This Valentine's Day marks the release of Cable #154, writer Ed Brisson and artist Jon Malin's finale on the book and the finale "Newer Mutants." The story which kicked off in Cable #150, with long-time X-Force villain Gideon returning to revive his planned extermination of the Externals.
With Gideon down to killing the last of the Externals, Cable #154 may not just end Brisson's tenure on the book, but an X-Men subplot stretching all the way back to the 90s (Spoiler alert: Brisson says it'll be "a bloodbath").
Newsarama spoke to Brisson ahead of the the issue's February 14 release date to find out exactly what's on the line, who might walk away, and what's next for Brisson and the Askani'son after his tenure on Cable comes to a close.
Nrama: Ed, "Newer Mutants" is coming to a close in Cable #154. What's at stake in this big finale?
Ed Brisson: Gideon’s on the road to ascending to near Godhood in this issue and if he does, things are going to get pretty damned dark for the X-universe. If he manages to kill all the Externals and absorb their power, he can very well become the type of baddie who could easily give Apocalypse and Thanos a run for their money.
It’s up to Cable and crew, along with an unlikely ally, to shut him down.
Nrama: You brought in a whole team of mutants under Cable's command in this story. Who grew on you the most?
Brisson: Armor, for sure.
She’s a character that I already really liked. Being able to tell a story set in the past and where she’s just new to the X-Mansion/Team and still discovering her powers has been a lot of fun. There’s a wide-eyed optimism and excitement in her that I find very relatable. I got a lot of enjoyment out of writing her dialog, especially her interactions with Cable.
Nrama: Blink's loyalties have been called into question leading up to this finale. Are you gonna break her fans' hearts again?
Nrama: Oh boy.
I knew people loved Blink. But, I was not prepared for just how vehemently vocal her fans are. It’s great, I love that people are rooting for her and how they really want to see her re-established within the Marvel U in a positive way.
All I’ll say is that we give her a hero moment in Cable #154 that I think they’ll dig. But where she lands? You’re going to have to read to find out.
Nrama: I will say Blink is featured in the upcoming Exiles ongoing.
Moving on, you brought back long the running X-Men subplot of the Externals for this story. Do you feel you've accomplished what you set out to do with these characters?
Brisson: I think so. I hope so.
The Externals storyline was dropped back in the 90s. I remember being really into it back then and wanted to revisit and try to put some of those players back on the board.
To my mind, Gideon was one of the best villains of the 90s that people don’t seem to remember. Our main goal, throughout this series, was to not only bring him back, but to also establish him as a serious threat within the Marvel Universe.
I’m hoping that we managed to do that!
Nrama: Speaking of which - Gideon is down to the last target on his hit list. Is everyone gonna make it out of Cable #154 in one piece?
Brisson: Nope! #154 is going to be a bloodbath.
Nrama: You brought Cable into "Legacy," bringing back his classic numbering for the milestone #150. What do you see as Cable's actual legacy in the Marvel Universe?
Brisson: To me, he’s the embodiment of everything that’s X-Men! He’s bouncing through time, trying to set things right (very X-Men!) and even his birth has a complicated X-Men soap opera-style story behind it - his mom, Madelyne Pryor, is actually a clone of Jean Grey, created by Mr. Sinister to have a child with Cyclops in order to fight Apocalypse. But Apocalyse finds out and so infects baby Nate with the techno-organic virus which results in him being shot 2,000 years into the future.
Nrama: Once your time on Cable is up, you'll still be in the X-Men universe writing Old Man Logan. If you had your pick, which X-character would you take on next?
Brisson: Honestly, Logan and Cable are my two big gets.
Beyond those two, I’d loved to do an X-Men team book. I grew up with the Claremont/Lee era X-Men and that’s the team (Colossus, Kitty, Wolverine, Psylocke, Storm, Cyclops, Rogue and Jubilee).
That, or the kids at the school. I have a soft spot for Glob, Shark-Girl, Rockslide, etc. In fact, they’ll be popping up in Old Man Logan very soon!
If I had to pick a solo book, I think that Havok is someone who hasn’t really found his place within the X-Men universe and could lend himself to some pretty interesting stories.
Nrama: Cable is a man defined more by his experiences than his destiny. What mark would you like to leave behind when you say goodbye to Nate Summers?
Brisson: Oh, I’m not saying goodbye to Nate Summers just yet. He and I will be crossing paths again very soon and when that happens… the stuff is gonna hit the fan. Stay tuned for details.