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The Religious Affiliation of Comic Book Character
Nathan Christopher Summers
Cable


Nathan Christopher Charles Summers, better known simply as Nathan Summers, or by the codename "Cable," is a devout adherent of the far-future Askani religion, the faith he was raised in. Cable has attempted to spread the word about Askani religion in our own time, although this faith still has very few followers.

When Cable was first introduced, he was the leader of the New Mutants. He soon transformed this team of students at Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters into the rather more pro-active and radical mutant superhero team X-Force. Since the break-up of X-Force, Cable has continued to be associated with the X-Men and has been a member of the team, although not a regular one. Cable has also worked with the mercenary Deadpool.

From: (http://pub72.ezboard.com/fcomiccastlefrm12.showMessage?topicID=197.topic; viewed 6 January 2006):

Cable Team, Cable #104 COVER, DARKO MACAN TALKS ABOUT 'CABLE

Writer Darko Macan joins fellow Croatian Igor Kordey on Cable beginning with #105

"Together, Darko and Igor will be taking Cable on a wild ride that will culminate this July," Cable editor Andrew Lis said. "I don't want to say too much about the first arc, but we will see a completely unexpected take on the Askani religion, and a few radical changes in the status quo. All of this will follow Darko's customary crisp scripts dealing with realistic consequences for all involved. We'll make you think with this book."...

NRAMA: Will Cable's religion play a role in your stories and view of the character?

DM: Oh, yes.

NRAMA: Will your take on Cable return him more strongly to his X-Men ties, or will you keep him off on his own, traveling the world as a warrior-priest?

From: (http://www.aintitcool.com/display.cgi?id=14587; viewed 6 January 2006):
[In the comic book series] Soldier X... Cable has... been cast as a mystery man from the distant future, a globe spanning mutant freedom fighter, and now, a Christ-like figure destined to die for a greater good. Each characterization has been uninteresting. Cable has been put into one ludicrous situation after another since the SOLDIER X relaunch. Recently, Cable has been traveling the globe and spreading the word of the Askani religion.
From: (http://members.shaw.ca/subliminal/historyIII.htm; viewed 6 January 2006):
Rachel Summers

HISTORY After Apocalypse...

Two thousand years in the future, Rachel Summers surfaces from the timestream into the Dark Age of mutants. She finds a world dominated by Apocalypse and his sects of cruel mutants who engender the survival of the fittest. Seeking to restore harmony to humanity, Rachel forms a family of dissidents named the Clan Askani and she becomes their leader, the Mother Askani. The philosophy of the Askani sisterhood governs their way of life; their way of thinking becomes a neo-religion of hope. After a failed direct assault on Apocalypse, Rachel is enlightened by a series of visions which delineate a higher purpose. While adrift in the timestream, Rachel sees a multitude of timelines. She remembers Apocalypse's plan to possess her brother Nathan, the Chosen One, and her part in instigating Apocalypse's downfall.

For almost a century, Rachel's sisterhood of powerful psis wars against Apocalypse's empire, as they await the Chosen One's arrival. Then, Rachel discovers that Apocalypse has infected Nathan with a techno-organic virus. Fearing for her young brother's survival, Rachel sends a member of the sisterhood back in time to get him. Although they slow Nathan's techno-organic infection, Rachel has a clone created as a fail-safe.

When Apocalypse sends his deadliest cadre to retrieve the Chosen One, the Askani are crushed and the clone is taken. Barely surviving the attacks, Rachel arranges for Nathan's parents to raise him. Rachel psionically pulls Scott and Jean Summers' psyches through the centuries into prepared bodies. Sapping the last of her energies, Rachel grants her parents the abilities to save their son and fulfill the prophecy of Apocalypse's destruction. Rachel's ancient body collapses into an irreversible coma. Nevertheless, Rachel's powerful mind guides Nathan for the next ten years. As Apocalypse prepares to possess Nathan's clone, the Summers family strikes, ultimately defeating Apocalypse. Rachel passes on, as her family has realized their destiny. From the astral plane, Rachel sends Scott and Jean back to the past. Rachel continues to confer with her brother Cable, guiding and supporting him throughout his journeys. To prevent the rise of Apocalypse from ever happening, the Askani had selectively altered and influenced timeline events. Rachel eventually grants Nathan knowledge about the Twelve and their role in Apocalypse's quest for power.

