Deadpool (2nd series) #69

Issue Date: 
September 2002
Story Title: 
Healing Factor - chapter 4: Finale

Gail Simone (writer), Udon - Erik Ko, Rhys Yorke, Arnold Tsand, Andrew Hou, Eric Vedder, Omar Dogan, TheRealT! (art team), Dave Sharpe (letters), Lynne Yoshii and Mike Raicht (assistant editors), Andrew Lis and Mike Marts (editors), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Bill Jemas (president)

Brief Description: 

Sandi has been beaten up by her abusive boyfriend Jerry, and Deadpool, Ratbag and the Taskmaster visit her in hospital to lighten her up. Deadpool has only two more days before his mind entirely breaks down because of the Black Swan's virus, but he says this is more than enough time to make sure that Sandi will never be harmed again. Sandi doesn't want to have a death on her conscience and makes Wade promise to not kill Jerry, so he only beats him up and tells him to leave and never come back. Still, the Taskmaster is not bound by such a promise and finishes the job Wade started. Deadpool says goodbye to his friends and allies before he and Ratbag return to Germany. He fights his way into the Black Swan's castle, and it turns out that not he but the Black Swan killed the Four Winds, right as Deadpool fell through the ceiling. Everyone believed him responsible and the Black Swab saw his reputation as merc destroyed, that's why he infected him with the virus. He now wants to finish Deadpool, but he brought an insurance with him - a suitcase filled with explosives attached to a timer counting 6 minutes down. The Swan fears for his castle, and asks want Deadpool wants. First he asks the Swan to set Ratbag's mind right and it works. He finally remembers his name is Erik and can again think straight. Deadpool tells Ratbag to leave the building as he fights it out with the Swan. Deadpool loses one arm in the fight, but eventually gets the upper hand as the Swan tries to use his telepathy on him. Wade uses the mindlink to give the Swan a rundown of his entire life, and the overwhelmed the Swan no longer puts up a fight. Deadpool wants to stop the detonation sequence, but he needs the code that he has written on his hand to not forget it. However it's the hand of his cut off arm, and before Deadpool gets to it, the castle explodes.

Full Summary: 

Deadpool, Ratbag and the Taskmaster are gathered around Sandi, who is lying in a hospital bed. Her left arm is broken, she has several bruises in her face and has to wear a neck brace. Deadpool thinks to himself that this is what happens to people all the time. They get hurt, they deal with it and then they get better. He however, has long forgotten how it feels to feel better, and he also has no idea how to make Sandi feel better. He could hug her and tell her things will be ok, but he thinks that nobody wants somebody like Deadpool doing this to them. Deadpool knows that he is only good at one thing - being a dangerous guy - and lately he can't even do that right thanks to the Black Swan's virus. From what the Taskmaster told him, he has only two more days before his brain is completely deleted - however he thinks that's more than enough time to ensure that this will never happen to Sandi again.

The Taskmaster says that Sandi's boyfriend did this to her and Wade wants to know if the cops have arrested him yet. The Taskmaster is not sure, but at least the doctors told him that Sandi will completely recover. Sandi tells both of them to not talk about her as she was not present, and Deadpool tries to light her up with a joke, saying that she is only doing it for the attention. A few jokes later, Wade gets all serious, asking Sandi if her mother did not tell her to hang around the nice guys. Sandi agrees, though she first would have to find one.

Deadpool apologizes that he has to leave - he has only two more days to track the Black Swan down and try to force him to restore his brain. Sandi tells him she understands, and the Taskmaster offers to stay with her. Deadpool says that he will pay Sandi's boyfriend a visit, though he has to promise Sandi that he won't kill him as she doesn't want to have a death on her conscience. However, she does want Wade to make sure that Jerry will leave the city and never come back.

Deadpool leaves, followed by Ratbag and, on the way out, they pass a man of the cleaning staff. Deadpool gives the man some money and tells him that Sandi will get everything she wants. Ratbag mutters, "Hot soup!!! I spilled it in my lap!" "Caution!" and "Bad Guy!" As usual, Deadpool fails to notice the truth of his message. After they are out of sight, the man takes off his baseball cap. It's Nijo, and he reports to the Black Swan through his communication unit, designed to looked like a mere walkman. Nijo tells the Swan that thanks to Sandi and the Taskmaster, Deadpool now knows who his attacker is. The Swan orders him to kill Sandi, but Nijo refuses - he won't go so far as killing an injured helpless woman, asleep in a hospital bed. The Swan reminds Nijo that she works for Deadpool, the guy who killed the Four Winds, of which one was Nijo's brother. Yet Nijo seems to be a man of honor, as he states that Deadpool will pay for this, but only Deadpool and nobody else. After saying that the Swan will need to find someone else to do his dirty work, Nijo throws the walkman away.

