2018 has seen two of Marvel’s least traditional heroes absolutely dominating at the box office, and leading the way for future film adaptations. Black Panther ended up earning $700 million dollars at the domestic box office, while Deadpool 2 has already earned its spot as the 5th highest-grossing R-rated movie of all time. Of course, that means Marvel has to capitalize on it further, and that means a crossover comic where the two heroes duke it out on the page. Black Panther vs. Deadpool, which is set to debut this October, is “a five-issue limited series from writer Daniel Kibblesmith and artist Ricardo Lopez Ortiz” that has the two characters fighting over, you guessed it, Vibranium.
“Featuring a brawl you can only get in comics (for now anyway), Black Panther vs. Deadpool is the best of both worlds, equal parts Black Panther/Wakanda and Deadpool/Crazytown,” said Editor Wil Moss. “In bouncing these two characters off each other (and sometimes through each other), Daniel and Ricardo have found some really fascinating insights into what makes them tick as individuals.”
While this all sounds well and good, the thought of a crossover between these two characters sounds…disorienting to say the least. Listen, there’s been plenty of unlikely crossovers that have worked way better than they have any right to, but it’s no coincidence that Marvel is pairing up these two characters after figuring out that including even just one of them pretty much guarantees a hit. I love these characters separately, and their brief interactions in the past (most notably a pretty intense fight during Civil War II) have been amusing, but I’m not totally sure how Marvel is going to pull off five issues of this.
And it’s not that they can’t, necessarily. I’ll be the first one to put my foot directly in my mouth if this series ends up being great. It’s just that the crossover feels forced and transparently just an attempt to cash in on two of their most recently profitable characters. To give all of this some context, it’s worth mentioning that Daniel Kibblesmith is a fantastic writer who’s currently writing the most recent Quantum & Woody series, which debuted this month. He’s also writing Valiant High, the company’s first all-ages release that’s scheduled to come out in September of this year.
As for Ricardo Lopez Ortiz, his art most definitely speaks for itself (you can check out more of that right here), but he’s also currently working with Mark Millar and Image Comics on the standalone Hit-Girl series that debuted in February of this year. Ortiz has a singular style that really brings the pages to life. It’s possible that Marvel will want him to reign it in a little, especially since they’re probably hoping to position this as one of their biggest hits of the year. Regardless, Ortiz is definitely going to bring something fresh to these characters, which we need after being inundated with them on-screen all year.
So at the end of the day, I’m hopeful, but cautiously so. Like every major studio, producer, and publication, it’s always a risk to bring on artists to do work that’s more commercial in nature, but striking the perfect balance between art and commerce is what’s made Marvel the most successful comic book and film production company/assembly line of the last decade. We’ll keep you posted on Black Panther vs. Deadpool as we learn more, but be sure to check out the first issue this October!
Source: Den of Geek