Tag: comics

Every question you have about Marvel’s Deadpool, answered


Deadpool is an enigma.

This loudmouthed anti-heros secretive nature has more to do with his tendency toward dishonesty than any actual air of mystery. Particularly as the character has gained mainstream popularity, many people have found themselves with unending questions about this costumed chatterbox. Once relatively obscure, Deadpool entered the mainstream in 2016 thanks to Ryan Reynolds flawless depiction of him. Marvel and 20th Century Fox invited the character into the homes and hearts of audiences worldwide withDeadpool;theMerc With a Mouths sequel, Deadpool 2; and the sequels kid-friendly recut, Once Upon a Deadpool. Yes, we will be ignoring that dumpster fire of a character fromX-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Deadpool gains scores of new fans every day, but many find themselves at a loss when it comes to his background. For all your confusing, invasive and somewhat inappropriate questions, we gathered everything you need to know about Deadpool.

Deadpools origins

Comics Explained/YouTube

The Merc With a Mouth first graced pages back in 1991, when Rob Liefeldand Fabian Nicieza wrote him into an issue ofThe New Mutants. The violent anti-hero we know and love was initially written as a villain. But, he gradually transformed into the more recognizable character audiences are now familiar with.

When the character was first thought up, Nicieza noted his similarities to the DC character Deathstroke, aka Slade Wilson. As a coy nod to his shared traits with the DC villain, the writers named Deadpool Wade Wilson. They established the long-running joke that Wade and Slade Wilson were related, which writers from both companies played into. The morally ambiguous character had bit parts in a number of comics for years before Marvel finally decided to give him a standalone title. Known for breaking the fourth wall, Deadpool became a niche favorite, particularly due to his satirical take on superheroand anti-herotropes.

Wade Wilson

Wade Wilson is Canadian-born, much like Wolverine, who partly served as inspiration for the character. Wades healing factor came from the Weapon X program, which aimed to create an army of living weapons. Before all that, however, he was the child of an abusive father.

Variant Comics/YouTube

Marvel has outlined a number of different potential childhoods for Wade. In one version, the scientist Butler tricked Wade into killing his parents. In other tellings of his past, however, Wade appeared to come from an unfortunate, dysfunctional household. The comics portrayed his father as violent and abusive, and Wade clearly resented him as a teenager.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

At 17, Wade joined the military. His tenure there didnt last long. Shortly following his exit from the armed forces, Wade became an assassin. In one story arc, he came across a lovely couple named Wade and Mercedes Wilson, who he murdered in pursuit of stealing Wades identity. That is almost exactly what happened to Logan, aka Wolverine, in an old story arc, so we can assume it is probably not canon. Add to this that T-Ray, one of Deadpools most prominent nemeses, is the one who shared that version of history, and we have very little faith in this particular tale.

Honestly, with Deadpool, who the hell knows?

Weapon X

After a few years as a contract killer, Wade discovered he had an incurable form of cancer. He said goodbye to the life he created for himself when a program called Weapon X offered its assistance. While he never had high hopes for success, Wade volunteered as a test subject for the Canadian torture club. What followed was an undetermined amount of time in Weapon Xs clutches, during which scientists conducted horrific experiments on him in an attempt to imbue him with superhuman abilities. Victims of the Weapon X program began making bets on when they and their fellows would die, a betting pool which they called the deadpool.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

Wade was deemed a failure after he assisted a friend, whod been lobotomized, in committing suicide. He was sent to Dr. Killebrew, who handled the failed experiments ejected from Weapon X. While Killebrew is probably not familiar to most people, moviegoers will recognize his assistant, Francis Freeman.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

Wade quickly became a favorite of Killebrew, whose test subjects often lacked resiliency. He tormented Wade until Francis tired of him and convinced Killebrew to finish him off. When Killebrew removed Wades heart, however, the regenerative ability theyd been experimenting with activated. Wade came back to life and fought his way out of the facility, freeing any living test subjects along the way. His first victim as Deadpool was Francis, who would later be revived, given a cybernetic enhancement and renamed Ajax. Despite Deadpools best efforts, Killebrew escaped, though the two would cross paths again.


After his escape from Weapon X, Wade went right back to his life as a mercenary. He adopted his shiny new name, and a number of well-known Marvel villains, including Kingpin and Tolliver, hired him. He first met Cable, who would become a long-time ally and sometimes friend, after being hired to kill him. Thankfully, his attempt failed, and the two eventually formed a unique bond.

