Creators: Artist Rob Liefeld and writter Fabian Nicieza.
First Appearance: The New Mutants #98 (February 1991).
A young man named Wade Wilson, dying of cancer, gets recruited by a program that calls itself Weapon X, to be experimented on in the chances of recreating the healing abilities of Weapon X, or Wolverine. When the testing fails, he is left dying and decripid, until finally sent to a prison for other failed Weapon X experiments.
There, he is bet upon by other in-mates, in something called the Dead Pool; a gambling game where prisoners place money on who they think their ward will kill next. Taken by the ward to be experimented on, and expected to die, Wilson survives, the healing factor Weapon X had tried to give him succeeding. Escaping, albeit without his sanity, he becomes a mercenary for hire, hiding scars behind his new persona and outfit, Deadpool, having taken the name with irony for surviving the Dead Pool gamble back in imprisonment.
Deadpool was first depicted as a villain, but has since branched out into a popular anti-hero with the abilities of hyper healing, and “breaking the fourth-wall”, comic lingo meaning he will occassionally speak to the reader. Or the several voices inside his head. Deadpool has since become, according to Empire magazine, 45th on their list of “The 50 Greatest Comic Book Characters”.