Cable #8 reunites its titular teen with one of his most reliable, constant allies: Domino. Of course, between the decidedly poorly executed Deadpool appearance earlier in the series and the complete lack of history between this Cable and Domino, there’s quite a bit of room for things to go wrong. Thankfully, Duggan and Noto are at the top of their game and ensure that Cable #8 is a fun read that starts the climb towards a conclusion.
Gerry Duggan (writer), Phil Noto (artist), Joe Sabino (letterer)
February 17th, 2021
Opening with Dom and Cable hanging out in Japan, the chemistry between the two forms the backbone of the issue and is, honestly, just fun as hell. With Cable no longer the grizzled old veteran she’s known for years, Domino is left equal parts amused and unsure with Teen Nathan and takes full advantage of the situation. Alternating between barely caring about the threat in front of her (to her credit, I will also drop what I’m doing for a plate of gyoza), and trying to mentor Cable, she provides most of the issue’s comedic relief. For his part, Nathan is just as awkward but the stress of Stryfe, his evil future clone self, being out in the world and scheming weighs on him too much for any real fun to be had.
That isn’t to say that the issue is a slog, of course. It’s tightly paced action makes it a breeze to read while still delivering on just enough laughs and action to make it feel substantive. A particular highlight is the downright Looney Tunes-ian slapstick fate that befalls one of the issue’s baddies courtesy of Domino’s bad luck powers. If someone wanted to turn her into a walking Tex Avery engine going forward, well, I wouldn’t complain.
The fact that Cable, who has very much been a cocky smarmy lead for the first half of this volume, is now playing the serious, guilt-wracked soldier helps this issue have a distinct tonal shift, even from the previous entry, and hints at how similar Old Man Cable and Teen Cable are swiftly becoming. The solicitation for Cable #11 being titled “Summer’s End” and this issue concluding with a return to the non-specific flash forward glimpse at Old Man Cable that began in Cable #1 lead me to think that a conclusion of some kind is in sight, and Cable’s renewed burden of duty will play a big role in that potential finale.
Noto is, as always, just an absolute art wizard. The choice of Tokyo as the issue’s primary location is a clever one, as the neon-soaked streets let Noto play in the bright pinks, greens, and blues that help make his picturesque figures and expressions pop. One particularly impressive sequence involves Cable facing off with a dozen identical clones, as well as a middle-aged version of his body. Juggling a baker’s dozen of the same exact character while maintaining identical features and proportions is enough of a challenge, but the addition of Middle-Aged Cable who looks every inch the grown up incarnation of our current teen hero, makes it a truly impressive feat of craftsmanship.
I feel like this review is a bit slight, but really, there isn’t much more to it than that. Cable #8 is a rock solid entry into a largely consistent series from two veteran creators. It works, and it works well. It doesn’t reinvent the wheel or push the character into a brand new, challenging direction, and that is fine. There are absolutely far more exciting and fresh books within the current crop of X-Titles (hi, X-Factor and New Mutants), but sometimes you just want a dang Superhero Comic Book, and Cable is more than happy to deliver that.