Deadpool Samurai Manga Introduces New Spider-Man Family Member

In the second issue of the Marvel Comics-Shonen Jump collaboration Deadpool: Samurai, fans are introduced to Hida Hakara or Sakura Spider, the newest member of that ever-growing group of heroes and villains with spider-powers, popularly known as the Spider-Man family.

One of the reasons why Sakura Spider has not been more active in Spidey family matters is because she is based out of Tokyo. She is a member of the “Avengers Japan Branch,” a previously unknown team of Avengers based in Japan that is also known as the Samurai Squad. The team seems to be the brainchild of Iron Man and Captain America, who believed in providing an Avengers footprint in Asia while also decreasing the need for the main Avengers team in New York to have to deploy everywhere a threat to the Earth manifests itself.

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Deadpool meets Hida after he becomes the Samurai Squad’s newest member. Initially, Iron Man is hesitant to consider Deadpool for the team, but at the urging of Captain America, he decides to engage in a deeper investigation of Deadpool’s worth as an Avenger. As comic luck would have it, Deadpool is on a mission in Japan at the same time. Although Iron Man is impressed with Deadpool’s ability to get the job done, he has reservations about his tendency to cause death and destruction in carrying out his mission. Iron Man nevertheless hires him to join the team, but subsequently tasks Sakura Spider with tamping down his chaotic tendencies.

Unlike other members of the Spider-Man family, Sakura Spider’s origins are identical to that of the family's founding member, Peter Parker. She was also bit by a radioactive spider that gave her the proportional powers of a spider. In the manga, she exhibits super-human strength, agility, and the ability to climb walls and stick to surfaces like a spider. She has somehow developed a webbing and a wrist-mounted web shooter that allows her to shoot webs to wrap up villains, bind objects, and swing on them just like the original Spider-Man. Moreover, she also possesses the tell-tale “spider-sense” capability.

Perhaps the biggest difference between Hida and Parker is in their mindset. Hida has an almost Captain America-esque mentality of doing the right thing and making sure that justice is achieved at all costs. This makes her pairing with Deadpool all the more entertaining. Where Deadpool is completely focused on getting the win no matter what, Hida is more interested in getting the win the right way, or not at all. Fans would not be mistaken if they find that this sounds like a rehash of the tensions between those other Avengers, Iron Man and Captain America. But so far in the manga, it is done a clever new way that is interesting to follow.

For a manga primarily focused on Deadpool, it might seem a bit strange to include the introduction of a completely new character. Indeed, Sakura Spider would likely have never met Deadpool, and been introduced to fans, but for his tendency to rack up death and destruction wherever he goes. But, as the manga suggests, Deadpool’s “kill and kill again” attitude is precisely why a character such as Sakura Spider makes sense, especially in a collaboration between Marvel Comics and Shonen Jump. Each character offers an anchor that fans from both genres can connect with and relate to in hopes that it will lead both to become more interested in what the other has to offer.

Next: Deadpool Team Tackles the War on Drugs in Image Comics Satire

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