So we come to the second half of the list and here we have the best of the best (in my opinion of course) of the merc with a mouth. Enjoy
14. Dead Reckoning-1998/1999
This is a weird one as it’s bloated, overly dialogue heavy and a space story which I don’t think goes with Deadpool too well but I’ll be damned if it doesn’t just sum up everything great about the character by the end of it. Joe Kelly’s run really saw him struggling with his identity and wanting to be a hero despite struggling with his more base animalistic violent thoughts. Falling in love with Siryn was a big part of that but anyway at this point we’re 23 issues in and this is where he got his chance to see if he really wanted to be the hero he thinks he does. An extraterrestrial being promising happiness and peace is heading towards earth but it’s discovered that it wipes free thought and leaves victims with a rictus grin. It’s up to our boy to help stop it getting to Earth.
13. Deadpool Kills The Marvel The Universe-2012
In the 90s Marvel made a controversial comic written by Garth Ennis (who better if you’re after controversy) where The Punisher went (more) insane and killed all the heroes and villains in the Marvel universe. Fast Forward to 2012 and the hot “new” writer on the scene Cullen Bunn gets a similar task but with Deadpool. It’s interesting in that it seems to be a focused attempt to take the character back to his dark roots in a time when he was at his goofiest. It’s out of canon and a violent look at how fragile his mind is and how it could completely snap.
Back in 2010 when the Deadpool movie was being seriously discussed this entertaining series of origin stories took advantage of that and had him hear about these Hollywood plans. He decides to hire a director to make the “real” version of his backstory before the bigwigs ruin it all and what follows is the story of his childhood….or at least the one he wants to tell. Duane Swierczynski tells the story well with a mix of humour and deranged insanity that makes Deadpool so great. Good art from Leandro Fernandez too.
Cullen Bunn’s sequel to Deadpool Kills The Marvel Universe goes much more for humour and slapstick this time as Deadpool is still sick of being immortal and thinks if he disrupts the order of the universe he might find a way to die. After killing all the heroes and redressing the balance didn’t work he finds his way to the “ideaverse” and takes out characters from classic literature like Tom Sawyer, Macbeth, Moby Dick and all sorts in a crazy violent version of Bill And Ted. The covers by Mike Del Mundo are superb.
10. Deadpool vs The Punisher-2017
Another in the long line of team up/versus mini series and this one is a big hitter as he comes up against Big Pun himself Frank Castle. It’s nice to see The Punisher in a more light hearted story as much as I love his regular series to be darker than a very dark thing it’s good to have the character let loose a little and be used in a comic manner every now and then. This is the perfect opportunity for that and with the inclusion of Taskmaster, a hugely underrated villain, it makes for a hell of a fun mini. Fred Van Lente nails the interactions between the two anti heroes with Pere Perez’s (great name) art shining with his framing of panels a particular highlight for me.
9. 5 Ronin-2011
He’s hardly in this alternate universe story but Deadpool is the glue that keeps the branching stories together.Wolverine, Hulk, Psylocke, Punisher (Or versions of them) are samurai who have left their masters to fight a common enemy. Behind the scenes is a strange but somehow wise goofball who doesn’t show his face and dual wields swords. The great Peter Milligan writes this intriguing tale with gritty and fantastic art from Leandro Fernandez.
8. Night Of The Living Deadpool-2015
It’s Cullen Bunn again who has done a great job with Deadpool over the last few years. Obviously the title is a play on George A. Romero’s classic and influential pioneering zombie movie Night Of The Living Dead and the homage shows with Deadpool being the only colour in the black and white world he’s now in so it gives a great visual flare that pops off the page with great art by Ramon Rosanas. There’s an interesting play on Deadpool’s healing factor fighting his turn to zombification after he is bitten.
7. Cruel Summer-2000
It may not be the most revered story or even the most memorable one. In fact I’ve never ever seen this in a list of the best Deadpool stories but it was the first one I read and it’ll always have a special place in my heart. I believe it was a preview of this story in the back of a Gambit annual that got me hooked and I went out and got it straight away. Like most Jimmy Palmiotti stories it involves double crosses, gangsters and most disturbingly to me it has a live burial scene. Creeps me right out…..ugh.
6. Suicide Kings-2009
What a fun miniseries this is. Deadpool takes a merc job from a want ad and ends up being framed for murder. This brings The Punisher after him which in turn brings out Spider-man and Daredevil to protect him as they know he’s innocent. The dynamic between all these A-listers (for the most part) with their vastly different personalities is a blast and writers Mike Benson and Adam Glass capture it brilliantly with fun dialogue and a cliched but enjoyable plot.
