Deadpool is all the rage right now. He’s long been one of Marvel’s most popular comic book characters, and the House of Ideas love to pit him against other heroes. In this case, he’s up against one of Marvel’s many Wolverines, Old Man Logan. It’s a promising premise. Both are semi-antiheroes, both enjoy going at it with impunity, and they even have something of a history. After all, Old Man Logan is an alternate-future version of the Ol’ Canucklehead himself. That means the dynamic is pretty similar to the one shared between Deadpool and Wolverine. Just with a lot more age-related jokes.
Writer Declan Shalvey knows both characters well. He has experience writing Deadpool, and it shows through in every scene. The Merc With A Mouth’s voice is perfectly reproduced, and you can’t help laughing at the wisecracks. What’s more, Shalvey gives the cantankerous Old Man Logan a streak of humor as well, ensuring the book has a consistent tone and style. Granted, Logan’s puns are atrocious, but he’s not the natural punster.
The plot’s simple. Deadpool and Old Man Logan cross paths, and engage in your traditional superhero scrap. Logan’s on a mission of some kind, apparently to help a young escapee mutant, and Deadpool does what he does best. He gets in the way. What follows is an entertaining clash that will bring a smile to any Marvel fan’s face. You’re talking claws, blades, and a lot of superhero posturing. It’s everything you could wind for your basic ‘fight’ comic.
Naturally, as with any of these superhero encounters, it’s all heading towards an actual team-up. Given the book’s title, you can’t help figuring the fight isn’t over just yet. There’s no doubt these two characters will be at cross-purposes through the whole series, and the mysterious girl will be the catalyst. Shalvey doesn’t spend much of this issue giving us any answers (or even clues), knowing we just want to see a scrap. Essentially, the comic gives you exactly what you’d expect from Deadpool Vs. Old Man Logan #1.
Mike Henderson’s art is strong here, and he’s clearly enjoying the book. The opening sequence is a little odd, and doesn’t reproduce well in digital format. Looked at as a whole page though, it’s clear what’s going on. The fundamental problem is that Henderson doesn’t quite capture a sense of motion in most scenes, giving the book a fairly static feel. Certain images really suffer as a result, such as Logan’s slicing Deadpool’s katanas. Henderson is also better at representing Deadpool than he is Logan. The wildness of Old Man Logan’s eyes frequently looks more like fear or panic.
That being said, if you’re a fan of the Merc With A Mouth, this is a book you’ll definitely want to read. It’s fun, it’s witty, and it’s entertaining. It’s not going to transform the comic book genre or anything like that, but then again, it’s not trying to. Shalvey and Henderson simply want to give their readers a good time, and on that count, they succeed admirably.
Don't expect Deadpool vs. Old Man Logan to change the industry, just expect to have a lot of fun reading it.