When I was young, I inherited a small comic book collection. Mostly Spiderman and X-Men comics, this small glimpse into the Marvel Universe put me on the fast track to nerddom. Long before Marvel was breaking box office records, I was waiting outside of a movie theater to see the very first X-Men film for the fourth time in a row. As an adult, I was happy to pass down my love of comics (and some actual comic books) to my kids. But there’s one character I’m not yet interested in them reading about.
Deadpool isn’t your typical super hero at all. As far as his back story goes, he’s a teenage delinquent turned military agent turned mercenary. He does what a lot of main stream comic book characters don’t do. He violently kills people. Granted, he only kills “bad” people, but that’s not the point I’m trying to make. He kills, he curses, and he’s really into sex. He’s not exactly a shining example of heroism. But as an adult, I enjoy reading the comics, and of course now I can (and did) enjoy seeing the movie.
This weekend was the opening weekend for the movie that fans of the Deadpool comic have been waiting for for years. In 2009, when Ryan Reynolds appeared in Wolverine Origins as a rather inaccurate version of his favorite comic book character, fans were understandably upset by what the X-Men franchise had done with the character. Ryan himself came out and said he didn’t like where they went with him, but agreed to do it on the grounds that they would give him and his character a solo and relatively accurate movie.
(NOT the Deadpool we expected. Source: YouTube.)
My husband, who is admittedly not into comic books but likes a good Marvel movie, joined me on Saturday night to see Deadpool. We considered it our Valentines Day date because we don’t get out too often. The theater was pretty full, mostly with adults, some our age, some older, some college-age, and even a sprinkling of high school kids. That’s all well and good, but then right in front of us sat a dad with two boys who couldn’t have been older than 12. I cringed when I saw them.
I wasn’t planning on allowing my boys to see the movie, even before I had seen it myself. Watching it confirmed what I already knew – it’s absolutely not appropriate for children. I’m by no means a very strict parent, and I’ve definitely let my kids watch movies that were rated for older audiences, and I’ll probably do it again, but this movie will not be one of them.
Kids have such vivid imaginations, and they love superheroes. They want to be superheroes. But right now, I won’t be allowing them to idolize a hero whose main job is essentially murder. And while I personally think Deadpool is an extremely interesting character – funny, charming, powerful – he is just not for kids. So unfortunately, you won’t see any Deadpool related tutoritals on this blog. From beginning to end, the movie is filled with bad words, colorful sexual references, really gory deaths, and graphic sex. (The comic books aren’t any cleaner!) Kids are already exposed to this stuff way too early, let’s not rush it.
As long as my boys are old enough to need permission to see a rated R movie, my answer will remain the same. No, you cannot watch this movie. When they’re 17, they can choose for themselves whether or not they would like to watch it. Heck, I might even watch it with them. But only so I can cover their eyes occasionally. After all, I’m still their mom.