The X-Men villain and Wolverine rival Sabretooth made a heroic and heartbreaking sacrifice in Weapon X that has thus far been for nothing.
The mutant Sabretooth is known for being an exceptionally cruel villain, constantly tormenting Wolverine and the other X-Men out of a sick sense of pleasure. However, in the aftermath of the “AXIS” crossover event, Sabretooth’s morality was inverted. As a result, the animalistic mutant gained more heroic tendencies and regretted his past atrocities. However, this all came to an end in Weapon X (2017) #26-27 (by Greg Pak, Fred Van Lente, Luca Pizzari, Roberto di Salvo, Alberto Alburquerque, Ibraim Roberson, Frank D’Armata, VC’s Joe Caramagna and VC’s Chris Eliopoulos), when Sabretooth visited hell and witnessed the suffering of his son, Graydon Creed.
The young Creed was an anti-mutant bigot during his lifetime who used his political influence to sway others to his hateful cause. His hatred of mutants developed in part because he had been abandoned by his two mutant parents, Sabretooth and Mystique. After seeing Graydon in hell, Sabretooth felt guilty and responsible for failing to be a good role model for his son.
Sabretooth sacrificed his soul to the Devil to bring Graydon back to life, and as a result his moral inversion was lost. The mutant villain returned to the land of the living as cruel and heartless as ever. With his morality gone, the vicious villain no longer cared about atoning for his past and went right back to doing what he did best, inflicting pain and death on others for his own personal gain.
This storyline is both tragic and touching, but it has one major problem: Graydon Creed has not been seen since he was resurrected. It is unknown whether he retaken his anti-mutant position or if his father’s sacrifice caused him to have a change of heart. It’s possible that he doesn’t even know how or why he was brought back to life. This lack of follow-up takes away an important part of Sabretooth’s sacrifice and makes it seem meaningless as it fails to show what Graydon Creed has done with the new life he has been given.
If Graydon uses his second chance at life to continue his anti-mutant activities, then Sabretooth’s sacrifice becomes tragic in a new way. Although he has been freed from Hell, Graydon’s actions will undoubtedly send him right back. Sabretooth may have believed that his was capable of redeeming himself, but Graydon will have proven his father wrong, and the sacrifice will have meant nothing.
On the other hand, if Graydon uses this opportunity to turn over a new leaf, new significance is brought to Sabretooth’s sacrifice. If his son takes up a new, more benevolent mission, it will mean that his father was actually able to do some good in the brief time he spent as a hero, and will suggest that his sacrifice may have been worth it.
Either one of these possibilities could make for a compelling story. Showing the consequences of Sabretooth’s sacrifice makes what he did for his son more endearing and relatable, whether the end result is good or bad. Nearly every good parent has made sacrifices for their child at some point, and as such understands the pride of their children improving as a result, as well as the pain of them stubbornly refusing to make a change for the better.
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