Cable & Deadpool #46

Issue Date: 
December 2007
Story Title: 
Eight to Save the Universe

Fabian Nicieza (Writer), Reilly Brown (Penciler), Skottie Young (Cover Artist), Jeremy Freeman (Inker) Gotham Entertainment Group (Colorist), Dave Sharpe (Letterer), Nicole Boose (Editor), Joe Quesada (Editor in Chief), Dan Buckley (Publisher)

Brief Description: 

A time displaced Deadpool and Bob find themselves battling the past versions of the Fantastic Four in the Baxter Building. Once Deadpool is knocked unconscious, it is quickly determined by Reed Richards that, although the pair came from the past on Dr. Doom's time platform, they belong in the future. In the present day, Weasel is being grilled by Black Panther and Storm of the current Fantastic Four as to why Deadpool and Bob didn't show up on their time platform. He explains that they appeared in the Baxter Building of the past, before giving them a device to help drain the chronal energies from the pair. Weasel sends the present day Fantastic Four to the past at the same time the past Fantastic Four attempt to send Deadpool and Bob to the present. The discrepancy causes Deadpool and Bob to spiral uncontrollably through time, causing prism-like alternate timelines with themselves as focal points. Both past and present day Fantastic Four teams manage to find the pair and the eight members manage to stabilize the chronal energies in order to snap them back to the present. The backlash erases the events from the past Fantastic Four's memories and Deadpool, Bob and Weasel go home to Agency X to find a waiting Dr. Strange.

Full Summary: 

Deadpool back-flips around the angry and surprised attacks of the Fantastic Four. Mr. Fantastic stretches out to punch Deadpool and Human Torch hurls fireballs towards him. The Thing, fist raised to punch, demands for Wade to stop bouncing around like a blasted monkey. Wade asks if Thing has looked in a mirror lately.

In the background, Bob Agent of HYDRA cowers and thinks about how they arrived here in the Baxter Building in New York City! Inside the incredible science labs of the infamous Reed Richards! He watches as his buddy Deadpool avoids capture by the Fantastic Four! Mr. Fantastic! The Invisible Girl! The Human Torch! The Thing! Exclamation points everywhere! They have jumped forward in time a few decades and he doesn't know how they were drawn to this location. That the two of them popped up on Dr. Doom's old time platform has not done much for their credibility.

Reed Richards demands to know how Wade accessed the time platform, to which Wade replies he swears he doesn't know. Deadpool uses a bo-staff to vault off of one of Sue Storm's invisible force fields and starts a flying kick towards Reed. Mid-leap, Wade tries to confirm that it is indeed a force field and not her ample matronly bosom or vivacious hips. The Thing asks “the Matchstick” if Wade was talking about Suzie's bosom. Torch stutters out that of course Wade couldn't have – does his sister even have a bosom?

Wade's high kick slams into an elongated Reed, who winces in pain. Deadpool apologizes and explains that he rambles when he gets nervous and he cannot control his exclamation points! Wade bounces off of Reed and hits Torch with his staff, apologizing again. His attack comes to an abrupt halt as his jump carries him right into an angry Thing. It's Clobberin' Time! This is going to hurt resigns Deadpool. POW!

Bob sits in a corner with his hands over his eyes. HYDRA rule of concealment #114: If you can't see them, they can't see you. Reed tells him that his friend is unconscious, so could Bob please come out now? We can see you assures Johnny. Bob rationalizes that Invisible Girl must be refracting the light somehow. Johnny notes that Bob is wearing a HYDRA uniform and Reed starts worrying about the implications of HYDRA figuring out how to use Doom's time platform. Bob panics and stutters out that is not the case. Using a hand-held analyzer, Reed notes that Bob is suffused with chronal particles... but there are conflicting temporal signatures. Bob assures Reed that he has no idea what he is talking about. Reed simplifies it by explaining that he came from the past but he is actually from the future.

A short while later, Deadpool, Bob and the Fantastic Four sit around the breakfast table. They are congenially eating French toast while a still unconscious Deadpool is slumped over in his seat. Reed confirms that the two of them are somehow leaking chronal particles, which is serving to draw them closer to their present day, which is Reed's future. Yup, says Bob. Johnny wants to make sure that Bob is not technically a HYDRA agent. Bob explains that he technically is a member of HYDRA but not right now and he only did it for the dental plan. As Sue pours tea for Thing, Ben comments that he thought only AIM had a dental plan. Reed apologizes to Bob, but claims he doesn't think his theory can stand up to scientific scrutiny. Suddenly, a bright light flashes out from Bob's body to the surprise of all else present.