Variant Comics/YouTube

Deadpool spent years following his Weapon X escape working doggedly as a mercenary. He made a few new enemies in characters like Madcap, Typhoid and Thanos, but he eventually got bored by the monotony of his life and switched things up. He kidnapped Blind Al and moved her into his guest room. Deadpool befriendedif you can call it thatWeasel and Bob, Agent of Hydra. He even made a few attempts to be a good guy. Usually, these went up in flames.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

Generally, Wades desire to emulate some of his heroes (looking at you, Spidey) was the driving force behind his shift into heroism. His relationships with other heroes often formed the base for his storylines, as was the case for years with Cable. Since then, Wade has teamed up with numerous other heroes, from Hercules to Spider-Man, usually causing hilarity-infused chaos for the established heroes.

Deadpools powers and abilities

Does Deadpools impressive ability to talk his way into, and then out of, trouble count as a superpower? At the very least, Wades approach to communication is an art. Despite not being appreciated by the majority of people he engages, Deadpools quick wit and clever quips are sometimes the only tools he uses in a fight. While he may look like a relatively unintelligent character, he often displays surprising skill in strategy and comprehension. Plus, Wade speaks a number of languages, including German and Japanese, but he usually pretends otherwise.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

A clever tongue is not the only weapon Wade brings to the table. His background as a soldier-turned-mercenary taught him excellent combat skills. He is an expert marksman, and his hand-to-hand skills are nearly unmatched. He is extremely capable with his swords. Not to mention, his near-immortality has aided him countless times.

Variant Comics/YouTube

Wades healing factor is unique. It mimics Wolverines in many ways, however, Wades physiology shapes his healing ability. Because of his cancer-riddled body, Wades healing factor can only work for him. Unlike Wolverine, whose healing ability has been replicated and passed on (you know, to Wade), all attempts to recreate Wades healing factor have failed. In fact, Wade once used his healing abilitys unique traitsand his brainto partially take down an invasion by the Skrulls. Wades healing factor got an upgrade after a fling with Lady Death prompted a jealous Thanoswho desperately sought her affectionsto curse Wade with eternal life. Now, there is no established method through which Wades existence can end.

Then theres the fact that Wade understands his status as a. He is one of very few fictional characters to break the fourth wall. As a result, he often uses his knowledge of the outside world to his advantage.

Deadpools team affiliations

Deadpools unorthodox methods tend to place him closer to villain than hero. For many, the word anti-hero brings to mind a man clothed all in black sporting a menacing cowl. Batman, however, is a hero through and through, despite his occasionally extreme methods. Deadpool fits much more comfortably in the anti-hero role. He fights bad guys but doesnt adhere to the same rules and regulations most heroes do. Most notably, he kills. Deadpool has no qualms about ending a life, particularly one of someone he believes deserving. This simple fact has isolated Deadpool throughout his career. It was also the cause behind his exclusion from teams. Despite all this, and his history of violence and inappropriate language, Deadpool has managed to find his way onto a few prominent superhero teams.

Captain America, Avengers, S.H.I.E.L.D.

Deadpool has had multiple short-term flings with celebrated superhero squads. Typically, his time as a hero ended in flames, but occasionally the red-clad mercenary managed to do some good first.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

When teamed up with Captain America, Deadpool managed to halt a dangerous invading alien entity. During his time with S.H.I.E.L.D., Deadpool was instrumental in pushing back the Skrulls invasion, despite never getting credit for his deeds. Thanks, Norman Osborn.

Deadpool Corps

How many Deadpools is too many? If you ask the writers at Marvel, there can never be too many katana-wielding badasses in the world. With that in mind, they created the Deadpool Corps, a collection of alternate Deadpools all gathered up in a tidy team. Among the members are Lady Deadpool, Kidpool, Headpool, and Dogpool.

Variant Comics/YouTube

Lady Deadpool comes from an alternate version of Earth, where a fascist American governmentthat Captain America leadsremoved all rights and liberties of the American people. Headpool, on the other hand (or should I say head), came from the Marvel Zombies universe. As a result, Headpool exists as a fully sentient zombie head. Kidpools world sees Xaviers School for Gifted Youngsters shifted into a boarding school for mutant boys, which the ambitious young Deadpool attended. Finally, Dogpool is from the parody Mascara-X project. There, scientists sought a product that would give their clients eternal youth. Their experimentation on a dog, whom they assumed dead and disposed of, saw the birth of the one and only Deadpool dog.

