The Unbelievable Gwenpool #1 Review

Posted April 13, 2016 by Alexander Handziuk in Comic Books

Written by: Christopher Hastings

Art by: Gurihuru and Danylo Beyruth

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Gwenpool is a strange concept, I mean just the name itself is enough to cause a raised eyebrow and a look of confusion. It takes two well known and well loved properties and puts them together in some sort of fan fiction-e sounding blob. The actual comic is somewhat of an amalgamation of the two characters, balancing the humor of Deadpool with the levity and charm that makes Spider Gwen such a standout character. I went into this book skeptical and came out of it more than satisfied as it masterfully balances humor, accessibility and even a serious moment or two while setting up well for the future.

Gwenpool is literally about a comic fan who is transported from her universe (our world) into the Marvel U and is aware of it. This direction sets her apart from her closest comparison, Deadpool, as she is more like a kid in a candy store then a smart ass dude played by Ryan Reynolds. This book very much defies expectations of what a #1 issue should contain. It doesn’t attempt to re-hash Gwenpool’s origin story and makes some hilarious jabs at the overuse of these stories, especially in the case of Spider-man. However, as much as Gwenpool doesn’t go down the origin story route, this issue quickly and effectively lets the reader know what it is that Gwenpool is all about by throwing you straight into the action. In doing this Hastings shows the reader why Gwenpool is a character we should care about rather than telling us, giving the issue a sense of constant enthrallment unbogged by exposition.

The issue is divided into two parts, a sort of prologue that introduces the reader to Gwenpool and the current status quo of this series, as well as the main story that builds off of it. The art in the prologue is handled by Danylo Beyruth and the main story is handled by Gurihuru. Their art styles differ immensely as Beyruth has a darker edge to his pencils while Gurihuru is much brighter and clean. That being said Beyruth’s dark style works with the prologues heist tone and his character expression work is simply superb and adds a lot to the comedic value of his section. Gurihuru’s art style is very anime inspired and it works wonderfully with the over the top, zany story being told. He is able to turn something as simple as someone being pushed into a moment of hilarity and his M.O.D.O.K scenes are especially stellar.

Gwenpool is not the book I thought it would be going into it and that’s a glorious thing. It takes part of what makes Deadpool great and puts its own distinct spin on it, creating something truly special and hilarious. If you are interested in a book that is funny, features comic book fans and even a serious moment or two, then Unbelieveable Gwenpool #1 is a book you won’t want to miss.

About the Author

Alexander Handziuk

Alex is a comic aficionado who loves Aquaman, Overwatch, the musical Hamilton and medium length strolls on beaches. Check him out on the Comics Dash Podcast, on twitter at @axehandziuk and in real life patrolling the borders of Canada.