- "I was born into war, bred into it. People think they understand pain, but they have no concept of it. What's the most pain you've ever felt? Maybe the kind that leaves you more... machine than man."
- ―Cable to Weasel
Cable is an enigmatic time-traveling cybernetic mutant soldier from the future. He is the son of Scott Summers and Jean Grey.
Little is known about Cable's backstory, only fragments such as that he was born into an apocalyptic future ravaged by war. At unknown points, he married and had a daughter named Hope, became bionically enhanced and became a time traveler. Later in life, he worked as some kind of soldier or bounty hunter tracking down violent mutants and criminals. One of the criminals he had frequently clashed with, named Firefist, eventually tracked down Cable's family and killed them.
At the end of the film in a post-credits scene, Wade Wilson suggested to the audience that Cable will appear in the sequel.
In the future, Cable was a kind of soldier with a wife and daughter and they lived in peace in the future. Cable hunted the mutant known as Firefist, which led him to invade Cable's home and killed his family with his pyrokinetic powers, leaving Cable as the sole survivor. Cable wanted revenge, deciding to kill him in the past to stop the future where his family was murdered from occurring.
Cable uses his time-traveling device in order to travel back in time to just after an incident that got Firefist sent to the Ice Box prison facility. Cable breaches the Ice Box, where he finds Russell. He kills every single guard in the prison facility easily via his weapons and his cybernetic arm and finally prepares to kill Russell as part of his goal to prevent his family's gruesome death. However, he is stopped by Wade Wilson, who is attempting to defend Russell.
Despite his efforts, Deadpool is brutally defeated by Cable and he is unable to heal himself due to the collar around his neck which inhibited his mutant ability to heal. Preparing to kill Russell again, Wade wakes up from his apparent death and wakes up from his vision of Vanessa after his collar was broken due to Cable throwing him from a walkway.
After regaining his powers, Wade uses almost all of his strength and fights Cable which explains that he wants to kill Russell in order to prevent a disaster in the future. Wilson is defeated again by Cable, who takes Wade's skee-ball token which he received from Vanessa. Wade tries to use Cable's pulse gun against him, causing a powerful destructive explosion which destroys most of the prison. Deadpool and Cable fall out of the Ice Box into the snowy mountains.
Wade is hit brutally by a rock and falls into an iced lake, causing him to experience another vision of Vanessa which helps him to understand that he still has a chance to save Russell and perhaps redeem himself for not saving Vanessa from death, whilst Cable uses his cybernetic arm to stop himself from crashing. In the aftermath, Russell is left alone at the Ice Box without help or guard, but he befriends the Juggernaut.
Wilson later organizes a team of mutants to fight Cable and save Russell, whom he calls the X-Force. Cable captures and interrogates Weasel to learn about Firefist's location and Deadpool's plan to rescue him. X-Force launches their assault on the prison truck transporting Russell by leaping from a plane and parachuting in, but all members other than Wilson and Domino die in the landing. Russell frees the Juggernaut, who destroys the truck and escapes with Russell. Cable decides to team up with Wilson and they plan to stop Russell from killing the orphanage's abusive headmaster, an act which sets Russell down his murderous path. Cable still wants to kill him but agrees to give Deadpool a chance to talk Russell down.
Wilson, Cable, and Domino arrive at the orphanage to stop Russell and the Juggernaut but face difficulty fighting the latter, who proves too powerful for them. Colossus arrives and distracts the Juggernaut long enough for Cable and Wilson to catch up with Russell. They manage to reach Russell before he can kill the Headmaster and Wilson attempts to calm him down, putting on the power-suppressing collar and offering himself in the headmaster's place. Cable shoots at Russell, but Wilson leaps in front of the bullet and is hit in the heart. Wilson dies and Russell loses his desire for revenge, saving Cable's family in the future.
Wilson's death allows him to reunite with Vanessa, though she again tells him that it is not yet his time. Cable travels back in time to before the fight and discreetly slips the skee-ball token into Wilson's costume, which ends up blocking the bullet and saving his life.
After the battle and preventing Russell's vengeance, the headmaster is run over by Dopinder. In the aftermath, Cable decides to stay in the present day, knowing that his family is now alive, to prevent the Earth from being destroyed.
Cable, for the most part, is a soldier: steady, disciplined, and focused on his mission. However, despite his very serious demeanor, he does possess a sense of humor as shown with his back and forth with Deadpool. The loss of his wife and child has made him willing to break certain morals for the greater good such as killing Russell as a child in order to prevent the post-apocalyptic future he will create as an adult. After watching Wade sacrifice himself to save Cable's timeline, Cable was deeply moved by Wade's actions and rather than return to his timeline (which was now fixed thanks to Deadpool due to child Russell seeing a mutant die to save him) Cable instead opts to use the final charge on his time travel device to save Wade instead, saving both Wade and his timeline.
