Thursday, April 28, 2005

Agent X 1 - 7

The only experience I've had with Deadpool has been the one mini-series, The Circle Chase, that I read a while back along with the currently running Cable and Deadpool series. As far as I know, Agent X was to be the successor to Deadpool's long running ongoing series, but it wasn't to star Deadpool but instead was focused on a character that was very, very similar to the much loved merc-with-a-mouth, Wade Wilson. Considering I really didn't like the mini I read, but that I heartily enjoy the ongoing Cable and Deadpool series, I was unsure of what I would think of the first half of the 15 issue run of Agent X.

Fortunately, Gail Simone writes this series wonderfully. The wacky, funny, over-the-top attitude of this title won me over by the end of the first issue and it only got better from there on out. At the start of this series, a man with no memory and a bunch of X shaped scars on his body runs into the Taskmaster's girlfriend and asks for help. She gives it, which irks Taskmaster to no end, which makes Alex Hayden (the man with no memory) very happy.

Because his girlfriend aks him, Taskmaster trains Alex since Alex would like to be a mercenary. The interplay between these two is spot-on funny. You can feel the animosity, yet it's always expressed in one-liners or physical gags. One Alex is trained well enough, he is sent on his first mission, which happens to be rounding up a bunch of stray animals, including some poop flinging monkeys. For payment his employer gives him the deed to a run down amusement park, which actually thrills Alex.

It doesn't thrill the local ninja crime boss, however. He sets out to kill Alex and his compatriots since Alex won't sell the amusement park to him. There's lots of fun, slap-stick bad guys vs. good guys action and an interesting little twist to end the situation.

Issue #7 was a stand alone issue that involved Alex helping out a man obsessed with underpants get back his most treasured pair from his arch-nemesis, a woman obsessed with bombs. I loved this entire issue because it was basically Simone poking fun at comic book collectors. At one point, obsessive underwear man freaks out because his prize pair of undies has been removed from it's protective mylar bag. This issue was gag and laugh filled!

It's been a really long time since I've read quality comedic superhero stories so Agent X is a riot. If you missed it when it hit the stands a couple of years back, make sure to check your back issue bins to see if you can find copies. You'll laugh and laugh and laugh each issue!

Art: 3.5
Story: 4.25
Overall: 4

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