As filming gets ready to begin on the sequel to last year’s blockbuster film, “Deadpool,” it appears clear that not only will the mutant known as Domino be part of the film, but Fox is looking at some major names to play the role, like Kerry Washington.
It makes sense that Domino would have a presence, of course, since she has strong ties to both Deadpool and his rumored co-star, Cable. Domino has never appeared in a live-action TV show or film before, so this is a major step forward for a character who only recently celebrated her 25th anniversary. Here are 15 things you should know about Domino ahead of her film debut.
15. SHE DEBUTED WITH DEADPOOL
Towards the tail end of their run on “New Mutants,” Rob Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza knew that the series would soon be relaunching as “X-Force.” As a result, the last six issues or so slowly weeded out certain members of the team (like Wolfsbane, Warlock and Rictor) and added new members (like Warpath, Shatterstar and Feral). One of the biggest issues in terms of adding new characters to the cast of the upcoming “X-Force” series was “New Mutants” #98.
Now, today, the issue is clearly best known for the introduction of a certain mercenary with a knack for wisecracks known as Deadpool. However, at the time that the issue came out, the other two characters seemed like they might be just as important. One of them was Gideon, a powerful mutant who ended up becoming the mentor to Sunspot and the reason why Sunspot left the team. The other was Domino, a mysterious woman who showed up to knock out Deadpool at the last moment after he was kicking the collective butt of Cable and the remaining New Mutants. All we knew about her was that she was a friend of Cable and that she showed up to help.
14. SHE ACTUALLY DEBUTED A YEAR LATER
Domino was soon the second in command of X-Force. However, there was a big twist revealed in “X-Force” #11 (by Rob Liefeld, Fabian Nicieza, Mark Pacella and Dan Panosian). Deadpool showed up to fight Domino, but he kept calling her “Vanessa.” At the end of the issue, we learned the truth — the Domino that had been serving with X-Force since “New Mutants” #98 was an impostor! She was secretly the shapeshifting mutant known as Copycat (or, as Deadpool knew her, his former girlfriend, Vanessa).
The real Domino had been captured by Deadpool’s sadistic employer, Tolliver, who had some earlier dealings with Domino and Cable that had gone wrong; he finally got his revenge by capturing Domino and hiring Copycat to replace her in X-Force. The interesting aspect of this reveal is that it retroactively made Domino’s “real” first appearance “X-Force” #8, which had a flashback in it to Domino and Cable’s early days together before X-Force. Domino escaped from Tolliver and eventually the real Domino joined X-Force.
13. SHE WAS A SPECIAL PROJECT
Domino’s origins were a mystery for years, until the “Domino” miniseries of 2000 showed Domino exploring her past and finally getting answers. You see, Domino was created as part of a government program called Project: Armageddon. The idea behind the program was to genetically design ultimate soldiers who would presumably be valuable in the case of any sort of planet-wide devastation. Almost all of the test subjects died, and Domino was one of the few survivors. Her distinctive face mark was part of the tagging used by the scientists to distinguish the experiments.
The program employee who had given birth to Domino helped her escape when Domino was a child. However, Domino had a brother who was left behind in suspended animation. Their mother rose up in the ranks of a group of religious fanatics known as the Armajesuits. Her mother used Domino to help them break into Project: Armageddon so she could kill off her son, who she believed was a threat to the world. Domino temporarily saved her brother and left him with the same priest that her mother had left her with years earlier.
12. SHE WAS AN ANGRY YOUTH
Abandoned by her mother at a young age and having her distinctly odd appearance, it is little surprise that Domino’s upbringing was a rough one. However, she took the notion of a difficult childhood to a whole other level. She lived in Madripoor for a time working as an underground fighter. It was at this point that she first met Sean Cassidy, who would one day become a member of the X-Men as Banshee.
Domino is slightly older than most other notable mutants, which is notable, as it makes her relationships with other heroes, mercs and evenless savory characters more understandable (and believable). She’s met quite a few folks over the years, including, for instance, the inimitable Puck from Alpha Flight. Domino eventually was recruited by the National Security Agency (NSA), but after that (inevitably) fell through, she became one of the most in-demand mercenaries working in the industry. This eventually brought her to the attention of Cable.
11. HER POWERS ARE… WEIRD
For years, Domino’s “luck” powers were about as vaguely described as you could get. Over time, though, they’ve been better explained. Then again, what we now know about the way that her mutant powers work has likely been artificially altered by Project: Armageddon, so we really don’t know for sure what her abilities would look like had she not been experimented on. That all notwithstanding, what Domino does is more like creating a probability field around her that she can use to telekinetically make things go certain ways.
