By Ben Morse
In 2011, terror overtakes the Marvel Universe as Fear Itself envelops its heroes and villains.
To delve deeper into what lies at the root of this climactic event, each week in Fear Files we will speak with Marvel’s biggest creators about exactly what frightens the premiere heroes and villains whose lives they guide.
What is Deadpool most afraid of?
Daniel Way: This is something I’ve explored quite a bit in the book, actually, and it’s a theme that will lead directly into a big Deadpool event that’s currently being planned. That being said, I’d rather not get into specifics about Deadpool’s greatest fear but I will say what he thinks his biggest fear is: to end up alone, with no one paying attention to him, chattering away like a maniac in a state of complete delusion. Deadpool is a walking, talking, bullet-spraying reaction; without action, he doesn’t exist. He fades out. And that, possibly, could be the thing he truly fears most.
Deadpool has generally been thought of as a character who simply acts rather than putting much thought into why he does things, but to what degree do you think his perception of this great fear you just outlined motivates his behavior?
Daniel Way: It’s the prime factor in his motivation, the main reason why everything he does is so excessive, so overblown. One grenade would do the job, sure—but nine grenades and maybe one of those rubber ducks that you played with in the bath as a kid? That’s the kinda thing that brings a crowd to its feet.
But again, what we’re talking about here are Deadpool’s perceived fears, not his true fears, one of which masks the other. And Deadpool…well, Deadpool’s not willing to even scratch the surface because acknowledging that the jaw-dropping extremes he’s willing to put himself through just to put on a show are simply an over-compensation would imply that he’s somehow lacking in some respect—that he’s incomplete. Which he is. Again, Deadpool is a reaction; a free radical, desperate to attach itself to something else so that it can become something else.
How does Deadpool’s need for attention both hurt and help him?
Daniel Way: I see—and characterize—Deadpool as a force of nature and, in my book, the world both reacts to him and compensates for him as such. By that, I mean all of these incredible, impossible things that he’s created have been balanced by an equal measure of destruction. For the most part, this destruction rains down on others because Deadpool’s actions have already caused him to lose everything he has, including his own life. He has nothing, and is in constant peril of becoming nothing. To fight back, he creates and, therefore, destroys.
However, there is one way in which his need for attention has actually helped him, and that’s by giving him a focal point, without which he’d probably devolve into an amorphous cloud of nihilistic carnage. Twisted and tragic though it may be, the fact of the matter is that this psychosis—Deadpool’s “insanity”—is the only thing that keeps him grounded.
Describe Deadpool’s nightmare scenario…
Daniel Way: He's Ted in "I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream".
Will Wade Wilson’s true terrors be revealed soon? Keep following DEADPOOL as well as FEAR ITSELF: DEADPOOL for the answers!
For more information on Fear Itself, visit the official event page.