Brian Posehn and Gerry Duggan started their run on Deadpool last fall with Wade Wilson being given the unseemly task of bringing rampaging undead presidents back to death. Since then, he spent time with "Demon in a Bottle" era Iron Man, and is now sharing a consciousness with his late S.H.I.E.L.D. ally, Agent Preston.
During Sunday's X-Men panel at C2E2 in Chicago, Marvel announced that another multi-part arc is in Deadpool's near-ish future: "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly." Starting in August with Deadpool #13, Posehn and Duggan will be joined by the new art team of Declan Shalvey and Jordie Bellaire; while Deadpool himself will be joined by fellow Weapon Plus alums Wolverine and Captain America, on a mission tied to their shared past.
Posehn and Duggan — who can be heard playing Dungeons & Dragons on the Nerd Poker podcast — talked to us in detail about "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly."Newsarama: Gerry, Brian, before we get to "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly," let's talk a bit about the first six months or so of the series up to now. It's the first monthly Marvel series for both of you — what has the experience been like?
Gerry Duggan: We're extremely grateful. Fans and retailers have ordered and reordered the issues — sending them back to press multiple times in most cases, so we're proud of that, but on a more personal note, we go into comic shops and cons all the time, and it's fun to have something on the shelves to sign.
The nicest thing I see on Twitter is people writing to say that they're either returning to comics, or picking up comics for the first time. Feels nice. I remember not being able to afford comics while I was studying at Emerson College, it was the only hiatus I've ever taken from reading — and it was Mark Waid's stuff that got me back into reading again. We're just trying to write a fun book, and maybe surprise every now and again with what we're up to.
Brian Posehn: Gerry went to college? That explains a lot. I've been really happy with how the books have turned out. And happy isn't a thing that I am very often. Our drawing guys and coloring lady, Val have been amazing. Every page has made me laugh with my mouth. It's been a dream for me to work for Marvel, a company I've followed since I was nine years old.
The coolest thing is that Spider-Man actually hand delivers my checks. I don't think they do that for Gerry or guys like Bendis or Remender, so don't tell them.
Nrama: And to whatever extent you may monitor this type of thing, have you been pleased with the response from fans?
Duggan: Very much so. I try to take a peek at Twitter and a few of the least-awful message boards in the days following the arrival of a new issue. Very grateful for the strong response. The great thing about Twitter is that you will very easily know what readers are thinking.
Posehn: I have done quite a few signings lately and only one guy was really negative and mean to me. Gerry later explained that gentleman was in my head. I don't know about Twitter but I've read really positive things on My Space, Friendster and Dogster.
Nrama: At first glance, "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly" seems like more serious subject matter than what we've seen from your Deadpool run so far, though naturally it'll surely still have comedic elements. What can you say about the tone of the story, and how it connects from what's come before?
Duggan: Well, the abductions that we see for the first time in #8 have been happening to Deadpool for a really long time. This story is definitely a more serious story with a darker tone than anything in our run up till now, but we want to tell important Deadpool stories, not just funny ones. He's going to be in a dark place to start the arc, and he'll go through hell before it ends. That said, if you're going to crawl through hell, best to be armed with Wade's sense of humor.
Posehn: The tonal shift isn't that drastic. We're not going from Ghostbusters to Life Is Beautiful. And like Gerry said, Wade will always have a sense of humor, no matter how bad things get. That's how crazy people cope. I've heard.
Nrama: Declan Shalvey is joining the series, adding to the book's already considerable pedigree of artistic talent. From your perspective as writers, what does he bring that's unique to this type of story?
Duggan: There's nobody better than drawing you into action than Declan Shalvey. He and his partner-in-crime Jordie Bellaire are one of the best one-two punches in comics right now. We're thrilled that they could follow Mike Hawthorne & Val Staples, who by the way, will be returning for the arc following "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly." We're thrilled that Marvel has helped us line up some of the most exciting artists working. Dec & Jordie's first cover will be revealed at C2E2 and if you're not asking your shop to pull Deadpool for you — you will after you see it.
Posehn: What Gerry said.
Nrama: "The Good, The Bad & The Ugly" stars Deadpool, Wolverine and Captain America — obviously they've all interacted to various degrees, but seeing them together at the lead of an arc is something different. What's fun about the dynamic between the three of them?
Duggan: Well, the obvious thing they all have in common is that they are super soldiers and products of human experimentation. If, as it seems Wade is still being experimented on.. .this would be of great interest to the three men.
The real answer to your question though is how different they are. Captain America and Wolverine have obviously established a good working relationship and have a long history. Neither is thrilled at the prospect of an adventure with Deadpool, and I think that's where we'll find some opportunities for some laughs. One of the people that Brian & I admire the most is Shane Black. His scripts have a way of being deadly serious and hilarious on the same page. If we can capture that kind of feeling with our Deadpool, then we'll be on the right track. Cap & Logan are not in any great rush to assist Wade with this mystery, but are pretty quickly convinced that Wade's problem is a situation that could cause major problems for the heroes of the Marvel U.
Posehn: Yeah, Shane Black rules all! What's fun for me is to write these three badasses together that are teaming up by necessity. With all the cameos we've done before and here, none of these heroes want to be around Wade. Wade is like Ash from the Evil Dead movies or Jack Burton from Big Trouble in Little China; he gets things done but everyone around him thinks he's a giant tool. And to get to have Cap and Wolvie react to this tool is super fun and we hope super funny.
Nrama: What can you share at this point about the antagonist of the story, who's also a product of the Weapon Plus program?
Posehn: I'll let Gerry try not to spoil this one.
Duggan: Well, it's Weapon Plus adjacent. This particular program is indeed using Deadpool's unique DNA as a template for something very sinister but I think people will be surprised about how Wade's genes are being used. It's not a straight A to B situation. It's got a wider scope and the bureaucrat running this show also has a... personal interest in exploiting Wade that is pretty creepy. Once the scope of the situation becomes clear, and the goals of the villains revealed Captain America and Wolverine won't have any choice but to throw in with Wade. And he'll be glad to have the help.
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