There is no question that Deadpool will be among the characters prioritized as Disney absorbs their newly acquired Fox assets. What has been on fans’ minds, however, is exactly how it would be done, and whether or not “The Merc with a Mouth” would be able to utilize, well… his mouth. Now, thanks to MCU Cosmic, we may have a better understanding of Marvel’s plan.
If the rumor is true, Marvel is considering three options:
1. A solo Deadpool film set in the MCU
2. A Deadpool series on their new Disney+ streaming platform
3. Including Deadpool as a feature character in the third Spider-Man film
Each option has its own pros and cons. Many fans will lament at the idea of a PG-13 Deadpool, as the hard R rating is exactly what has set the character apart on film. Sadly for those fans, the Disney+ and the Spider-Man routes would most certainly not be rated R. There’s also the chance that a Deadpool solo flick could be PG-13, but I personally doubt it. Deadpool’s comic routes, however, are much tamer than film fans might realize. He can thrive in a PG-13 setting. Regardless, it’s important to acknowledge the pros of each option in full.
A Deadpool solo film is how many Marvel fans have been assuming that the character would be introduced, if not one of Marvel’s famous post-credit scenes. Before the announcement of a merger, the expectation was that Deadpool’s solo arc would be a trilogy. Deadpool 3 would be an organic finale before the character is allowed to interact with the Avengers, X-Men, and/or X-Force. And as mentioned, it would likely be rated R, setting the tone for Marvel to introduce other more adult-oriented characters. However, the concern here is how well a solo film would set the stage for Deadpool’s role in a much larger universe. They could feature MCU heroes or even villains, but there’s the possibility that forcing the MCU into the film could hinder the overall story. This is one of the common complaints about Spider-Man’s first solo outing in Homecoming, with some saying that Iron Man hogged much of the spotlight.
Now, a Disney+ series could be very interesting. If the goal here is to truly establish Deadpool in the MCU, this may well be the best option. Giving the character six hours to play around in the MCU is significantly more than the other choices, and the expectation is that it would likely feature other established characters, or even cross over with one of the other series. This could really be awesome if done well. The primary concern here is that this would require fans to purchase the platform in order to see a hugely significant character’s intro. While I expect Disney+ to make mountains of money, not everyone will spring for the service. Casual fans who don’t buy might find Deadpool’s first film appearance to be somewhat confusing, not having that same transition through the series that diehard fans will surely eat up.
Lastly, there is the Spider-Man 3 option. Again, multiple pros and cons. Spidey/Deadpool currently share a popular ongoing comic book series, playing off of each other’s witty banter very well. Featuring in Spidey’s film would not give the character nearly as much time as the other two choices; not without handcuffing Spider-Man in his own film at least. However, I believe that it would be rather poetic. If they go this route, it would nearly match Spider-Man’s transition from Sony to the MCU. Spider-Man’s first appearance was, of course, as a guest character in Captain America: Civil War. Both of Spider-Man’s two solo outings heavily feature an established MCU character in Iron Man and Nick Fury respectively, in order to better establish Peter Parker in the larger MCU. Spider-Man certainly doesn’t need the help beyond this point, appearing in two Avengers films already, but by making Deadpool the featured character in his third flick, it would flip the script and instead make Spidey the old hand ushering a new, but known, character into the fold.
I don’t know which option I prefer the most, but I’m interested to know what you think. Let me know in the comments or on Twitter at @abondination!