This week, the first wave of Marvel Comics' Marvel NOW! relaunch hits shelves, ushering in a new age of books across the line -- including the X-Men. The next few months celebrate a whole new line of X-Books, which means X-Position is set to welcome a bevy of new writers ready to expound on what Marvel NOW! has in store for some fan-favorite characters.
Kicking things off are "Deadpool" co-writers Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn, who celebrate the United States election day with their first X-POSITION! Gerry and Brian have teamed up to answer all your questions about the Merc With A Mouth's battle against the terror of undead American presidents.
Brian, Gerry, welcome to X-Position! We'll start things up with a set of general questions from Alex about your run on "Deadpool."
Hi Gerry and Brian. I've read all the interviews/previews, and I'm really excited for your run on the title! The fact that your Twitter feeds are very funny (but with an edge) also helps.
Gerry Duggan: Not a question, Alex, but thanks.
Brian Posehn: Cool, glad you're excited. So are we. Also happy you enjoy our tweets. You'll love the new Deadpool. He doesn't talk to himself anymore but he does tweet to himself (with an edge). Enjoy.
1) In my opinion the best Deadpool stories have been about how, behind the wisecracks and wacky adventures, Wade is a dark, scarred soul who is capable of being a complete bastard, even to those closest to him. Any plans to explore this part of him?
Duggan: Evidence of this is already being drawn at an undisclosed location. You might not see it in the first few issues, but it will arrive, and when it does it won't be pretty.
Posehn: Oh yeah, whatever Gerry said.
2) I'm very excited to hear that you plan to set up a more steady supporting cast. Is there anything you can tell us at this stage about the new characters you have created and why they are good foils for Wade?
Posehn: Again nope.
Duggan: We're excited by the new characters too. They're around to be a pain in the ass. Jerry is nothing without George, Elaine and Kramer.
Posehn: Jeez Gerry, how about toeing the party line?
3) Will there be much interaction between this book and the new Thunderbolts?
Duggan: Stay tuned. (Yes.) Nothing much we can discuss at the moment. Dan [Way's] getting that new book up and running, after that happens you'll hopefully see some fun surprises.
Posehn: Yep, Thunderbolts. And then the Thundercats. [Laughs]
4) Do you have a favorite character from DP's allies? And his enemies?
Duggan: The old classics like Hydra Bob are fun, and right now his X-Force chums are probably my new favorite allies. As for his rogues gallery, there has been a lot of great face-offs over the years, but we're hoping to make some additions to that. The second arc has a new villain that has a serious grudge against Deadpool.
Posehn: I've never read Deadpool. I hear good things though.
5) And finally, a fun one: I've noticed in interviews that "Ghostbusters" has come up a lot as a touchstone for what sort of tone you're aiming for. In your opinion, what film(s) should a Deadpool story NEVER be like?
Duggan: "On Golden Pond," "Big Momma's House." Anything Tyler Perry or Kevin James.
Posehn: "Schindler's List," "Sophie's Choice"...
Next up, Molly has a question for the two of you about being funny.
Hi Gerry and Brian!
Duggan: Hi, Mols. May I call you that?
1) Being funny is really hard. How have you two worked together collaboratively to come to one funny result?
Duggan: Boring technical answer: Google docs, on phone, FaceTime, etc. Real answer: If we both laugh it goes in. If Marvel laughs and OKs it -- it stays in. It usually comes back from Tony [Moore] even better, so we try to rewrite the balloons to raise our game to the level of the art. I think if we have a secret ingredient -- it's that last rewrite that we torment the letterer with...
Posehn: And beyond that Gerry and I basically share a brain. We love the same movies and shows and laugh at the same shit. Very seldom do we disagree about a joke. So far it's been a blast and I think the funny is on the page.
2) Why do you think Deadpool is a character that needed some freshening up for Marvel NOW!?
Duggan: I think it was less about needing a refresh and more about creating an accessible place to jump onto Deadpool. This is not very scientific, but I've seen lots of responses online from folks that aren't Deadpool fans who are going to try the book out. Obviously we want long-time fans to recognize & stick around for the character they love, but we wanted to write a first issue that would make new Deadpool fans out of readers that had not tried Deadpool yet. There are three great issues before the end of the year all with art from Tony, Val [Staples] and Geof [Darrow]. These guys have created an amazing place to jump on Deadpool -- Wait.
Posehn: What that guy said. Wait, what did that guy say?
mr_infinite has some pressing queries about Deadpool's design and his interaction with Thor.