Heroes for Hire

Deadpool was far from the founder of this particular team. The Heroes for Hire had seen multiple iterations created and disbanded before Deadpool first graced comic books. When Deadpool got his hands on the team, however, he created his own short-lived roster of superheroes.

Heroes for Hire/Marvel Comics

Among Deadpools Heroes for Hire were a number of lesser-known characters. Solo,Madcap,Slapstick,Foolkiller,Terror, andStingray were all members of the team. Unfortunately, their title didnt last long. Matt Murdock and Luke Cage sought swift litigation after the establishment of Deadpools new group. Forced by the law to change their name, Deadpools team became known asMercs for Money.

Deadpools relationships

As you may have guessed from the two very popular films, Deadpool is a bit of a romantic. Despite his unfortunate nausea-inducing looks, Wade has always had a soft spot for women and Spider-Man. Considering the web-slinger is canonically in high school in theMarvel Cinematic Universe, however, Wade has wisely kept any lustful feelings to himself.

Truthfully, Deadpools sexual orientation has been questioned for years. His long-term relationships all tend to be with women, but writers have heavily indicated that the Merc finds people of all genders and sexual identities attractive. Thanks to a statement from Nicieza in 2015, we gained a deeper understanding of his sexual orientation.Deadpool is whatever sexual inclination his brain tells him he is in THAT moment, he wrote. And then the moment passes.


One of the most prominent and impacting relationships Wade Wilsonever had was with Vanessa Carlysle.Back in his mercenary days, Wade frequented a sex worker named Vanessa. The two formed a deep bond, and they eventually began a relationship in earnest. Unfortunately, Wades discovery of his cancer and subsequent signing onto Weapon X interrupted their plans for the future. For years, the two were apart. Wade traveled the world to meet new, exciting people and kill them, and Vanessa became a mercenary herself.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

Now known as Copycatwith a power portfolio to match her nameVanessa joined X-Force. She and Deadpool clashed frequently as each one flipped between good guy and bad guy. Copycat used her shapeshifting ability to torment Wade on several occasions, usually in pursuit of ruining his romantic prospects. She was very successful in most of these attempts, thanks in part to Wades tendency toward self-sabotage.

Lady Death

With Thanos officially dead in the MCU, its unlikely we will see many stories revolving around his paramour Lady Death. The physical embodiment of death was, in Marvel comics, Thanos primary motivation for many of his evil deeds. Thanos hoped to prove his love to the cloaked cosmic entity by destroying all life. Unfortunately for Thanos, his feelings appeared perpetually unrequited, and he served more often as a tool for death than a love interest.

Variant Comics/YouTube

Deadpool, however, managed to catch Mistress Deaths eye on several occasions, thanks to his frequent brushes with the afterlife. After his hundredth-or-so visit to the other side, Deadpool began to develop feelings for the cloaked entity and sought to end his life and join her eternally. A jealous Thanos refused to let this happen, cursing Deadpool with immortality in a quest to forever keep the two apart.


Deadpool loves himself a shapeshifter. This form-changing succubus ruled over the monster world long before humans came to be, but her father sealed her away for millennia. Eventually, Deadpool freed Shiklah on a job from Dracula, who hoped to make her his wife. Once she was free, Shiklah and Deadpool quickly formed a bond, and despite Wades reservations, they found themselves married in no time.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

Shiklah, who can absorb life force through a good makeout sesh, attempted to drain the Merc With a Mouth on several occasions. Thanks to his healing factor, these attempts typically resulted in nothing more than a brief period of unconsciousness. Deadpools misfortune in the area of love saw this relationship quickly fail, though the former couple ended on relatively good terms. When youre dealing with the Queen of the Undead, good terms are really the best you can hope for.


Siryn is perhaps the healthiest of Deadpools relationships. She was instrumental in Deadpools eventual turn toward real heroism. After joining X-Force, Siryn, whose real name isTheresa Cassidy, discovered that her teammate Warpath had developed feelings for her. Theresa, however, only had eyes for Wade.

Deadpool/Marvel Comics

Even after discovering the scars concealed under his mask, Theresas interest in Wade persisted. Her tender heart and welcoming nature changed Wade for the better, repeatedly encouraging him to rise above his base instincts. While their relationship never blossomed into anything official, the duo often found opportunities to assist each other. When Theresa lost her voicea necessary aspect of her powersthanks to Feral, Deadpool swooped in to save the day with a dose of Wolverines blood.

Read more: https://www.dailydot.com/parsec/deadpool/

These powerhouse Marvel heroes pack serious punch


We live in the era of the superhero.