(two hours later)

A man in military pants is hurrying to pack his belonging in a large bag. He secretly leaves his flat through the window, but before he can climb down the fire escape, he gets pulled up to the roof. There, he is greeted by Deadpool. The man is Jerry, Sandi's ex. He pulls a gun from his back, and says that he was about to leave anyway, so there is no need to fight. Deadpool calmly says that sooner or later, everybody pays. Jerry repeats that he wants to leave the city peacefully, but Deadpool angrily starts to beat him up. Many blows later, Jerry is in almost as bad condition as Sandi. Deadpool tells him that the only reason he allows him to live is because he promised it to Sandi. After he left, Jerry slowly gets to his feet and silently curses at Sandi. Suddenly, he becomes aware that he is not alone. The Taskmaster stands in front of him and he tells Jerry that he didn't make such a promise to Sandi ...

At the offices of Deadpool Inc, Wade tells Ratbag to shave, as they'll depart to Germany right after he finishes some phone calls he has to make. First, he speaks with Siryn who tells him that she doesn't want to know what he is going to do, just to be careful. He then talks to Weasel and asks him to prepare something special. Done with the serious conversations, Wade makes a few prank calls to Wolverine, Captain America and Blind Al. Logan replies to Wade's question with "Well, when I have to go, I make sure they're fully retracted". Cap is angry about Deadpool's poor taste, as he asked him if he had Bucky in a can. Apparently Deadpool demands something obscene from Al, which she refuses to do. Finally, Deadpool calls a military general, whose boss owes him a favor. Wade demands a transport to Germany, and the general agrees to arrange it, though afterwards he will pretend to never have been in contact with Deadpool. Wade says that this will be no problem as he won't survive that long.

One flight later, Deadpool and Ratbag parachute off a plane. Usually, Wade thinks parachutes are for wussies, but he brought some precious items with him and he doesn't want them damaged. They land in a forest near the Black Swan's castle. Standing at one of the windows, Nijo witnessed their landing and tells the Swan that Deadpool has arrived. Slightly bored, the Swan has to admit that he has spent too much time on Deadpool for the little amount of pleasure it has given him. He orders his security staff to find the intruder and bring him before him. Also, he asks his guard to put in a CD, the Valkyries. Then he decides differently and wants to listen to the Twilight. Nijo is fed up with the Swan constantly listening to Wagner's classic music, and promises to buy him a Radiohead CD when this is over.

Outside, a buggy with three guards is chasing Ratbag and Deadpool. Wade runs away, followed by the car, but suddenly he remembers that he is completely mental which gives him a refreshingly new set of options. Deadpool leaps into the air and performs a somersault backwards, landing on top of the buggy. Making his usual jokes, Deadpool effectively deals with the three guards and takes control of the car.

Nijo and the Black Swan hear a crashing sound from downstairs. In the huge entrance hall, they find the remains of the buggy. Nijo states the obvious - Deadpool is in the castle. He then points the way, and the Black Swan asks how he can know in which direction Wilson went. However, he then sees it himself. A giant portrait of the Black Swan has been modified with some red paint. He now displays a mustache and horns. Suddenly, the two hear loud music, apparently Deadpool has changed the found the stereo and changed the CD. Just as Nijo comments on the country song that was playing, Wade again changes the CD and now they are forced to listen to Joan Osborne's "One of Us". While the Black Swan is majorly annoyed, Nijo comments that the move to alternate folk rock was really evil; it's almost torture. Finally, the two make their way to some sort of living room where Deadpool is already waiting for them. Ratbag, still carrying the spray can of red paint, has "decorated" this room as well. The walls display Deadpool insignia, Ratbag's name and other graffiti.

The Black Swan is shocked to see his home so brutally destroyed, and Deadpool uses this moment to sum up what he so far has figure out: The Swan was angry about Deadpool killing the Four Winds, which was supposed to be the Swan's hit. Therefore, he took revenge and put a virus into his brain that slowly eats away every single memory until he is a basket case. Nijo is outraged. He wants to deal with his brother's killer, though Black Swan intervenes. Calling Nijo an idiot and ramming a blade through his chest, he reveals that it was he who shot the Four Winds. Wilson was falling from the ceiling, glass flying everywhere. He could not have shot them, but everyone in the place believed it, which ruined the Swan's perfect career in the merc business. Though somewhat surprised that Deadpool has been surviving the effects of his brain virus for that long, he now wants it to end once and for all.

