SABRETOOTH: Page 4 of 12

Publication Date: 27th Jul 2023
Written By: Douglas Mangum and Monolith.
Image Work: Tanwer and Binaryan (Ryan Jones).


Shortly after the confrontation with Sinister, the mansion was once again abandoned by both the X-Men & X-Factor, who apparently left the corpse of Sabretooth buried in the rubble of the destroyed mansion. It was beneath the rubble that the returning New Mutants found him, after Mirage detected via her Valkyrie sense someone dying. Once he was dug free, the still living Sabretooth attacked the group of youths, but was too weak to properly put up a fight and seemingly died from exhaustion. Nevertheless, Mirage observed that, though Sabretooth was dead, she didn’t sense that death was coming for him. Thinking it was just another example of her powers having been acting erratic recently, the group dismissed the oddity and left Sabretooth’s corpse behind. [New Mutants (1st series) #75]

Despite his apparent death, Sabretooth indeed remained alive. Some months later, as Logan’s birthday approached, he returned to Madripoor, where Logan had been spending time in between activities with the X-Men. Possibly due to his still recuperating, Sabretooth declined to attack Logan, as he usually did. Instead, he shadowed his old foe as he was investigating some heavily armed criminals. When they seemed to evade Wolverine for a brief time, Sabretooth decided to let his presence – and life – be known by killing them first and leaving a note behind that no one was to kill Logan… but Sabretooth. [Wolverine (2nd series) #10]

With Sinister apparently dead after his confrontation with the X-Men & X-Factor at the Xavier mansion, Sabretooth was once again a free mercenary agent. Under a contract for the Red Skull, Sabretooth assassinated the prime minister of Symkaria, the home country of Silver Sable, as part of a plot to engineer a war between that country and the United States. However, when a witness implicated Sabretooth in the assassination, Silver Sable accompanied Captain America to Mexico, where Sabretooth had been cultivating a group of mercenary outlaws. During a fight with Silver Sable, Sabretooth overshot an attack and caused a wall to fall down upon him, apparently killing him. [Amazing Spider-Man (1st series) #322-324]

Though Captain America had been convinced he was dead, Sabretooth lived and soon returned to New York, where he once more began hunting any Morlock survivors, such as Chicken Legs and Mole. Though he killed Chicken Legs, Mole eluded Sabretooth, who next drew his attention to Archangel, whom he downed from the air by a sniper rifle. Nevertheless, Archangel proved too strong for an easy kill and Sabretooth was badly injured in their fight. Possibly due to his injuries, Sabretooth mistakenly believed that he had killed Archangel and departed before finishing the job. Returning to the Morlock tunnels to recuperate, Sabretooth ran into Mole once again, and finished his earlier hunt. [X-Factor (1st series) #51-53]

Sabretooth seemed to stay for some time in the tunnels, continuing his hunt for Morlock survivors. The sounds of one such slaughter attracted the attention of Caliban, a former Morlock who had found a new purpose in life as a servant to Apocalypse. Now with a transformed body far stronger than what he had before, Caliban had spent weeks in the Morlock tunnels hunting Sabretooth. Spoiling for a decent fight for some time, Sabretooth was overjoyed at the opportunity to battle the hulking Caliban. However, the transformed Caliban proved too strong and actually snapped Sabretooth’s back, leaving his apparent corpse behind in the sewers. [New Mutants (1st series) #90-91]

Though left for dead, death again declined to come for Sabretooth. For some weeks, he lived in the sewers, feeding on albino alligators which lived there, until he was roused by the passing robotic little girl, Elsie Dee. Hearing her speak aloud to herself about getting help for the injured Wolverine, Sabretooth suddenly became obsessed with his old foe and attacked.

Inexplicably, Sabretooth professed that he was Logan’s father, an idea which Logan immediately rejected. The conflict between the two was complicated by various factors. First, Manhattan was at the time experiencing an extremely powerful rainstorm, which was flooding the tunnels. Further, with the intervention of Cable and Elsie Dee, Sabretooth was captured by Nick Fury and put into restraints in a S.H.I.E.L.D. helicopter. Though an agent had applied a sedative, it was not enough to stop Sabretooth, who quickly escaped and immediately went for the throat of his “son,” Wolverine. It was the quick action of the robotic Elsie Dee which tossed Sabretooth off the airborne helicopter to the river far below. Though he had only been in restraints briefly, it had been long enough for an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. to have sampled Sabretooth’s DNA, which proved to Wolverine that Sabretooth’s claim of being his father was not true, no matter how much Sabretooth had seemed to believe it. [Wolverine (2nd series) #41-43]

[Note: Subsequent stories have reaffirmed that Sabretooth is not Wolverine’s father, and that those memories were part of the memory implants placed in him by Weapon X, likely as part of a cover identity at one time. What isn’t clear is how long Sabretooth was operating under this delusion prior to the encounter in the tunnels. He may have believed Wolverine was his son ever since leaving Weapon X, or the trauma from his encounter with Caliban could have shook loose the false memories or at some other point in-between.]

