Deadpool shocked audiences when it was released earlier this year. Sure, we knew the character had raunchy and crude tendencies and that this would be the first modern superhero movie to receive an “R” rating. We just didn’t know it would be so damn funny. The ribald superhero romp was eminently quotable and has spawned lists counting down the 30 funniest lines from the movie. Pick any other superhero movie and you’d have to dig for five funny lines while Deadpool reveled in its own humor.
Deadpool has always been a vulgar character, and no other hero holds a candle to his hijinks. He’ll probably stand tall as, by far, the funniest cinematic superhero we’ll find in this current era of overblown comic book adaptations. But this begs the question of whether any other superheroes could be on this same level if they were allowed to lighten up and play within the comedy-friendly boundaries of an “R” rating? It’s a tough questions but we have a few ideas of some heroes that might be worth considering.
Okay, fine, Robert Downey, Jr.’s portrayal of Tony Stark/Iron Man is pretty funny. The trouble is that he’s pretty much the only actor that brings such a level of charm to his role, which makes Marvel lean on him for comic relief. This leads to his lines becoming campy and predictable. What was once natural wit and carefree charm is starting to feel staged and unnatural the further we get into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. At least we’ll always have him getting drunk and playing around with an Iron Man suit.
It’s not hard to imagine a full-blown Tony Stark letting go of himself go more with an “R” rating. He could curse more, make cruder jokes, do a few morally questionable things, and generally be a more of an jerk with none of it looking particularly out of character. He’s a safe pick as perhaps the only superhero character who could match Deadpool, hypothetically, in comedic value.
We can probably agree that Tobey Maguire’s Peter Parker was a dweeb. But Andrew Garfield’s was overflowing with sarcasm and wit. Unfortunately, The Amazing Spider-Man didn’t leave too much of an impression, with its sequel more or less disappointing everyone and the series being discontinued. The film’s biggest dent was probably in the gaming market, where it led not only to a console game and a mobile adaptation, but to a licensed online slot reel as well. Called a remarkable and exciting adaptation of the comic, it didn’t fully resemble the film, but it’s still a fun adaptation of the character that brings the wisecracking web-slinger to a slot reel that’s a blast whether you’re a fan of the comics or not.
However, the actual movie, and Garfield’s performance, seems to have been forgotten. He wasn’t exactly a gold mine of jokes and comedic moments, but he was more crass and amusing than your average superhero, and it would have been nice to see the studios explore that a bit more. There’s some hope for a sassy Peter Parker moving forward with the Tom Holland portrayal, but it seems unlikely given that they’re playing up his youth this time around.
This one is a long shot. There’s almost nothing to suggest that Iron Fist is going to be a funny character when he debuts in his upcoming Netflix series. He’s not particularly funny in comics, and Finn Jones, who will be playing the part, is best known as the decidedly not-hilarious Ser Loras Tyrell from Game Of Thrones. So we’re putting this one into the “hopeful” category, because as good as the Marvel/Netflix shows have been, they’re utterly lacking in comedic touch. Iron Fist is the last main character who will be introduced to the “Defenders” (alongside Daredevil, Luke Cage, and Jessica Jones), and it would be a blast if he were framed as the goofball of the group.