Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Everybody Out of the Pool

All right, I get it. Deadpool is overexposed at the moment, so Marvel overoverexposes him as a joke. "Hey, wouldn't it be funny if Deadpool had as many monthly series as Superman?" Parody of Big Two marketing excess, etc. etc. I get it.

But at some point, "It's a joke" really isn't a joke anymore. The Colbert Report is funny and all, but it's begun to disturb me. He parodies crass commercialism by plugging his Christmas special DVD, but really, he's still actually plugging his Christmas special DVD. He parodies pundits who thrive on a cult of personality, but the joke has become so successful that he's got a following every bit as fanatical as a Bill O'Reilly ever did; the only difference between the two fanbases is a continuously thinning veneer of irony.

You can buy "KEEP CALM AND CARRY ON" stuff on notebooks and posters for your dorm room. People are paying for propaganda.

And sure, Deadpool having four or however many it is series at the same time shouldn't cheese me off because I'm not buying anything anyway. But at the same time...

...once upon a time, in the late 90s, there was a Deadpool comic that I actually enjoyed. I'm not sure if Joe Kelly's run is held in high critical esteem today or not, but I don't care. It was uproariously funny, but also had a lot of solid character work. Kelly took a Rob Liefeld-designed character with no real thought put into his creation save "He's like Spider-Man if Spider-Man was an assassin. Oh, and he's got Wolverine's healing powers!" and tried to build a purpose for this character. Not a pinnacle of the sequential art medium, but just good supercomics.

But Kelly left, prematurely, after 33 issues because sales were hovering around cancellation, and he was sick of being told "Okay, wrap up your plotlines because you only have five issues left ... wait, hold on, eight ... oops, three." So it's quite irritating that Kelly's labor of love had the axe hanging over its head the whole time, but now they're doing Deadpool Corps and Deadpool Team-Up because, you know, that's hilarious.

So starting today, I am declaring WAR ON IRONY. UP WITH SINCERITY. DO YOUR PART.

If nothing else, I've been watching The Daily Show instead of The Colbert Report lately.

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