After last issue’s intense conclusion, DEADPOOL #32 arrives this week with the aftermath of Deadpool’s actions. While the previous issue was nearly devoid of humor, this time we get some in addition to drama for the Merc. DEADPOOL #32 is still very much a SECRET EMPIRE tie-in, but it stands as a solid story and source of development for the title.

Playing With a Stacked Deck

Our story takes place well into SECRET EMPIRE, where we find Deadpool as a now somewhat reluctant member of HYDRA. Still coping with the murder of Coulson, Deadpool is dealing with the guilt that he helped bring about Rogers’ world domination. He’s been tasked with hunting down the remaining heroes and resistance, all in exchange for a “comfortable” life for his daughter, Ellie. However, the question now is how long can Deadpool go before accepting the consequences of actions?

Deadpool #32
Image from DEADPOOL #32, courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

DEADPOOL #32 isn’t as intense as the previous installment, as it uses its time to flesh out Deadpool’s conscious. We’re given panels where he’s haunted by his murdering of Coulson, showing the reader that he isn’t without remorse. But to the Merc, this kind of incident isn’t uncommon. He goes on with his life looking out for his daughter, trying to make the most of it. Deadpool is a character that tries to work with the cards that he’s been dealt in life, attempting to make ends meet and relish in happiness when possible. All of this is conveyed well through his inner monologue throughout the issue. The SECRET EMPIRE story is showing just how far that lifestyle takes him before guilt and consequence kick in.

READ: How far will Deadpool go for Captain America? Find out in our review of DEADPOOL #31!

DEADPOOL #32 Doesn’t Forget the Laughs

Writer Gerry Duggan once again succeeds with a balanced story of humor and seriousness. DEADPOOL #32 delves into the workings of the Merc’s conscious. But we are also given some key moments of hilarity that evens it out. The moments in the issue where Deadpool is taking his daughter to school are prime examples. Here there are witty quips between the two, all the while displaying Deadpool’s regret between the lines. The running gag of Deadpool making fun of HYDRA’s salute is entertaining, helping break the tension as he receives less than heroic orders from the organization. The icing on the cake, however, is the Merc’s fight with Speedball. The scene contains signature Deadpool moments of mutilation and quips, simultaneously showcasing his well-honed mercenary talents. Duggan’s ability to blend the tones in each scene is in top form here.

Deadpool #32
Image from DEADPOOL #32, courtesy of Marvel Entertainment

Deadpool’s Beauty Through Madness

Artist Matteo Lolli and colorist Ruth Redmond once again provide spectacular visuals for the issue. The backgrounds throughout the story give off a somewhat monotone feel, especially during the scenes when Deadpool is driving around Ellie. The clean, organized looks and colors of the backdrops give off a quiet feel. It blends well with the idea that the world is under HYDRA’s control, where everything seems less lively due to it. Of course, this isn’t the case when Deadpool fights Speedball. The two fighters colliding and exchanging blows feels very engaging, and Speedball himself looks awesome with his powers illustrated. The backdrop gives off a fitting twilight feel, as you get the idea of the sun setting as these vibrant combatants face-off. Each key moment of Duggan’s story combines seamlessly with Lolli and Redmond’s art, making for a beautiful issue.

READ: For more gore and action, check out our review of DEADPOOL VS. THE PUNISHER #4!

DEADPOOL #32 is a strong follow-up to the previous issue of intrigue and drama. The exploration into the mind and tendencies of Deadpool are engaging, all while giving us something to laugh at when needed. SECRET EMPIRE has given us a powerful tale of growth for the Merc. And, what’s better, is that growth doesn’t show any signs of letting up.

DEADPOOL #32 is another worty installment not only for SECRET EMPIRE, but for the Merc and his guilty conscious.
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