OK, maybe notreal superheroes. Thor and Captain America are not actually wandering the streets in their brightly colored outfits, but interest in these costumed defendersparticularly Marvel heroeshas reached an all-time high. As superhero films continue to dominate the box office, they invite more people into their fandoms and beg the question: Who are the strongest Marvel heroes?

Even for experienced comic book readers, the near-constant superhero movie releases can be overwhelming. It can be especially difficult for new fans to keep track of these champions world-changing abilities. For those wondering who can possibly top Captain Marvels impressive power portfolio, here are the most powerful Marvel heroes. (Then see how they stack up to the other most powerful Marvel characters, from villains to gods.)

The most powerful Marvel heroes

If the strongest Marvel heroes were to duke it out, it would likely mean the destruction of a planet or two. The Hulks impressive strength is difficult to compare to Scarlet Witchs reality-altering powers or Professor Xs telepathy, so these characters are listed in no particular order.

Franklin Richards / Powerhouse

Thought up by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in the late 60s, the son of the Fantastic Fours Reed and Susan Richards vastly outmatches his parents in power levels. Though his parents boast their own impressive list of abilities, Franklins reality-warping powers are on their own level.

Franklin was born into a loving family in New York City. Unlike most mutants, his powers didnt wait until he hit puberty to manifest. Instead, due to his parents radiation-infused genes, Franklin began developing his mutant abilities as a toddler. As a child, he engaged in numerous battles with malevolent villains, including Ultron, Norman Osborn, and Onslaught.

Variant Comics/YouTube


Due to the reality-warping nature of his abilities, Franklin Richards is capable of almost anything. A mere thought from Franklin can create or destroy matter, even on a cosmic scale. With power levels equal to the Celestials, Franklin once created a miniature universe that he literally carries around in his pocket. To top off his already-impressive resume, Franklin also harnesses incredible psionic powers. Telepathy, telekinesis, psychic blasts and astral projection are but a few of his extensive abilities. Franklin may even be immortal, based on hints dropped in his storylines.

Wanda Maximoff / Scarlet Witch

Originally written as a villain, Wanda Maximoff has flipped between ally and enemy of the X-Men for decades. When Lee and Kirby first introduced her in 1964, Scarlet Witchs powers were undefined. Over the years, her abilities have fluctuated between manageable and overwhelming.

Wanda, the child of Magneto and his wife Magda, was born in secret in the fictional country Transia. Her twin brother, Pietro, accompanied her throughout their difficult childhood. At least some of Wandas magic-like abilities come from the god Chthon, who intended to use her body as a vessel when she was old enough. The twins eventually joined the Brotherhood of Mutants under Magneto. At the time, they were unaware of their connection to the metal-powered mutant.

Variant Comics/YouTube


As previously mentioned, Wandas powers were initially vague. Her magical abilities had an echo of Black Cats bad luck powers, causing chaos wherever she directed them. Wandas abilities were defined as chaos magic for some time, before they shifted into the realm of reality warping. Despite the magical properties of Scarlet Witchs abilities, they come from her mutant genes. When utilizing her reality-warping talents, Wanda is capable of completely reshaping the universe.

Thor Odinson / God of Thunder

Created in the silver age of comic books, Thor has been a Marvel mainstay since Lee, Kirby, and Larry thought him up. Chris Hemsworths charming depictionnot to mention those stellar absbrought the character into the mainstream with 2011sThor.

Based on the Norse god of the same name, the comic book version of Thor deviates from his inspiration in many ways. While he still harnesses the power of thunder and lightning, Marvels Thor has extra levels to his story. After Odin sends him to Earth with no memory of his prior life, Thor embraces his alternate identity as medical student Donald Blake. In the process, he meets and falls in love with Jane Foster, a nurse. While Lokis manipulations often draw him away from Earth, our little planet has long been a favorite of the blonde-haired god. Thankfully, his status as a founding member of the Avengersalso thanks to Lokikeeps him in close touch with his friends and allies on Earth.

Variant Comics/YouTube


Thors Asgardian origins grant him a remarkably long life and impressive strength. While not entirely invulnerable, Thor can resist staggering damage. He possesses superhuman speed, eyesight, durability, and excellent hand-to-hand combat skills. His hammer, Mjolnir, focuses his power as the God of Thunder. Using it, he can better direct his ability to summon a storm upon his foes. This Marvel hero can travel through time, regenerate portions of his body, and his stamina is enough to engage in combat for months on end with no breaks. On top of everything, Thor can enter a berserker rage in combat, which enhances his strength and stamina tenfold.

