In what can only be explained as a grand cinematic editing experiment, 20th Century Fox and director David Leitch have decided to re-release Deadpool 2, now conveniently shaved down – or to be more frank sandblasted – into a shape that can fit into the bland auspices of a PG-13 rating.
The two Deadpool movies have previously gained much of their clout and notoriety (not to mention enormous box office numbers) via their subversive naughtiness. In a world where all major superhero flicks are rated PG-13 – read: they are bereft of sex, feature no intriguing filth, don’t allow themselves to cuss too much, and feature no bloody violence – the Deadpool movies were more than amusing, they were refreshing.
From within the studio-sanctioned system, here was a comedic superhero that had no qualms about murdering, swearing, and having dirty sex; you’re certainly not going to see a pegging scene in a Captain America film. Additionally, Deadpool offered a hilarious meta-narrative; Our anti-hero would often address the camera to comment on his own place in the current pop firmament.
The question at hand with this new re-edit, dubbed Once Upon a Deadpool, is whether or not Deadpool can be funny, interesting, or maintain its same refreshing subversiveness while wielding the MPAA rating that typically eschews anything naughty. The answer is: It cannot.