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Long After Watchmen: Let’s Talk About Deadpool History

July 5th, 2012 Posted by Gavok

I regularly peek at the traffic of the site because of ego. No big deal, I figure. While the new stuff almost always ends up hitting the top of the hit list, it’s interesting to see what stuff regularly gets its share of visitors no matter how old it gets. The We Care a Lot and the What If stuff, for instance, still do well. One of those articles that still gets notice is the Top 70 Deadpool Moments. It’s a 7-day series of daily posts I did three years ago that listed my favorite moments in the character’s history (with a little help from the readers). It was a fun writing project, but I look back at it and raise an eyebrow.

The timing of it was deliberate. X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which featured a character that was SUPPOSED to be Deadpool, was about to be released and Day 7 came out on that Friday. It was right before what I like to call the Deadpoolsplosion, where he started appearing all over the place with way too many comics to keep track of. And I think back to the list and all the comics that have come out since then and I wonder how much I’d change the list if given the chance to update it.

Sadly, I wouldn’t change all that much. There really haven’t been too many stellar incidents with him since mid-09. He’s had his moments for sure, but they’re more few and far between than there should be, what with him being all over the place. In fact, for a guy who was once one of my favorite Marvel characters, the only thing I read with him is a team book where he rarely gets shoved into the forefront.

I figured it would be a good time to look at the character’s history and see what went right and what went wrong.

Deadpool made his first appearance in New Mutants #98 in 1990, where he fought Cable and lost. While Fabian Nicieza was the writer, the basic design for the character was an idea of the artist, Rob Liefeld. Liefeld had always wanted to draw Deathstroke the Terminator professionally – something he’d get to do 22 years later at the expense of me caring about what was a fun series – but since Deathstroke was a DC character, he had to make due with a pastiche. We got Wade Wilson instead of Slade Wilson and our awkwardly-drawn villain was born.

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Fourcast! 26: Welcome to the Deadpool, Street Angel!

November 23rd, 2009 Posted by david brothers

-Wait, who is that? Who let Gavin on the podcast? Did he hack my computer?
-Theme music: 6th Sense’s 4a.m. Instrumental
-I Made Esther Read: Street Angel, by Jim Rugg and Brian Maruca. Check out this clip.
-Deadpool. What’s the deal with that guy? And Agent X, remember that?

And of course, there’s bad news– the Fourcast! is on hiatus for at least a month and change. Unavoidable technical issues, time, unrelated stress, blah blah blah– we’ll be back at some point in January, most likely. Call it a holiday, and call it a comeback in a month or so.

Subscribe to the Fourcast! via:
-Podcast Alley feed!
-RSS feed via Feedburner
-iTunes Store

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“Could ya see yourself with a Spider workin’ harder than 9 to 5?”

September 29th, 2009 Posted by david brothers

Sometimes you don’t realize how much you miss something until it comes back.

One of the best parts of Spider-Man’s supporting cast are the female characters he meets, befriends, and sometimes dates. Glory Grant, Gwen Stacy, Mary Jane, Betty Brant, Liz Allan, and probably a dozen others. They ran the gamut from weepy and hot-for-teenager Lee/Ditko-era Betty Brant to determined Gwen Stacy to party girl with a heart of gold MJ.

While Aunt May and MJ’s Aunt Anna were both pretty much cut from the same cloth, with Aunt May being a little more frail on occasion, the rest of the women came from all walks of life, and the series benefitted from it. One woman who is absolutely in my top three, though, is Felicia Hardy, the Black Cat.

Felicia brought a more realistic version of the Clark/Lois/Superman love triangle to comics. In a world where you honestly have a choice between the heroic hot dude and the shlub who just kinda stutters a little, who in the world would choose the shlub? Felicia is an attractive cat burglar and lives the high life. When Spider-Man reveals his identity, all she can say is, “Put your mask back on!” It’s Spider-Man she loves, fabulous man of mystery and amazing hero, not Peter Parker, Dude Who Worries About His Rent.

Felicia brings something to the Spider-books that MJ or Gwen never could. She’s got abilities that raise her above the level of “normal comic book girl.” Her bad luck powers are only icing on the cake for her agility, general physical fitness, and ability to plan a crime. She knows the risks and enters into them of her own free will. Her fun-loving nature, too, provides a wonderful contrast to Peter Parker’s constant gnashing of teeth.

She was actually in my first comic, though she jobbed to Venom there. Amazing Spider-Man #316, the beginning of Venom’s big comeback tour. She comes looking for Spider-Man, not knowing that 1) he’s married and 2) moved out. Venom catches her while she’s in Spider’s old apartment, beats the snot out of her, and leaves her in tears. Great going, guys.

Amazing Spidey #606 brought the Black Cat back into the Spider-Man family proper, with her first appearance in the flagship book since Maximum Carnage. Do the math: that’s 16 years. She showed up in various miniseries and probably Spectacular or Web Of, but Amazing is the Spidey book. Seems like a long time, doesn’t it? Luckily, her return to Amazing Spider-Man is also a return to form, as she reminds me of the character that I loved back in the day.

From Amazing Spidey 606, words by Joe Kelly, pictures by Mike McKone, with Chris Chuckry on colors:

blackcat_001blackcat_002blackcat_003
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Welcome back, Felicia Hardy.

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