Charles Xavier / Professor X

Inspired by Martin Luther King Jr, Charles Xaviercreated by Lee and Kirbyfirst appeared in Marvel comics in the early 60s. Even to non-comic lovers, Professor X has become a household name thanks to Sir Patrick Stewart and James McAvoys portrayals of the character.

Born to a wealthy nuclear scientist in New York, Xavier came into his mutant abilities as an adolescent. After the death of his father, Xaviers mother married Kurt Marko and brought Cain Markoalso known as Juggernautinto the family. After receiving Ph.D.s in biophysics, psychology, genetics, and anthropology, Xavier was drafted into the Korean war. After trekking around the world, he lost the use of his legs thanks to an alien named Lucifer. Eventually, Xavier returned to New York and founded Xaviers School for Gifted Youngsters.

Variant Comics/YouTube


Xavier is one of the most powerful telepaths of all Marvel heroes. Before Magneto limited the Earths electromagnetic field, Xaviers telepathy was strong enough to cover the entire planet. His mind-reading and thought-projecting abilities typically span about 250 miles, but outside of Earths bounds, he has reached much further.

Professor Xcan learn entirely new languages by digging deep enough in a fluent persons mind, and teach them a new language using the same method. He can project illusions, erase memories, limit powers, communicate with animals, and even shoot psionic blasts. His psychic abilities are great enough to match Ego the Living Planet, and to top it off, he is incredibly intelligent, driven, and kind. Charles Xaviers power portfolio stretches far beyond what this article allows.

Bruce Banner / The Hulk

If this were a numerical ranking of the most powerful Marvel heroes, the Hulk would likely come in at Number One. While the strongest Avenger has lost several battles over the yearsincluding one to Deadpoolhis overwhelming power and stunning intellect generally land him on top. Created by Lee and Kirby in the early 60s, the Hulk is one of the most iconic Marvel heroes of all time.

Bruce Banner was a hero even before he became the Hulk. The massive amounts of gamma radiation that lead to his aggressive alter ego hit him when he saved a teenager who had wandered into the testing area. While Banner didnt initially see any side effects from his gamma shower, the Hulk gradually revealed himself to his scientific counterpart. After realizing that anger prompted his alter ego, Banner sought methods to control his rage. The character has appeared as both a hero and antagonist during his Marvel comics tenure.

Variant Comics/YouTube


The Hulk smashes; what more is there to say?

Best known for his anger-induced rampages, the Hulk has seemingly unlimited power. In the comics, his strength, regenerative ability, and endurance all increase with his rage. As long as the Hulk is angry, he is all but unstoppable. His immense strength allows him to punch between spatial dimensions, and coupled with Banners brilliance, the Hulk is a truly staggering powerhouse.

Jean Grey / Phoenix

Jean Grey is at her most powerful when affected by the Phoenix Force, but because that version of her is technically a villain, she wont be included here. Even without the enhancements that Dark Phoenix brings with her, the characterwhom Lee and Kirby conceived in the early 60sis an Omega-level mutant.

Jeans powers first manifested when she was quite young. After seeing a friend struck and killed by a car, Jean mentally linked to her friend and nearly died herself. Thanks to Charles Xavier, she survived, but he was forced to block her telepathic abilities until she was old enough to learn control. Her relationship with Scott Summers persisted for decades, despite Jean harboring a secret desire for Wolverine.

Variant Comics/YouTube


As an Omega-level mutant, Jean is among few telepaths who can communicate with animals. Her telepathic skills are less refined than her telekinesis, but Jean is still among the strongest telepaths on Earth. Her telekinesis allows her to fly, lift thousands of pounds, and create force fields. Once she melds with the Phoenix Force, these powers multiply, making Jean one of the most powerful Marvel heroes of all time.

Carol Danvers / Captain Marvel

Roy Thomasand Gene Colan first introduced the world to Carol Danvers in the late 60s. The film version of Captain Marvels origin story is surprisingly accurate and created a host of new fans.

Danvers was an officer in the military before she gained her superhuman powers. After a nearby Kree device exploded, catching her in the blast, Danvers developed her enhanced abilities. Initially named Ms. Marvel, the character also went by Binary and Warbird before eventually claiming the title of Captain Marvel. Captain Marvel has long been considered a feminist icon, particularly given Danvers fight for equal pay as far back as the mid-70s.