Despite the prodigious drop, Sabretooth was none the worse and slipped back into Manhattan, looking for his next confrontation with Wolverine. When the millionaire Ronald Parvenue intended to commemorate his new midtown casino with a mysterious creature recently caught in Canada, Sabretooth surmised that Wolverine couldn’t stay away. Sabretooth was correct and, as it happened, the creature was the powerful Blackfoot forest spirit called Hunter in Darkness. When the presentation went badly due to a sniper’s intervention, Wolverine intervened, bringing out both Sabretooth and Lady Deathstrike, who like Sabretooth wanted Wolverine’s life. The ensuing battle was chaos, as the three combatants had to deal with the now-freed Hunter in Darkness and the sniper, a woman named Emmy Doolan whose father had been killed by the creature. Her mercury-tipped bullets had an odd effect on both Sabretooth and Wolverine, triggering various memory implants embedded in them by Weapon X years before. Ironically, a side effect of the hallucinations was Sabretooth recognizing that his belief that he was Wolverine’s father was just programming. The two soon recovered from the mercury’s effects and, while Wolverine dealt with Ms. Doolan, Sabretooth escaped. [Wolverine (2nd series) #45-46]

While traveling through the Midwest, Sabretooth encountered Jack Russell, known as the Werewolf by Night, in a country bar. Immediately recognizing each other for who and what they were, Sabretooth decided to flaunt a challenge to Russell. He exited the establishment with a young woman, leaving it clear for Jack that the woman wouldn’t survive the night without his intervention. Russell followed Sabretooth and indeed found him in the middle of an assault on the woman. Becoming the werewolf, the two clashed and Sabretooth seemed about to meet his match when a trio of hunters intervened. Having seen Sabretooth as a normal human being attacked by a monster, they fired at Russell, who ran off into the night. [Marvel Comics Presents (1st series) #98]

Continuing his occupation as a freelance assassin, Sabretooth was nonetheless occasionally the target of assassination himself. While on a job in Hong Kong targeting a Triad boss, Sabretooth was attacked by an “alpha-class” psi-talent, a young woman named of Birdy. Unfortunately for the telepath, her best was not good enough and Sabretooth shrugged off her attack and turned upon her. Though Sabretooth left her alive and, it seems, relatively unharmed physically, Birdy was under no delusions that she was anything but Sabretooth’s property. From there on, Birdy serviced Sabretooth with her telepathy, bestowing a telepathic “glow” which he found sated his animalistic and murderous urges. Creed enjoyed the “glow” so much that he soon grew addicted to it. It also seems that Sabretooth used the comely Birdy sexually, forcing her to service him physically as well as mentally. [Maverick One-Shot]

With Birdy at his side, Creed cultivated a more respectable image for himself, even appearing for jobs in a tailored suit and tie rather than the fur-covered union suit. Sabretooth brought along Birdie when he was hired by the joint forces of the Fenris twins and Matsu’o Tsurayaba (the current head of the Hand ninja clan). The villains were attempting to recreate the Soviet Super-Soldier Program from the Cold War, and needed the Carbonadium Synthesizer to stabilize their recently unearthed operative, Omega Red. Their combined forces had already captured most of the X-Men’s “blue” team, but Wolverine evaded them and it was Wolverine whom they needed for information.  Creed’s memory problems shone through at this point, as Omega Red looked familiar but Sabretooth was unable to place him. The captured Gambit, however, was a much more recent acquaintance and Sabretooth took joy in hinting at LeBeau’s dark and hidden past to his fellow X-Men.

