Editor's Note: The final issue of Cable & Deadpool arrives in stores tomorrow, February 20.
Plot: Deadpool joins in a star-studded Marvel team-up against dinosaurs that have been bonded with the Venom "symbiont."
Commentary: Cable & Deadpool is a terrific comic because it's not to be read like continuity heavy X-Men, Spider-Man, or anything else in the Marvel universe. When you open to page one, you don't wonder "How could he be doing this while simultaneously hunting Mystique in Afghanistan?" Instead you enjoy it's zany, subversive, goofy style…sadly, for the last time.
In this final chapter, Nicieza and Brown finally surround our favorite schlock-talking mercenary with his idols: Spider-Man, the Thing, Ms. Marvel, Wonder Man, the Fantastic Four, and The Avengers. The opening between Deadpool and old Web-Head is hilarious and biting, especially when the Merc-with-a Mouth retorts about having a supporting cast: "And I don’t have to make a deal with Mephisto to have it, either." Deadpool is refreshing against the cavalcade of crossovers and special events that shape the Marvel Universe.
Cable & Deadpool #50, for all its tongue-in-cheek moments, is also surprisingly tender. Deadpool wants to be more than just a mercenary, a killing machine whose healing factor makes him nearly imperishable. He wants to be a hero, much like Cable's current transformation from gun toting badass to gun toting badass with a peaceful objective. Without even reading the series, you can appreciate Deadpool's longing and his sense of acceptance when finally fighting alongside the Black Widow and Spider-Woman.
All of this is made possible by Reilly Brown's great art. His style harkens back to classic superhero comics, while delivering every joke perfectly. You'd think comedy in comics is easy. Well, it is. But when real visual comedians do it, the effects are incredible. For example, while Spidey and Deadpool sock and lobotomize the Venom-Dinos, the merc's supporting cast disappears. For four pages, our two heroes fight in an alley--climbing up fire escapes, walls, and atop a garbage dumpster. When the dinos are finally dealt with, the two supporting characters meekly poke out of the dumpster to stare up at Deadpool.
In conclusion, the series' final bow is so laugh out loud funny, thrilling, and actually touching, that it's sad to think that not enough people picked up this book. Despite being under-read and suffering from low sales, its fans have been steadfast and loyal for good reason. Go find out why.
Final Word: Bea Arthur forever!
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