Deadpool Bi-Annual #1
November 30, 2015
Let us now wait for the eventual crossover of Squirrel Girl and Brute Force.
(We open at Linkara at his futon pondering)
Linkara: Hmm, I feel like something big happened recently.
(Cut to a montage of epic moments and fight scenes from the Atop the Fourth Wall Movie show)
Linkara: No, not that. That happened months ago. Anyway, hello and welcome to Atop the Fourth Wall, where bad comics burn. Well, here's a first for this show, we're finally reviewing a Deadpool comic. (beat) Nah, who the hell cares? "BRUTE FORCE"!!
(Cut to cover and pages from "Brute Force #1")
Linkara (v/o): Yes, "Brute Force", the toy tie-in that never was. A group of environmentally-minded radicals made up of cybernetic animals that could transform and shoot lasers and had a robo-bear fighting a cyber gorilla and terrorist clowns and a rich eco-terrorist who wanted to turn everyone into mutant fish people in order to breathe polluted air.
(Cut to a clip of The Airzone Solution)
MacNamara: Neat idea, bad image.
Linkara: I long ago lamented that we had seen the last of "Brute Force" after the final issue of their four-issue mini, but it seems that somebody at Marvel actually decided to resurrect them for a comic. And who else could handle them but... well, yeah, Deadpool.
(Cut to shots of Deadpool comics)
Linkara (v/o): Here's the thing: there's a reason why we haven't reviewed a Deadpool comic up until this point: Deadpool doesn't suck. In fact, I'd be hard-pressed to find a Deadpool comic that I'd outright call bad. People often say Deadpool killed the Marvel universe, but I haven't read it yet. Sure, there are ones that aren't as good as others or the humor fell flat or went into kinda creepy, uncomfortable territory, but that's just the nature of the character. While we loved him for his fourth wall breaking, he's just as much a woobie character, due to a lot of tragedy defining his life. Hell, it comes with the territory of being a dark comedy, since Deadpool is still a murderous assassin. More often than not, he'll do the right thing, but a lot of people end up on the receiving end of a bullet or a sword before we get there.
Linkara: If not for the presence of "Brute Force", I'd never be spotlighting this on the show, and even then, this is gonna be a bit tricky.
Linkara (v/o): See, one of the amazing things about "Brute Force" is that it reveled in how it took itself somewhat seriously despite being nuttier than a PayDay bar. Putting them in a comedy seems like you'll ruin the joke a bit.
Linkara: But it does give the characters more exposure, so why not? Let's dig into (holds up comic of review) "Deadpool Bi-Annual #1" and see if this is the glorious return we all want.
("AT4W" title sequence is shown; episode title is then displayed, with Nightwish's "Ghost Love Score" playing in the background)
(Cover for "Deadpool Bi-Annual #1" is shown, in which Brute Force is about to attack Deadpool, who is dressed as a great white hunter)
Linkara (v/o): Look at that cover! Is that not the one of the most beautiful covers ever? The members of Brute Force roaring and getting ready to tear Deadpool apart! I also dig Deadpool's plaid socks. In any event, it really does help that with the changing of art styles over time, Brute Force actually looks really damn menacing in these shots. Well, except for the kangaroo, but I think you can get over that because it's also a kangaroo with guns. (reads text at bottom) "Brute Force Returns!"
Linkara: (holding up and gesturing towards comic) See? Even Marvel recognizes the significance of this event and wants to point out how important it is.
Linkara (v/o): And yeah, the "bi-annual" title, I'm sure it's just meant as a joke since it's so far the only bi-annual issue of anything I'd ever heard of. This came out last year, so it's not like there's been a huge amount of time to have a second bi-annual, but it is past that point, so... I wouldn't read too much into the title other than it sounded funny and we wanted to do this. We open on a recap page, where chibi Deadpool gives us the lowdown.
Deadpool: Deadpool here, the Merc with the Mouth!
Linkara: Anyone else find it weird that he's called that, but his mask doesn't even have a mouth drawn on it?