The Fantastic Four jump up, ready to attack the HYDRA agent that from their perspective has just appeared at their table. This is getting old sighs Bob, as Reed wraps his arms around him, Johnny prepares to throw a fireball and Thing brings down a chair towards his head. Deadpool wakes up at that exact moment, declaring that Britney's thong is EVERYWHERE – stretching – choking the life out of me! The Fantastic Four just look at him, as Wade reasons that he must have had a Mr. Fantastic influenced nightmare, followed by his delight at the French toast in front of him. Have they figured out how they got here yet? he inquires.

Back in the present day Baxter Building, the current Fantastic Four of Black Panther, Storm, Thing and Human Torch monitor the progress of Deadpool's friend, Weasel. Black Panther asks Weasel if he has been able to calculate where Deadpool and Bob went. When Weasel denies such knowledge, T’Challa sternly pushes him to explain himself. Weasel says that the pair teleported to Dr. Doom's time platform spatially but not exactly chronologically.  Johnny, having just finished flirting with Weasel's female associates, Outlaw and Sandi, simplifies by saying they're HERE but not NOW. Weasel annoyingly claims that is what he just said.

A frustrated Thing demands of the “little Weasel” to tell him WHEN they are here. About eight years in the past, answers Weasel. He follows it up with a question for the Thing and Torch, asking if they remembered a zany adventure involving a red-and-black-clad, mouth-running-a-mile-a-minute mercenary and his cowardly HYDRA sidekick. When the two look at each other and shrug with a solid “No,” Weasel wonders why not.

Black Panther lunges towards Weasel and angrily questions what kind of games Weasel is trying to play. A panicked Weasel swears he has told nothing but the truth and that chronal physics isn't an exact science. Well actually it is an exact science but it's a really, really exacting exact science. Did he mention it was also his worst subject at Cal-Polytech? Storm stands behind Weasel and calmly tells him to compose himself, that her husband is merely gauging his intent. By scaring the pee-pee out of me, questions Weasel. T’Challa's flashing eyes appear over his shoulder, claiming that it works. A startled Weasel timidly asks if that means Mr. Panther believes him, to which T’Challa replies that Weasel is still alive isn't he? Seeking solace in Storm, Weasel asks if he's doing it again and Storm confirms that he is quite good at it.

Black Panther asks Weasel if he can narrow the egress points for their chronal signatures to minimize the search parameters? A confused Weasel wonders if T’Challa means to go back in time to find them. It is the kind of thing the Fantastic Four tends to do, assures T’Challa. Standing on the time platform, the quartet begin the teleportation while Weasel tosses them a device that will help them track Deadpool and Bob and then siphon their excess chronal energy. It is a locator targeted to four possible egress points based on diminishing strength of the chronal signature… Give it a rest Reed Jr. interrupts Johnny. Just hit whatever button sends the DeLorean back in time!

Back in the past, Deadpool and Bob are standing on Doom's time platform as well, as the past Fantastic Four prepares the platform for operation. Wade asks if they can send him forward in time to when he was mowing his lawn and his next-door neighbor, Mrs. Nowicki, asked if he could rub lotion on her back and he ran and locked himself in the bathroom? He would really like a do-over on that one, please. Reed explains that that would actually be Wade's past, not his future. Confused, Wade remarks that it looks like Kirby/Sinnot... so like 1967 right? Reed has no idea what he is talking about and Wade says to forget it.

Bob wants to know if he can use the bathroom before they leave, but Reed assures them that it should only take a nanosecond to get back to their time. Bob thinks he can hold it for at least a nanosecond. The time platform begins to teleport them and a tickled Wade comments that it is so much easier to team up with people in the past where no one knows anything about him.

Deadpool and Bob fall through a myriad of images from throughout the 1970s and 1980s. Bob thinks about how a nanosecond can seem like forever and that it is weird how he can sort of see time as they travel through it. It feels like a Billy Joel song, except that they kind of did start the fire. Among the images are Richard Nixon, peace signs raised as he leaves office, Jimmi Hendrix on his guitar, the Vietnam War, the Berlin wall and the tearing down of a statue of Joseph Stalin. Perhaps Bob has been spending too much time with Mr. Wilson. Things were much safer when he was an ordinary agent of HYDRA albeit much more boring too.

