The last time we saw Spider-man in the same frame as Deadpool, Spidey was quitting The Avengers because of Deadpool’s involvement in the group. Not for lack of effort and desire on Deadpool’s part, this is the least likely superhero duo imaginable. While the two heroes generally want the same results, neither can understand what motivates the other, and neither approves of the other’s methods of achieving results.
Spider-Man / Deadpool #1 story opens with Spider-Man and Deadpool hanging upside down, face to face, tied up by Dormammu in hell. We have to wait a whole three pages before DP starts working blue, cracking his first of many erection jokes in the story.
Spider-Man spends the entire issue trying to balance his duties as CEO of Parker Industries and his desire to remain a costumed super hero. Deadpool is trying to recruit Spidey as a mercenary for his own business, Deadpool is the Greatest, Inc. If he can convince Spider-Man to come work for him, his obsession with becoming Spider-Man’s best friend has a chance at fulfillment and Deadpool might have a chance at growing a conscience.
It is evident that Joe Kelly is very comfortable writing both Deadpool and Spider-Man, having written brilliant stories for both franchises. The punch lines and puns are delivered smoothly, never feeling forced. There are a couple of the breaking kayfabe moments we’ve come to expect from Deadpool, and while Spidey gets a few jokes and bad puns in, it’s interesting to see him play the straight man. The story is weighted slightly toward Deadpool as the star, but that makes sense due to the current popularity of the character.
Ed McGuiness is able to show a surprising range of emotion through the posture and body language of two masked characters. The design of the Mindless Ones, Dormammu, BAMF and Hydro-Man all definitely have that “heel” look to them, but also an element of innocence, which is mirrored in the dual nature of a sociopath who is genuinely attempting to be a good person but doesn’t know how.
Spider-Man Deadpool #1, released January 6, 2016, written by: Joe Kelly, artist: Ed McGuiness, ink: Mark Morales, color: Jason Keith