Why Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool movie absolutely has to be rated R

Ryan Reynolds

We greet you with a plate of chimichanga’s, because it’s time to talk chop. (Get it, chop-shop? Forget it.)

After the leak, and subsequent reception, of the 2-minute CG-clip showing off Ryan Reynolds as the always titillating and profoundly profane Deadpool, Marvel finally greenlit the production of a dedicated feature-film.

But, with rumors of a PG-13 rating spreading like wildfire, will the movie truly be able to capture the spirit of the comics?

Thanks to the efforts of Reynolds, who has certainly lived up to his billing as a ‘Deadpool lover’ with a torrent of enthusiastic posts and new information, we’ve learned much more about the movie in the past few months. Fan-hype reached new heights late last week when Reynolds revealed the first official picture of his Deadpool costume.

His white-eyes, speculated to be computer-generated, reminded fans of what Batman could have been like had his eyes been white, and few costumes in recent memories have been as true to the source material as Deadpool’s. Let’s just hope this won’t mark Ryan Reynolds’ second stint as a failed CG-outfit, because we all remember what happened to the Green Lantern. So, at the very least movie-Deadpool’s looks will resemble the real deal, but what about his words and more importantly; his actions.

Fans pining for an R-rated Deadpool movie, which certainly wouldn’t be the first of its kind with both the Blade franchise and the Punisher movie attracting similar ratings, will be able to find some solace in the knowledge that Reynolds is on their side. As he has repeatedly insisted that he will fight for an R-rating.

But, should fans worry about the rumored PG-13 rating or is this nothing more than a tempest in a teacup?


When Deadpool was conceived in 1991, he was presented as little more than Marvel’s Teen Titan inspired Deathstroke, and it wasn’t until 1997 that the would-be X-man donned the con of the Merc with a Mouth in earnest.

Imbued with the irreverence of the character then-writer Joe Kelly kick-started the mercenary’s career by writing and creating well outside the bounds of typical comic books.

Since that day Deadpool has gone on to embody the modern spoof, essentially serving as Marvel’s own South Park. Armed with poignant, but often damning, comments about comics as a whole, a slew of overtly self-aware, yet childishly chuckle-worthy zingers, and a constant torrent of offensive slurs and curses, Deadpool was the most childish comic-book hero an adult could wish for.

But, that seems to be the point. Like Kick-ass and Blade before it, Deadpool was never intended as a kid’s product. The writing was aimed at a mature audience, with a greater understanding and appreciation of the pop-culture icons that were being spoofed. It exuded charm, primarily because the writers always wrote with the belief that each new issue could be their last. By enforcing artificial restrictions, the screenwriters will have to work within the precise bounds that Deadpool himself was born to not just avoid but to shatter altogether.

Joe Kelly noted, “With Deadpool, we could do anything we wanted because everybody just expected the book to be cancelled every five seconds, so nobody was paying attention. And we could get away with it.”


Some of you might be of the belief that Deadpool could make fun of the censorship in his own movie. However, cursing is far more than just a running gag, which is what a series of bleeps and a black bars would be, it defines the tone. Deadpool could and should probably be leading the discussion on censorship in comic book movies, but it shouldn’t dominate a movie that should be about a character borne of stupid irreverence.

But, it’s not verbal boundlessness alone that made Deadpool work. The Deadpool Kilology, as writer Cullen Bunn has wittingly nicknamed his collection of Deadpool works, serves as the perfect example of why Deadpool requires gratuitous, stomach-pain inducing gore and violence. After his rebranding Deadpool became popular thanks to his bizarre mix of violence and comedy. It was like Marvel was desperate to ride on the coattails of ‘Happy Tree Friends’. Of course, comic book movies have explored violence before, few characters actually met a definitive end. Deadpool however both managed to introduce one of the most loveable characters, Pandapool, and kill him off in 50 panels or less. And trust us, many other hilarious variations of the Deadpool character found their deaths on those panels – Dear reader, get your hands on a copy of ‘Deadpool kills Deadpool’ and join the hilarity, you will not regret it.

The way these deaths are portrayed is part of Deadpool’s charm. Hell, one of Deadpool’s most vaunted abilities is his ability to re-attach lost limbs, a technique that has resulted in endless hilarity. Deadpool has been eaten and carved his way out of the stomach of a dinosaur, blew up the face of a colossal Galactus-Deadpool and chopped off more heads than we can count. To abandon such an integral part of the character would be to do him a disservice.

And there you have it, our two cents! If you disagree with us, or agree with us but would like to add something to the discussion, anyway, you can find us with plate of hot chimichanga’s in the comments.


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