“Deadpool” Kills the Cinematic Superhero Universe

deadpool_2016-widePerhaps the most frustrating aspect of a new superhero property entering the cinematic universe is the obligatory origin story. Because it’s a new character or collection of characters, Hollywood assumes it’s audiences will never understand or appreciate them until we see their origin story — it’s called “en media res” folks, Google it.

A young Bruce Wayne falls into the bat cave before losing his parents. Iron Man blasts his way out of a terrorist cave after building an exosuit out of scrap metal. Peter Parker gets bit by a spider and exacts revenge on his high school bullies.

Origin stories have become commonplace and unfortunately tedious.

“Deadpool” is guilty of being yet another superhero origin story, but as the titular anti hero says himself, this is a different kind of superhero story.

Fox Studios managed to weave an origin story into an original conflict taking place in the movie’s present.

For an origin story I think “Deadpool” did very well. That said, time spent in the movie’s past leaves less room for the film’s central story, which takes place in the present.

I wish Deadpool’s two X-Men associates, Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead, had more screen time. Colossus’s steel body protects a soft, kind heart, and his sentimental attitude clashes wonderfully with Deadpool’s raunchy and hyperactive demeanor. Negasonic Teenage Warhead speaks almost purely through her body language–which usually implies she has no interest in speaking.

The characters are great and almost seem out of place in Deadpool’s party–which makes for great entertainment seeing the three interact. Sadly, they don’t have enough screen time. They could have used much more development as characters. We first meet Colossus as he demands that Deadpool surrender and return with them to Xavier’s X-Men Academy. After a few flash backs and very topical pop culture references, Colossus has been convinced to join Deadpool on his quest for vengeance… For absolutely no reason. The film just sort of glosses over the fact that Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead just abandon their goal to help Deadpool, whom neither of them are particularly fond of.

I did enjoy that most of the movie’s present plot took place on a highway after a brutal, action-packed opening sequence. It was a smaller story, concerned with Deadpool’s tragic story and how he copes with it. Not with retrieving magic hammers or saving the world.

It was nice to see a superhero story in a smaller scope, and I like they were able to keep the present plot at the highway for so long without it getting boring.

There wasn’t much tension in the final confrontation between Deadpool and Ajax, the stereotypical psycho Deadpool tauntingly calls Francis. But that’s okay, because tensit wasn’t nonexistent and the humor was 10/10.

I really liked that Francis was so braggy about how he’d been turned into a sociopath, totally feeding his own ego the whole movie while nobody else gave a single shit.

He was a great character in that he served his purpose in the story. Not particularly memorable, but just enough to evoke fond memories of what happens to him.

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