1) I've seen some of the preview pages and they look fantastic -- especially Deadpool's design by Tony Moore. What's he carrying in all those pockets? (Deadpool, not Tony Moore. I guess Tony Moore, too, if he has a lot of pockets.)
Duggan: You would have to ask Deadpool. Luckily the things that we write for him seem to be pretty close at hand. We do have one gag coming up where those pouches carry extra masks.
Posehn: Gerry's right, the rest of the pouches are full of candy. Wait 'til halfway through our run when we introduce our new character, Fatpool.
2) Deadpool teams up with Thor in the first issue, but Thor doesn't seem all that thrilled about it. Why is that?
Duggan: That exchange is pretty central to our view of who Deadpool is in the Marvel Universe. He's a guy you don't want to be seen next to. He's got a history of mental illness, violence, and he's a mercenary and assassin. He should make you uncomfortable.
Posehn: I don't think Thor likes a lot of humans. If I was a god I'd be more of a tool.
3) Who is the most badass President of the United States in both real history and Deadpool's undead mission?
Duggan: Teddy Roosevelt was the biggest badass ever. He was shot by a would-be assassin and finished his speech before proceeding to a doctor. In the comic Deadpool definitely finds him a handful. Taft won't be easy, he's sort of their tubby Hulk. Washington causes him the most trouble.
Posehn: In real history Reagan is a giant badass because he faced rejection as an actor and lived through an assassination attempt, not to mention he worked with chimps and they're super frightening.
thegreatsam0928 wants to know about dispatching undead presidents and the tools one uses to do so.
What kind of weapons are best for killing undead presidents?
Duggan: Traditional weapons will slow them down, but won't be fatal. That will be a problem for Deadpool. One he'll need some help with...
cora_reef has questions on two topics: Mexican food and the living Presidents.
1) Deadpool had a somewhat unhealthy relationship with Mexican food. Does that factor in to how he deals with the undead Presidents?
Duggan: No, but most of his relationships are unhealthy.
Posehn: Are you asking if he farts on a dead president? Read the book.
2) Will Deadpool battle any live Presidents?
Duggan: No. But keep your eyes peeled for a cameo...
Posehn: Just Romney or whoever won.
3) Although Deadpool seems to work best alone, he's always had a pretty fun supporting cast -- besides the characters you're already using, who do you think would be the most fun to bring into the book from the existing Marvel Universe characters?
Duggan: The more fancy-pants -- the better. Reed Richards, Tony Stark. We're using Dr. Strange in issue #3 -- he was a blast to write.
Posehn: Power Pack and Herbie the FF robot.
Ryan asks about finding new and hilarious ways to use Deadpool in this post-"AvX" Marvel U...
1) Was it difficult to come up with new humorous ways to use Deadpool considering he's been the comic relief of the Marvel Universe for years?
Duggan: Maybe if we've been writing him for years, but we're just getting going and are pretty energized to tell some fun action-comedy stories.
2) Is there another character you guys would really love to take on in the Marvel Universe?
Duggan: Yes. Does anyone know how to get in touch with [Marvel Editor-in-Chief] Axel Alonso? We're very happy and lucky to be on Deadpool. We're pitching a lot of fun names to guest star. I couldn't be happier.
Posehn: Batman is pretty cool.
And here's our "Behind the X" question: What was your favorite academic subject in high school and why?
Duggan: Tie: English & Graphics. In the former we were reading some very interesting books. I was reading comics for pleasure but had gotten away from novels and Shakespeare, but those classes reignited my passion for literature. In the latter class we were making our own screen printed shirts, posters and stickers. Lots of fun, inside joke stuff. Really goofy. That experience is also why I enjoy the work of Shepard Fairey so much.
Posehn: Lunch and recess. Am I right, people? Actually, the boring answer is I loved Creative Writing and the school newspaper. Those were the only times I remember being able to be myself and I used humor in both.
Special thanks to Gerry Duggan and Brian Posehn for their awesome answers for their very first X-POSITION!
Next week, X-POSITION welcomes back "Astonishing X-Men" writer Marjorie Liu to take on all questions about how her team faces a Marvel Universe in the wake of "Avengers Vs. X-Men" and what it means for her team of misfit mutants. If you've got a burning query, send it on over with the subject line "X-Position" or if you've got a question that can be put into 140 characters or less, you can send it via Twitter. Do it to it!