|DEADPOOL No. 3. February 2013|
Now I always thought that cover art was primarily designed to attract new readers. It doesn’t have to be anything particularly flashy like the 3-D motion ones “DC Comics” have used to promote their ‘New 52 Futures End’ event. But purely on a basic commercial footing it makes sense to publish something with a half decent illustration so that people will buy the comic book.
Why therefore “Marvel Worldwide” agreed to publish the third issue of “Deadpool” sporting such an appalling zombie-fest cover by Geof Darrow and Peter Doherty is beyond me. It genuinely looks like something a school boy would quickly sketch out for his playground friends during break-time, with poorly drawn misshapen figures hampered by large bold text and giant arrows. Admittedly the majority of the characters on the cover are the Living Dead, and therefore by definition will lack proper articulation, but I’m convinced that is not the reason why their distorted features and poses are so poorly drawn.
Now it could be that this was possibly an attempt by the cover artists to try and tie into the tongue-in-cheek antics of the ‘Merc with the Mouth’ found within the excellent storyline by Brian Posehn and Gerry Duggan. But if it was then it failed quite miserably.
Fortunately things do get better and better as “Dr. Strange Lives or How I learned Deadpool was da Bomb” progresses. I’m not convinced the writers really have got to grips with Doctor Stephen Strange, portraying the Sorcerer Supreme in a rather aloof, almost aristocratic manner.
But once matters move beyond the Sanctum Sanctorum the action picks up quite dramatically and the Earth’s primary protector against magical threats becomes just that; whisking foes off to the Astral Plane and exclaiming “By the Hoary Hosts of Hoggoth!” whenever he can.
Indeed this comic book has some great ‘laugh out loud’ moments within it, all very well written and delivered by Posehn and Duggan. Strange’s chiding of Ben Franklin’s ghost for sleeping with the sorcerer’s girlfriend back in the Seventies, and Deadpool’s quip at Abraham Lincoln for being assassinated by an actor, being particular highlights.
All these zany antics are superbly illustrated by artist Tony Moore and his depictions of all the former American presidents, albeit it they’re dead and rotting, are very recognisable, even those like Gerald Ford and Richard Nixon who are less easy to caricature like Lincoln or George Washington.