Unless you’ve been a nerd living under a very large rock (or perhaps have zero nerdy inclinations at all…at which I have to wonder what brought you here) you are no doubt aware that this week is Deadpool week. At the end of this week, in less than four days time, the much beloved wise-cracking, ass-kicking, chimichanga-munching character will finally be given the proper spotlight in his own movie.
With that in mind I spent the last week reading a few “classic” Deadpool books penned by Cullen Bunn.
Night of the Living Deadpool
As the title eludes to, this is a straight up zombie story with a Deadpool twist. Deadpool wakes up from a chimichanga induced “nap” and finds that during his several day long slumber the world has all but ended. Half-sentient zombies are everywhere, bemoaning their existence, pleading for death and complaining as they devour the living. Deadpool meets a group of survivors and they flee the city. Eventually Deadpool encounters an A.I.M. scientist who claims to be responsible for the zombie plague which leads to Deadpool looking for a cure for the disease.
There are lots of loving homages to other pieces of zombie fiction. During their escape from the city there are panels showing them passing up on other locations that are no doubt nods to zombie lore, from a Mall (Dawn of the Dead), an amusement park (possibly the end of Zombieland), a farm house and prison (The Walking Dead). There is another sequence where DP is bemoaning not being involved in starting the apocalypse (because he thought he would at least have a front row seat if not actually be the one who started it) that shows several more homages from rabid monkeys (28 Days Later), lab experiments (arguably Reanimator), a satellite coming back from Venus (Night of the Living Dead) and even what Deadpool calls “magical mushmouth” (Army of Darkness). The whole book is done in a style that is either a nod to Night of the Living Dead or The Walking Dead depending on how you look at it as with the exception of flashbacks and Deadpool himself, everything is in black and white.
Final Verdict: 9 out of 10, a must read for fans of Deadpool and zombies alike.
Deadpool Kills Deadpool
The third and final book of Bunn’s Deadpool Killogy tells the story of what happens when a particularly crazy and self-aware version of Deadpool (and that says a lot) decides that only way to save all comic book characters from the repeated cycle of suffering for the entertainment of others (we the comic book readers of the world) is to travel the multiverse and slaughter all versions of himself. This version of Deadpool is referred to as Dreadpool outside of the book and is the main character in the other two books (Deadpool Kills the Marvel Universe and Deadpool Killistrated).
The proper Marvel-616 (or the main Marvel universe for those unaware) Deadpool is surprised when the members of the Deadpool Corps crash land the Bea Arthur in the middle of his fight with Ultimatum and inform him of the “Suicide War” spanning the multiverse. He quickly joins them after an all in black version of Deadpool attacks and is defeated.
Over the course of the book many, many variants of Deadpool are encountered from Pandapool (yes a panda bear in Deadpool garb), to Motorpool (a mechanic Deadpool from a world ruled by the automotive industry), to versions of Deadpool based on other Marvel characters (Wolverine, Spiral, Galactus, Howard the Duck and M.O.D.O..K. to name a few) and many others who are never named but make for some amazing panels throughout the book. As to be expected the story descends into chaos as it barrels towards the final showdown with Deadpool and Dreadpool.
Final Verdict: 9 out of 10, a satisfying read that takes an absurd concept and runs with it.
Deadpool vs Carnage
The last time I read a Deadpool vs book it was Hawkeye facing off with the Merc with a Mouth and I closed that book less than fully satisfied.
That was not the case here.
Carnage has long been one of my favorite Spider-Man villains and his particular brand of crazy pairs oh so well with Deadpool.
What there is of a plot concerns Deadpool hunting down Carnage as he makes his way randomly across the country slaughtering groups of people at his leisure. Carnage believes he is serving Chaos by randomly murdering men, women and children while Deadpool believes he is destined to be the one who can find the pattern of Carnage’s killings and stop him.
From this premise we are given a handful of brutal and awesome battles between the two in locations ranging from an abandoned model community to a secret lab.
Final Verdict: 10 out of 10, easily my favorite of these three books, the combination of one of my favorite Marvel villains and arguably my favorite Marvel hero was just too much to overcome.
Seriously, I feel all Deadpool fans should check out these books. They are all worth the asking price (I picked them up for less than $10 a piece) and were great additions to my collection (and should find homes in yours as well).