As stated on the cover, “Deadpool” #250 (A.K.A. #45) contains “The Death of Deadpool,” which is told through a lead story crafted by this volume’s regular writers, Brian Posehn and Gerry Duggan. However, this comic has more to offer than just the death of one of Marvel’s characters who happens to fall outside the purview of the Marvel Cinematic Universe: it contains the death of everyone, but especially Deadpool.
Recently branded as “morally flexible,” Deadpool gives readers everything they expect in the eighty-four pages contained between the covers of “Deadpool” #250: fighting, killing, humor, flat humor, more fighting and killing, some dark humor, some oddball tales, some appearances by other Marvel characters, a breakdown of the fourth wall and some chuckle-worthy moments.
The thirty-page lead has a bit of a cheat to it, but it’s a cheat in the way that Deadpool leaves this world. He doesn’t go easily, and he takes a whole mess of folks — including, apparently, the entirety of U.L.T.I.M.A.T.U.M. and some Shriners — with him. Posehn and Duggan serve up ridiculous situations that, truly, could only happen in a Deadpool comic, and the writers guide the Regeneratin’ Degenerate through it with style.
Mike Hawthorne’s art is on target, and the writers serve up everything from a Winnebago in Kansas to a stolen yacht for the artist to draw. Jordie Bellaire matches each scene, from the dry, poisoned Kansas farm to the blue, open waters of the ocean. This lead tale alone is enough to satisfy readers, but there’s over fifty pages following that left in the oversized issue.
Deadpool’s wife, Shikla, has five pages where she attempts to ready herself for the trivia night with Deadpool. This story, written by Mike Drucker and drawn by J. J. Kirby with colors from Veronica Gandini, is a wacky little tale that actually plays more straight than some of the other back-up adventures, as it provides an explanation for the demonic queen’s absence in the lead tale. Shikla provides some dark desperation humor while Drucker and Kirby even sneak in an homage to another comic book character.
“The Family S.H.I.E.L.D.” plays like a madcap sitcom blended with a twisted version of “Freaky Friday” as Paul Scheer, Nick Giovannetti and Ty Templeton cross Deadpool’s mind with that of a random dog on the street and drop the dog (Taco Dog) in on the Preston family. Five pages are enough to prove that Taco just doesn’t have the chops to carry a series of his own, but an occasional fever dream adventure might not be out of the question.
Deadpool’s mentorship of Kid Apocalypse gets five pages from Ben Acker and Ben Blacker with art from Natalie Nourigat. Once again focusing on the fear that Evan will grow up to become Apocalypse (especially in the light of the recently completed “AXIS” story), Acker and Blacker blend in the Reavers and even sneak in a cameo from everyone’s favorite Aunt May in a story that is the most charming piece of “Deadpool” #250. Mind you, the bar is not set very high, but Acker and Blacker prove themselves worthy.
In “The Thwipster and the Quipster Battle the Hipsters,” Deadpool abstains from appearing, choosing instead to let Agent Adsit have a marvelous team-up with Spider-Man. Writer Scott Aukerman gives Adsit the chance to chat up one of his idols, while artist Mirko Colak and colorist Ruth Redmond draw up Man-Wolf and a mess of other lycanthropes for the duo to battle. This story reminds readers that not everyone in this comic is Deadpool nor does everyone want to be him, and Aukerman gives Adsit a chance to flex a little bit.
“All About the Benjamins” serves up a team-up of a different stripe, as Ben Grimm happens to be in Philadelphia when the city needs to be saved from a giant squid. Or something like that, anyway, as writer Jason Mantzoukas seems to have opened the door for artist Todd Nauck with the question, “So, what do you want to draw?” in a story that fits a whole lot of silliness into five pages.
Michael the Necromancer meets his girlfriend’s folks in another Deadpool-free tale titled, “Parents: The Meeting,” written by Matt Selman and drawn by Jacob Chabot. This story has an odd, offbeat bend to it, even for a “Deadpool” comic, but it serves up a “Twilight Zone” via Tim Burton type tale for a comedic 1980s remake vibe. It should be funnier with a summarization like that, but it maybe just needed a little more room to grow.
The final narrative packed into “Deadpool” #250 is a nod to “Infinity Gauntlet” from Duggan, Posehn and frequent collaborator Scott Koblish. Here and only here, readers are treated to the joys of seeing Thanos fly a helicopter (again) and the agony of the Marvel Universe attempting to roast Deadpool. Howard the Duck emcees the event, which actually provides the most humor for these final twenty pages (aside from the visual gag of Wolverine’s appearance). Most of the Marvel Universe pops up in this story, which shifts back into the funny once Deadpool mans the microphone. Koblish and colorist Val Staples give this tale the look of a comic snatched from the stands of yesteryear, with faux textures and “damage” present in the panels of conversation between Thanos and Deadpool.
Letterer Joe Sabino keeps the narrative rolling and the appearance smooth and consistent throughout the eight stories in “Deadpool” #250. Deadpool’s trademark word balloons have set a new standard and Sabino has ample opportunity to provide plenty of other lettering styles for comparison.
“Deadpool” #250 finishes off with three pages eulogizing the mercenary as culled from the Twitterverse with a final page fumetti-esque confrontation between Clark Gregg and Jordan D. White. Where the lead story really gives readers what they want to see and what the cover promises to deliver, the remainder of the issue meanders through to the end without really sharing much of a throughline. Yes, they are all connected to Deadpool, but — clocking in at eighty-four pages — this one is gonna leave some legs numb and eyes crossed, some bellies in stitches and some others saying, “That’s it?!” In other words, “Deadpool” #250 is completely inline with the expectations readers are certain to have for any “Deadpool” comic with Posehn and Duggan credited on the story.