Suddenly, the two notice a change that they remark feels similar to a road bump, or more accurately like a head-on multi-car, tractor-trailer collision. The pair begin cascading duplicates of themselves in a spiral pattern as images of alternate versions of themselves appear in the background. Bob sees himself during the good times, flipping burgers on the grill while his angry wife and crying children stand behind him. Alternatively, he sees himself as Supreme Commander of HYDRA and an image of himself punching out Nick Fury. Wade sees himself as a successfully duplicated version of Weapon X complete with adamantium claws and a version of himself as one of the original X-Men.

Jane, stop this crazy thing, yells Deadpool. What's happening, he follows up. Bob yells back that he really has to go to the bathroom and states that they are going to die. Images of Deadpool as a Horseman of Apocalypse, a member of X-Force and a member of the Avengers flash by, as Wade asks Bob if he saw the cool one where he had claws. Gyaaaah, replies Bob as images of himself as leader of a world ruled by HYDRA and himself as Dr. Doom fighting an Iron Man version of Deadpool pop up.

I see them! Out of nowhere, the hand of Reed Richards reaches down towards the out of control pair. The Fantastic Four of the past are driving their Fantasti-car and have come to rescue them. Johnny notes that the farther they fall, the more they seem to be breaking up time. Reed explains that it is like a prism-effect. They are creating bifurcated timelines with themselves as the fulcrum for the divergence stream. Thing exasperatedly wishes that just once he would like Reed to just say, “Yeah.” An amused Sue tells Ben to hush and for Reed to continue. Reed manages to detect the sarcasm and Johnny pokes fun at the genius again as he flies down to a relieved Wade and Bob. They believe they are saved.

Maybe not, they correct themselves as a giant lightning bolt strikes the Fantasti-car. Where did that come from… The present day Fantastic Four appear and Black Panther apologizes that they have to take over now. Past Thing asks present day Thing what is up with his ugly mug, to which he retorts that he forgot his Botox. The reference goes right over the other Thing's head. Reed quickly catches on that T’Challa is from Deadpool's timeline and they have come to retrieve the two. Reed continues by asking if the presence of T’Challa, Ben, Johnny, and the other woman... T’Challa interjects that she is Storm, his wife and a future X-Man... Does their presence mean Sue and I... Are on vacation, T’Challa informs a relieved Reed.

Present day Johnny explains that the four of them kind of bumped into Deadpool and Bob during their trip back – causing the pair to tumble through the timestream. Storm picks up where he left off, saying that if Reed had touched Deadpool while he was in the spiral they all would have been lost in the bifurcated timelines. T’Challa holds up Weasel's device, which Reed interprets as being one that can siphon off the excess chronal particles suffusing their bodies, thereby creating a rubber band effect that could snap them back to their proper time. I was going to say “bring them with us,” an interrupted Black Panther concludes.

What is the range, asks Reed. T’Challa says that is a moot point to someone who can stretch within meters of them. Reed asks Sue to create a force field around him to protect him from the time vortex. Both Johnnies need to create a thermal updraft to stabilize the Fantasti-car. The Bens need to anchor Reed to the car as best as they can.

Bob thinks it is weird that, while they are so far away, he can see them like they are right next to him. They work so smoothly together enacting their plan as Mr. Fantastic stretches down with the device. As both of them cry out for him to save them, Bob realizes how pathetic they sound. Be prepared for a painful jolt warns Reed. Like when I got a cease and desist from Scott Baio's lawyers asks Wade. As the device radiates out rings of blue energy, Reed shouts out to Susan that as always before they enter the great unknown, he loves her.

Back in the present day, Wade stupidly looks down the barrel of his revolver as he casually comments that they forgot everything. T’Challa confirms that indeed the past Fantastic Four got caught in the backwash of the pairs siphoned chronal energy. Weasel expands that it realigned their chronal signature, snapping them back to their own time – and thankfully with no memory of Deadpool and Bob. Well Deadpool certainly has a memory of it and he thinks that what the Fantastic Eight did was pretty cool in his book. He extends his hand to Black Panther, who asks if he really has to shake it. It would really help validate Wade emotionally he pleads.

Behind the annoyed-looking Black Panther, shaking Deadpool's hand, a smiling Johnny has the laughing Outlaw and Sandi in his arms. The Thing barks out that Wade has ten seconds to get his mercenary butt out of here and to take the HYDRA agent and Weasel with him. His Aunt Petunia knows how many warrants each of them have outstanding. Sandi and Outlaw can stay if they want... heard they're up fer a good game of poker. Outlaw snarks that he will be up if it's a good game...

