Review: Deadpool #19
Brian Posehn, Gerry Duggan, Declan Shalvey, and Jordie Bellaire have been on an absolute tear in “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.” It’s a shame to see it end, but the Deadpool crew finishes the arc off with perfection.
The hard part about writing a Deadpool book is nailing the humor. Everyone’s funny bone is different, so it can be hard for every joke to land. Before the current arc, Posehn and Duggan were doing ok but the jokes had problems. #19 is a perfect example of how to write a humor in a Deadpool comic. The humor comes naturally from the story, and hits a wide variety of people. North Korea’s insistence that Captain America is propaganda and their light talk of being executed gave me a hard chuckle. “For a moment I thought you were going to say I was from Ohio,” says Deadpool had me laughing uncontrollably. You don’t need to be caught up on pop culture or the character to understand these jokes, so the jokes hit. Posehn and Duggan use this peppered humor to cut through this serious, and sometimes depressing, issue.
Deadpool is a funny character, but arcs like “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” show that he can be more than the laughing stock of the Marvel universe. For once, we are really seeing the scars on the inside of Wade instead of just assuming he has messed up as much the inside as he is on the outside. While Wade’s tryst with Carm felt like a passing joke, Posehn and Duggan built on it very well. This entire arc remedies an ongoing problem with Deadpool, who is a character that is sometimes hard to relate too. But the small changes they’ve made, like the voices in his head having meaning and giving him a pseudo-family, have brought him back down to Earth again in terms of reliability. Posehn and Duggan even give a nice commentary on the nature of heroes in the Marvel universe in the last few pages. Not every arc can be this serious, but every once and a while is a welcomed thing. During Daniel Way’s volume, there were plenty of arcs where Deadpool said/acted like he was a changed man. But “The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly” truly gives us the feeling that something about Wade has changed. Sure, the cover to #20 has him fighting with a dinosaur, but this serious side of Wade will hopefully come back sooner rather than later.
Declan Shalvey has been firing on all cylinders while on Deadpool. The slight facial expressions showing through Deadpool’s mask are perfect for the character in his current state. He’s not the over the top character he has been, and only chooses to show the complete rage he is feeling at the moment. Shalvey displays his range here, going from dead seriousness with Deadpool, to nailing sight gags with the North Korean army. His minimalist scenes for Deadpool’s flashbacks work well. Wade doesn’t remember the events well, so these scenes wouldn’t be brimming with detail. The reader is seeing exactly what Wade is remembering. Jordie Bellaire colors accentuate the memories, showering Deadpool in a light red. Now this is probably there to show the reader which one is Deadpool, but it also works as a self critique of Deadpool. He’s always seen himself as a bad guy, no matter how much he tries to be a hero, and red is a color that represents evil.
Deadpool #19 gets 5/5.