What Is Deadpool's True Origin Story?
Prepare for January 29's 'Deadpool: The End' with a look back at Deadpool: The Beginning!
Deadpool is one of the most unkillable creations in mighty Marvel history. But everything ends eventually, even for Marvel’s Merc With a Mouth.
Next month, classic Deadpool scribe Joe Kelly is teaming up with artist Mike Hawthorne to tell that story in DEADPOOL: THE END #1!
As improbable as it may sound, this tale will bring Wade Wilson’s bizarre and unforgettable life to a close...at some point in the future. But before we can fully appreciate Deadpool’s final chapter, we have to look back at the beginning. Deadpool was always an unlikely hero—after just one appearance in NEW MUTANTS (1983) and handful of X-FORCE (1991) guest spots, Deadpool became a breakout character. However, his full origin story took a few years to come into focus...
Before DEADPOOL: THE END #1 hits your local comic shop on January 29, Marvel.com is taking a look back at the events that made Wade Wilson into the man that he is today.
Happy Boxing Day
Fabian Nicieza and Rob Liefeld introduced Deadpool alongside Domino and Gideon in NEW MUTANTS (1983) #98. Retroactively, Domino was revealed to actually be Vanessa Carlysle, AKA Copycat, in disguise. But even Vanessa is essential to Wade’s history.
When Deadpool got the drop on Cable, it was on behalf of Tolliver, an alias used by Cable’s estranged son, Genesis. Unfortunately for Deadpool, he was quickly defeated by Domino and the New Mutants before getting mailed back to Tolliver...in a box.
Deadpool made his return soon after, in X-FORCE (1991) #2, for a brief fight with Kane. At the time, Kane was going by the moniker Weapon X—also the name of the organization that experimented on Deadpool, Kane, and even Wolverine. In the future, Deadpool and Kane feuded over their mutual romantic feelings for Vanessa. But within the context of this issue, their conflict wasn’t personal...yet.
Cable vs. Deadpool
Based on X-FORCE (1991) #14-15, it’s hard to believe that Cable and Deadpool would go on to become such close friends in CABLE AND DEADPOOL (2004). That’s because they were at each others’ throats when the real Domino made her debut, and Vanessa narrowly survived getting stabbed in the back by Wade. Cable came out on top in this encounter, but it was the last time that Deadpool was a mere flunky. From here on out, Wade Wilson was a star!
A Leading Man!
Nicieza was the perfect choice to chronicle Wade’s first solo comic, the four-issue limited series DEADPOOL: THE CIRCLE CHASE (1993). He was joined by Joe Madureira, an artist who quickly became a superstar at Marvel. Together, they began adding the elements that have since become synonymous with Deadpool, like his relationship with Weasel and his doomed romance with Vanessa. Even Kane played a role as Deadpool took on their mutual enemy, Slayback.
Filling in the Gaps
Mark Waid and artist Ian Churchill added to Wade’s tapestry in DEADPOOL: SINS OF THE PAST (1994). They brought Wade together with Theresa Cassidy (AKA Siryn), a member of X-Force who was among the first to realize that Deadpool could be a hero. Together, they took on Siryn’s evil uncle, Black Tom Cassidy and Juggernaut. They also came face-to-face with Dr. Killebrew, the man whose unethical experiments turned Wade into Deadpool.
Love Doesn’t Always Win
In 1997, writer Joe Kelly and artist Ed McGuinness launched the first ever DEADPOOL ongoing series. But for the origin of Wade and Vanessa’s tragic love story, Kelly teamed up with artist Aaron Lopresti in DEADPOOL (1997) #-1. (Yes, negative one.) At this point in their lives, Wade and Vanessa were truly devoted to each other. But the one foe they couldn’t defeat was Wade’s cancer—and rather than fighting that battle together, Wade pushed Vanessa away when he needed her the most. Arguably, they’ve never been the same since.
The Lady’s Name is Death
Now, many people don't know that Death is quite literally one of the greatest loves of Wade Wilson’s life. In DEADPOOL AND DEATH ANNUAL (1998) #1, Kelly and artist Steve Harris finally explored the true origin of Deadpool as a Weapon X reject. They also established Ajax as Deadpool’s first nemesis, and the right-hand man of Dr. Killebrew. The irony of this tale is that Death and Deadpool could have been very happy together...if his powers hadn’t made him nearly immortal.
F Is For Francis
Concurrently with the DEADPOOL AND DEATH ANNUAL, Kelly and artist Walter McDaniel brought Ajax and Dr. Killebrew back into Wade’s life in DEADPOOL (1997) #17-19. By this time, Killebrew was repentant for the sins he committed against Wade. Unfortunately, Ajax had transformed himself into a seemingly indestructible foe who was bent on killing both of them. In their final showdown, both Wade and Killebrew had to rise above their shared past to survive Ajax’s assault.
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