This post contains spoilers for the movie Deadpool 2, and discusses the ending of the movie in detail.
Not every joke in Deadpool 2 hits its target. The sequel to 2016's runaway blockbuster, which starred Ryan Reynolds as a smart-ass superhero with a gift for brutally murdering bad guys and making 12-year-olds giggle, takes a Family Guy-like approach to comedy: constantly fire off rude one-liners and pop culture references, and see what sticks. By the end, you'll either be charmed by its persistence or exhausted by its relentless pursuit of the next punchline.
And, in true blockbuster fashion, Deadpool 2 saves its best wisecracks for the post-credits scene.
The primary appeal of the so-called Merc with a Mouth is that he takes playful, irreverent potshots at other superhero films: Deadpool 2 opens with voice-over narration mocking last year's Oscar-nominated X-men movie Logan, which also arrived with an R-rating, and doesn't let up for its two-hour runtime. The happy-go-lucky Marvel Cinematic Universe (including the most recent Avengers film) and the po-faced DC movies (like the Justice League) all get name-checked in a blur of quips, explosions, and familiar needle-drops.
But, like many comedians, Deadpool's best material is often self-deprecating. He dishes out meta-barbs and ironic asides at the expense of other franchises; he can also take it. In the post-credits scene, which finds the smarmy assassin using time-travel technology he steals from Josh Brolin's Cable to "fix" past wrongs, Deadpool 2 skewers two embarrassing chapters in Reynolds' own long journey to super-hero stardom. Fittingly, it shows no mercy.