To ensure that the Dark Age of Apocalypse never comes to be, the Summers family defeat Apocalypse in the twentieth century. Without Apocalypse, the Askani timeline is nullified, (Rachel does not emerge in the fortieth century). Consequently, Rachel remains drifting in the timestream, pulled by the flow of time. Rachel passes through a million years of darkness. Unexpectedly, the energy of the Phoenix Force dissipates and Rachel is pulled two billion years into the future, towards the end of all realities on Earth. This penultimate Earth is ruled by Gaunt, the greatest mass murderer in human history. Within Gaunt's prison, her powers muted, Rachel becomes a slave and a lure for her brother Cable. From the end of time, Rachel calls for Nathan's help. Nathan arrives and accepts Gaunt's challenge for Rachel's freedom. Nathan wins the battle and returns to the present with Rachel.

Overwhelmed by recent events Rachel decides to live in seclusion and attempt to lead a normal life. After a few weeks of attending college, Rachel encounters a radical anti-mutant student group. At a campus rally, Rachel stops the anti-mutant group's terrorist attempt and learns of their connection to the Dark Sisterhood. Rachel discovers the sisterhood is also responsible for incriminating her brother Nathan. Rachel leaves college to help her brother bring down the Dark Sisterhood and their leader the Dark Mother.

SOURCES:
Claremont, Chris. "Crossroads" The UNCANNY X-MEN No. 203 [1986-03].
Lobdell, Scott. "Sacrifice" The ADVENTURES of CYCLOPS and PHOENIX No. 4 [1994-08].
Lobdell, Scott. "Wish You Were Here" The ADVENTURES of CYCLOPS and PHOENIX No. 1 [1994-05].
Moore, John Francis. "Askani Rising: Part One" X-MEN: PHOENIX Vol. 1, No. 1 [1999-12].
Nicienza, Fabian. "Fathers and Sons Part Three: Day spring" CABLE Vol. 2, No. 8 [1994-02].
Weinberg, Robert. "Countdown Part Two: Armageddon Approaches" CABLE Vol. 2, No. 94 [2001-08].
Weinberg, Robert. "Last Man Standing" CABLE Vol. 2, No. 86 [2000-12].
Weinberg, Robert. "Part Three of Countdown: Eternity Waits!" CABLE Vol. 2, No. 95 [2001-09].
Weinberg, Robert. "Undertow" CABLE Vol. 2, No. 85 [2000-11].

Discussion

From: "Religion of the X-Men" message board started 15 May 2005 on Comic Book Resources website (http://forums.comicbookresources.com/archive/index.php/t-58362.html; viewed 13 June 2006):
Emerald Ghost
05-15-2005, 05:56 PM

Do you ever wonder what religion an X-Man is? I know they are just characters, but still, just for the fun of it.

I am wondering if you could guess their religion by their character, or what they've said, etc.


jeangreydp 05-15-2005, 10:48 PM

...I'd say Scott, Rachel and Nathan are all pretty skeptical when it comes to a higher power. Jean I see holding onto some type of religion mostly because it's been so ingrained in her upbringing...


Daithi
04-01-2006, 04:01 AM

I believe Nathan would still consider Askani to be his religion.

From: "(OFFTOPIC) Sleepwalker and a RANT!" thread started 9 April 1996 on rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks newsgroup (http://groups.google.com/group/rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks/browse_thread/thread/530027d02cbeb884/7c688dd20f2f433c; viewed 13 June 2006):
From: Brian
Date: Wed, Apr 10 1996 12:00 am

Say, this [religious affiliations of the X-Men] would be a neat thread... Anyone know any issues where a X-Member professed his/her religion?


