Agent X (04 - Alex Hayden)
Real Name: Nijo 'Alex Hayden' Minamiyori
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Agent X has a healing factor as well as limited telepathy.
Nijo was an assassin, mercenary, and agent employed by the Black Swan. He blamed Deadpool for his brother's death. The Black Swan targeted Deadpool for his assassination of the four winds. However, Black Swan grew tired of Nijo and stabbed him. A bomb Deadpool had brought went off, and all were presumed killed.
However, Alex Hayden soon emerged. He was found by Sandi, who assumed he was Deadpool. He took the name as a combination of composers he liked: Alexander Grieg and Josef Haydn. Taskmaster sought to help him get his bearings. He noticed Alex was ambidextrous and that he was somehow interfering with his reflex ability while training with him. Taskmaster then knew he couldn't be Deadpool, despite his healing factor and recognition of him and Sandi. They formed a mercenary group, Agency X. The headquarters is based out of an amusement park.
Alex met Outlaw (Inez Temple) while assigned to try and take out the Punisher and steal his Colt 45. handguns. They failed and were locked up in a phone booth minus their weapons and clothes by Castle. The Punisher then killed the people who had sent them.
Alex, Taskmaster and Sandi returned to his apartment to find Black Swan and Deadpool waiting. It turned out that all three had partially merged during the explosion. Black Swan psionically acquired Deadpool's healing factor but accidentally made contact Nijo.
Inez returned in time to help fight the Black Swan, who had now absorbed both Alex and Deadpool's powers to augment himself. After Deadpool pinned Swan under a car, Alex ignited it. Alex then reversed Black Swan's absorption, but also gave him the memories of being stabbed to death. The group then repeatedly shot the Black Swan to make sure he was dead. The body was taxidermied and carried around by each couple (Taskmaster and Sandi, Alex and Inez) as a prop while they went on vacation.
Alex had another confrontation with Deadpool. Unable to do much damage to each other due to their healing factors, they relented after Wade agreed to hand Alex his pancreas back.
After a botched attempt to steal a device from Hydra, Sandi and Outlaw convinced Deadpool to rescue Alex. Alex had been affected by the device he was supposed to steal, giving him arthritis and "the American gene" (which resulted in making him incredibly fat). This made escape physically impossible - though he wouldn't want to miss out on the many treats, and monkey chow, that were being given to him as a lab specimen. Deadpool managed to free Alex with the help of Bob, Agent of HYDRA. He then asked Deadpool to run Agency X whilst he got himself back in shape, reasoning with himself that his only other alternatives were to shoot himself or eat Sandi and his business.
Agent X was born out of Marvel Comics' long-running Deadpool series, whose sales had slumped to cancellation point, with experiments including the "miniseries within a series" Deadpool: Agent of Weapon X and Deadpool: Funeral for a Freak, where the main series' numbering was demoted to secondary status below the "miniseries" numbering, having failed to stymie the leak. The decision was then taken to run a "final arc" to close the series, then restart it from #1 with an X in the title in an attempt to more closely identify it with their popular X-Men franchise (as part of the same effort, Cable was changed to Soldier X and "X-Force" was changed to "X-Statix"). Online humorist Gail Simone was chosen to write both Deadpool's final arc and the new series, with the UDON studio, who had recently revamped the Taskmaster in a well-received miniseries, to supply the art.
Agent X replaced Deadpool with a similar protagonist, while including ambiguous hints as to the nature of his relationship with the original character. Agent X was well-received by critics and was a steady seller in a crowded market. This title suffered due to Marvel's lack of support for both this and Soldier X -- neither title enjoyed house or trade support. Simone publicly clashed with Marvel's editorial staff as the X-Men relaunch struggled to find a foothold. Simone left the book after issue 7, with the protagonist's true identity still unrevealed.
The book's sales further suffered after Marvel canceled the book, then changed course to publish a series of fill-ins, to mixed reviews. Towards the end, two of these fill-ins were published to small fanfare: those by noted author Evan Dorkin and the acclaimed art team of Juan Bobillo & Marcelo Sosa. Just like the work of Simone & Udon, these fill-ins were sadly forgotten by the comics community. Stillborn, Agent X was canceled with issue #12. However, shortly after this announcement, Marvel decided to launch a Cable & Deadpool book as a change in direction. This allowed Simone and UDON to complete their initial vision as part of a three-issue arc tying up the loose ends and restoring Deadpool for use in the new book, which was published after a month's hiatus as Agent X #13-15.
Agent X also appeared in Cable and Deadpool numbers 11-12. He would make another appearance in numbers 38-39, where he was captured on a mission against HYDRA, who were able to give him arthritis using new technology, then morbid obesity so he wouldn't notice the arthritis. He was subsequently rescued by Deadpool, who was hired by Sandi and Outlaw. After being rescued, Agent X decided to allow Deadpool to run Agency X until he was cured of his disabilities.
In the 'Dear Deadpool' section of issue 37 the writers put in a hint of Agent X getting his own series again.
First Appearance: Agent X (2002) #1
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Agent X (2002)
#1 All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2006)
- 'Dead Man's Switch, Part 1'#2
- 'Dead Man's Switch, Part 2'#3
- 'Dead Man's Switch, Part 3: Quiet Desperation'#4
- 'Dead Man's Switch, Part 4: Invisible'#5
- 'Dead Man's Switch, Part 5: A Little Crazy'#6
- 'Dead Man's Switch, Part 6: Uninvited Guests'#7
- 'Shameful William'#8
- 'Hold That Ghost, Part 1'#9
- 'Hold That Ghost, Part 2'#10
- 'If At First You Don't Succeed... Die, Die Again!'#11
- 'Fight the Power!'#12
- 'Out With a Bang'#13
- 'Deadpool Walkin', Part 1: Our Lives in Fracture'#14
- 'Deadpool Walkin', Part 2: Foul Brain Stew'#15
- 'Deadpool Walkin', Part 3: A Means to an End'
#1 Cable & Deadpool (2004)
- 'Abraxas to Batwing'
#11 Deadpool (2008)
- 'Thirty Pieces, Part 1: Predator & Pray'#12
- 'Thirty Pieces, Part 2: True Confessions'#38
- 'It's In The Genes'#39
- 'Mistaken Identities'#40
- 'Fractured: Part One'#43
- 'With Friends Like These--?'#45
- 'Band of (Oh) Brothers'#46
- 'Eight To Save The Universe!'#47
- 'I Need a Trip Through the Netherrealms Like a Kick to the Nether Regions'#49
- 'Sabertooth Serenade'#50
- 'Symbiosis Mitosis'
#27 Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z (2008)
- 'The Wedding of Deadpool'
The Marvel Encyclopedia (2006)
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