5. Deadpool v Gambit: The “V” Is For “VS”-2017
Probably another one that won’t appear on many lists this high but if you’ve been following Kinker Korner for a long time you’ll know me unironic and completely unashamed love of Gambit despite writers destroying him for the past twenty years. So seeing him co-star with an A-lister in a fun miniseries was great stuff. From the duo dressing up as Daredevil and Spider-man to double crosses and brutal fights, writers Ben Acker and Ben Blacker (seriously) deliver a fun story. I’m a complete stickler for how my boy Gambit is drawn though and Danilo Beyruth doesn’t really nail the handsome look as well as some others do…..he’s very pointy.
4 (Tied).Deadpool, Power Man And Iron Fist-2016
This cool two parter is part flashback and part present and features Power Man and Iron Fist. I’m a massive Luke Cage fan so it’s great to see him interact with Deadpool and like I mentioned in part one these flashback stories with Val Staples on colours are just fantastic and fun. From references to The Warriors, Aunt May pepper spraying Deadpool just because…. and of course the Heroes For Hire it’s a blast from start to finish.
4 (Tied). Temporary Insanitation-2016
This epic is four issues crammed into one oversized comic with Deadpool, Daredevil, Power Man And Iron Fist all coming together for a big crossover. The cool thing is it brings in all the writers from the respective titles to work together so you have David F. Walker, Gerry Diggan, Charles Soule and the artists on each title. It’s great fun and an ode to all sorts of genres from kung fu movies to crime drama, comedy and it’s all deliriously violent. Deadpool takes on an assignment that ends up with him crossing paths with other heroes and getting into all kinds of shenanigans….whoda thunk it?.
3.The Good, The Bad And The Ugly-2013/2014
The Duggan and Posehn run is known more for it’s slapstick comedy and flashback issues which is what makes this emotional and hard hitting arc so special. It’s topping many lists of people’s favourite all time Deadpool story and it’s easy to see why. It starts off with humour as Deadpool keeps waking up after being drugged with his organs missing over and over again (his healing factor kept reproducing them) so he enlists the help of Wolverine and Captain America to help figure out what’s going on. Sounds like a random team up but it makes sense as they are all characters with extensive history in human experimentation. These resulted in differing outcomes, Cap becoming a hero, Wolverine using it for revenge and Deadpool going completely insane. It gets really emotional as it’s easy to forget that before all the laughter and fun Wade Wilson was a handsome man who was experimented on and abused to the point of insanity and he hates showing his face. It deals with that extensively and hits hard. The writing duo did a great job to vary their style and create an all time classic.
2. With Great Power Comes Great Coincidence-1998
This was so unbelievably unique at the time and really set the bar for fourth wall smashing content in comics. Joe Kelly takes Deadpool and thrusts him through a portal with Blind Al and they get stuck in an early classic Spider-man comic. Seeing him interact with Kraven The Hunter, Aunt May, Peter Parker etc is just so funny and the first time I had ever seen anything like it. Joe Kelly really innovated and was allowed that luxury because although Deadpool was a cult comic and doing well enough to keep going it wasn’t big enough for the Marvel bigwigs to really care about interfering with. Therefore we got innovative and crazy fun issues like this. This kind of thing have been a lot now but let’s give it up for Joe Kelly for giving Deadpool an identity that has stuck ever since.
1.The Final Execution-2012
Rick Remender’s excellent Uncanny X-Force had been building up beautifully to this final epic arc. So damn much happens in it from Wolverine being forced to kill Daken, his son (seen in another two Kinker Korner lists) characters from the Age Of Apocalypse appearing and most importantly here…Deadpool becoming a true hero. He was used brilliantly in this series as he wasn’t rammed down your throat as is many writer’s downfall when they have him in a team book. The other characters shine but when Deadpool gets involved it really makes an impact. The situations were so dire and serious in the series that it gave him a chance to really shine and become the hero he and team member he’d always wanted to be. That’s something that is misunderstood about him, he wants to belong but he’s so stubborn that any rejection sends him off the deep end where he pretends to be a loner. Anyway an excellent end to a wonderful, dark, violent series.
…and there it is, the top Deadpool stories in his varied career. Wade Wilson sure has starred in many different styles of genres and has been taken on by all sorts of writers and artists. Hopefully you enjoyed it and if you haven’t checked some of them out maybe give them a shot and see what you think. Cheers folks, see you back here soon and catch me @swing_kinker