The Usual Flaws
In an average issue, Cable is back from fighting Apocalypse with the X-Men, but his problems have just begun.
Story & Script
There's no point in debating the dull soap opera of Cable's life, as that's been a given for an entire run of issues. If you're reading this era of Cable, that's what you're in for.
Banalities aside, this issue hovers around a low-grade of okay. Nothing is egregiously objectionable, but there are some weak spots. Dialog from Stacey and Irene is utterly interchangeable. Blaquesmith seems to be played for comedy. The mysterious futurists in the interlude are so vague they are nearly unparsable, but hopefully that's leading to something interesting. Also, why are the introductory narrative boxes written in second person? It's an awkward choice.
The one bit of dialog that – to me – exposes Pruett's lack of abilities is Cable flatly claiming the past week was the worst of his life and that “everything I've ever known, everything I've ever lived for... is gone.” Yes, fighting Apocalypse was harrowing, but given what Cable has lived through it seems to be a bit of hyperbole. What are these things he's known and lived for that are gone? It could have been framed more effectively if Cable talk about the joy of fighting alongside his father only amplifying his loss, or if he revealed he was partially sorry to have killed Apocalypse, thus destroying his own future – including the wife he once loved. But, no, Pruett just drops a cliché and keeps moving.
The art isn't bad in the scope of Cable, though not good by any other measure. Juan Santacruz seems to have been chosen solely for his ability to draw Cable's ET-equse mentor Blaquesmith, because his humans are universally weak. He sketches Cable with a a panty-waist and a hockey-player's nose, and repeatedly loses his sense of scope and proportion (and this is before the TO virus ravages his body). Stacey fares better, drawn with an indie comics plainness that suits her.
Santacruz commits one of my personal pet peeves – not sketching facial features onto small characters who we can still see perfectly well. Michael Ryan acquits himself well in a mid-issue interlude, though it's colored a little garishly. Finally, I really hate the lettering in this era of Cable. It's distracting and hard to read.
At the point you read an issue and think, “That was almost okay... for this comic,” that's a clear sign to stay away. Even if you're a Cable fanatic there's nothing here for you, unless you're a rabid completist.