Variant Comics/YouTube


Superhuman strength, endurance, and stamina are just the beginning of Captain Marvels formidable power lineup. She is physically durable and can access what Marvel writers call a seventh sense, which allows her limited precognitive abilities. She can absorb and redirect energy, and eventually gained the power of flight. The explosive blasts that she shoots from her fingertips are powerful enough to destroy a nuclear weapon, and her ability to bounce back from a hit is almost unmatched.

Stephen Strange / Doctor Strange

In the early 60s, Steve Ditkoand Lee created this mystical hero.Once an egotistical surgeon, Strange began his journey into mysticism following a crash that ruined his ability to perform surgery. He stumbled across the magic that came to define his character in his quest to restore his dexterity. A rumor led him to the Ancient One, a sorcerer who trains Strange in the mystic arts. In a veryDeadpool manner, Doctor Strange has acknowledged his status as a comic book character, albeit in an alternate reality.

The MCUsDoctor Strange was popular, as was the announcement that the second installment will be a horror film.

Variant Comics/YouTube


One of the few non-mutants on this list, Doctor Strange is human despite his magical abilities. Often, Strange uses outside tools to boost his magic. His Cloak of Levitation allows him to fly, an amulet protects him from evil magic, the Book of the Vishanti boosts his magical knowledge, and he even occasionally finds use for a literal crystal ball. He is a capable fighter and is acknowledged as one of the most powerful magicians in the universe.

The Vision

By 1968, Leeand Thomas search for a new addition to the Avengers birthed the Vision. While several questions linger about the upcoming Disney+ seriesWandaVision, many fans are looking forward to more of the hyper-intelligent android.

The robot Ultron created the Vision for insidious purposes. Though he was initially intended as a weapon against Ultrons creator Hank Pym, the Avengers eventually convinced the Vision to turn against his creator. Though his romance with Wanda Maximoff helped ground him, the Vision was often struggled his mechanical ability to be turned against his teammates. His children with Wanda were, obviously, not hisor children at all, it turns outbut their romance has long been a mainstay in Marvel comics.

Variant Comics/YouTube


The Vision closely resembles a human, apart from his crimson skin and the Solar Jewel embedded in his forehead. His artificial nature grants him superhuman strength, speed, stamina, flight, and the ability to shoot optic beams from his forehead bling. The Vision is also capable of gaining or losing mass at will. This allows him to switch between extraordinarily denseboosting his strength and durabilityand nearly intangible. His skills as a tactician have come in handy through the years, as has his expertise in repairing himself.


This Marvel hero might sound familiar, as Lee and Kirby adapted Hercules from his mythological roots in the mid-60s. Marvels iteration of the immortal beefcake borrows much from his Roman origins, though he still has plenty of unique characteristics.

Hercules first appeared in Marvel comics as a similarly-powered counterpart of Thor. Occasionally a friend, but often manipulated or tricked into an enemy, Hercules popped in and out of comics for years. He briefly ruled the Netherworld and once tried to take down the Avengers. Eventually, however, he became a trusted ally of the superhero team and founded the Champions.



Hercules is a divine hero, so he harnesses your typical god-like powers. Once, this Marvel hero even fought the Hulk to a standstill. He can run up to 100 mph, jump to incredible heights, and possesses staggering physical strength. He is skilled in archery and wrestling, and hes mastered the art of the earth-shattering punch. His ability to heal from most wounds often comes in handy, as do his immortality and immunity to some degree of magical influence. To top it all off, this chiseled hero boasts a pair of perfect pecs. A hero to us all.

Read more: https://www.dailydot.com/parsec/most-powerful-marvel-heroes-2019/

So Long, You Weird, Space-Time-Defying Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.


Odds are you watch Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., because you’re reading this. That puts you in a sort of exclusive club. Which is to say, not many people watch this show. A hanging story-chad of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, S.H.I.E.L.D. has had ratings consistently low enough to make the prospect of its renewal every year a kind of comic-book cliffhanger.

Yet it was. Six times. No matter what—stranding characters on distant planets, swapping members of the ensemble in and out, touring through some back alleys of the Marvel pantheon for characters whom it’d perhaps be a stretch to describe as beloved—Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was just … on, y’all. And now, as the show preps for its final season, it’s finally over. In the hours before the show’s Thursday panel at San Diego Comic-Con, the network finally took a shotgun axe to its little sci-fi superhero spy show. (The shotgun axe is a thing in the show. That’s the kind of show it is.)