Deadpool: The Killing-Jobber with the Jibber-Jabber!
(Cut to a clip of The A-Team)
Mr. T: C'mon, sucker, I ain't got time for you crazy rap!
(Cut back to the Deadpool comic)
Linkara (v/o): He explains that at the time the comic came out, Deadpool had been working with S.H.I.E.L.D., particularly after he helped them deal with an influx of zombie former presidents...
Linkara: (ecstatically) COMIC BOOKS, EVERYONE!!
Linkara (v/o): ...and he has three main S.H.I.E.L.D. contacts: Agent Preston, Agent Adsit and Agent Coulson. Yes, like Harley Quinn, the popularity of Coulson in the Marvel cinematic universe brought about an actual Agent Coulson in the comics, mostly interacting with Deadpool from what I've seen, because who else would you want to help transition someone from a different medium than a guy who can break the fourth wall?
(The actual comic story begins)
Linkara (v/o): Since Deadpool is working with S.H.I.E.L.D., he's being sent on a mission to Salt Lake City to capture a newly-appointed H.Y.D.R.A. division chief. And naturally, Deadpool jumps out of a plane without a parachute.
S.H.I.E.L.D. agent #1: Was he wearing a parachute?
S.H.I.E.L.D. agent #2: No, no he wasn't. That idiot stopped using them when he found out Captain America jumps without one.
Linkara: You guys should've seen it when he found out that Cap became a werewolf one time. I saw him picking fights with every dog he could find.
Deadpool: (singing as he falls) When Captain America throws his mighty shield, something, something, something yield!
Linkara: Oh, come on, Deadpool. You're a walking, talking pop culture Wikipedia. You expect me to believe that you forgot the words to one of the catchiest jingles ever? It'd be like my fans forgetting the words to my theme song.
Linkara (v/o): Annnd Deadpool lands right on top of the guy he was sent for, killing him instantly.
S.H.I.E.L.D. agent: Damn it, Deadpool, we needed him alive.
Deadpool: My bad.
Linkara: (as S.H.I.E.L.D. agent) And how the hell can you hear us when we're all the way up here? Seriously, it's not even like it's coming over the radio or something. (as Deadpool) Oh, don't worry, I just read your word balloon. Pretty word balloon...
Linkara (v/o): We cut over to Sea World– uh, I mean, Water World...
(Cut to a clip of Waterworld)
Deacon: It does look like shit.
(Cut back to the comic)
Linkara (v/o): No, not that one. We even have this mother... with massive hair. Seriously, who wears their hair like that in 2014? ...and her daughter.
Daughter: If whales are as smart as humans, why do we imprison them in parks?
Mother: Umm, why do you have to read so much? Just play with the iPhone more like a normal kid.
Linkara: You would think that that's bad parenting, but it's actually pretty intelligent, because (becomes frustrated) what the hell kind of crappy-ass hippie book is she reading that says that whales are as smart as humans? You could probably find some articles via your iPhone that show that they're intelligent, just not as smart as humans!
Linkara (v/o): Although, the real point here is that Water World is a bit of a hellhole to the animals under its care, as we see with this dude concerning a dolphin being fidgety while they transport it to a different tank. And it's not surprising that it is, since it looks like if it leans its head back too much, its blowhole will be trapped under the water and it'll drown.
Water World employee: (to another employee) You just have to show them who's smarter. Smarter people have hands!
Linkara (v/o): Annnd it whacks the dolphin.
(Cut to a clip of Mystery Science Theater 3000, where Mike and the Bots are watching Time Chasers)
Mike: Hi, I'm Bob Evil.
(Back to the comic)
Linkara (v/o): You know, it's no wonder the whale probe from Star Trek IV was pissed off. I'm betting it got its whale transmission from the ones in this place. Anyway, the other worker has suddenly vanished, and a silhouetted figure emerges. And the next panel shows a news report talking about an explosion at the theme park, and in particular, how all the sea life has vanished.
