It's long been an open secret that Deadpool 2 will be the setup for Fox's X-Force movie. Taking interviews as part of the build-up to the first film's release, Ryan Reynolds insisted that X-Force was a "priority" for the studio, but at the same time it was cautioned there wouldn't be excessive setup.
All that changed when Fox began to release trailers for Deadpool 2. Every TV clip and trailer seemed to stress the importance of X-Force, with Deadpool putting together a "super-duper ******* group." Some viewers actually began to worry that the film would focus too much on X-Force, to the detriment of Deadpool himself.
In the end, though, Fox pulled a bait and switch. Deadpool 2 had teased the X-Force, but the team we saw in the trailers barely made an appearance. Far from getting their chance to shine on the big screen, the likes of Bedlam and Shatterstar were killed with ease.
- This Page: Deadpool 2 Was Mocking X-Force
- Next Page: Meet Deadpool 2's REAL X-Force
Deadpool 2 Was Mocking X-Force (And Its Creator)
There's a sense in which the marketing for Deadpool 2 was the ultimate gag, setting up one film just so the studio could deliver something completely different. The first incarnation of X-Force was a version of the team from the '90s, a blend of X-Force stalwarts like Domino and Shatterstar with lesser-known members like Bedlam and Vanisher. It showed promise, but frankly, it seemed more than a little random. In the end, though, this X-Force team didn't even make it past a parachute jump. Far from cutting a bloody swathe through their enemies, they were shredded by helicopter blades or electrocuted when they collided with electricity wires. Deadpool 2 treated X-Force in just the same way the Merc With A Mouth treats everything else - with subversive wit and humor.
This was underscored by the movie's dialogue that circled around this era of comics. When Domino discusses her super-powers, she's roundly mocked by Wade, who insists luck isn't a power; it's certainly not very cinematic. All that leads to a brilliant gag in which Wade speculates that she was probably created by somebody "who can't draw feet." It's an obvious reference to Rob Liefeld, Domino's creator, who's well known for finding feet difficult to draw - he tends to obscure them behind smoke and dust! There was also a running gag about Cable's bag, with Deadpool describing it as a "fanny pack," another searing critique on the fashion choices Liefeld's characters tend to make. Deadpool 2 further treated X-Force like a joke.
Rob Liefeld, for his part, loved it. He may be well-known for creating some of the most macho, testosterone-driven characters in Marvel Comics, but Liefeld wasn't ashamed to admit he cried after watching Deadpool 2. "Part was the nostalgia of the particular track blasting," he explained, "but mostly the emotion that they had landed the plane in such spectacular fashion." The film may have poked fun at Liefeld, but he clearly thought it was great.
X-Force is Still Coming
Deadpool 2 may have had a laugh at X-Force's expense, but the team movie is still on its way. Drew Goddard already has his own story, and Deadpool 2 writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick are frankly glad to take a break from the Deadpool franchise. As Wernick noted, they've "written a draft of Deadpool every consecutive year since 2009."
All that means this film is a crucial step along the journey to X-Force. There have been reports that X-Force will start filming this Fall, although that depends on the status of Goddard's many in-gestation projects. It's true that Fox's long-term plans are in doubt, given Disney's proposed purchase of the bulk of Fox's movie empire, but Reynolds remains confident an X-Force movie is on its way. As he explained:
"It really is at the moment—and maybe it’s an illusion, and maybe I’m naïve—but it’s business as usual at Fox," claims Reynolds. "I’m not an executive over there ... but I like to think that whoever buys Fox is buying it to keep intact, and to allow it to be its own entity."
X-Force is still on the way, then. So just how did Deadpool 2 set it up?
Page 2 of 2: Meet Deadpool 2's REAL X-Force
- X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) release date: Feb 14, 2019
- Gambit (2019) release date: Jun 07, 2019
- New Mutants (2019) release date: Aug 02, 2019