With the arrival of Deadpool 2‘s “official” trailer (that is, one that’s only about 15% meta-comedy and in-jokes), something else has also been confirmed. Deadpool is, indeed, pulling together the misfits of the X-Men world and shaping them into X-Force. It’s not a dream sequence or expensive joke just for the trailer! But what the heck is X-Force, exactly?
For that, fire up a little “Rush, Rush” to get in the mood and let’s go back to 1991. Launched by Rob Liefeld, one of the hottest artists in comics at the time, X-Force was formed out of the ashes of The New Mutants, Marvel’s collection of hip, teen mutants. Liefeld’s newly created badass, Cable, took over the team and molded them into sort of a superheroic Navy SEALs who would proactively go after threats to mutantkind, most notably the Mutant Liberation Front led by Stryfe, who is a clone of Cable. After Liefeld left to start his own Extreme Universe, with swearing and a jarred penis, the book was variously reinvented over the years. But the idea of a focused, morally flexible strike force seems to be what Deadpool 2 is riffing on here.
So who are these people? Fox is keeping much of that under wraps, but there are a few heroes we’ve seen in action.
Cable (Josh Brolin)
A mercenary who comes from the future, and has the most absurdly complicated backstory and childhood of any superhero ever, Cable is basically Kyle Reese from The Terminator if Kyle Reese was a psychic using his powers to slow the spread of a “techno-organic” virus that gives him awesome cyborg parts. We know, we know, but keep in mind most of the audience for this comic was Jolt-addled teenage boys.
Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand)
While she’s not a member of the team in the comics, since she played a major role in the first movie and returns here, we’re just assuming she’s going to help out Deadpool in his mutant-saving crusade.
Domino (Zazie Beetz)
Domino is a mercenary with the power to alter probability in her favor who tends to be a romantic interest for Cable — when she’s not being impersonated by somebody. That she’s a few credits shy of her degree is a new aspect of her character that we hope Marvel explores.
G.W. Bridge (Terry Crews)
Yes, he is named “George Washington Bridge.” In the comics, Bridge doesn’t have any superpowers. He’s just a badass. That may change for the movie, but let’s face it, if any mortal can survive hanging out with Deadpool, it’s Sergeant Jeffords.
Surge (Shioli Kutsuna)
Surge is a Japanese mutant who’s an enormous battery and constantly collects electricity from the environment around her. If she doesn’t release the energy — either through shock blasts or super-speed — she speaks at super-speed, is unable to focus her thoughts, and discharges electricity everywhere.
And The Rest
There’s a lot of this team that we’ve only seen glimpses of. Shatterstar (Lewis Tan) has only appeared in the background. There’s a character who seems likely to be acid-puking mutant Zeitgeist (Bill Skarsgard) we haven’t seen in action yet, possibly for reasons of taste or at least keeping a joke a secret until he blows his groceries. And a mustachioed Rob Delaney appears to be playing a co-worker of G.W. Bridge named Peter:
In other words, there’s a lot more to learn about this team. We’ll see just how much May 18th.