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  • “We’re shooting the very last episode right now, so a lot of us are feeling this,” said show cocreator Jed Whedon from the stage of San Diego’s Hall H, an auditorium I am contractually required to describe as cavernous. “Part of the reason we’re really enjoying this is that we’re going through what the characters are going through, which is, this is our last mission together.”

    “And,” interjected Clark Gregg, the show’s lead, “the dragons look amazing.” (The dragons aren’t a thing. The show doesn’t have dragons. Probably.)

    S.H.I.E.L.D. started out as part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Its center was Agent Phil Coulson, played by Gregg as the rectitudally high and tight, right-hand man of Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury in Iron Man and sacrificed to narrative gods in Avengers: That First One. But death is just something people get better from in comics; Gregg was a sunny spot in the movies’ Sturm and Drang. Coulson came back to take over TV S.H.I.E.L.D.

    In the early years, other Marvel cinematic characters occasionally showed up. Lady Sif from Thor did a guest spot. Some of the visual effects showing magic looked like the ones in Doctor Strange. Even Jackson’s Fury came in to shoot a gun, and if you watched closely you noticed that the helicarrier that saves the day at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron gets handed off from a S.H.I.E.L.D. episode. In the movies—Captain America: The Winter Soldier, primarily—S.H.I.E.L.D. the agency turned out to be rife with bad guys, and it disbanded, and it sort of did on TV too. The agents went on the run, ran a shadow-S.H.I.E.L.D., I think, and fought an offshoot of the movie bad guys.

    For the first couple seasons, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was a sometimes predictable show that had a second job supporting Disney-Marvel’s dominion over all of pop culture time and space. But then it leveraged its hard-to-explain renewals to quietly become one of the zaniest, weirdest pieces of sci-fi on TV.

    The renewals aren’t that hard to explain, actually. The show had a marketing value, sure, and a small but avid fanbase, like a lot of genre TV. But since Disney owns the ABC television network, and ABC produces the show, it’s owned and operated, relatively cheaper to make because the network doesn’t have to share money with some other studio. Think of it as Disney’s ABC’s Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Even a lower-rated, in-house-produced show can make more money, in the end, than an expensive but popular one made by someone else.

    That’s a potent combination, as it turns out. Few people watching, little oversight from a network because the stakes are low, a fan base distilled down to the most committed gladiators … what’s a writers’ room to do? Well, any damn thing it wants is the answer. Guest stars: Patton Oswalt, Bill Paxton, Kyle MacLachlan, Ron Glass, Edward James Olmos, Ruth Negga, Blair Underwood, Powers Boothe.1 Deep dives into Marvel’s back catalog: Ghost Rider, Deathlok, the Absorbing Man, Graviton, Mockingbird.

    The show went to a virtual matrix universe where everyone was a bad guy, and the Big Baddy was a magic robot lady. When Ghost Rider showed up, he wasn’t the iconic 1970s motorcycle demon with a flaming skull. This was the new Ghost Rider, who drives a lowrider (but also has a flaming skull). (The actor who played him, Gabriel Luna, is slated for a Ghost Rider show on Hulu.) There was time travel, space travel, a post-apocalyptic Earth rescued via time and space travel, and blue aliens. A beloved character used suspended animation to join his friends in a timeline where Earth was destroyed, but then died while helping them escape and change that future. So his friends went to space to fish him out of suspended animation in the newly remade present, because now there are two of him. Coulson died again! And came back again, only this time as a bad guy with no memories, from another planet, on our Earth to fight zombie alien space bats.

    It’s a lot, right? Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t always great. But it always felt like real humans were sitting in a room authentically trying to outdo whatever they’d tried last time. “We never know when we’re shooting the end of the thing if we’re going to get another season,” Gregg said in Hall H. So every season things would get weird, come to a head, and go out big. Someone, probably in a suit, maybe in Burbank, would say "Um, actually could you just do more?" The show would say "Errr, OK." So things would just get weirder.

    That’s a rock-solid legacy. Marvel’s TV shows are about to change radically. The deals with Netflix that led to Jessica Jones and Daredevil, among others, have ended; the new streaming network Disney+ has announced shows more clearly derived from the movies, about Loki, Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and others. The days of Marvel on a broadcast network are passing into legend. As for Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? “This is the flagship show of Marvel television,” said Jeph Loeb, the head of that division. “And it’s the show that I love most.” Which, you know, I get it. Thanks for the ride, Agents. In the era of peak, golden-age, highly burnished, super-professional polish, TV needs weird too.

