PAST FEARS, PART 3: The techno-organic being Metus is still after Cable. Turns out, Metus has pursued Cable through the years between the pages. This time, Metus is after Nate Grey who seeks Cable’s help. But can the two of the most powerful telekinetics in the world handle this loathsome creature?
Authors: Lonnie Nadler & Zac Thompson
Artists: German Peralta
Colors: Jesus Aburtov
Letters: Travis Lanham
Publisher: Marvel Comics
What You Need to Know:
Metus, a techno-organic creature from Cable’s past, is after him. It’s been there in the background through the years but has resurfaced once again in the present, using Hope as bait. However, we find out that wasn’t Cable’s first encounter with the creature. He’s dealt with Metus throughout his childhood as well as when he and Hope fled into the future from Bishop.
During the Age of Apocalypse, Mr. Sinister created a child of Cyclops and Jean Grey: Nate Grey. This boy was the same genetically as Cable, but his powers were not dampened by the presence of the techno-organic virus. At the end of the Age, Nate Grey managed to bring himself to the 616 Marvel Universe.
At first distrustful of his genetic “brother” (in fact, he tried to kill Cable), Nate eventually came to view Cable as family.
What You’ll Find Out:
Years ago, in one of Cable’s safe houses, Nate Grey crashes through the roof, fleeing something. Cable quickly examines his unconscious brother. He begins medical treatment until suddenly Nate wakes up, screaming “run”. Cable explains that Nate is safe there, but then Metus emerges from the computers behind him. Nate tries to attack but Metus brushes him aside. Cable confronts his old foe but before Metus can attack, Nate blows his head off. The act leaves Nate weak and Cable timeslides them both.
Somewhere at the end of time, inside a cube resting on a slab of rock drifting through empty space, Cable and Nate show up, seeing three other versions of Cable, each from different timelines. They each sensed the danger that was pursuing Cable and teleported there. Nate, however, knows that one is an imposter, one must be Metus and so he forcibly invades their minds, all four of them.
He finds memories of their childhoods, all similar, but all different in key ways. In Cable’s he sees the view of Slym and Redd we all know (seriously, if you haven’t read the Adventures of Cyclops and Phoenix, go do so…it’s a great story). In one, he sees a version of Slym and Redd that raised Cable to be a monk, to focus on meditation. In another, he sees a version where Slym and Redd raised Cable to be a warrior through and through. And in the fourth, he sees one without Slym and Redd, where Cable has become more machine than man.
Nate’s probes get nowhere, but since they suspect that Metus is posing as one of them, the only solution is for them to all stay put until they can figure out if Metus is there. They all place their time machines on the table. But there still isn’t trust amongst any of them. They agree to keep watch in teams of two.
Sometime later that night, they make a gruesome discovery: the severed arm of the warrior/Cable. The four remaining begin to turn on each other, but Cable has an idea. They should each have telekinesis. Metus doesn’t. Lifting a chair would demonstrate they are who they say they are. And one by one, they do so. Cable is the last, but his difficulty betrays that Metus is nearby.
Suddenly, the wall behinds them transforms and Metus tears apart the machine/Cable, absorbing his techno-organic parts. The remaining three concentrate their fire on Metus who grows in size, towering over them. He grabs the monk/Cable and absorbs him, growing even stronger. However, even as it grabs Cable, Nate is able to blast a hole in Metus. But before Nate can finish the job, Cable blocks him, allowing Metus to escape into the void.
Confused over Cable’s decision to spare Metus, Nate probes his mind, discovering the hidden connection between the two. But Cable would rather not discuss it. The two timeslide once more, leaving behind the ruins of the safehouse…and some techno-organic remains.
What Just Happened?
This book continues our exploration into Cable’s past. For those of us who have read him as we grew up, we may recognize the periods these stories are drawn from.
Unfortunately, after reading this issue, I didn’t really feel any sense of wonder of nostalgia. I left this issue taking one thing away from it… Cable truly viewed Nate Grey as his brother. The shared a bond like siblings, despite their unorthodox origins. And I wish the book had explored that more. We got a little of it at the start and the end, but otherwise it was all about escaping from Metus and trying to prepare for him.
I enjoyed the trio of Cables, though, and the differences in their origins. Kind of curious why there weren’t more…but I guess there were only so many pages in the book.
We also get to see that Metus and Cable are more connected than anybody else maybe suspected. Cable spares Metus for a reason we’re not privy to but there’s something there. And I am intrigued.
The art is decent. Enjoyable. Peralta has a pretty good grasp on Metus and a lot of the scenes in shadow with Metus are beautifully drawn. Probably my favorite part of the book.
At the end of the day, this book is only a little above average. I’m still enjoying this run, but so far it’s the weak one.
Final Thoughts: Despite a fun glimpse into the past, future, and alternate realities, this entry into the newest Cable arc feels a little bland. Maybe Nadler and Thompson should focus more than a single issue during each time period.
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