Today’s reading: Deadpool #17, 1998
Story by Joe Kelly
Art by Walter McDaniel
For about a year and a half now, Zoe Culloden has teased Wade with promises of playing a role of cosmic importance. Now that Wade’s on the Landau, Luckman & Lake payroll, it’s time to explain what that means.
At least, according to Overboss Dixon it’s time. Zoe still thinks Wade’s not ready to process what’s being requested of him. And Dixon just wants Wade to fail anyway.
Per team LL&L, an alien lifeform has been on a direct course for Earth for at least 20 years (pretty slow when you consider how many times the Shi’ar, Kree, Skrulls, Galactus, et al have popped by for visits in that span). Somehow, Wade’s involvement, as the so-called Mithras, “the light before the sun,” is supposed to allow whatever’s coming to usher in a new age of enlightenment and utopia on Earth.
To make their point, they show Wade a virtual-reality hologram of New York City circa 2002. Allegedly the city becomes a futuristic utopia or at the very least a green-hued version of New New York from Futurama, which won’t premiere on Fox for about a year from the publication of this comic. Oh, and there’s a giant statue of Deadpool.
“I guess Giuliani’s quality-of-life laws really did the trick, huh?” Wade says. Topical!
All jokes aside, DP predictably flips out and says he’s not their man.
“A guy like me isn’t even allowed to walk on the same block as Avengers Mansion,” he tells Zoe. Just give it 17 years, Wade.
Fortunately, Dixon purports to have a backup Mithras. But whoever that is may not be necessary, as Montgomery the precog shares a trio of visions with Wade that snap him out of his post-exposition freakout:
“You will close the door to the sharpest edge of your soul and open a bitter heart. The kiss of Death (capitalization mine) will mean a lease on life to a walking ghost. Finally, in the coldest circle of Hell, the devil will teach you mercy, and for a brief moment, you will believe. When these three events transpire, you will know that I can see through the veil of time, that I speak true.”
Wade responds to Monty’s vision by returning home and fulfilling the first prophecy, by sealing up the door to The Box and apologizing to Blind Al for putting her in there back in issue #13. He’s about to tell her she’s free to leave when his teleportation belt clicks on by itself and whisks him away.
Where’s he going? Well, he’s about to meet the man who’s been on his tail since issue #14. Ajax has found his best lead yet in one Dr. Emrys Killbrew. (Remember him from issues 3-5?) Turns out the two are old friends, dating to when Killbrew worked for the Weapon X program. Ajax tortures Killbrew a bunch till Dr. K – whom McDaniel draws much less like Wilford Brimley – gives up how to find Deadpool, which involves hacking the signal on his belt and, through the magic of science, bringing him to them.
Next time on Thursdays with Wade, Deadpool and Ajax have their first confrontation, and Wade meets the next most important woman in his life. This one’s real bony, though. See ya then!
In addition to writing for The Matt Signal, Dan Grote is now the official comics blogger for The Press of Atlantic City. New posts appear Wednesday mornings at PressofAC.com/Life. His new novel, Magic Pier, is available however you get your books online. He and Matt have been friends since the days when Onslaught was just a glimmer in Charles Xavier's eye. Follow @danielpgrote on Twitter.