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Deadpool: Back in Black

Deadpool Legends
by yo go re

Wow, how lame is this: someone's made a combo-knockoff of Gwenom and Gwenpool, and then removed all the Gwens by gender-bending it to be male? Congratulations, you've made "trying too hard" into an artform.

Increased aggression? Boosted strength? Nah, he's just in it for the slimming black suit.

In 2015, Marvel released a maxi-series called Secret Wars. It was named after the 1984 maxi-series Secret Wars. To tie in with/cash in on that, Marvel published Deadpool's Secret Secret Wars, which showed us what Wade Wilson was up to during the original Secret Wars. Because he was totally there, you guys! Hanging out with the heroes, getting Spider-Man's symbiote before him and driving it insane, lots of stuff! You read that right: Venom is only murderous and evil because the first being it bonded with was Deadpool. Thanks, Wade! Anyway, between the point when Peter Parker rejected the symbiote and Eddie Brock accepted it, it hooked up with Deadpool again, in a series titled Back in Black - thus, this figure.

No matter what the suit looks like or how slimy it feels, the guy inside it is still Deadpool - he's just like Spider-Man, but with guns and charm - so this figure uses the same body as the last Deadpool, though he doesn't get things like the holster, the scabbards... basically, all the straps and pouches. Did you know it was even legal to release a Deadpool without straps and pouches? Apparently it is! Or else Hasbro is going to be in trouble with the police! The Deadpool police. The Deadpool Police Department. The DPPD. He even comments on the lack of pouches in the comic, while admiring his own butt in a mirror.

Wade figured out what was going on with the symbiote much faster than Peter ever did, playing around with its mimickry abilities to try out several different looks - Fantastic Four (and a half), Cruella DeVille, Captain America, etc. - but this is a stylized version of his normal costume, with the red sections black and the black sections white.

In Back in Black, whenever Deadpool thought about Spider-Man, the symbiote reacted badly, getting furious and out of control - basically, it stopped looking like Deadpool's normal mask and stared looking more... Venomy. To depict that, the figure comes with a repaint of Superior Venom's head - which is very tough to swap onto the balljoint. I had to soak it in hot water for a few minutes before I could get it on there. Maybe leaving it on there will force the socket to expand.

But that's not all! It wasn't just the symbiote's face that tended to freak out, it was the whole body, so Deadpool also comes with the clawed hands we've seen before (his normal hands are made for gripping, and he also includes one right-handed thwip). The right hand seems a little loose in the arm, but that may vary.

The toy also gets the tendrils that came with Agent Venom, marking the first time that piece has been reused. It doesn't sit flush against his back, since it wasn't designed with this mold in mind, but the fact that it's black on black means that ignoring any gaps will be easy. And since the first time Deadpool used the costume this way, the tendrils that shot off his back grabbed some energy swords from a cult of mechano-nihilists, his only weapons are a pair of katanas molded in translucent pink and then given painted handles - it's not quite accurate to the book, but it gets the idea across.

"Back in Black" Deadpool is a GameStop exclusive, because that's apparently a thing now. It's the usual Marvel Legends box, but with Deadpool's symbol on the top, a pink tray behind the figure, and '80s-style graphics for the logo and on the back. The pink and black is quite eyecatching, especially in contrast against the black-and-white toy itself, and will be easy to spot at a glance if you're looking for it in the store.

Technically this figure was released to coincide with the upcoming Deadpool-themed series of Marvel Legends (itself intended to ride the wave of the second movie, I guess? The one with the Sasquatch BAF), but none of those are out yet, making this a bit of a sneak preview. It may be based on an obscure storyline, but it's graphically interesting, and has smart accessories. The only question now is whether to keep him with the Deadpool figures or the Venom figures.

-- 12/11/17


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