Julian Dennison in Deadpool 2

We're a month out from Deadpool 2 finally hitting theaters, and while there's been no shortage of Deadpool comic book material to enjoy since the first movie made a splash, it'll be nice to reunite with Ryan Reynolds' version of the Merc with the Mouth. As we learned last month with the latest trailer, Deadpool 2 will revolve around Wade Wilson and the totally-not-derivative X-Force working to protect a mutant kid from the time-traveling Cable. Until now, that kid, played by Hunt for the Wilderpeople's Julian Dennison, hasn't been identified, but last night, a trio of Deadpool 2 TV spots aired during new episodes of The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead, and we may have finally learned who the character is thanks to one simple name: Russell.

The name Russell by itself doesn't help much, but when looking up any characters from Marvel Comics with that name, as well as taking into account that Deadpool 2's Russell can generate fire, it looks as though the movie is featuring a version of Russell Collins, who is also pyrokinetic. Introduced in 1986's X-Factor #1, Russell Collins mutant ability emerged while he was serving in the Navy, and although the military police quickly apprehended him, he was rescued by the X-Factor. Along with serving on that team of mutant superheroes, Russell was also a member of the X-Terminators and New Mutants, but he was later brainwashed by the Mutant Liberation Front. Eventually he was freed from that brainwashing by Magneto and joined the Master of Magnetism's Acolytes in gratitude, but soon after he was killed by Holocaust, a mutant villain from the Age of Apocalypse reality.

Russell Collins X-Men comics

If Julian Dennison is indeed playing Russell Collins outside of Deadpool 2, then obviously this would be a loose adaptation of the character, with his name and powers potentially being the only similarities. That said, this still doesn't explain just why Dennison's Russell is so important from the movie. Here's what we know about him so far: he's pyrokinetic, he seems to have been held in a mutant prison/detention center (judging by the collar around his neck), Cable wants to kill him and he will not hesitate to flip you the bird. Given that like his comic book counterpart, Josh Brolin's Cable hails from an apocalyptic future, presumably he believes that by killing Russell, somehow that future won't come to pass. Why he believes that remains to be seen.

Of course, both Russell and Cable are just a few of the many characters making up Deadpool 2's cast. Along with Ryan Reynolds and most of the cast from the first Deadpool movie reprising their respective roles, the sequel's new players include Zazie Beetz's Domino, Jack Kesy's Black Tom Cassidy, Terry Crews' Bedlam, Lewis Tan's Shatterstar and Rob Delaney's Peter, along with Shioli Kutsana, Eddie Marsan and Bill Skarsgard in officially undisclosed roles.

Deadpool 2 hits theaters on May 18. To learn what other major motion pictures are coming out this year, look through our 2018 release schedule.

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