News reporter: In other new news...are Frisbees back?!
Linkara: Did... Frisbees ever go away?
Linkara (v/o): Deadpool has been summoned by the corporate offices that own Water World, and they explain Brute Force's backstory and how they were responsible for the attack.
Deadpool: Whoa! Are they animals or vehicles?
Deadpool: Genius! Imagine the merchandising! Kids will go nuts!
Linkara (v/o): And as the editorial box reminds... they did not.
Linkara: Which remains a big shame. This is your Transformers killer right here, people!
Linkara (v/o): It's exposited that they...
Executive: ...eventually turned against their masters and went underground.
Linkara (v/o): No mention is made in the comic about Dr. Pierce or of the others in his little organization, so it's uncertain what happened to them after the miniseries. And let's face it, with everything that's happened in the Marvel universe since then, a whole hell of a lot of things could've happened killed Dr. Pierce or disillusioned him from doing anything more with Brute Force, and they just went off on their own. Each member of Brute Force is introduced: Soar the eagle, Boomer the kangaroo, Lionheart the... uh, lion, and... Dr. Echo? Um, the dolphin was called Surfstreak originally.
Linkara: (slamming comic shut in anger) Zero out of ten worst revival of Brute Force ever! I'm not even gonna keep reading!
(Linkara slams comic down on couch, gets up and storms off. Moments later, he returns begrudgingly)
Linkara: All right, but I'm only doing this out of an obligation to the team. (opens up comic again)
Linkara (v/o): On that same note, they refer to our robo-bear as just Bear.
Linkara: (holding a teddy bear tightly) Beeeeaaaar!
Linkara (v/o): Even though in the original mini, he was called Wreckless. They say he's only named Bear because he's "too dumb to respond to anything else." And then there's the fact that the image of him has him punching a wall and yelling, "I am... Bear?" This has been taken to be a reference to me and the "I am a man" gag.
Linkara: Which, if true, I'd be honored, frankly. Can't say if it is true, though. I certainly would appreciate my legacy being the return of Brute Force, rather than (makes a "finger quote") "may have inspired enough interest in 'S.C.I. Spy' to have a trade of it made".
Linkara (v/o): They want Deadpool to kill Brute Force, since, of course, they have bad publicity already over a recent documentary that showed off their inhumane practices.
Executive: We suspect that Brute Force is going to attack our park in San Antonio next. We've been getting a lot of flak for dressing up our killer whales in drag there, but the kids love it.
Linkara: What is drag for a species that doesn't normally wear clothes? Do you wear shark costumes?
Executive: You must put a stop to those filthy animals...for the children.
Deadpool: I'm fine with doing it for the money.
Linkara: Deadpool, a hero for our generation.
Linkara (v/o): We cut over to Brute Force meeting in a warehouse where we get some exposition from them. Soar is no longer their leader – as if he ever was – and that Boomer completely agrees with me about Frisbees never having left. Seriously, how slow a news day was it? Anyway, they're a little peeved that the news covered up the story about their liberation of the animals.
Soar: This kind of thing never happened when I was in charge. My plans were solid--
Boomer: You had us chasing snakes for months.
Soar: I told you, snakes are the natural enemies of eagles. I needed to have them removed from the table so I could think more clearly.
Linkara: Brute Force: save the environment! Save nature! Except for snakes. (clenches fist and teeth) SCREW SNAKES!
Linkara (v/o): The former Surfstreak, now Ecco the Dolphin with a doctorate, also developed the "Superness Armor", an improvement over Tony Stark's Extremis stuff.
Echo: Why the world loves that man I have no idea.
Linkara (v/o): I agree, especially when we actually saw earlier that our cybernetic dolphin didn't kill the asshole workers, but gave them wedgies, utterly humiliating them. That's how you truly destroy an opponent. Back over to Deadpool, the aforementioned agent Preston, who's not seen in the comic, but she's a good supporting character, is encouraging him to not take the job, since... well, the Water World people are more than a little skivvy.
