THE X-MEN PROJECT: CHAPTER 42 – SABRETOOTH IS A DOG MAN

Chapter 42

Victor Creed was born sometime/somewhere in the 19th century Canadian Frontier. While Logan’s origin tale does the future Wolverine no favors, readers learn that Victor Creed had it much worse. When his mutant powers first appeared, his father caged him and would rip his canine teeth out of his skull everyday. The teeth would grow back due to his healing factor and the process would repeat until Victor killed his father. Victor escaped his home to reunite his brother and sister. His siblings had recently liberated a rather savage mutant from Nathaniel Essex. The future Mr. Sinister had been collecting mutants in Canada to slice and dice. Thus, the chalky geneticist is the reason why Sabretooth’s siblings were able to introduce Victor to Wolverine.

Things happen and Saul Creed ends up getting killed. Victor blames Wolverine for what happened and a vendetta is born. Year later, Sabretooth would retaliate against Logan by killing his lover Silver Fox. Due to the Hama run and later tampering, it would turn out that Wolverine wasn’t that fond of Silver Fox. Plus, she didn’t die. Everyone would later reunite as part of Team X. Throw in John Wraith and Maverick to round out our mutant Black Ops team and you’ve got the early to mid 90s in a nutshell. During this time, Sabretooth throws down with Mystique and sires Graydon Creed. Some time after that, Sabretooth abandons Team X to work as a freelance mercenary in Saigon.

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Victor and Logan first met in the Modern Era after Sabretooth had teamed up with the Constrictor to fight Iron Fist and Misty Knight. While Phoenix showed up around some of those early Iron Fist stories, nothing directly connected Wolvie to Sabretooth until the Mutant Massacre. Right before Gambit recruits Sabretooth for the Marauders, Sabretooth fights The Black Cat and Spider-Man on behalf of The Foreigner. The Black Cat nearly loses her leg to Sabretooth, but is saved thanks to a well-placed crowbar. But, things aren’t resolved as Sabretooth gets the orders to head into the Morlock Tunnels to murder innocent homeless mutants.

Sabretooth is directly implicated in the deaths of Mole and Chickenwings. But, the worse comes when Sabretooth follows the Morlock tunnels back into the X-Mansion. Psylocke is left alone to defend the Mansion against Sabretooth and wins. Sabretooth would later gravely injure Psylocke during a brief period of captivity. But, that’s an aspect of what Sabretooth does. He likes to find the most defenseless people and abuse them. Make no mistake that Sabretooth is one of the worst mutants allowed to love, but there is a method to his madness. Later, he would work with the Marauders to target Polaris and Madelyne Pryor at strategic times to draw the X-Men into a larger trap.

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When Sabretooth started a life of costume mercenary work. He aimed small, but always meant to feed a larger desire of carnage. It was only after dealing with mutant telepaths that would give him the Glow would cause him to taper off. The “glow” were the Psionic charges that telepaths would fire into his brain that would cause Sabretooth to calm down suggesting that there might be a chemical imbalance to the mutant. Sabretooth would later hire the mutant telepath Birdy to keep him telepathically charged, but Birdy would later be killed by his son Graydon Creed. Fearing for his mental sanctity, Sabretooth would turn to the X-Men for help as a means of getting his psionic fix.

A bone claw to the brain from Wolverine fixed this matter and then we went back into traditional violent Sabretooth mode. Sabretooth would later be shipped off to X-Factor where he worked as a secret government mole designated to assassinate team members who stepped out of line. This echoes back to his work within the Marauders, as a long-term planner who knew that he was always being called upon to clean up messes. Sabretooth would later work with a revamped Weapon X program, Apocalypse and Romulus to keep crafting plans to keep Wolverine on the ropes. Things were going good until Wolverine used the Muramasa blade to cut off Sabretooth’s left arm and head.

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Over the years, there has been an attempt to force bonds between Wolverine and Sabretooth. Whether it’s tying their origins to a long lost lineage of Lupine Human ancestors or trying to suggest that they are father and son. None of that pans out, as writers realize that it would only serve to take the vicious bite out of Victor Creed. Well, this all changed when Sabretooth died and was sent to Hell. Wolverine went after him to find that his spirit had been broken and he was left as a lap dog for the Devil. Victor steals Satan’s sword and battles it out with Wolverine, because that the way things are done. As quick as that sudden mood change was, Sabretooth dies again in Hell. But, that all is forgotten by the time that he returns to Earth to start a Yakuza gang war. Comics, people.

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The one thing about the character that continues to make me happy is his willingness to slip back in awful acts of evil. He guts the homeless, kills women, attacks children and lives to destroy the mutant world. He works to balance out Wolverine, as Logan constantly sees what he could’ve been had things gone wrong. That being said, Victor Creed goes beyond that with the Sabretooth persona. He is a mutant given true power over his destiny, but all he wants to do is rack up a bodycount. Nothing is as frightening as someone that can hear something like Xavier’s dream and scoff at it. Not because he can’t follow it, but because he’s already decided that terror is the only thing that matters in life.

In a Post-Axis Marvel Universe, I’m not sure that I truly buy an inverted Sabretooth. What Remender wants to do with the new Avengers team is neat, but there are too many character shifts to make it work. I’ll be intrigued to see if Rogue’s Avengers team can go out of its way to forgive a mutant or two that took part in genocide. But, that might just be the fatal moralist in me. Some actions should never be forgiven and Sabretooth has had his razor sharp talons in quite a few of those pies.

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