If there's one thing you can say about Marvel's Deadpool franchise, it's that you have to expect the unexpected. In the case of Deadpool 2, you should probably double that. Especially since the Deadpool 2 trailer references Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants, and it might be enough to shift the way you think about Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants. At the very least, it will make you want to go to grad school to write an X-rated paper on the point Deadpool makes about it.
In case you didn't catch it the first time around, the Deadpool 2 Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants reference unfolds in a deeply Deadpoolian way. "Doing the right thing is messy," the mercenary explains in a voiceover, "You wanna fight for what's right? Sometimes, you have to fight dirty." It seems like the character is just laying out his own ethos for the audience, but then — plot twist — he's actually in a car with the rest of his team and seems to be mid-story. "And that," he finishes, "Is why Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is pure pornography." So, OK. There's a lot to unpack there.
First, if you're wondering WTF is happening, know that Deadpool is one of Marvel's most unique characters. He's a foul-mouthed assassin, pop culture aficionado, and is notably aware of his own fictionality. The comic series and the first film adaptation constantly play with the fourth wall, as Deadpool makes reference after reference, curses enthusiastically, and riffs on the fact that he's a character in a film people are watching. So, it should come as no surprise to you that the Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants reference is used in the same sentence as the word "porn."
The joke becomes even funnier when you consider the off-camera reason for why the trailer likely cut the clip in this way (if the joke is in the movie at all). Deadpool 2 star Ryan Reynolds is married to actor Blake Lively, whose starring role in Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants helped launch her career. Deadpool the character might have a deeper explanation for his comparison, but does it really need to get any deeper than a fourth wall-breaking joke about his actor's off-screen wife? Maybe we should start considering what Deadpool could or would say if Blake Lively actually made a cameo in the upcoming ilm.
Still, even so, hearing the comparison between Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and pornography is definitely unusual. But it's obvious that Deadpool 2 is not a superhero film to take your kids to. In fact, it's not really a superhero film at all: Deadpool is more of an antihero, if antiheroes were good-hearted, charismatic, violent, and had strong opinions on the Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants franchise. To be fair, Deadpool 2 isn't necessarily calling your favorite teen series pornography. It's equally likely the trailer was edited to look that way, for maximum effect. Yes, equally likely — not more. Again, one can never be sure with this character.
Everything about the Deadpool 2 trailer delights and confuses by design. Deadpool in general is like an exercise in cognitive dissonance. The wisecracks and the meta moments have returned, as has romance, violence, probably burritos, and the studio being comfortable marketing a film largely on star Ryan Reynolds' boyish, foul-mouthed charms. He's in almost every single frame of the trailer, masked and unmasked, and also provides most of the dialogue.
Only Reynolds could deliver the Sisterhood reference and sound more sincere than aroused. The tagline for Deadpool 2 might as well be "Why? Because we can." Magical pants not included.