Deadpool tells him to wait, and he shows him a suitcase. A large timer displays 6:47 minutes. Deadpool explains that the bag is packed with explosives and the Swan's castle will be destroyed in the detonation. The Swan points out that Wade too would die, but Deadpool corrects him that he might die, ... or he might not. As the times is already down to 6:09 minutes, the Swan asks what Deadpool wants. Pointing towards Ratbag, he tells the Swan to fix him with his mental powers. He says that he usually doesn't use his powers in that way, but he will try. The Swan cleans the blade which he killed Nijo with, and then places both hands on Ratbag's head, who is scared and screams in agony. Deadpool holds the blade to the Swan's throat and orders him to stop, as the operation is apparently not working. Yet suddenly Ratbag's brain is ok, and he asks what is going on. While the Swan nearly passes out from the strain, Deadpool tells Ratbag to get the hell out of here and run as fast as he can.

The timer already down to 4:08, Deadpool asks if he could be cured as well, but the Swan replies negatively. While Ratbag's mind was only mis-wired, the data in Wade's head has been permanently erased. The Swan asks for the code to stop the detonation, but Deadpool refuses, so the Swan announces that he will pull it from Wade's head. They start a swordfight and the Black Swan once more asks for the code. Otherwise, he promises to go after Deadpool's friends and ensure that their future is very unfortunate, that is, if he survives the explosion. Wade intends to keep the Swan in the castle, so that they both will die. During the fight, Deadpool feels the Swan trying to enter his mind. As he finds the Swan to be a great swordsman, Deadpool tries to defeat him with a kick to the head.

Overconfident, Wade approaches his fallen opponent, who then rams a sword into his left leg. Now Wade goes down, and the Swan angrily rams his sword into him time and again, demanding the code. Wade laughs as the Swan evidently is panicking now. Even his powers go haywire and, through their mindlink, he can even access the Swan's memories. With the timer having passed the two minute mark, Deadpool gets up and pulls a harmonica to play a tune. He has to do it one-handed, as the Swan cut off his left arm. Deadpool tells that Swan that as he wants to get into his head so badly, he will give it to him. Wade's entire life flashes before the Swan's eyes, who holds his head with both hands as if trying to stop it from breaking apart.

In New York, Sandi is feeling better and has been released from hospital. Still wearing the neck brace and her broken arm in plaster, she is now at the office of Deadpool Inc. The phone rings and Sandi picks it up. It's Ratbag, whose real name is Erik. He is feeling okay for the first time in a very long time. Looking back to the castle that is about to explode within the next few seconds, he informs Sandi that Deadpool won't make it back. She understands and wishes Erik all the best. As she sees a box left for her by Wade, she realizes that Deadpool must have known that he would not return. Sandi opens the box and finds a Paddle Ball. Sandi's reaction is "Heh. Idiot", she then starts to play a few balls with her good arm.

The time is down to 0:34. The black Swan, overwhelmed by the images he saw, no longer puts up a fight. Deadpool tells him that he hates guys like him, as long as they are on top, they put on a good show. However, because of his telepathy working both ways, Deadpool knows that the Swan is afraid now. 0:19 - Deadpool punches the Swan in the face and he flies backwards, his head crashing in to the lit fireplace. Deadpool states that it was "this ignoble, ill-mannered, brain-sick commoner" who got the best of him. 0:07 - Having finished his enemy, Deadpool wants to stop the detonation. He remembers that he wrote the code on his hand - the hand of the arm that was cut off! 0:03 - Deadpool spots his arm and the suitcase carrying the explosives at the other side of the room. 0:01 - Deadpool leaps towards his arm, but it's too late. The castle explodes. Deadpool's last thought is: "Ha! Now that's funny!"

Characters Involved: 


Ratbag / Erik





Blind Al

Wolverine (X-Men)

Captain America (America)

Jerry, Sandi's abusive boyfriend


Black Swan

Story Notes: 

The assassination of the Four Winds happened in Deadpool (2nd series) #65.

Deadpool's prank call to Captain America is a variation of one of the oldest prank calls in the world. The basic idea is to call a tobacco store and ask if they have Prince Albert in a can (a brand of pipe tobacco). Upon hearing that they do, the prankster would then reply, "Well, you'd better let him out then."

The images seen on the collage page of Deapool's life include Deapool rescuing Weasel, Kid Deadpool, Deadpool's personified personality traits, Deadpool as Thor and his ugly head disfigured by the cancer scars. They are pulled from Deadpool (2nd series) #1, Deadpool (2nd series) #11, 37, 51 and 64 (= Deadpool: Funeral for a Freak #4)

The issue contains a humor page that redoes some scenes of the issue in the style of TV show outtakes. For example Deadpool has problems with his text and the other "actors" laughs, or in another sequence a stunt fails.

Issue Information: 
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