Powers and Abilities
- Bionic Physiology: Much of Cable’s body, namely his left side, has been altered with cybernetics and bionics, due to his techno-organic virus, giving him his cyborg appearance along with a wide range of abilities.
- Bionic Arm: Cable's prosthetic left arm is bulletproof.
- Enhanced Strength: Cable's strength is far superior than the average human. He was able to knock out Deadpool with just a few punches and rip a door off a truck with ease.
- Enhanced Durability: His body is highly durable allowing him to survive situations impossible for normal humans. He was able to survive the crash of the DMC transport truck and a direct kick from Juggernaut.
- Enhanced Agility: Cable is incredibly agile and reflexes, being able to jump over a speeding truck with ease.
- Enhanced Vision: Cable's eye has advanced scanning and holographic capabilities. It was able to scan his many weapons and pick out the perfect pieces needed to build a better gun. The eye gives Cable vital information on his surroundings such as potential threats, location of items and seems to enhance his vision well beyond that of a normal human, including telescopic and spectrum lenses.
- Shield Generation: Cable's bionics allow him to project a oval shaped force-field from his arms. While being shot at close range, Cable was able to withstand the bullets rippling against him with the force field. The shield was strong enough to take a full blast of fire from Firefist.
- Computer Interaction: Cable’s bionic body allows him to interact with machines and computer devices. Cable was able grab one of the electrical cables in the Ice Box, and hack into its systems to uncover the prisoner layout of the building. The information traveled through his arm into his eye, which displayed the information holographically.
- Telekinesis: Cable has some telekinetic abilities as he used them to grab his gun from ten feet away.
- "There's nothing I can't kill."
- ―Cable to Deadpool
- Master Combatant: Cable is outstandingly skilled in hand to hand combat, as he is able to easily overpower Deadpool, a highly proficient hand-to-hand combatant, with ease. He was able to singlehandedly take out a whole squad of DMC soldiers.
- Master Marksman: Due to his training as a soldier and bounty hunter Cable is a highly capable marksman and able to use a wide variety of weapons with ease and accuracy. After he reversed time to prevent Deadpool's noble death, he placed Wilson's skee-ball token directly under Deadpool's scabbard-strap and shot it with pinpoint accuracy.
- Knife Mastery: Cable is experienced with using a knife in combat. This is seen during his fights with Deadpool.
- Master Engineer: Cable showed skills in engineering as he was able to make a new futuristic rifle using parts which were outdated for his time. The gun could serve as a shock-wave weapon, normal firearm, or a grenade launcher.
- Cable's Customized Rifle: Cable has a specially designed futuristic rifle, built from pieces of various guns. It has three different modes of fire: normal bullets, grenades, and an energy pulse. The energy pulse function at full power is strong enough to send the Juggernaut flying backward. The rifle also has an advanced scope and flashlight.
- FN EGLM Grenade Launcher: Cable uses this grenade launcher during his Attack on the Ice Box.
- Walther PPQ Q5 Match: Cable uses this handgun as his sidearm. He dual wields two of them during the final shootout against the Essex attendants.
- Combat Knife: Cable uses a combat knife for closes quarters combat. He uses this knife against Deadpool during their fights.
- Time Travel Device: With the use of a wrist-mounted device, Cable is capable of traveling through time. Cable used it to travel over fifty years into the past so he could save his family. It is capable of physical time travel as well as mental.
- Cable was teased in the post-credits scene of Deadpool. Mel Gibson, Dolph Lundgren, and Keira Knightley were mentioned by Deadpool as actors who could portray Cable in the sequel.
- Cable was originally planned to appear in X-Men: Days of Future Past in a role similar to the one that Bishop had in the film. He was considered "too big" of a character to be killed off, which is why Cable was written out of the film and replaced with Bishop.
- Deadpool refers to Cable as "Thanos", a nod to the fact that Josh Brolin - the actor who portrays Cable - also plays the character Thanos in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
- Brad Pitt met with the director to discuss the part of Cable, but couldn't commit due to scheduling conflicts, although he was cast as Vanisher instead.
- Dolph Lundgren, Mel Gibson, Kurt Russell, Bruce Willis, Alec Baldwin, Sylvester Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Stephen Lang, Ron Perlman, Pierce Brosnan, and David Harbour were considered for the part of Cable.
- Michael Shannon was reportedly eyed for Cable but dropped out due to scheduling issues.
- Russell Crowe was Deadpool co-creator Rob Liefeld's choice for Cable.
- In the comics, Cable is the son of Cyclops, it is currently unknown if they share this connection in the film universe, however, Cable does share the surname "Summers", hinting at some kind of connection.
- In the comics, Cable is the son of Cyclops and Madelyne Pryor; the clone of the late Jean Grey. Although Jean is genetically his mother by proxy and helped raise him and teach him how to use his powers in the future.
- Josh Brolin signed a four-film deal to play Cable, and described his appearance here as just the introduction for the character, with "three more movies to reveal more."