Deadpool: Minibus Vol. 0
Authors: Mike Benson, Duane Swierczynski
Illustrators: Carlo Barberi, Jason Pearson
Publisher: Marvel Comics
-Deadpool: Suicide Kings 1-5
-Deadpool: Pulp 1-4
-Deadpool: Wade Wilson's War 1-4
-Fear Itself: Deadpool 1-3
-Amazing Spider-Man Annual 38
-Deadpool Annual (2011)
-The Incredible Hulk Annual (2011)
Deadpool was one of those characters that I never really got into. All of the merchandising, the Hot Topic belt buckles, the socks with the split red & black mask logo - it seemed as if this was a character that I would just skip. The same way you skip a band like Slipknot. Just not my thing.
Then the Deadpool movie came around starring (ugh!) Ryan f***ing Reynolds, but introducing me to the character. It seemed as if the most merchandised mercenary was now played by one of the most one-note, annoying actors ever to grace the silver screen. Strangely enough, Ryan Reynolds turned out to be the perfect cast for Deadpool, as the character himself, nobody seems to like, much like Ryan Reynolds is an actor that also nobody seems to like. The movie was entertaining and brought me to here: reviewing this comic for you.
At first glance this comic is NICE! It’s like a super nice leather bound hardcover book you would see in the library in Wayne Manor. It better be nice as this is one EXPENSIVE graphic novel. Clocking in at around $70 dollars, I sure hope you like the Crimson Comedian a lot. I can’t see anyone who works a honest living plunk this kind of money down for a comic of any kind even if you are the most hardcore of hardcore fan with the Deadpool socks and everything. This comic is described as a minibus, sort of like an omnibus where they collect all of the comics for a certain character, but you know, mini. The collection is far ranging in tone and art styles which is really cool. Some of the comics focus more on Wade Wilson’s backstory, some act as sort of a prequel, then others are just plain one off stories. You don’t really have a cohesive story that runs throughout the comic which is cool because you can really just jump in at any point. Outside of the pricepoint, this is a solid sort of ‘starter’ kit for becoming a Deadpool fan.
Although I found reading this enjoyable, I still wouldn’t say that I like Deadpool as a character. Described as the ‘Crimson Comedian’ or ‘The Merc With the Mouth’ - it really depends on who is writing the comic as to whether or not it is actually funny. For the majority of the time, I found the humor to just be annoying, kind of like you’re hanging out with your friend’s little brother and he won’t shut the f*** up. However, during the comic ‘Deadpool: Pulp,’ the comic is largely humorless and it makes the story so dry and boring. It’s almost like a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ thing. This is because, like animation, comics don’t have a test audience. This isn’t like stand-up comedy where you can write a joke, test it, and then hone the craft over time. With comics, once it’s in print, it’s done. There are no rewrites. Some of the comics really nail the humor - I think the ‘Suicide Kings’ issues are a decent example of this but other comics...I was just waiting for something as dumb ass as Deadpool beheading someone and then dabbing afterwards. It’s like weird junior high YouTuber humor. Plus some of the jokes are either so topical that you miss what was funny about it because it happened so long ago and is now dated or the references are so specific that if you’re not in the know, you’re not going to get it. These are collected from the Marvel Knights series - I mean I guess it’s supposed to be bad humor and he’s supposed to be annoying? That’s part of the charm right?
I would say that Deadpool is a top shelf Marvel comic. They hire the tip top artists to work on this property and it looks like it. The highlight art wise is the aforementioned ‘Deadpool: Pulp’ that captures that 1960’s noir setting and gives the comic this cool sort of James Bond vibe. I can see that comic specifically being somewhat influential on the new James Bond comics by Jason Masters and Warren Ellis. Deadpool is also one of the better written and developed characters in the Marvel universe. He may be annoying, and his humor off the mark, but writing a character with different personalities and wrapping it into a cohesive story would be challenging and I commend all the writers for their valiant efforts. It would be hard to write a character that not only has a inner monologue, but also has conversations with other characters, in addition to also talking to the audience directly (a.k.a. breaking the fourth wall). It is something that you do not see often in comics and it greatly adds to the charm of Deadpool.
If you are a Deadpool fan, you most likely already have these comics as well as the socks, belt buckle, coffee mug, loot crate beanie… But if you are new to the character and you have a lot of extra ransom money just lying around, handcuff that briefcase full of money to your wrist and go buy this minibus.