Deadpool 2 Is Fine, but Zazie Beetz’s Domino Is a Treasure
Deadpool 2 is out today, and while we don’t have an official review up, I felt it was important to declare a 5-star, two thumbs up, spoiler-free review of one specific element of the film: Zazie Beetz’s Domino.
I had mixed feelings about the movie as a whole. If you’re expecting Deadpool 2 to be basically like Deadpool but more, you’d be correct. It’s pretty much just Double Deadpool: double the crudeness, double the swearing, double the fourth-wall-busting meta jokes. It’s fun and it’s funny, but it’s also exhausting. Zazie Beetz, however, is a total delight.
Domino is hands-down the best part of Deadpool 2. The character is the perfect foil to Ryan Reynold’s Wade. They’re both filled to the brim with sarcasm and self-assuredness. But where Wade has a manic, antagonistic energy, Domino’s superpower is luck–no matter the situation or how tough her opponent, things just happen to work out in her favor. That means she moves through the world with ease, and a super chill demeanor. Not only does that easy-goingness offer a needed respite from the film’s frenetic energy, but it makes her a joy to watch, especially in her fight scenes, which are far cooler than the trailers ever captured.
Zazie Beetz’s execution of the character is perfection. When it was announced that Beetz, who is mixed race, had been cast in a role that is white in the comics, the internet was flooded with trolls swearing “I’m not racist but …” and then following that up with racist reasons why she shouldn’t play the part. They said her hair is impractical (bullshit) or that her skin needs to be white because that’s why she’s named Domino. (Which is also bullshit because the swap of comic book Domino’s black mark over her eye was replaced with what appears to be a patch of vitiligo. It looks awesome and realistic onscreen but it maintains the domino essence just fine.)
Not only does Beetz’s blackness not detract from the character in any way whatsoever, but it adds a new layer that’s powerful to watch. To watch a woman who looks like Beetz move through the world with nothing but ease, with luck on her side, and to kick major ass while doing it–that’s not something we get to see very often.
In a recent interview with Vanity Fair, Beetz said, “I think black women are often depicted specifically in terms of the struggle, and never having the privilege of feeling light at heart and feeling that release, right? And that is a pretty cool thing to see on a screen.”
An X-Force movie has already been announced, written and directed by Drew Goddard. I am 100% down for that, on the condition that it is led by Domino. Sure, Deadpool can be in it if he wants. Cable can come, too. But this had better be Domino’s movie. (Terry Crews’ Bedlam also got an inexcusably small amount of screentime.) In the meantime, Beetz has six other movies in various stages of development, plus a recurring role on Atlanta. So there’s plenty of Beetz to tide us over till we get more Domino.
(image: Joe Lederer / 20th Century Fox)
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