Wolverine (2nd series) #185

Issue Date: 
March 2003
Story Title: 
Sleeping with the fishes

Frank Tieri (writer), Sean Chen (penciler), Tom Palmer (inker), Avalon Studios’ Edgar Tadeo (colors), Rich and Jimmy at Comicraft (letters), Warren Simmons and John Miesegaes (assistant editors), Axel Alonso (editor), Joe Quesada (editor in chief), Bill Jemas (president)

Brief Description: 

Freddo is showing Logan a movie. The situation portrayed in the movie is similar to the one Logan is facing. Freddo has kidnapped his friend and his daughter. He threatens to have them both killed, unless Logan kills a grand jury witness from his trial. Logan tells Freddo he’s dead and walks away. Johnny and Freddo get into an altercation, because Johnny thinks Freddo is wrong to threaten a kid. The next day at the trial, the witness appears, much to Freddo’s dismay. He orders Tony to make the call to have the child killed, but Johnny impedes it. After the trial Freddo tells his driver to take him home. The driver is actually Logan who takes Freddo to a forest in the outskirts of town. Tony and Johnny are waiting for him there. Logan cuts off Freddo’s finger, takes the ring that makes him godfather of the mob and gives it to Johnny. Johnny tells him that his friend’s debt has been paid. Logan tells him he doesn’t know the guy; he simply overheard the story and decided to check it out. Johnny is taken aback, but then he and Tony take Freddo to grave they have dug up and kill him, by shooting him three times. Logan hears the shots as he drives off into the night.

Full Summary: 

A TV screen shows a scene of a cop yelling in a telephone, while a mother cries in her bed and shocked nurse looks at the newborn baby. Cut to a scene with a mobster talking on the phone. The mobboss is sitting in a chair behind him and is drinking champagne and smiling. As the scene cuts to a close up of the mobster on the phone, Freddo pauses the film with the remote.
He turns to Logan who is sitting in his office and says he love’s that scene. Since Logan doesn’t say anything, Freddo decides to explain the scene to him. Danny Aiello is a corrupt police chief whose kid got switched at birth by DeNiro and his mob. To get the kid back he has to play by their rules. He asks Logan if he finds the story familiar, since there is a kid involved as well. However the kid in the movie doesn’t run the risk of getting the Jon Benet Ramsey treatment. However they shouldn’t worry, for as long as they call the safe house every hour the kid will remain alive.

Freddo shows Logan today’s headline. The star witness in Freddo’s case will testify tomorrow. He tells Logan that it won’t happen. His men can’t get to her because there are too mane fed’s protecting her. He figures however that Logan won’t have any problems whatsoever with reaching her. He knows what Logan is thinking, does he or doesn’t he have the girl and the old man. Freddo takes out a gift box from his desk and tells Logan that inside is the proof that he is telling the truth. Logan turns and gives Johnny a dirty look. He opens the box and inside he finds one of the girl’s pigtails and a Polaroid of the girl and her father holding up a copy of the daily bugle. Johnny breathes a sigh of relief. Freddo asks if they were afraid that the present was something sick like a severed hand. Logan looks coldly at Freddo and utters: ”You’re dead”. Looking back at Johnny, he walks away.

Once the X-Man has left the room, Johnny wants to argue with Freddo that he is wrong. Logan has honored their deal and they are repaying him by killing the kid. Freddo doesn’t want to hear it, he already knows what Johnny has to say. Angered at Johnny’s insistence, Freddo pulls out a gun from his desk drawer and threatens him. Furious Johnny takes out his pistol and both men point at each other’s heads. Freddo dares Johnny to pull the trigger. He tells him he knows about the promise he made to his father on his deathbed and that he doesn’t have the stones to disobey him. Johnny’s hand quivers, but he eventually lowers it. Freddo tells him that he knows he is right and that if Logan doesn’t take care of his problem, it will be the end for Johnny. He orders Johnny to get out, because he makes him sick. Johnny walks out of the room and lowers his head in defeat in the hall.

The day of the trial Freddo is sitting confidently in the courtroom, his lawyers display a confident smile as well. The bailiff opens a door and the key witness appears. Freddo is shocked; he turns and looks angrily at Tony who is sitting in the audience behind him. Tony gets up, takes out his cell phone and walks out. As he is about to push the send button, Johnny grabs his arm and stops him.

Later Freddo walks out of the courthouse and tells the reporters that he won’t give any comments. He steps into his limo and suddenly slams his fist on the door and curses. He tells the driver to take him home. He can’t see the driver because the metallic shutters are closed. Freddo says to himself that at least the little girl and her father will get what’s coming to them. He suddenly notices that they are not going to his house; he asks the driver where they are going but gets no response. He lowers the shutters and demands to know where they are going. The driver turns around and reveals himself as Logan. Freddo pulls out a gun and points it frantically at Logan. Logan smiles coolly and tells him to not embarrass himself. Freddo tries to open the door, but can’t. Logan tells him it’s locked. Freddo tries to shoot the door. Logan informs him that the gun is empty and shows him the bullets. He tries to cut a deal with Logan, but he answers that they already tried that and it didn’t work. He has already made a deal with another “interested party”. And unlike him he honors his deals.

As night falls they arrive at a forest where Johnny and Tony are waiting. Logan pulls Freddo out of the limo. He pops one of his claws and grabs Freddo’s right pinky finger. Logan cuts the finger and removes the ring. The ring is worn by the boss of the family. Logan gives Johnny the ring and tells him to not make him come back for it. As he walks back towards the limo, Johnny tells him that his friends’ debt has been paid off. Logan looks puzzled for second and answers that he is not really his friend. He simply overheard the story in a bar and decided to check it out in order to kill some time. Johnny is taken aback that someone is willing to get into so much trouble just to help some stranger. As Wolverine drives away, he tells Tony, that Logan is the craziest bastard he’s ever met.

Tony tells Freddo to start walking. Freddo wants to know what happened to the girl since Logan wasn’t affected. Tony answers that he wasn’t going to kill her, he has killed a lot of people but never a kid. Thanks to Johnny he didn’t have to. Freddo looks at Johnny and pathetically tries to apologize for their earlier argument. Johnny says it’s too late; he went too far this time. Never involve civilians and especially kids. He tells that he can’t protect him anymore. Freddo asks what’s going to happen to him now, is he no longer boss? Does he have to leave the country? Johnny answers that if he could allow that he would do it, but Freddo has seen enough mob movies to know how these things end. They arrive at a small clearing in the forest, where a grave has been dug up. Johnny looks up the sky and asks Salvatore, Freddo’s father, to forgive him.

As he drives away Logan hears three gun shots and with a smile on his face he says: “Ya broke my heart, Freddo… Ya broke my heart.”

Characters Involved: 


Freddo Pazzo, the Godfather of the Pazzo Family

Johnny Delacavva, underboss of the Pazzo Family

Tony Ditello and other members of the Pazzo Family

Bailiff and other people in the courtroom

Freddo’s lawyers

News reporters

Story Notes: 

The movie Freddo is watching is “The Godfather II”. It won several Academy Awards, including best picture in 1975. Danny Aiello and Robert de Niro are both Hollywood actors, who have stared in a number of films. De Niro has been nominated on several occasions and won for his portrayal of a boxer in Martin Scorsese’s “Raging Bull” in 1981. De Niro also won for best supporting actor in 1975, for his role in “The Godfather II”

The last name Pazzo is the Italian word for “crazy“.

Johnny had made a promise to Salvatore Pazzo, the former godfather, to protect Freddo in Wolverine (2nd series) #182.

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