Deadpool: Good's overrated, Preston, I'm trying to get that Wil Wheaton money. I'm talking about that S.T.N.G.* money.
- NOTE: Linkara reads "S.T.N.G." as "Star Trek Next Generation", which makes sense since Wheaton appeared on that show.
Linkara: I'd argue against that, since Wil Wheaton is a good guy. Buuuut... he did appear on The Big Bang Theory. You raise many moral quandaries, Deadpool.
Linkara (v/o): The bigger issue, though, is that this issue is totally unconnected to the story people are actually following with this comic.
Deadpool: Whoa...did you just say "story"?
Preston: Wha...No...I said "sorry"...
Deadpool: No, you didn't, you said "story." As in our current plot line. Like we are just two incredible characters in an underappreciated comic that's dying with a handsome lead playing me...
Linkara: (as Deadpool) And then I can snarkily insult the Green Lantern movie, even though it's really not that bad, and I don't understand why people hate it so much. But that could just be Linkara talking through me, and not just be my opinion. (looks up in thought briefly) Fourth-wall breaking is weird.
Linkara (v/o): Seriously, though, Preston, you knock it off with breaking the fourth wall. Deadpool is the only one that's supposed to do that. Or is his fourth-wall breaking rubbing off on you?
Linkara: It could be infectious! Next thing you know, I could be talking to an audience through a camera!
Linkara (v/o): Brute Force arrives, and we get this lovely shot of Deadpool's butt. And... I think he's tucked his package between his legs, based on that bulge. Weird. Still, if we're gonna have pointless fanservice in comics, let's at least make it equal opportunity and not just women, so kudos there.
(Cut to a shot of a hairy man singing "Stormy Weather" in a shower)
Linkara (v/o): OH, GOD, NOT THAT!!!
(Back to the Deadpool comic, thankfully)
Linkara (v/o): The fight begins, and while the comic has trouble with the characters' names, it seems to remember how Brute Force can't play nice within its own team, as both Soar and Lionheart try to charge at Deadpool, only to argue so much about who gets to attack him first that they slam into each other. Gotta love how they have force fields that protect them from bullets, but not each other. Dr. Ecco-Streak tries his luck, with Deadpool himself also going fisticuffs for this fight, but like a T-rex, it seems our happy dolphin's arms aren't quite long enough and Deadpool just holds him back with one hand, and then uses a sword to slice them off. And this, my friends, is why it's good not to have a neural interface. Just imagine how much it would suck if Surfstreak actually felt that. Fortunately, Boomer, not just distracting himself with some sweet tunes for once, is able to pull off a pretty good duel with Deadpool. But it ends with him electrocuted. Which leaves us to our Robo-Bear. And I just realized that his vehicle mode is in fact a giant bear that he is piloting.
(Cut to a clip of the bear-driving scene in an episode of Clerks: The Animated Series)
Offscreen voice: Oh, my God, a bear's driving! How can that be?!
(Back to the comic again)
Deadpool: B.T. Dubs, your bear vehicle is the best thing ever.
Linkara: Well, Deadpool, I think we can call that (dons a pair of sunglasses) the bare necessities.
(A quick clip of C.S.I. Miami is shown, before cutting back to the comic again)
Linkara (v/o): Yo, dawg, I heard you like robo-bears, so I put a robo-bear inside of your robo-bears. Wreckless one-punches Deadpool through several walls, knocking him out and letting them complete the task of destroying Water World San Antonio. Deadpool's clients are naturally a bit upset about this, since he failed to stop Brute Force, but he says he was unprepared for what they had to offer.
Deadpool: You didn't tell me that they had a Bulk. (That's what I call a Bear Hulk.)
Linkara: That's what I call a bizarre movie about a giant purple dude who around some stock CGI effects that Lupa showed me on my birthday. (looks up in thought) Why am I thinking so much about that today?
Linkara (v/o): Deadpool says he needs an army to take them down, which makes the Water World owner quite nervous. He also wants Surf-Ecco's hands as a trophy, but the owner says he intends to have them for his own business.