For instance, let’s say that you fire a laser at her. Her probability field makes it so that she telekinetically alters the direction of the blast so that it misses her and, at the same time, the field is sort of connected to her body to make herself move in such a fashion that she will always avoid the laser blast. However, she has to actively used this power for it to work. If she doesn’t make a move to duck something, it will hit her the same as anyone else.
10. SHE WAS “MARRIED”
One of the absolutely oddest parts of Domino’s history is the fact that she was apparently married to a man named Dr. Milo Thurman, who had an almost supernatural ability to process probabilities to such an exact degree that he was too dangerous to be left on his own. After getting caught hacking into the NSA, he was arrested and held in a special facility without access to the outside world. Domino was assigned guard duty on Thurman and the two fell in love. Here’s where it gets tricky. It seems highly unlikely that the NSA would let one of its agents marry one of its prisoners, doesn’t it?
In addition, even in the storyline where Thurman’s existence was revealed, Domino used quotes when she referred to him as her husband, which suggests that while they clearly had a romantic relationship, it is unlikely that they were ever officially married. Nevertheless, later comics have then confirmed that they were married. Thurman sadly lost his life when Donald Pierce (formerly of the Hellfire Club) tried to merge Thurman’s analytical mind with a computer controlled by Pierce.
9. HOW SHE MET CABLE
Domino split with the NSA after she helped protect Thurman from an attempt by AIM to capture him; they initially wanted to seize and plunder his valuable mind for their own purposes. Domino was listed as dead after that attack, which also suggests that the whole “ex-husband” angle doesn’t make sense. After all, how could he they have gotten a divorce if he thought that she was dead? In any event, she went freelance and become a well-respected mercenary.
She made such a name for herself that she was recruited by Cable and G.W. Bridge to join their highly specialized mercenary team, Wild Pack, which was later renamed Six Pack, likely due to Silver Sable’s agents going by the name Wild Pack. The other three members were Grizzly, Kane and Hammer. The group broke up after Cable ruined a mission in his pursuit of Stryfe. The mission that they were on when Cable went AWOL was one for Tolliver, which is why he hunted Domino down later as revenge.
8. SHE LED X-FORCE
One of the oddest aspects of Domino in the early days of “X-Force” was that she became a prominent cast member of the series, but did not actually meet the team for real until the series had been around for nearly three years. During the first year, she was captured the entire time. When she was freed, she reformed the Six Pack in an attempt to find X-Force. By this time, the team had split from Cable. Finally, after Cable and X-Force got back together, Domino was officially brought on board in “X-Force” #30.
Due to her being the oldest one in the group outside of Cable, Domino quickly found herself in a leadership role with the team. Cable would often leave X-Force for his own adventures; in those instances, Domino basically became the leader of X-Force by default. After taking a break from the team herself, she returned and took on a more formal leadership role.
7. SHE DATED CABLE
One of the strangest things about Domino in the early issues of “X-Force” not being the real Domino is that during that time period, the fake Domino and Cable became romantically involved. Since those early issues were read by so many people, most people just think of Cable and Domino as being lovers. However, the actual Domino and Cable were only friends at that point in time.
Upon the real Domino joining X-Force, she and Cable grew closer, and when the universe seemed like it was about to end (in the events leading up to the “Age of Apocalypse”), they finally admitted that they had romantic feelings for each other and made out like high schoolers. They continued to date for some time until Domino was captured during Operation: Zero Tolerance. When she was eventually freed, Cable had moved on in his life and the two decided to split up.
6. SHE TRIED TO KILL CABLE
After X-Force split up (after a mission in which seemingly everyone but Domino was killed), Domino returned to her life as a mercenary (following a short-lived time serving in Professor Xavier’s worldwide X-Corporation). However, she was soon brought back into the world of Cable when the Six Pack reformed to investigate Cable’s attempts to become a sort of new messiah for the human race.
Domino, in particular, investigated Cable (and his ally, Deadpool), when he was organizing a rebellion inside the nation of Rumekistan, which had been taken over by the Flag-Smasher. Domino came to realize two things – someone had to kill the leader so that the rebellion could succeed and she could not let that death be on Cable’s conscience. So, she did it for them (Cable had only planned on having Deadpool wound him). When she saw how quickly Cable took to being the head of the country, she began to doubt him and actually considered killing him. Instead, she just used her powers to demonstrate that she could have killed him if she wanted to and could do so at any time in the future if he doesn’t shape up. In the end, they reconciled before Cable was supposedly killed (again).
