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Gail Simone working on ‘first Marvel story in TEN YEARS’

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Before writing titles like Birds of Prey, Secret Six and Batgirl for DC Comics, Gail Simone had a brief tenure at Marvel, working on Deadpool, the Deadpool-spinoff Agent X and the kid-friendly Gus Beezer one-shots. It’s been more than 10 years since those titles first saw print, but now she’s headed back to the House of Ideas to work on a new Deadpool story for the big wedding issue.

“Am I Excited? To be writing my first Marvel story in TEN YEARS?” she sad on her Tumblr. “Yes, I am!”

If you frequent her Tumblr, you know she talks fondly of Deadpool and the Agent X characters whenever she’s asked about them, so it isn’t surprising to see her once again writing the now-engaged character. Will her story perhaps involve some of the Agent X cast, like Taskmaster, Outlaw or the title character himself? I guess we’ll find out in April.

In addition to Simone and, of course, series regulars Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn, Deadpool #27 will also feature stories written by Fabian Nicieza, Mark Waid, Joe Kelly, Christopher Priest, Jimmy Palmiotti, Frank Tieri, Daniel Way and Victor Gischler, with art by Mike Hawthorne, Scott Koblish and “many more.” Check out the solicitation information below.

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The Fifth Color | Deadpool reminds us tragedy is easy, comedy is hard

deadpool18_cvrI hate “dark and gritty.” Some days I wake up and say a little prayer on announcement weekends like this one, where the House of Ideas sells us on the next batch of comics’ twists and turns that no one hails a new book as being a must-read because it will be “dark and gritty.” I like to think that’s we’ve moved past thinking that shading your books in big, black washes and stockpiling your panels in death, dismemberment and human anguish means your comics are better or “more realistic” than one that’s more lighthearted. After all, death not only gets you an annotation in the Overstreet guide, but it also means something important has happened.

That’s what makes Deadpool so interesting as a character and as an ongoing comic. Nothing really important happens in a Deadpool comic; he doesn’t cross over with big events all that often, and he’s more a guest star in other characters’ comics than a major player in his own. He also happens to be wacky, dangerous in a Bugs Bunny sort of way and more self-aware than most heroes, whether anti- or super-. With the right creative team, Deadpool can make you think while making you laugh, or tug at the heart string and your funny bone. At his worst, he’s like a CBS sitcom: high in ratings, panned by critics, divisive in his target audience and competing against the better shows.

Marvel NOW! Deadpool wonderfully leans toward the former, with Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn balancing humor and horror on a katana’s edge, as Deadpool #18 expertly delivers on both this week.

WARNING: HUGE spoiler for Deadpool #18 this week, so please grab your copy and a box of tissues and read along!

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For one night only: Ed McGuinness revisits ‘Deadpool’

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Although he’s currently known for his work on brawny heroes like Superman and Red Hulk, upcoming Astonishing X-Men artist Ed McGuinness got his big break from a very different kind of hero: a merc with a mouth. In 1997, he and writer Joe Kelly joined forces to put the ’90s anti-hero Deadpool head-deep in hijinks and human suffering, and gave the mercenary an oddly lovable supporting cast that included Blind Al and Weasel. The series gained cult status among for its ballsy slapstick humor that grew to become a trademark for the once-dark character.

And now, Marvel is pulling together Kelly and McGuinness’ run — along with a few extras — in a massive tome titled Deadpool by Joe Kelly Omnibus. Although I have a bit of an issue with not including the artist’s name in that title, I’m excited to get all these issues in my hand. For this early 2014 collection, Marvel commissioned McGuinness to create a cover commemorating the run. “It was a blast revisiting these characters,” the artist wrote on his DeviantArt page.

Deadpool by Joe Kelly Omnibus is scheduled for release in January.

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Deadpool vs. Robin Thicke in ‘Merc Lines’

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I realized this morning that, despite a fairly steady stream of ongoing titles, miniseries and one-shots over the past two decades, I’ve never read a comic featuring Deadpool. Therefore, the sum total of my knowledge about Marvel’s popular Merc With a Mouth comes from Wikipedia, trailers for that recently released video game and those “Deadpool vs.” videos. Y’know, the ones where someone dressed as the character dances and fights his way through a comic convention, to “Gangnam Style,” or whatnot.

If Deadpool comics were about him dancing, only occasionally inappropriately, with the denizens of the Marvel Universe while taking periodic breaks to seek out tacos, I’d probably buy them all. And that, strangely enough, brings us to the latest video, in which Deadpool sends up Alan Thicke and Gloria Loring’s theme song to The Facts of Life Robin Thicke’s inescapable “Blurred Lines” — with a little help from the Marvel Universe — in “Merc Lines.”

I apologize in advance for the tune getting stuck in your head again.

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Matt Cowan comments on casting confusion with ‘Sounds Like’

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Matt Cowan’s handle on DeviantArt is “Matt Can’t Draw”, which isn’t necessarily true. Sure, he is more of a designer, a conceptual artist, than a straight-up “drawer.” His latest series, “Sounds Like,” is possibly a thinly veiled dig at the lack of imagination of Hollywood casting departments. Or is it just an excuse to draw his favorite characters together?

In any case, check them out below. And if you harbor some irrational prejudice against DeviantArt, Cowan’s work is also posted to his Tumblr.

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Batman tops YouTube’s list of most popular superheroes

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Despite competition from cinematic upstarts like Iron Man, Wolverine and Captain America, Batman reigns as the most popular superhero on YouTube, with more than 3 billion views of a staggering 71,000 hours of video. But the character at No. 2 may surprise fans, and undoubtedly please Marvel Studios. Verily.

