So, thanks to Hydra Bob, Deadpool's succeeded in getting injected with the serum that's taken out his healing factor and he can now fulfill his wish to get offed. The complications: Bob got the serum from Tombstone (who had it made in order to kill Deadpool as payback for putting him in the slammer) by promising Tombey that he could be the one to kill Wade Wilson. Only, getting gunned down by a second-rater like Tombstone isn't the spectacular ending the ego-crazed Wade desires, he wants to go out in style--possibly by being destroyed by his team-mates X-Force after playing them and massively pissing them off.
'Fine.' Except, if Tombstone doesn't get to be the one who puts a bullet in Deadpool's head, he's gonna make damn sure he puts one in Bob's.
Wade got into his crazy scheme in the first place after his 'friends' temporarily killed him--briefly reuniting him with the love of his life, the female embodiment of Death--before his healing factor brought him back; Wade surmising that what his friends wanted for him was for him to be with Death, and deciding that this was what he wanted for himself now.
Only, that whole thing--? Kind of a subjective call. Those 'friends' are gone, the only one that wasn't party to it is the only one that's stuck around. Hydra Bob. Wade hadn't thought about anyone else, he hadn't considered what would happen to Bob if he carried out his plan. And he doesn't want his one true friend Bob to die...
We hit the ground running in this concluding chapter of DEAD, as the bulletproof Tombstone comes gunning for Deadpool before Wade's had the chance to come up with a plan to save Hydra Bob's ass. Of course, if he really cares about Bob, he could just take the hit from Tombstone, but with Hydra Bob having shown Wade he does have a true friend, maybe Bob's actually given him something to live for. After all, this whole thing kicked off when Deadpool returned to Earth after saving a planet--to no kudos--looking for some love from his buddies and getting a barrage of gunfire from them instead.
So, now mortal and vulnerable and without a plan, Deadpool goes on the lam with Bob and Tombstone pursues--before being met with a 'temporary fix' that'll buy them some breathing space.
Bob's scared to the point of bordering on suicidal, and in a tense conversation with Wade, Deadpool's twisted mind kind of has a reboot. This was all a game to Wade--who saw the way he played his team-mates X-Force, Daken, Kingpin and co. off against each other as a grand game of Chess--his ultimate challenge--and attaining the lethal serum as the lynchpin of that. But getting it didn't turn out to be so tough for Wade, Bob did the work there, really--and now that Deadpool is mortal as a result of it, there's no challenge. Dying would be easy. And with Death a woman of VERY high demands, dying now wouldn't be worthy of her.
So Wade doesn't want to die now--but there's the small problem of both Tombstone and X-Force being out to kill him. So Deadpool and Bob are going to flee via Grand Central Station (one of the places X-Force have deemed to look for him at), so they need disguises...
But then, upon seeing his newly scar-free face in the mirror--a result of the serum--Deadpool realizes they don't need disguises--no-one now knows what either of them look like without their masks...
Despite this, tension holds as Wade and Bob hit Grand Central Station, only to be met by X-Force--and things don't look good for either of them.
I won't say exactly happens, but--*BIG SPOILER ALERT*--everything gets resolved and tied up in a neat little bow and Wade Wilson is now a blue-eyed pretty boy, complete with stylin' hair (that's come from nowhere) and comes out of DEAD mortal, and with a new lease on life.
Ale Garza's art isn't as strong here as it has been in previous issues--on occasion, I mistakenly thought there were two pencillers involved--and it would have been nice to have regular Deadpool artist Carlo Barberi back for the conclusion of the story he helped kick off--but Garza, inked by Sean Parsons, does a decent enough job.
In the writing, Daniel Way requires you to read between the lines and put things together in terms of the characters' motivations, which asks for a high degree of trust that he knows Wade inside out, given that they're certainly not the most logical or linear of motives.
We have a decent conclusion to the big arc here, though I would have liked to have seen some Deadpool on Death action (not in the biblical sense, that would be gross). If, like me, you find that amiss, you'll be able to find it in my unofficial Prequel to DEAD, Bootleg Deadpool hearts Death, here.
Way will be staying on board as Deadpool: the pretty boy years begins in issue #55, meanwhile, I'm continuing to work on showcasing my MwaM-writing skillz (for which Deadpool hearts Death was the last thing)--having fun along the way--should a vacancy come up at some point. ;)
And you can get a first look at my new thing here:
Meet Wade Wilson, Blind Al and Weasel parodies Wayne Winston, Nigel and Rodent--who will be making their debut in an upcoming Abnormals Special, taking on Grant Springford's little demon Nasty--dynamically illustrated by Sgt. Mike Battle's Graham Pearce.
Stay tuned ;)