Deadpool's "Family" Could Be The Real X-Force
Deadpool's first X-Force team are slaughtered unceremoniously, but that's only so he can build a new team around himself - a group who Wade refers to as his "family." It seems likely that this is the new X-Force, not simply a black ops team of mutants but also a loose "family" who genuinely care about one another. There's a clever visual nod in Deadpool 2's third act reinforcing this idea, with Wade's costume stained gray by fire and dust; it's the color of the costume he wore when he became a member of X-Force in Rick Remender's comic book run.
That means the stars of the X-Force movie are a team unlike any version we've ever seen before in the comics. It's true that there are three classic X-Force team members; Cable, Domino, and of course Deadpool. But while Deadpool is pretty comic-book-accurate, both Cable and Domino are very different to their comic book counterparts. Cable's convoluted backstory has been ditched in favor of a much simpler, far more personal reason for traveling in time; it's a smart move on Fox's part, given his comic book history is frankly bewildering for all but the most committed X-Men fans. Additionally, in terms of power levels, while Cable is still a powerhouse, there's no trace of his telekinesis and telepathy. Meanwhile, Domino's powers have stayed the same, but Zazie Beetz's version is very different in terms of appearance. Colossus, for his part, was only a brief member of an X-Force team; he joined up during Dennis Hopeless's short-lived Cable and X-Force run, and actually became Domino's lover.
Rounding the team out are three younger members, only one of whom has ever even been associated with the X-Force brand before. Firefist is the cinematic version of the blond-haired and blue-eyed "Rusty" Collins, and while the powers are the same, his character and personality - not to mention his visuals - have been switched up by Fox. Negasonic Teenage Warhead was so different to the original comic book version that Fox had to do a deal with Marvel in order to be allowed to run with their version of the character. And the Yukio of the comics isn't even a mutant, never mind a member of X-Force.
Deadpool has Moved Beyond the Comics
In terms of overall tone and style, the Deadpool films have been about as comic-book-accurate as its possible to be. Ryan Reynolds's Wade Wilson is the perfect big-screen of the Merc With A Mouth, wisecracking and breaking the fourth wall with impunity. But even the first film teased that these movies would move beyond the comics, liberally redesigning Negasonic Teenage Warhead. Deadpool 2 takes that one step further; it sets up a potential X-Force team that's not only never been seen in the comics, it wouldn't even be possible without making radical changes to characters who are either long-dead (Russell) or have a strong fan-base (Yukio).
What makes this particularly interesting, though, is that the underlying concepts are still the same; it's the execution that is radically different. In the comics, the original X-Force was created when Cable agreed to serve as a mentor to a group of young X-Men, the New Mutants. The team gradually turned into an interesting blend of adult heroes - like Cable and Domino - and teenagers who were finding their way in a brutal world that hated and feared them. Deadpool's "family" may not be true to the comic book roster, meaning the team dynamic in X-Force will be unlike anything from the comics, but the themes and ideas remain the same. It's a fascinating approach to comic book adaptations, and it's sure to leave lovers of the comics rather divided. The reality is, though, a comic book roster was never going to be on the cards; most of the classic X-Force team members are reserved for Josh Boone's New Mutants, or (in the case of Olivia Munn's Psylocke) exist in a different time-period and are expected to appear in X-Men: Dark Phoenix.
Drew Goddard already has his own story for X-Force, but whatever it may be, it will be completely different to the comics. The core concepts will remain the same; X-Force will still be the ultimate team of black ops mutants, taking on the most brutal threats to the mutant race. As Deadpool 2 co-writer Rhett Reese noted, the team will still be "much more morally flexible" than the X-Men; that means we're in for a darker, bloodier, and even "raunchier" ensemble movie. What makes this equally fascinating, though, is the question of whether or not X-Force will take a similarly dramatic approach to redesigning its villains. If it does, even the most experienced comic book reader can have no idea what to expect.
- X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) release date: Jun 07, 2019
- Gambit (2020) release date: Mar 13, 2020
- New Mutants (2020) release date: Apr 03, 2020