Friday, April 14, 2017
There's something to be said for knowing yourself, and knowing when you need to take the time for serious mental health help. Of course, it's possible to know you need the help, but still half-ass it. Like today's book! From 1999, Deadpool #26--deep breath, the full title is "Our Second Most Confusing Issue Yet...After Issue #6 (We Would've Said #9, But That Was Just Bad, Not Confusing) (or Mouthful of Malice, Head Full of Cheese)" Script by Joe Kelly, co-plotted by James Felder, pencils by Pete Woods, inks by Walden Wong.
Deadpool is not in a good place here, although for different reasons than usual. He was coming off the "Dead Reckoning" storyline, where he saved the world from an alien messiah that would have left earth mindlessly, blissfully happy: it's safe to say Pool is hung up on the idea that he saved the world from being happy. He also narrates here as if he's specifically talking to someone, explaining himself; although it would be a bit before that someone would respond back. In a somewhat cliched Middle Eastern nation, Pool rescues a bride from a forced marriage to an oil sultan; but while she thinks her true love paid Pool to save her, he was actually hired by the sultan's brother to steal her for himself. Pool's new pilot, Ilaney, questions him on it, and is shouted down for her trouble.
Ilaney was a new addition to the supporting cast, since Blind Al was no longer staying with Pool, but as he sets up his new place...in Bolivia? Former pre-cognitive Monty was still around, although Pool didn't really want to talk to him right now. He does give Monty a gun, which Monty thinks is to kill himself based on Pool's wording, but it's to guard Pool's dollies. Or their heads. Again, not in a great place then.
Pool takes a merc job for a hit, in the hopes that it will quiet everything else going on in his head for a moment. There are a few problems with that, though. Pool is testy and fidgety, the target turns out to have A.I.M. support troops, and Pool is also hallucinating "a lady on a giant saber-toothed rabbit pouring bourbon into a pitcher of milk while Patsy Cline's 'Crazy' plays softly in the background..."
Losing his cool a bit, and nearly shooting Ilaney during a helicopter crash, Pool is still able to get them out of it. (How? "Come on...they're A.I.M.") On the last page of the issue, we find Pool has divulged all of this, under hypnosis, to his psychiatrist...Dr. Bong?
In the last panel, there's a picture of Howard the Duck, with darts thrown at it: if I'm not mistaken, Dr Bong hadn't appeared in a comic for about twenty years, since Howard the Duck #31 in 1979! Ooh, no, take that back: it had only been ten years, since 1989's She-Hulk #5! A deep cut: I was only vaguely aware of the character from old Bullpen Bulletin mentions. Hmm, Bong apparently wasn't a psychologist before this appearance, either. Weird. Still, this was at the time a high-water point in Deadpool's insanity, and while he would get better (through the magic of sucker-punching Kitty Pryde and getting multiple-stabbed by Wolverine) he would get waaaaay crazier down the road, too.
I wish I could say I picked this one with the bunny for Easter, like I plan ahead here. Get some chocolate bunnies and have a good weekend!