Written by Kelly Thompson. Pencilled by Chris Bachalo. Inked by like 10 people. Coloured by David Curiel.
This is actually quite a tough issue, to write about. I'd love to deep dive into the symbolism utilised, the amazing callbacks to previous issues, prior Deadpool runs, historic Russian literature and obscure French independent cinema...
But, yeah. There isn't any of that. There's barely a plot, to be brutally honest. Deadpool spends the issue bouncing back and forth between quipping, fighting, and regenerating.
Which is to say, it's pretty much the archetypal Deadpool issue, and I loved every &$%#'n frame of it.
Don't get me wrong. I love grand story arcs; I live for reference heavy plots that feel more like an experience, than a story. I was there for every page of Duggan's Saga.
But sometimes, it's good to take a step back, and just enjoy a really fun issue.
And that is exactly what Thompson has given us here. Kraven is hunting Deadpool, and the only people that can stand in his way are Deadpool's Honour Guard. A wolf guy, a blob dude, a rocky thing, and a baby landshark, called Jeff.
But along the way, Deadpool will flirt, fight, and consult his ever so handy Marvel Monster cards, in an attempt not to get skewered... Or chomped by Jeff.
I've read a LOT of issues like this. Lore-lite, heavy on fun. People think that if they write a half-decent fight, and throw in a few good burns, they'll be made. Hell, Joss Whedon has made a whole career out of that basic outline. But here's the thing... while that kind of issue is easy to write, it's actually pretty damn hard to write well. Most comics like this are forgotten, almost as soon as you close the book. It takes a writer with some real skill to write an issue like that, and have it actually stick with the reader.
I think that's the skill that Thompson has shown, in her short time on Deadpool. She writes a very funny 'Pool. The zingers fly hard and fast. Almost as fast as the fists. But underneath it all is a bone-weary sadness, and a resigned, somewhat flawed, heroism. It's the aspect that first drew me to the character, and it's an aspect that has been on full display this whole run. It's the reason I started reading Thompson's take on the Merc with a Mouth, and it's the reason I'll keep reading until I die, or Wade does.
Overall, another great issue. As I think I mentioned, I'm really loving Thompson's take on Deadpool; the writing is funny, the jokes sharp, and the plot, bare though it was, was enough to keep me turning pages. The art continues to be strong. Bachalo's style is clear enough that the action is easy to follow, but with just enough scratch and warp to suit the somewhat twisted nature of the comic.
Really enjoying his run, and I hope I get the chance to enjoy it for years to come.