    1Updated 7/19/19 7:47 AM PDT to correct the spelling of Powers Boothe's name

    Read more: https://www.wired.com/story/farewell-agents-of-shield/

    8 Essential Books in the Queer Comics Canon


    More than a decade ago, when Batwoman was reimagined as a gay character, it was a big deal. She was a woman in comics who dated and danced with other women, experienced heartbreak, and went through many of the mundanities of relationships that queer people aren't often afforded in mainstream media. Katherine "Kate" Kane was revolutionary.

    She was, and is, also not alone. LGBTQ+ people are now featured in a lot of comics. In fact, when it comes to queer representation, the Marvel and DC movies and television shows are pretty far behind their paperback counterparts. Batwoman is only just now getting a her own show, and Marvel is promising that a gay character is coming, but such a character has yet to be seen. It's no wonder, then, that when movie fans start speculating about whether or not Captain Marvel and Valkyrie might be a couple, most readers have to hold back the "Well, if you read the comics…" from their lips.

    Look beyond the superhero fare and there are even more queer characters filling comics panels. With a barrier to entry that can be as low as setting up a Squarespace account, indie comics featuring LGBTQ+ people are everywhere. And the mainstream titles are beefing up the queer storylines too. It's a lot to take in. Don't know where to start? Below are some of the best titles out there, from simple stories to superhero sagas.

    Note: When you buy something using the retail links in our stories, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Read more about how this works.

    Check, Please!


    Check, Please! had the humblest of beginnings—starting as a class assignment for author Ngozi Ukazu, the webcomic grew a loyal online fanbase, and eventually got published as a book. It follows freshman hockey player Eric Bittle, or “Bitty,” navigating student life and playing hockey for his fictional liberal arts school. It’s a wholesome story, one that’s more about friendship than hockey. It’ll leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling, but will also punch you in the gut when you least expect it.
    How to read it: In print, or online.



    America Chavez is one of the Young Avengers (a great queer story in its own right) who grew up in a queer utopia with her two mothers and is mourning their loss while also navigating the "real world"—and the racism, sexism, and homophobia that comes with it—for the first time. Plus, it features a queer woman of color punching Hitler in the face.
    How to read it: In print.

    The Witch Boy


    In the world of The Witch Boy, all girls are witches and all boys are shapeshifters. Our protagonist struggles with those expectations and trying to be himself in a world that penalizes him for that. The Witch Boy was written as a children’s comic, but still has enough complexity and intrigue for an adult reader. And it's great for facilitating conversations between parents and their children about gender and gender roles.
    How to read it: In print.

    Bingo Love

    Image Comics

    This indie comic made a lot of best-of lists last year, and with good reason. The book follows two queer women from their teenage years in the 1960s to the present day. It’s beautifully written and illustrated, and it tells a story you likely haven’t heard or seen before.
    How to read it: In print.



    Iceman is just one example of the benefits that comics have over films. The same character can be written over and over again in various iterations and interpretations. In this case, 2017 Iceman is recently out and finding community while also learning to accept himself as both a mutant and a gay man. X-Men have long served as an allegory for various marginalized groups over the years, and that’s true two-fold here. Bobby Drake’s double minority identity is framed throughout the series through the lens of his parents who love him but say all the wrong things in a way that rings very true, and highlights the importance of having queer writers behind queer stories.
    How to read it: In print.


    Archie Comics

    In a similar vein of reinterpreting a familiar character—in this case an Archie one—Chip Zdarsky’s Jughead Jones made headlines in 2016 when he came out as asexual. It was a move that was very much in character for those familiar with the (pre-Riverdale) burger-loving guy.
    How to read it: In print.

    O Human Star

    Blue Delliquanti

    This futuristic sci-fi webcomic is about a man who wakes up to find that he's been dead for 16 years and his brain has been uploaded into a robot’s body. It explores nature-versus-nurture and how much society and our upbringing impacts our relationship to ourselves and our genders, and it only gets more complex as the comic goes on.
    How to read it: In print, and online.

    A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns

    Oni Press

    A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns is a great example of a comic being used as a tool for education. As genderqueer author Archie Bongiovanni explains in the book, it can be exhausting for trans and gender-nonconforming individuals to explain their pronouns and identities to others over and over again. This book does some of the heavy lifting, and its compact print size makes it easy to whip out should you run into someone who needs it.
    How to read it: In print.

    Read more: https://www.wired.com/story/8-essential-books-queer-comics-canon/

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