SPOILER WARNING: This article contains spoilers for “Uncanny Avengers” #19, which is on sale now.
When we left the Avengers Unity Squad last month in “Uncanny Avengers” #18, things had taken a turn for the worse. Pretty much the entire team had been taken captive by the Red Skull, the super villain now in possession of Professor Xavier’s powerful telepathic brain. Of course the entire team wasn’t captured; Deadpool still remains free and trying to put the captured Rogue’s backup plan in action.
“Uncanny Avengers” #19 by Gerry Duggan, Pepe Larraz and Rodrigo Zayas picks up right where the previous issue left off, with Deadpool frantically on the run from the Red Skull’s top agent, the mind-controlled speedster Quicksilver. Deadpool manages to leave a voicemail with an unknown recipient before being attacked by Quicksilver. Fortunately, Deadpool flees into the sewer and makes his way to Doctor Strange’s Sanctum Sanctorum, which is also the address he left in the voicemail.
Back at the former Avengers Mansion (now Red Skull’s stronghold), the villain tries his hardest to break down the team’s psychic defenses. After taking control of Rogue in the previous issue, he gets into the heads of Synapse, Doctor Voodoo and Human Torch with relative ease. He hadn’t planned on one member of the team — Cable — putting up such a fight. The Red Skull tries to assault Cable’s mind, and Cable puts up a mental fight.
Cable being able to fend off a telepathic attack from the Red Skull makes sense, though, as the character’s formidable mental powers are often overlooked. In addition to being a strategic mastermind, expert hand-to-hand combatant and master marksman, Cable also possesses one of the most powerful brains on the planet. The problem is, though, he spent most of his life using his mental powers to keep the destructive techno-organic virus in his system at bay. This right here, Cable going brain-to-brain against the mental power of Charles Xavier, shows him putting his mental powers to use.
Too bad it doesn’t work.
The Red Skull quickly recovers from Cable’s stabbing, admitting that he underestimated the hero’s telepathic abilities. The Skull then unleashes the full force of his power, chasing a mental image of Cable through his mind’s construct of the mansion. Backed into a corner at the bottom of a stairwell, Cable is left with no choice. He mentally enacts the “Lifeboat Protocol” on his A.I. system and does what he has to do…
As Cable crushes the lightbulb dangling in front of him in his mental construct, he pulls off a maneuver in the real world that the Red Skull didn’t anticipate: he erases his consciousness.
Rather than let him fall under the control of the Red Skull like the rest of the Avengers, Cable deploys an all-new contingency plan and wipes his own brain clean, rendering him useless to the Red Skull. This may not be the end of Cable’s story, though. The solicitation info for “Uncanny Avengers” #21, arriving in March, features a highly exaggerated, fully ’90s Cable on the cover battling with the Red Skull.
There’s also the matter of Cable’s ongoing series from James Robinson and Carlos Pacheco, which launches in April. So while this isn’t the end of Cable, it is possible that this major move could set the stage for what’s to come next for the character.
As Cable makes his desperate play, his former partner Deadpool makes one of his own. Wade Wilson arrives at the Sanctum Sanctorum, beaten and desperate. Unfortunately for him, Doctor Strange isn’t at home. Strange’s partner-in-magic Wong is, though, and after some convincing Wong seems ready to ride into battle with Wade. And we also learn that Wong isn’t the only person Wade’s convinced to come along for the ride; the guy that Wade left a voicemail for also shows up.
Yep Spider-Man is back after leaving the team back in “Uncanny Avengers” #1. Although, Spidey does reiterate that no, he’s not really rejoining the team — even if Deadpool keeps asking him to. It looks like Deadpool now has two allies in his fight to free the Avengers Unity Squad.
“Uncanny Avengers” #20 arrives in stores on February 8.
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