Assigned to the hunt with Tsurayaba’s mind-controlled Psylocke, Sabretooth quickly found both Wolverine and their former mutual teammate Maverick. Psylocke was not under the Hand’s control anymore, however, and she orchestrated a Trojan Horse gambit by telepathically taking over Creed’s mind and having him pretend to capture Logan and North. Sabretooth and Psylocke returned with the two in bonds, and Wolverine was placed in a machine designed to force him to recall the Team X mission to relocate the Carbonadium Synthesizer from so many years ago. Once the information resurfaced, however, Psylocke broke her ruse as being mind-controlled and attacked Matsu’o and Fenris. Still under Psylocke’s command, Sabretooth did not respond at first, but eventually broke himself free of her mental control and fought back. However, with the X-Men freed by Maverick, the ensuing battle caused explosions that allowed them all to escape. With no one left to pay him, Sabretooth departed. [X-Men (2nd series) #5-7]

Though mysticism rarely intersected with his life, Sabretooth was unwillingly drawn into a supernatural battle when the mage Mordred the Mystic sought a way to delay an investigation by Interpol agent Sam Buchanan and his friends. Searching Buchanan’s memories, Mordred found an antagonistic history between Buchanan and Sabretooth, and summoned the latter to both vex and assist Buchanan in a hunt for one of the missing Darkhold pages. Sabretooth seemed bent on killing Buchanan for a mission that had gone wrong years before in the Falklands. However, when demonic creatures related to the N’Garai attacked, Sabretooth joined forces with Buchanan and his team in order to stay alive. In the end, Mordred succeeded in his goals and sent Sabretooth back from whence he had been summoned, all without his understanding of the role he had played. [Darkhold: Pages from the Book of Sins #3-4]

Continuing his solo mercenary work, Sabretooth accepted a job as an assassin from a Mr. Shiro, head of a splinter group of Yakuza calling itself the “Yakuzida.” When the FBI hired Knightwing Restorations to protect Karl Powers, an informant-turned witness against the Yakuzida, Shiro found his own operatives incapable of getting to the witness. The assignment brought Sabretooth back into conflict with his old foe, Iron Fist, who was a friend and ally to Colleen Wing and Misty Knight. To Sabretooth’s surprise, Iron Fist was hardly at the top of his game, his moves seemingly stiff and unpracticed. However, just as it seemed Sabretooth was about to finish off his adversary, Iron Fist managed to summon a blow which knocked Sabretooth into an electrical conduit. The resulting explosions allowed Iron Fist, his allies and, most importantly, the witness to escape. [Marvel Comics Presents (1st series) #133-136]

As it happened, Sabretooth’s path would soon cross another old foe, namely Spider-Man. Aware of the manipulations he had suffered in the past, Sabretooth did not wish the same for others. His own need for revenge caused him to search for Doctor Phillip Chambers, a Canadian geneticist who had been part of the Weapon X project. In the years since, Dr. Chambers had gone to the “private sector” for the Roxxon Corporation and was designing mutagenic compounds and testing them on animals from the New York City zoo. Sabretooth’s search brought him into conflict with Spider-Man and the Punisher, who were likewise following a trail of murders to Dr. Chamber’s project. However, before they could stop him, Sabretooth found and murdered the doctor, ending any further investigation into Roxxon’s activities. [Spider-Man / Punisher / Sabretooth: Designer Genes]

Sabretooth was attending a professional wrestling match when he was attacked by a Shiva robot. Part of a remnant Weapon X program to track down rogue agents, the Shiva program had been inadvertently activated by Wolverine during an investigation into a Weapon X base. Though he easily defeated this first attacking robot, Sabretooth was informed by John Wraith that the victory was hollow, as the Shiva program would send another robot incapable of being beaten the same way. At first, Sabretooth did not recognize his former Team X teammate, but soon saw past the memory wipes on his own. [Wolverine (2nd series) #60]

The reason for Wraith’s intervention, however, had not been the Shiva program, but their mutual former teammate, Mastodon. Like Wraith, Mastodon had been given an age suppression factor, which had kept him alive and younger much longer than would have been natural. Now, the age suppression properties had begun to break down, accelerating his age to infirmity, and Wraith was gathering his old teammates to address the problem. Much to both Sabretooth and Wolverine’s surprise, one of those teammates was “Silver Fox,” whom both of them remembered being killed at the cabin in Mount Logan. Now an agent of Hydra, Silver Fox had access to information which led the group to the hideout of Aldo Ferro, the Cuban crime lord and psi-talent who had aided the original Weapon X program in their memory implantation process. The reunited Team X's confrontation with Ferro (or "Psi-Borg" as he called himself)  was both surreal and inconclusive, as his psi-powers enabled him to manipulate their perceptions throughout the battle. In the course of this, Ferro manipulated Sabretooth into killing Silver Fox again(?), leaving the mystery of her resurrection and return unanswered. To those manipulated by Ferro’s illusions, Sabretooth seemed to have been eaten by a tree… and disappeared. [Wolverine (2nd series) #61-64]