Deadpool, Bob and Weasel walk shamefully down the street. Weasel can't believe the girls stayed but Bob and Wade understand that it is too cool a chance to pass up hanging out with the Fantastic Four. Did you see how they work together, asks Wade. That is more than teamwork, that's family. My family is all in jail, remarks Weasel. Bob is bemused that he can never hail a cab in this city. Wade reassures Weasel and asks if he would prefer to be called Penetrator. Weasel says he would love to be called “Penetraitor” but the armor he is carrying is totally shot.

Wade goes back to saying that his family is all messed up too – mostly his fault, but what he is saying is that maybe they all have a new family. Cable must have saved Wade for a reason and not because he is so cuddly. He must have to do something right – to do some good in the world. Agency X can charge for different jobs, but the money can float them so they can be heroes. An unconvinced Weasel says that it sounds like a lot of hard work.

Bob, on the other hand, thinks that Wade is starting to get it. Letting Bob live, helping his friend Cable, rescuing Weasel and seeing Captain America and the Fantastic Four in action has all begun to make Wade realize that there is more to what he does. To who Wade is. Before the agent of HYDRA starts to get all preachy, the truth is that most agents of HYDRA don't want to rule the world, but they do it because they have nowhere else to go. Just like Mr. Wilson. So after hitting the rock-bottom, you either stay in the hole or start to climb your way out – and keep climbing all the way to the top.

As they enter Agency X, Agent X is interviewing a client behind closed doors, asking him how his agency can assist him. The trio opens the door announcing their triumphant return and readiness to get back to work. The obese Agent X, sipping a giant soda, enthusiastically greets him, saying that this current client specifically asked for Wade. All three have a surprised look on their faces as Deadpool declares “By the Onion Rings of Rangoon!”

A levitating Dr. Strange, with an annoyed look on his face, greets Deadpool, inquiring if Wade would like to help him stop the utter destruction of their planet. Okay, Wade quickly agrees. An especially wise decision... considering that YOU created the threat, Strange ominously concludes.

Characters Involved: 

Deadpool, Bob - Agent of HYDRA

Mr. Fantastic, Invisible Girl, Human Torch, Thing (Fantastic Four Past Versions)
Black Panther, Storm, Thing, Human Torch (all Fantastic Four)

Weasel, Agent X, Outlaw, Sandi (all Agency X)
Dr. Strange

Story Notes: 

Weasel's chronal particle powered Penetraitor armor malfunctioned in issue #44 and sent Deadpool and Bob to the past. Their first stop was World War II, where they teamed up with Captain America and Bucky until Weasel partially managed to pull them forward.

As demonstrated in issue #45, the chronal particles suffusing Deadpool and Bob occasionally leak out in bursts of bright light, erasing the memories of those around them. Presumably the rest of these particles were drained by Mr. Fantastic erasing the past Fantastic Four's memory of these events thus preserving the timeline.

Deadpool’s reference to exclamation make fun of the extensive use of this punctuation in dialogue of comics in the 1960s and earlier. Due to the severe limitations of print capabilities, periods were avoided in punctuating sentences as they were difficult to see by the reader. As a result, for all dialogue that did not end in a question mark, exclamation points were used in place of periods, no matter how mundane the statement made by the character speaking.

Deadpool is most likely referencing often provocatively dressed Britney Spears in his nightmare.

The DeLorean is a reference to the time machine in Back to the Future.

The time period of the Fantastic Four that Wade travels too is the Stan Lee written, Jack Kirby penciled, and Joe Sinnot inked era of the late 1960s. This is why Deadpool remarks the look is akin to Kirby/Sinnot. However, due to Marvel's sliding timescale, this period no longer took place in the 1960s. Instead it is roughly 8 years from the present day, which at the time this issue was written was 2007. Thus Mr. Fantastic's confusion since it was presumably 1999 and not 1967.

The lyrics of Billy Joel's 1989 pop song “We Didn't Start the Fire” quickly alluded to many big news stories between the years 1949 and 1989.

Botox or Botulism toxin did not start being widely used for the cosmetic effect of reducing wrinkles until the early 2000s.

Scott Baio is an actor best known for his roles as Chachi from “Happy Days” and Charles in “Charles in Charge.”

“Jane, stop this crazy thing” is a line spoken by George Jetson in the opening credits of the cartoon, “the Jetsons.”

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