Absolute Carnage vs. Deadpool #1 Review

by Harlan Ivester on August 21, 2019

Writer: Frank Tieri
Penciler: Marcelo Ferreira
Inker: Roberto Poggi
Colorist: Rachelle Rosenberg
Letterer: VC’s Joe Sabino
Publisher: Marvel Comics

            Carnage and Deadpool are both kind of all or nothing characters. They can be fun but they can also be really easy to write poorly. So it stands to reason that Absolute Carnage vs. Deadpool is similarly polarized in terms of potential. I’m not too excited, but I’m always willing to give something an honest chance.

            The nicest thing I can say about Absolute Carnage vs. Deadpool #1 is that the most casual of Deadpool fans will probably be satisfied. People who just want to see Deadpool epic shooty haha funny low-hanging humor will get just that. If you’re hoping for anything of actual substance, you won’t find it here. And you know, that would be perfectly fine if this issue just got on with the violence and focused on that, but there’s practically none here. The book spends way too long setting up how Wade runs into Carnage again – don’t think about that situation at all or the logic will fold like a napkin – and then he bails before throwing flaming microwaves at symbiotic mooks. It’s remarkably tame for a book that’s two selling points are humor and violence. Tieri’s voice for Carnage is also weirdly boring here, which isn’t a problem I remember having with his work on the character before. Carnage isn’t a funny character like Wade or Spider-Man, but he’s always having fun with what he’s doing. Yet, in this book, he’s almost entirely business.

            Ferreira and Poggi do a fine enough job with what they’re given to work with, but unfortunately the inappropriately tame nature of the script doesn’t really give them a chance to do what a book with this premise should allow them to do. Certain framing practices make otherwise mundane scenes a bit more interesting, and I think that considering the main characters are never unmasked, they convey moods quite well. The colors are sufficient in terms of shading but the lighting feels inconsistent. In some scenes, it seems like the light is coming from the “camera” rather than any actual canon light source. Most people won’t notice or care. I usually don’t, but I guess it’s worth mentioning.

            Absolute Carnage vs. Deadpool #1 is really underwhelming. A story that should emphasize humor and violence has almost none of it, and its two main characters are written with voices that mostly don’t fit. If your only knowledge of Deadpool is that picture you saw of him on your uncle’s Facebook where he’s riding a unicorn and making some type of comments about chimichangas, then maybe you’ll like this book. Anyone else will find that it misses the mark by a wide margin because it doesn’t seem to know what the audience is there for. I didn’t laugh once while reading it, and I would say that makes it a failure by any measure. Skip this one.

Our Score:


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