The first storyline in this title served as something of an extended epilogue to “Messiah Complex,” as Cable skipped into the future with the baby, attempting to remain one step ahead of the pursuing Bishop. Obviously, this formula couldn’t last forever, so after a 2-month gap from the regular plot (in which we saw some fairly decent stories featuring Cyclops and Bishop take the place of the title character) the series returns with a new idea, sufficiently different from what has come before.
It’s been around two years since we last saw the characters, and Cable’s been hiding out in a small farming community in the future, keeping his head low while he raises the baby (who hasn’t yet been named — presumably to avoid having to confirm her identity.) It makes sense that Cable, an experienced time traveller, would eventually find a way to hide from Bishop, although from his interrogation scenes, it does seem that Bishop has come up with a new strategy to achieve his aims.
The main problem with the series thus far is that Cable is quite clearly positioned as the least interesting character in the cast. Bishop has a fairly complex motive and a history that backs it up nicely, even if he does come across as slightly crazed. Cyclops, too, has some depth as an appropriate choice of character for the supporting cast. Even the baby has the central mystery of her identity to keep people coming back. Cable, though, doesn’t seem to have any function in his own title, beyond putting one foot in front of the other and tying the disparate threads together. Indeed, his adaptability actually works against him, as the character we’re seeing in this issue doesn’t even feel like the same Cable we’re used to, having spent two years hidden away in a retreat in what can only be described as a fairly un-Cable-like situation.
The book’s not bad, of course — a little plodding, occasionally a little sterile — but it does at least seem to have a clear idea of what it’s doing and where it’s going, even if it’s not rushing to get there. The main problem is that it shouldn’t really be called “Cable” at all — it’s not about him, and it doesn’t seem to want to be. At this point you could quite easily have titled the comic “Bishop” and it wouldn’t have been that jarring a change. For something billed as a solo book, that’s inarguably a problem, and one that doesn’t look like it’ll be addressed soon. “Cable” is definitely worth following if you’re interested in the fallout from “Messiah Complex,” but if it’s the character you’re interested in, then it’s unlikely to satisfy that particular craving.