Hi there. You’re probably reading this because you have a newfound obsession with Deadpool, thanks to Ryan Reynolds being his power animal. This is going to be a review of some length, so I’m guessing there’s going to be bad language, references to violence, and worst of all, spoilers ahead. If you haven’t gone to see the movie, you should. Then come back and get your Deadpool fix when you’re sad it’s over and the sequel is years away.
I blame Deadpool’s popularity on several aspects. One, he’s one of the few comic book characters who is aware of his heritage. He breaks the fourth wall, and make references to the ‘real world’ in all its glory. It gives him a direct line of communication to you, the audience member. He feels more real, this way. (As an aside, She-Hulk breaks the fourth wall, too, and I hope that the Marvel studios are paying attention to how much Deadpool made this weekend and adding 2+2.)
Next, he’s a mercenary with a heart of gold. Which means that when he feels the need, he’ll kill someone he deems deserves it without mercy. At the same time, he won’t take money from a girl who paid him to get rid of her stalker. He does have a sense of right and wrong, it’s just skewed as all hell.
Deadpool is a modern day Robin Hood. He's developed from a world of increasingly screwed-up priorities. He has clear vision about what is right and wrong, but a flippant way of distributing that justice. The villian describes his weakness as, 'he can feel.' In some ways you realize that Wade feels deeply, so deeply that humor is his only way to survive these insane situations.
There is an insane glee in watching Deadpool kill goons. This isn’t your typical X-Man 'no one dies' scenario. Henchmen fall like wheat to a scythe, and Deadpool has no qualms about ending people’s lives. Batman would have no end of frowny-face for Deadpool’s antics. The humor is a big part of it, as our “hero” shoots off at the mouth, but there’s catharsis in seeing waves of bad guys fall. There is a part of us, many of us, who dream of taking out the obstacles in our life, be it a boss, a co-worker, an unfair insurance claim, a flooding washing machine, whatever. Wade Wilson, aka Deadpool, does what we can’t. He is a revenge fantasy come to life.
And I have been remiss. Basking in Deadpool’s glory, I haven’t mentioned his girlfriend, Vanessa, played by the glorious Morena Baccarin. She was a stunning addition to the Deadpool cast. She is *never* the shrinking violet / victim type. From the first move where she grabs a man’s balls and twists because he grabbed her ass, you see her stand up for herself time and time again. She doesn’t make stupid decisions. She gets tricked, but how she handles herself while in the villain’s clutches is superb. You can see why Wade Wilson would crawl across broken glass for her.
The way this origin story was filmed kept the pacing strong throughout the whole movie. There were few pauses for breath, and when they cropped up you find they were a welcome break from the story. The addition of Colossus as foil was well-executed, and the main bad guy was that perfect level of twisted but believable.
I think Marvel made a good decision by releasing Deadpool as rated ‘R.’ The joy of Deadpool is in the carnage and the adult language. It’s not meant for kids, but there are lots of comics that are so it’s not as though they are entirely shut out. I think Deadpool is the catharsis that people in their normal everyday lives, and I think that that is how it should be.