Deadpool, The Merc With A Mouth, Wade Wilson, or my personal favorite; “The Regenerating Degenerate”. Arguably the most resilient individual of the Marvel Universe, Senior ‘Pool started as a simple man. One with near-super human skill with virtually all lethal weapons (including the difficult to master Chimichanga) but a mortal man none the less.
Wade Wilson, as his friends call him, has an often blurry past. The story has deviated over time, due to both comical effect, and Deadpool’s terrible memory (more on that later). However, the generally accepted history is the following: Wade Wilson, one way or another, became crazy-good at killing. Taught from the age of 18, when he entered the Army Special Operations Division, he quickly rose in skill and reputation. He was however, kicked out of the military for reasons Wade described as, “They were all to jealous.” From here he worked as a mercenary, taking jobs that he and his girl friend (maybe fiance?) Vanessa Carlysle (who eventually becomes Copycat) felt morally comfortable with.
Then, for reasons not elaborated on, Wade is diagnosed with terminal, inoperable, wide-spread, nasty-as-all-hell cancer. Facing death, with nowhere to turn, Department K/Weapon X director William Stryker makes contact. The Weapon X program is a Canada based project directed at turning mutants, or would-be mutants, into weapons. Responsible for amping up Sabretooth, giving Wolverine his adamantium claws, whatever the hell Leech is, and of course Deadpool. Stryker promised to rid Wilson of his cancer, in exchange for time as a mercenary, however he did not apparently elaborate as to how.
Wade was, technically, not cured of his cancer. Stryker fused with Wilson’s DNA, the healing factor borrowed from Wolverine. But it was likely tampered with, as it’s effects in Wade became extremely exaggerated. Basically Wade Wilson becomes a walking talking near-eternal tumor. And although the healing factor’s effectiveness varies over time, it’s usually the case that Wade can grow back entire limbs within a 1-7 days. At one point he grows back his whole body from the tip of his finger (Funeral For A Freak series).
This is accomplished, basically by all of Wade’s cells constantly regenerating, replacing themselves when needed, and/or dying off. So in one way, Deadpool can never die, in another he is constantly dying. This constant replacement/regeneration of cells leaves him even more crazed and looped-out that he was before. It also causes his occasional amnesia, then later on, multiple personality disorder/dissociative identity disorder and probable schizophrenia.
Once Wade was experimented on, it quickly became apparent that he my never die. He worked with others like him on a Weapon X task force, killing those he was pointed toward. At some point thereafter, he killed another Weapon X operative known as Sluggo, which got him kicked out of the program and put into The Workshop, a ‘hospice’ of sorts. Here, Wade was experimented on relentlessly by Doctor Killebrew and his assistant Ajax. They wanted to know the limits of his healing factor, and so tried every conceivable method of killing Wade, with no result. This continued for so long that the other ex-powered people at the ‘hospice’ began taking bets on how long Wilson would live. Or in other words, a betting pool on how soon he’d be dead… and thus… Deadpool.
After the inmates of The Workshop band together, around Deadpool, they broke out and were let loose upon the world. Deadpool now free to do as he wished, did what he did best, freelance mercenary work; this time with substantially lower moral standards.
For years Deadpool ran around the globe, either playing a key role in near-Earthending events, or totally ignoring them. He died countless times, had his healing factor removed… then replaced… then dulled… then amped up again. There was even an identity crisis that briefly brought into question if Deadpool was Wade Wilson, or if he was a crazed man who took Wade’s name and life. There’s still some debate about this, although everyone agrees, he’s definitely a crazed man.
At one point Deadpool was split into/combined with another mercenary called the Black Swan (and a dead body) resulting in Deadpool being a little less kill-crazy, Black Swan being a little more insane, and a dead body that was essentially a more moral Deadpool, named Agent X.
Deadpool’s adventures are certainly far and wide, ranging from the Jesus-like role in Protocol Mithras, to the Judas-like role in The Burnt Offering. The Merc With A Mouth, is all over the damned place.
One Deadpool’s most notable traits his that is fully aware that he is in a comic book. He often calls out the writers/artists, treating the 4th wall more like a door. This completely vexes the other characters, and never fails to make me think, “Awe that Deadpool… he’s one silly S.O.B.”
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