NOW! THEN! brings us a radical throwback to a Deadpool tale of yesteryear that meets every expectation! If you’re like me and have been keeping up with the Marvel NOW! Deadpool series then you have probably been pretty disappointed. I started off the series with some pretty high hopes, and I admit, the prospect of a Deadpool story involving the revenge of zombie presidents sounded incredibly promising but fell incredibly short. I enjoyed a few laughs here and there, but I honestly had a hard time making it through. Just as my attention was fading, Deadpool would throw out a little cheap-shot punchline to save my interest, but by the end I was left with a pile of half-hearted zingers. I felt like there could have been so much more added to each issue, but why linger on past mistakes?
Deadpool #7 hits the nail on the head! Although this issue is a tangent story said to have been taken from the Marvel inventory, it fully delivers a whirlwind of laughs and fun. First off, the style of the issue itself is synonymous with what you would expect from a comic at the tail end of the Bronze Age. Pages look worn and yellowed with age, while panels are made up of color halftone dots and faded ink. It truly feels like an old comic I picked up at a flea market.
Each page of this issue of yesteryear carries with it an ongoing, tongue-in-cheek quirk that would make any comic lover grin, if not literally laugh out loud (I know I did several times). The sheer sight of Deadpool sporting a Daredevil-like “DP” on his chest, a mini cape, and a yellow-and-white-striped sweat band on his head should be enough to make you crack a smile. Perhaps my favorite part of the entire issue, however, exists within the first few pages. We get a small comedic sketch involving Peter Parker at the Daily Bugle in which Peter ultimately serves the same purpose Bill Murray does in The Darjeeling Limited—a mere segue into the main character’s first appearance.
The heart of the story, however, comes from Deadpool’s deal with a demon to cause Iron Man to fall off the sober bandwagon. What, you ask, would make Deadpool want to do such a thing? The promise of riches and glory by being granted his own laser disc factory (because we all know how well the laser disc turned out…if you’re asking yourself, “What’s a laser disc?” then you’ve proven my point)! The demon, who we can only assume was hired by Obadiah Stane, expresses that it is in his client’s best interest that Iron Man fall back into his boozing habits and that the Merc with a Mouth is the perfect person to compel somebody to drink.
Despite the overall comedic tone of this issue, the story actually takes quite a heartwarming turn as Deadpool decides to help the afflicted Tony Stark instead. That’s what is utterly wonderful about this comic and clearly sets it apart from the previous six issues—they actually manage to humanize Deadpool. I know, what the hell? Can that even be done? Yes, Deadpool has feelings. And in true ’80s sitcom style, Deadpool helps promote an anti-alcoholism message before immediately switching back to his clumsy, reckless self.
I highly recommend picking up this issue of Deadpool, especially if you have been disappointed by Duggan and Posehn’s run so far. It’s a quick and fun one-shot that is bound to make you chuckle at minimum, while also providing the most heart-warming feeling you will probably ever get while reading a Deadpool comic! I give this book an 8 out of 10 instead of the 7.5 I was considering for the simple fact that it was a refreshing change of pace for the series thus far.
Let me know in the comments below what you thought about this issue or what you think about Deadpool NOW! so far.