Domino is poised to shoot to comics character superstardom with Deadpool 2. We thought it would be worth taking a look at who this queen of good fortune is, where she came from, and what makes her tick.
Ready? Let’s give this a shot…
Domino is actually complicated from the start. Her first appearance was in New Mutants #98, the issue that also introduced Deadpool. She was created by Fabian Nicieza and Rob Liefeld for the third-to-last issue of the series that chronicled the adventures of the second wave of students at the Xavier School.
Except her actual first appearance came a year later, in Nicieza and Liefeld’s X-Force #8.
Turns out the person who the New Mutants/X-Force thought was Domino was actually a mutant named Copycat with the power to mimic someone down to a genetic and mutant power level. We don’t meet her until X-Force #19. Also, her real name is Vanessa Carlyle, one she shares with Morena Baccarain’s character from the first Deadpool movie. So spoiler? Or prediction? This got crazy complicated real fast. Let’s start over.
Who cares. Domino was created in the ‘90s as a badass mercenary, and she’s chock full of the convoluted backstory you might expect from one with so humble an origin. Neena Thurman (her real name) also has all the abilities of a badass ‘90s mercenary – expert marksmanship, can do martial arts, has casual sex with Wolverine.
Her mutant power involves altering probability fields. Basically, she’s lucky – everything tends to fall into place when she’s around. Sometimes that means she hits a trick shot; sometimes that means there’s a swimming pool full of 372,844 pancakes under the skylight she’s standing on when the skylight shatters.
That really happened, by the way. Daniel Way’s Deadpool run had its moments.
Domino’s been on just about all of them. She started out on Six Pack – mercenaries that included Cable, GW Bridge, Grizzly, Garrison Kane and Deadpool. She eventually joined X-Force, the actual paramilitary understudies of the X-Men after Cable got his hands on them. She ran the Hong Kong branch of the X-Corporation (the X-Men’s early aughts attempt to integrate with the corporate world). She was part of Cable’s late period X-Force team along with Dr. Nemesis, Colossus (her one true boyfriend), and Forge. And most recently she’s been running around with a Weapon X team run by Old Man Logan.
Well, there have been a number of alternate versions of her in the multiverse. Ultimate Domino was basically the same Domino, only she was hanging out with a Cable who was actually a future Wolverine. In X-Men: The End, she got killed by a Super Skrull pretending to be Wolverine. And in the Age of Apocalypse, she ran black ops for Apocalypse himself along with Grizzly and Caliban. There, she was killed when Nate Grey (AoA’s Cable) used his telepathy to relive every murder she committed from the victim’s side. It was pretty rough.
Also there’s Copycat, the person who posed as Domino. Copycat was a mutant shapeshifter who took on Domino’s appearance and powers to spy on Cable on behalf of the shadowy Mr. Tolliver, who is himself a 90s X-Men continuity singularity.
SO WHY DOMINO?
She’s a ton of fun as a character. Someone who’s lucky all the time and knows it can get into some crazy stuff. Making her a mercenary just leans into the slapstick violence you can pull off with her. And when you pair her with a fourth wall breaker like Deadpool, narrative convenience becomes an end goal of its own. As long as she ends up with Colossus, Deadpool 2 should make her work well.