Cinema: ‘Deadpool 2’ Is Stale And Lazy
In 2016, the original Deadpool was a breath of fresh air among superhero movies. Hard R rated superhero movies were almost unheard of and certainly none of them were so self-aware or willing to mock themselves so openly. Deadpool 2 attempts to repeat this success by imitating its predecessor, but ultimately fails because it treads to much of the same ground. Sure, the story is somewhat different and there are some new characters, but Deadpool 2 never manages to become its own entity as it refuses to challenge its humor and instead opts to do the same jokes twice. If you’ve seen the first Deadpool, then you already know the punchline to every joke, making it hard to find much to laugh at in Deadpool 2.
One of the strongest factors Deadpool 2 had going for it, wasn’t even a part of the movie itself, but the marketing. The marketing was fun and different and wasn’t afraid of trying new things to grab audience’s attention. There was even a short pre-movie scene in front of Logan that hilariously mocked how much time superheroes waste while getting changed into their costumes. It was morbid, weird and self-deprecating like a lot of the best Deadpool humor is, all while being a new joke that wasn’t done in the previous film. This is just one example of the many great clips and ties in that were released before the film. It almost feels as if all the creative energy and new and funny ideas were put solely into the marketing instead of the actual movie.
Unlike the ad campaign, Deadpool 2 had very little in terms of new jokes. Almost all the jokes in Deadpool 2 were either slightly different versions of gags from the previous film or new jokes that ran on for way too long. Some redone jokes include, a lost limb of Deadpool growing back, but being baby sized which grosses out his companions, Deadpool mocking Ryan Reynolds for being in Green Lantern and X-Men Origins, Deadpool comparing himself to Hugh Jackman or Wolverine, Deadpool commenting on how he only ever sees the same X-Men whenever he’s at their mansion and T.J. Miller telling Deadpool that he looks like an avocado without his mask. The new jokes that do exist are funny at first, but are almost always ruined by going on for way too long. Examples of this include Deadpool saying Domino’s luck isn’t a power and needlessly monologuing over her scene that demonstrates it is, Deadpool seemingly dying at the end to reveal he’s not dead just yet, only to seemingly die again, to once again reveal he’s not dead yet and finally almost all the members of X-Force dying in horrible ways.
Without good humor, much of the film ends up being quite boring and almost hard to sit through at points. There was word that the first half of Deadpool 2 was slow, so I sat waiting for the eventual point where the movie would pick up, but it never came. Almost everything that happened was extremely predictable and for a movie that so openly mocks superhero clichés, Deadpool 2 was sure full of them. As soon as Deadpool’s girlfriend Vanessa died toward the beginning of the film, I kept wondering how Deadpool 2 would subvert this overly done trope of the hero’s love interest dying, but it never did as Deadpool 2 played it completely straight. Only after the movie ended was there some sort of twist as Deadpool reversed the deaths of Vanessa and X-Force member Peter during the after credits scene.
Speaking of the after credits scene that was probably the only scene in the entire movie that managed to stay entertaining from start to finish. Even then, it still relied on making fun of Green Lantern and X-Men Origins as Deadpool killed both the old Deadpool and Ryan Reynolds before he could sign on to Green Lantern. It’s terrible that one of the best and most creative parts of the movie was once again, like the ad campaign, not even part of the movie. Despite being the best part, this after credits scene also makes most of the movie the audience just experienced almost entirely pointless. Just about everything audiences spent the last two hours watching never even happened. It’s about on the same level as everything being a dream quality of bad. Audiences may leave the movie laughing at first, but with this current ending it’s a wonder if anything introduced in this movie will have any lasting impact on the franchise at all.
Beyond that, anything fun or new in Deadpool 2 is wasted and not used to its fullest extent. For example, Terry Crews appears in the film as Bedlam a member of the X-Force team, but doesn’t get to do anything before being killed off for a cheap joke. Why put such a comedically talented actor such as Terry Crews in the film if you’re not going to do anything with him? It’s insulting to Mr. Crews and its insulting to fans of his that expected to see him be funny. Besides wasting Terry Crews, the film also does practically nothing with Negasonic Teenage Warhead. Brianna Hildebrand who plays Negasonic Teenage Warhead, was a super fun part of the last movie, but in Deadpool 2 all she does is act bratty and hang around her new girlfriend. She like Terry Crews, was hardly in the movie and had very little to do. Besides helping beat Juggernaut you could practically take her and her girlfriend out of the movie and little would change plot wise. It’s real shame as Deadpool 2 could have been used to expand her character with more depth and screen time. The writers could have explored her new relationship and given Negasonic Teenage Warhead something meaningful to do in the plot, but they instead decided to give her a significant other with little to no character as if that’s the same thing.
Another odd decision, was how Deadpool 2 constantly hyped up the Juggernaut as the big bad of the movie. Maybe it’s just me, but Juggernaut always seemed pretty lame. He looks silly and his superpower of being unstoppable when in motion is very odd. Despite this, Deadpool can’t stop singing his praise and the movie itself is constantly hyping him up to be one the fiercest enemies anyone has ever faced before revealing his identity. After being revealed. Juggernaut rips Deadpool in half and then goes head-to-head with Colossus in a fight, before getting defeated in a pretty humiliating way and even possibly being electrocuted to death. Juggernaut is hardly in the movie, doesn’t pose all that much of a threat, and then goes out like a chump. This leaves me to wonder if he was built up intentionally as some sort of unfunny joke or whether the filmmakers intended for him to be cool, but failed horribly to do so. Either way, whatever Juggernaut’s intended purpose was, he didn’t accomplish it.
In the end, Deadpool 2 is nothing more than a big bag of wasted opportunity. Despite exciting new characters like Domino and Cable, Deadpool 2 is too stuck in the shadow of the original to do anything worth viewing. It would rather do something we’ve already seen with new characters than try something new while exploring new faucets of returning ones. With stale humor, pacing that never picks up and nothing visually interesting to admire, it’s hard to recommend Deadpool 2 to anybody except someone content with laughing at the same old jokes and gags. You’d probably get more entertainment and laughs watching the ad campaign for Deadpool 2 than the actual movie.