Deadpool (Wade Winston Wilson) is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. Created by writer Fabian Nicieza and artist/writer Rob Liefeld, the character first appeared in The New Mutants #98 (cover-dated February 1991). Initially Deadpool was depicted as a supervillain when he made his first appearance in The New Mutants and later in issues of X-Force, but later evolved into his more recognizable antiheroic persona. Deadpool, whose real name is Wade Wilson, is a disfigured and deeply disturbed mercenary and assassin with the superhuman ability of an accelerated healing factor and physical prowess. The character is known as the “Merc with a Mouth” because of his tendency to joke constantly, including his proclivity for breaking the fourth wall, a literary device used by the writers for humorous effect and running gags.
The character’s popularity has seen him featured in numerous forms of other media. In the 2004 series Cable & Deadpool, he refers to his own scarred appearance as “Ryan Reynolds crossed with a Shar-Pei”. Reynolds himself would eventually portray the character in the X-Men film series, appearing in X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009), Deadpool (2016), and its sequel Deadpool 2 (2018).