From: Ryan W. Fitzpatrick
Date: Wed, Apr 10 1996 12:00 am

...Don't know any others for sure, but would Cable's praying to the mother Askani be considered a religion???


From: Katharine Weizel
Date: Wed, Apr 10 1996 12:00 am

Quasi-religious philosophy? Yeah, why not.


From: Blase Martin Louis
Date: Thurs, Apr 11 1996 12:00 am

re: "...would Cable's praying to the mother Askani be considered a religion?"

Works in my book. Kinda weird, though, worshipping your sister as a religious figure.


From: Brian
Date: Thurs, Apr 11 1996 12:00 am

Hey, works for me. Better than the early days, when he worshipped on the altar of Really Big Guns. :)

From: "X-Men religious affiliations" thread started 1 June 2002 on rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks newsgroup (http://groups.google.com/group/rec.arts.comics.marvel.xbooks/browse_thread/thread/78e6830d00083d2f/102a03cd2dab9fda; viewed 13 June 2006):
From: Chris Dodson
Date: Sat, Jun 1 2002 9:38 pm

I'm looking for information on the religious beliefs of all the current X-Men for a story I'm submitting to Marvel. The only one I know for sure is Nightcrawler (Catholic). I get the impression that Wolverine is an atheist or agnostic, but I have no in-comic evidence to support this. Any help you guys could give me would be greatly appreciated. Also, in your responses, could you provide titles and issue numbers of the comics in which the information is stated? Thanks.


From: Mike Kantor
Date: Sat, Jun 1 2002 11:38 pm

Cable is Askani!

Storm believes in the "Bright Lady"...


From: Kenneth
Date: Sun, Jun 2 2002 11:59 am

...Cable is Askani, and should not count as standard religion. (I don't really think that there are Askanians among us.)

From: "What are the religious beliefs of the main mutants in the X-Books?" forum discussion started 16 January 2007 on "Comic Book Resources" website (http://forums.comicbookresources.com/archive/index.php/t-160293.html; viewed 16 May 2007):

01-16-2007, 03:51 PM
What do you think the religious beliefs of the following mutants are?


FortKnox
01-19-2007, 12:00 AM

We know what Cable's is and that is the Askani which was started by his sister from a (somewhat) another mother Rachel.

From: "Religious Characters In Marvel" forum discussion started 15 September 2006 on "Comic Book Resources" website (http://forums.comicbookresources.com/archive/index.php/t-143850.html; viewed 25 May 2007):

Nogs
09-15-2006, 09:01 PM

The other day I was thinking about religion and comic books... What I'm interested in is the way religious characters are portrayed in comic books...

I think the first step is listing what characters are what religion...


Deadpooligan
09-15-2006, 09:44 PM

Mags is actually a born Jewish who was raised by gypsies in his youth.

His kids, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch are gypsy.

...Cable is Askani. At least I think it's a faith...

From: "Religious Super Heroes PC or otherwise" forum discussion, started 17 September 2003 on "HERO Games" website (http://www.herogames.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-8036.html; viewed 12 July 2007):

Hermit
Sep 17th, '03, 09:38 PM

Another thread got me to thinking a bit about religious super heroes. They do occur in comic books. Some it barely gets mentioned, some few are quite devout in their faith...

How much or little does your typical super human in your campaign (or game if you are a player) let his/her faith affect his/her life especially AS a super hero?


McCoy
Sep 18th, '03, 07:40 AM

Should also mention that my games take place in an alternate Marvel universe, one player did worship Apocalypse as a god, another was a time traveler (and Magneto's great-great-granddaughter) who had a religion founded by Sam Guthre worshiping Professor X, Magneto, Cable and Apocalypse.


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