New Mutants #98 (First Appearance of Deadpool) – Reviews Of Old Comics
New Mutants #98 marks a departure from me in writing these reviews. My golden rule in writing any review is not to write a negative review. I also try not to go into a comic that I actually haven’t read with no pre-conceived notions. That’s usually hard for me to do, but given that this book features a character that I don’t really care for, although his movie was really good and an artist that I consider one of the worst artists of my generation. It’s hard not going into this comic with the expectation that it will be bad.
Writer: Fabian Nicieza, Rob Liefled
Artist: Rob Liefeld
Inker: Dave Hunt
Colorist: Gene D’Angelo
Editor: Jack C. Harris
Some muscular old guy named Gideon who is combating his male pattern baldness with a four foot ponytail is training against some generic robots. He has powers that let him adapt whatever powers he needs in a situation. Here, he has adapted flight, speed and strength. His assistant Adam takes notes for Gideon, and relays his schedule. As he leaves for an appointment he arranges something special concerning Emmanuel DaCosta.
Meanwhile, Cable and Cannonball are training in the Danger Room. Cannonball is trying to make his blast field quiet. Cable is using his cybernetics to provide distractions. Afterwards they discuss problems the New Mutants are having, especially after losing Wolfsbane in Genosha.
Meanwhile, Emmanuel DaCosta is poisoned and killed by Gideon’s operative, Eve.
Richtor tells Boom Boom that he is leaving the New Mutants to find Rahne, aka Wolfsbane. In the library, Cable is attacked by Deadpool. Cannonball keeps his blastfield quiet enough to sneak up on Deadpool and save Cable from a point blank kill shot. Deadpool is able to neutralize Cannonball, and still get the drop on Cable, when the other New Mutants show up. Richtor is easily neutralized. Before Deadpool can take out Sunspot and Boom Boom, he is felled from behind by knives thrown by Domino. She had been contacted by Cable to assist him in training the New Mutants. They decide to send Deadpool back to his employer, Mr. Tolliver, who does not handle failure well.
That night, Richtor sneaks out to rescue Rahne. Sunspot wakes up to find Gideon in his room with the news that his father has died.
Fabian Nicieza is trying to craft a story of a team in transition, but at the same time, so much mystery surrounds many of these characters, it’s hard to follow. It’s not written for a casual reader to jump on, and a lot of the problem comes with how the dialogue seems to have been written “Marvel-style.” It had to be fit within the artwork, and that is a problem. The most confusing element is Richtor’s story, since he seems to leave the team in his first scene, but is there to help against Deadpool before really leaving. I could place the blame on Rob Liefeld, but it could have been remedied with better dialogue.
The artwork is most problematic with me. Deadpool and Domino are good character designs, which is credit that I will give to Rob Liefeld. However, Gideon is laughable. The character is a business tycoon, but looks like a villain from a Jean-Claude Van Damme movie. Liefeld is also very sparse with consistency in his rendering of costumes that he, himself created. forcing the colorist to try and render the details. His lack of proper perspective is annoying to the point of almost infuriating. His anatomy takes a back seat to rendering a cool pose and fitting the form into the shot. Backgrounds are sparse, and primarilly consist of rubble.
If you’re looking for the issue itself, good luck unless you have some cash. Currently an unslabbed copy runs into three figures, easily. Your best bet is to find in a collected edition or digitally.
FINAL RATING: 3.0 (out of a possible 10) This is problematic on so many levels. I had hoped that it would be better, but it simply isn’t.