That’s according to research released today by the video-sharing website as part of its “Geek Week” celebration. The breakdown is based on keyword searches since 2008 for everything from film trailers to fan originals to video-game play.

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Deadpool invades this week’s Shelf Porn

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Hello and welcome to Shelf Porn, where we take you inside one fan’s house to check out their collection of stuff. Today’s collection comes from Sharon in Illinois, who shows off her comics, art, statues and a whole lot of Deadpool.

If you’d like to see your collection featured here on Shelf Porn, check out the submission instructions.

And now let’s hear from Sharon …

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SDCC ‘ 13 | Deadpool dances, fights his way through Comic-Con

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We’ve seen Deadpool vs. Comic-Con 2012, Deadpool vs. “Gangnam Style” and, earlier this year, Deadpool vs. WonderCon, so it would’ve been more than a little disappointing if we weren’t treated another visit to Comic-Con International by the Merc With a Mouth. Thankfully, a video was uploaded this morning chronicling Deadpool’s return to San Diego, where he crashes a religious demonstration, torments a zombie, spars with cosplayers, and dances with just about anybody who’s willing to shimmy, thrust or Dougie.

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SDCC ’13 | Marvel announces Comic-Con-exclusive merchandise

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Marvel has announced a line-up of merchandise for Comic-Con International that includes a Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. T-shirt, a Rocket Raccoon mug and, perhaps most adorably of all, Skottie Young’s Avengers movie poster (part of the Phase 1 Marvel Cinematic Universe Blu-Ray Collector’s Set) and glass tumbler.

The limited-edition pieces will be available at the Marvel booth (#2329) at the San Diego Convention Center. See the list, with images, below:

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‘Deadpool’ video game debuts launch trailer: ‘Drop the beat!’

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Ahead of the arrival of the Deadpool video game on Tuesday, IGN. com has debuted the gameplay launch trailer for the third-person shooter from Marvel, Activision and High Moon Studios.

“This is my launch trailer,” the Merc with a Mouth says in the introduction, “and research shows that trailers, dubstep and absolute chaos go together like Wolverine and bad haircuts.”

Developed for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC, Deadpool is a third-person shooter in which the character — like his comic-book counterpart — breaks the fourth wall to interact with players, in between combat focusing on guns, twin swords and an expanded arsenal that includes lasers and giant hammers.

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Deadpool’s driving a taco truck to Comic-Con

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The only thing better than one Deadpool is six Deadpools, right? (Hey, I could be a Marvel editor!) And the only thing better than six Deadpools? Tacos. This summer attendees at Comic-Con International in San Diego will have the chance to buy the Deadpool Corps. wrapped in a taco-truck package at the Hasbro booth.

Marvel.com reports that the 3.75-inch Marvel Universe figures of Deadpool, Lady Deadpool and Champion of the Universe Deadpool will come with figurines of Kidpool, Dogpool and Squirrelpool, packaged in individual “taco shells” and stuffed inside a taco truck. After the con, a limited number will be available for sale at the online Hasbro toy shop.

Check out the packaging below.

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Activision debuts cover for ‘Deadpool’ video game

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Activision has at last revealed the cover for Deadpool, the upcoming video game developed by High Moon Studios and written by Daniel Way.

Arriving June 25 for or PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC, Deadpool is a third-person shooter in which the character — like his comic-book counterpart — breaks the fourth wall to interact with players, in between combat focusing on guns, twin swords and an expanded arsenal that includes lasers and giant hammers.

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Conversing on Comics with Declan Shalvey

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A great artist can make readers stand up at attention, while a fast artist can make editors’ lives a lot easier. Luckily for fans and publishers alike, Declan Shalvey is both.

Taking the artistic reins on Deadpool in August, Shalvey is in the middle of an epic upward-bound trajectory in comics, drawing books for Marvel and Dark Horse. His career began with a 28 Days Later comic for BOOM! Studios, but fans didn’t really take notice of his work until he began alternating arcs of Thunderbolts with Kev Walker.

Despite its frantic biweekly shipping schedule, Thunderbolts was an ideal showcase for Shalvey’s gritty, textured illustrations (with a bounce reminiscent of emotive newspaper cartoonists). After working on that title, and its successor Dark Avengers, for two years, the Irish artist was tapped to follow after Tony Moore on Venom. But stand back: Shalvey isn’t just a superhero artist. While tackling those comics for Marvel, he also illustrated graphic novel adaptations of Frankenstein and Sweeney Todd for European publishers, and arcs of Vertigo’s Northlanders and Dark Horse’s Conan the Barbarian.

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The Marauders board ‘Deadpool’ video game

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The cast of Activision’s Deadpool continues to grow with the announcement that Marauders Arclight, Blockbuster and Vertigo are joining their leader Mister Sinister in the video game. You can see the images below, courtesy of SuperHeroHype.

Arriving June 25 for or PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC, Deadpool is a third-person shooter in which the character — like his comic-book counterpart — breaks the fourth wall to interact with players, in between combat focusing on guns, twin swords and an expanded arsenal that includes lasers and giant hammers.

Developed by High Moon Studios and written by Daniel Way, the game will retail in North America for a lower-than-usual $49.99 for consoles and $39.99 for PCs.

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‘Deadpool’ video game gets June 25 release

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Fans of Marvel’s Merc With a Mouth don’t have much longer to wait: Activision has announced it will release its Deadpool video game June 25 in North America (which probably means June 28 in Europe) for PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC. Previously, the title had been saddled with a nebulous “summer” launch date.

To mark the announcement, the publisher has debuted a half-dozen new screenshots of the game, which will retail in North America for a lower-than-usual $49.99 for consoles and $39.99 for PCs.

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