Thursday, February 28, 2008

Joe Casey Comics: Cable #67

[Continuing my look at Joe Casey's run on Cable. New posts Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.]

Continuing "Sign of the End Times: Total Chaos in Three Parts," Cable teams up with the Avengers to take on Apocalypse's Harbinger, which is bent on destroying New York.

This is a very straight-forward superhero action issue. Not much experimentation or even advancement of Casey's pet themes. Most of the issue is spent on Cable and the Avengers trying to take down the Harbinger, an ever adapting enemy. The only thing that seems to succeed is Thor's arrival and his use of a transdimensional warp--but even that only keeps Harbinger occupied for a short period of time.

The composition of the second page is interesting as it has Cable and the Harbinger divided by panels midway through the page that fill us in on what happened. Cable is at the top of the page, seemingly above Harbinger, until we see the whole picture and notice that Harbinger is standing over Cable's unconscious body. Ladronn plays with our expectations of the hero being above the villain and subverts them by having Harbinger actually standing over Cable.

The sequence where Harbinger adapts to return from space is very reminiscent of Casey's later cosmic work.

It's also interesting to see Cable interact with the Avengers as this is the height of his integration into the Marvel universe and he's a terrorist to them thanks to SHIELD. They don't know him and only barely recognise his affiliation to the X-Men. In a way, Cable is trapped between those two worlds, not accepted in either.

At the end of the issue, Apocalypse activates Harbinger's self-destruct sequence in an effort to destroy New York.

Personally, I love Ladronn's Avengers. His Kirby-esque style works very well here.

On Saturday, I'll conclude my look at this story arc and discuss deus ex machina a little.