Deadpool: Very vague. Sounds like somebody has a very sensual and potentially painful evening planned. You enjoy them, you dirty devil, and in case you need a safe word, I always use "detergent."
Linkara: Gotta love Deadpool! No judging from this dude.
Linkara (v/o): We cut to Water World, Orlando, where Deadpool is giving a big speech to all the workers to get them all pumped to kill cyborg animals, pointing out one guy in particular, Doug. Doug collects DNA samples from their bull orca.
Deadpool: Really? You read more as schlub than scientist.
Scientist: Not a scientist. I collect samples... the old fashioned way.
Deadpool: Whoa! I'm going to have to ask you to stop right there. I've seen a lot of terrible images, but I fear that one will forever be burned into my brain.
Linkara: Well, just because he doesn't judge, doesn't mean he wants to hear about it.
Linkara (v/o): In a two-page spread montage, Deadpool helps train the troops: do some combat exercises, reload weapons, beat up dolphins, shoot a laser pointer into a dude's eye, keep dolphins in terrifying captivity, talk about how Water World is clearly a not-evil place, check out the killer whale with the exposed brain, get macaroni, and– wait. Yeah, Deadpool realizes he's made a terrible mistake and calls up Agent Coulson for help, since he doesn't want Agent Preston to yell, "I told you so!" Coulson says he can't have S.H.I.E.L.D. openly assault a family-friendly environment because of the bad press, but he knows some people who can. Cut to the warehouse where Brute Force is talking about their latest plan, including an upgrade to supernus that will let them go beyond their normal vehicle modes. They're worried, though, on how tough Deadpool was, and apparently Dr. Surf has spare arms, but then Agent Coulson shows up, revealing that they've actually worked together. Annnnd Deadpool shows up, which results in three hours of fighting before Coulson gets them to stop killing each other. Coulson reveals that he actually worked with Brute Force in the '90s with them as a black-ops initiative. It's possible Coulson was one of the FBI agents investigating Pierce and whatnot back in the mini. But the government disavowed them when a job went south. He wants them to team up and deal with Water World, but Brute Force is reluctant. However, Deadpool makes it clear they won't get past the defenses he set up without his help.
Deadpool: Boomer, I'll put a stop in your hop when my automated sentry guns armed with military grade sticky foam hose you down.
Linkara: (waves dismissively) Oh, please, he attaches Walkmen to the foam, and the awesome vibrations would rock him out of it! (smiles)
Deadpool: Bear, I have a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt in an electrified robo-suit that's covered in honey.
Linkara: (making a finger quote) "Robo-bear vs. jiu-jitsu black belt electrified robo-suit" doesn't really have the same ring to it, does it?
Linkara (v/o): For Dr. Echo, he's filled the pool with elbow macaroni.
Dr. Echo: Why would you do that? Macaroni doesn't go in pools. Why?
Deadpool: Because all geniuses like you are mildly autistic and therefore easily stressed when things aren't in their proper place or order.
Linkara: Wow! That's some... Wow. You... really just said that. What the hell, comic?
Linkara (v/o): I mean, just... if you were going for a joke, why not just make it be that his ordered mind couldn't stand the dislogic of it? Why go for it like that? Not cool, man. Conversely, his method of taking out Lionheart is perfect: a laser pointer.
Lionheart: Guys, we gotta catch this thing! Guys! It's moving so fast.
(Cut to a clip of Patton)
Patton: (looking through a pair of binoculars) You magnificent bastard, I read your BOOK!
(Back to the Deadpool comic)
Linkara (v/o): And as for Soar... well, Deadpool didn't think of anything for him.
Deadpool: Sorry. Didn't really deem you a threat. You being a bird and all.
Linkara: (as Deadpool) Yeah, I mean, when could an eagle ever be a threat? (looks offscreen) Isn't that right, Chris Farley?
