that be decided to go in. 

Instead, a TON of writers are brought in to write about the many, many times Deadpool got married before because for some reason this issue needed to be not only jam-packed with characters on the cover, but also crammed with writers! Besides series writers Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn, there’s Joe Kelly, Jimmy Palmiotti, Gail Simone, Victor Gischler, Daniel Way, Frank Tieri, Christopher Priest, Mark Waid, and Deadpool’s co-creator Fabian Nicieza (apparently Rob Liefeld and Marvel still aren’t talking). 

The Deadpool previous marriages stories range from dull to crap to forgettable to I’ve-literally-forgotten-what’s-happening-in-this-5-page-story-and-I’m-only-on-page-3 to snoreworthy. These stories take up about half the book and are nothing but a chore to get through. There is a crazy bachelor party but it’s a framing device that takes up a few pages only. 

Then there are the other issues. An extra-long story where Deadpool becomes one with Madcap (yawn), another “lost issue” where Deadpool, Cable and Fury fight Hitler (not nearly as fun as it sounds), and finally the honeymoon issue which sees Deadpool and Shiklah fighting Pokemon-esque characters in Tokyo, that turns out to be a nod to the story arc from Volume 3 (dreary). 

So what was good? Unfortunately not much. The wedding itself is much more lo-fi than the cover suggests, with Wade and Shiklah tying the knot in the park with Nightcrawler presiding. It starts to rain but Thor helpfully nudges the clouds away. The ceremony is… kinda sweet. 

There’s a nice dig at DC on the cover of the wedding issue (“the most important #27 issue ever!” - Batman first appeared in Detective Comics #27) and a fun variant cover parodying Batman’s famous first appearance. 

And then there’s the big-ass cover itself, which is more like a spot-the-superhero puzzle! It actually holds the Guinness World Record for Most Comic Book Characters on a Single Issue Cover! Looking at the detail and discovering who was in attendance was easily the most entertaining part of the book for me, and I loved that real world people got drawn in too, like the creative team for this book and some Marvel execs. 

This book should’ve been way more fun and entertaining than it turned out to be. The last word you should think of when you hear the words “Deadpool” and “wedding” is “boring”, and yet that’s what this volume is: a boring mess.

Deadpool Volume 5: The Wedding of Deadpool

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