5. SHE JOINED A NEW X-FORCE
Domino returned to being a mercenary after Cable’s apparent death. She then found herself caught up with the newly reformed X-Force, which had been reformed by Cyclops as a special black ops team that would go on wet works missions that Cyclops forbid them from telling the other X-Men about. During her stint on this version of X-Force, Domino began a relationship with Wolverine (they even shared a miniseries where Wolverine helped Domino with a contract put out on her head), but it was short-lived.
When X-Force was broken up after the team went public (and Cyclops had a hard time explaining why he had his own special team of killers), Domino stuck around with the X-Men on their island sanctuary of Utopia and became a key member of the X-Men’s security team. She largely helped protect Utopia from outside forces in a squad led by Storm. After “Avengers vs. X-Men,” the X-Men on Utopia dispersed and Domino broke from the X-Men.
4. SHE LEARNED THE IDENTITY OF RED HULK
During her time with the Cyclops-controlled X-Force, Domino found herself caught up in a bizarre adventure outside of the X-Men titles (albeit in a story written by Jeph Loeb, who had written Domino for years in the pages of both “Cable” and “X-Force”). Domino was given a hint about some AIM scientists, who she still held a grudge against from when they tried to kidnap her “husband,” Milo Thurman. However, when she set up her sniper rifle and trained it on an AIM meeting, she instead discovered Thunderbolt Ross transforming into the Red Hulk!
The Red Hulk could not deal with Domino revealing his secret identity, so he hired a group of mercenaries known as “Code Red” (consisting of Deadpool, Punisher, Thundra, Crimson Dynamo, and Elektra) to kill Domino. Domino, meanwhile, got the assistance from her teammates in X-Force and there was soon a total free-for-all. When Elektra realized what was really going on, she and Domino ended up both being attacked by the newly-introdued Red She-Hulk! In the end, Domino cut a deal with the Red Hulk. She would keep quiet about his secret identity if he would keep X-Force’s existence a secret. Naturally, both secrets failed to remain secrets.
3. SHE RE-JOINED CABLE AND X-FORCE
Following the events of “Avengers vs. X-Men,” mutant relations with the rest of the world were pretty iffy. Havok, Rogue and Wolverine helped assuage fears of mutants by joining a new team of Avengers known as the Unity Squad (or “Uncanny Avengers”). However, there were still certain missions that needed to be done that regular heroes could not do, so Cable reformed X-Force as a new rogue group. Domino ultimately joined up again, alongside Doctor Nemesis, Forge and Colossus (who was still dealing with the guilt over his actions during “Avengers vs. X-Men” when he was possessed by the Phoenix Force).
This X-Force team was on the run because they defeated a villain who mutated humans into monsters; in the process, the team had to kill a few of the humans that he had mutated. When they died, however, they returned to their human form, so it made it look like X-Force had just killed a bunch of innocent humans. Later, while on the run together after the team split up, Domino and Colossus began a short-lived romantic relationship. Cable’s X-Force then merged with Psylocke’s X-Force, but Colossus and Domino both skipped this merged team.
2. SHE RUNS THE MERCS FOR MONEY
Recently, with very her rumored role in “Deadpool 2” almost certainly a driving factor in this decision, Domino’s return to mercenary work following her leaving Cable’s X-Force has led her to the pages of the “Deadpool” spin-off comic book, “Deadpool and the Mercs for Money,” as the new leader of the titular team.
Domino’s team of Mercs for Money consists of Gorilla-Man (from the Agents of Atlas), Machine Man (from Nextwave), Hit-Monkey, Massacre and, perhaps most importantly, Negasonic Teenage Warhead, who was prominently featured in the original “Deadpool” film. Up until this storyline, Negasonic had been dead in the comic books for years (she was brought to life by Selene during the “Necrosha” crossover, but died again at the end of that event). So, this way, Domino gets to be connected to both Deadpool and Negasonic Teenage Warhead in the comics ahead of the next “Deadpool” film.
1. SHE WILL BE IN WEAPON X
In the very near future, it appears Domino will be pulled into the world of superhero team books once more with a brand-new series launching in April called “Weapon X” by Greg Pak and Greg Land. The series is about a newly reborn Weapon X program that is dedicating itself to eliminating all mutants from the planet. In response to this plan, a ragtag team of heroes and anti-heroes team-up to take Weapon X down. The team consists of Old Man Logan, Sabretooth, Lady Deathstrike, Warpath and Domino.
The last time that “Weapon X” had a comic book, Domino was prominently featured as part of a resistance to the previous incarnation of the eponymous program, so it makes sense that she would be involved in taking this version down, as well; especially along side her former X-Force teammate, Warpath. She served with him in two different versions of X-Force: the original Cable-led team and the Cyclops-controlled group.
What’s your favorite Domino comic book factoid or story? Let us know in the comments section!
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