(Cut to a brief clip of Almost Heroes, with Mr. Hunt (Farley) getting attacked by an eagle)
(Back to the comic)
Linkara (v/o): Fortunately, all of his precautions were set up with the assumption of a night attack, so they'll be fine if they attack during the day.
Deadpool: What can I say? I'm not a fortress-builder. I'm just a guy who shoots things for money.
Linkara: And stabs, too. Don't forget the stabbing.
Linkara (v/o): And thus, Deadpool and Brute Force arrive in the middle of a dolphin show, even wearing his own Brute Force power armor... I wonder if it boosts his intelligence, too? ...proclaiming that he's there to liberate the animals. When a person in the crowd says that the animals seem happy, Deadpool has Echo-Streak let in an animal trainer into the water, where the animals proceed to rip him apart.
Deadpool: Flipper is not happy.
Linkara: (as Deadpool) Flipper wants his back pay.
Linkara (v/o): The guards Deadpool train show up to fight, and thus a bloodbath ensues. Even showing off, they gave Dr. Echo some cannon fists. Cool, yes, but I frankly think he looks more insanely awesome as a cyborg dolphin with guns. To once again remind us that, occasional bizarre offensive remarks aside, Deadpool is a good guy, he runs into Doug the DNA guy again, who's terrified to fight and hates his job and his life, with Deadpool saying that they'll just get him some help, and everything will get better.
Linkara: Although I don't think that same pep talk is gonna work for the guys you're putting bullets into.
Linkara (v/o): Tragedy erupts, however, as Soar saves Boomer's life... and is stepped on by Tatanka-Tank, the killer whale from earlier who is now outfitted in a giant cyborg body, with the head of Water World riding on his back.
Linkara: Let's see you ride on this whale, Neutro!
Linkara (v/o): And indeed, the Water World CEO plans to use this technology for world domination, as was his plan all along with Water World's expensive admission prices. However, Tatanka is pretty pissed off... at everything, really, and kills the CEO before attacking our heroes. Fortunately, with the upgraded armor, they Megazord it up, combining into a single assault robot... and still are smaller than the orca, who proceeds to knock them into pieces.
Deadpool: Sorry, guys. It was nice knowing you. I'm gonna regenerate after I die and be okay, but know that I'll feel very guilty about it.
Linkara: Oh, Deadpool, you're so kind and considerate.
Linkara (v/o): However, Doug intercedes to prevent their killing, with the only way he knows how: by asking Tatanka to collect a sample from him. And fortunately, we do not see him... uh, obtain the sample, but the aftereffects are clear with the now-pacified Tatanka. Lionheart proclaims that maybe man and beast can coexist. And... Soar arrives, revealing that he was not killed at all. And so, our comic ends with them making an A-Team joke for us... and also Soar apparently having been transformed into Laserbeak.
Deadpool: (A-Team theme plays as he speaks) If you are an animal that has a problem...if no one else can help...and if you can find them...maybe you can hire...BRUTE FORCE.
Linkara: (holding up comic angrily) This comic... (suddenly smiles) is fantastic!
Linkara (v/o): Aside from a questionable moment here or there, not just Deadpool's little remarks, but Brute Force's much more bloodthirsty tendencies in this book, this is a great modern take on Brute Force, something a bit more tongue-in-cheek while also parodying real-life stuff happening. Sadly, we haven't had any more Brute Force since then, but hey, it's still great to see these guys back in action one more time.
Linkara: Next time, December starts up, which means... (throws out his arms excitedly) CHRISTMAS!... is delayed for a week, since I have a Patreon-sponsored review of a visual novel to do. (beat) Nah, I'll decorate anyway.
Deadpool may end up getting a Secret Origins Month at some point, but unlikely, since that's really for Gold/Silver Age characters.
Just a reminder: I gave ALL reporters the Tom Brokaw voice regardless of gender.
(Stinger: return to the Brute Force-type Megazord)
Linkara (v/o): Look at this thing, people! Why can't we have actual Brute Force toys that combine like this?