GAUNT

Full-body shot of GauntReal Name: Unrevealed

Identity/Class: Extra-temporal (Earth-Borderline) human cyborg; technology user.

Occupation: Warlord (exiled)

Affiliations:

(At death) "Sub-Human wretches" (his servants), unknown people using spherical ship;
(Previously) His armies

Enemies: Cable, Phoenix (Rachel Summers), unnamed captors who sentenced him to life on a near-dead Earth.

Known Relatives: None known

Aliases: None

Base of Operations: At death, was confined to a near-dead far-future Earth;

Previously mobile.

First Appearance: Cable II#83 (September, 2000),
    first named in Cable II#84 (October, 2000)

Powers/Abilities: Deliberately infected himself with a "weak" techno-organic [transmode] virus variant over which he had complete control (partially due to "nanotech drivers"), resulting in increased physical strength (Class 10?), reduced vulnerability to physical attack and effective immortality, as the nanotech replaces any body part which wears out and won't regenerate with "living steel." He has also utilized mind-control technology, was shown to use a sword in flashback, and previously had access to great armies.

History:

Gaunt whacks Cable

(Cable II#85, flashback) - He was, in his own words, "the great warlord of human history." With the aim of conquering his entire universe, he killed trillions in a war lasting over 10000 years where, "No crime was too great, no sin too depraved for [him] to commit in the name of that goal." Eventually he lost and was captured, convicted and sentenced to imprisonment upon an ancient, "Borderline" Earth, the common point all surviving Earths reach, to live alone until the sun goes out, served only by "sub-human wretches." Over one hundred thousand years later, Rachel Summers "washed up" on this ancient Earth, minus the Phoenix Force, and Gaunt, with her powers muted by the same devices that kept his in check, was able to enslave her and probe her mind, determining to lure Cable to the future for a fight to satisfy his lust for battle.

(Cable II#82 - BTS) - A caged Rachel Summers calls back in time to Cable for help.

(Cable II#83) - Rachel Summers telepathically calls back in time to Cable, and we see her held captive at Gaunt's feet, with handcuffs and chains around her ankles, as she says "He must be stopped... we can only do it together."

(Cable II#84) - Gaunt himself (named for the first time) calls back in time to Cable, calling Rachel his "guest" as she, crying, batters against a window, and tells Cable to join him "as time waits for no man. Not even you."

(Cable II#85) - Cable time-travels to Gaunt's future, and finds Rachel -- Gaunt's slave. He tells Cable his history, and Rachel says he's fascinated by good because it's so alien to him. At the end Gaunt challenges Cable to a fight, with the prize the chance for Cable to return to the modern era with Rachel, but both of them would be forced to remain on the Borderline Earth with Gaunt "till the end of time," if Cable were to lose. He accepts.

(Cable II#86) - Gaunt uses mind-control technology to give the sleeping Cable the nightmare of his TO-virus overrunning him, in an attempt to weaken Cable before the fight, but Rachel is able to dispel the illusion (despite the inhibitors in her handcuffs, she's still able to contact Cable in dreams). When a rested Cable awakes, he finds that Rachel's mind has been freed but not her powers, as Gaunt wants her to watch him "crush" Cable, since he forced her to lure Cable there in the first place. After they have an overtly civilized breakfast with Gaunt, where he gives more info about his origins, talking about how his captors ensured that he would have food, servants, everything he needed but nothing he wanted - no women, no tribute, no conversation and no battle, he offers Cable the use of his exercise room, as he wants him in prime condition for the fight (Cable declines). After taunting Cable, they both strip to the waist and prepare to fight bare-knuckle, with no powers, until one can't rise to continue the fight. Once the fight begins, Gaunt almost overwhelms Cable - who only manages to draw blood once, with a punch from his left [techno-organic] arm. As it seems that Cable finally can't continue, Rachel hits Gaunt from behind, but what finally beats him is that punch from Cable, which infected him with Cable's far more virulent TO-virus. As it manifests (shortly after Rachel's blow) he falls to the ground, unable to move and with spikes emanating from his body. After Rachel and Cable leave, a white spherical ship arrives, congratulates Gaunt on reuniting the Summers family then - in response to Gaunt telling them they promised him his freedom - opens and kills him, saying that the truest freedom is death.

HeadshotComments: Created by Robert Weinberg, Michael Ryan and Walden Wong

Weinberg's original conception of the character was more fitting of the name "Gaunt" than the version which eventually saw print, as his editors reputedly wanted a more "futuristic looking villain." The following is excerpted from the script to Cable II#83, from http://www.robertweinberg.net/cablescript.htm, and the version of the panel which saw print is the picture on the top-right of this page.
    Our villain (of the next plot arc) is very tall - seven feet or so - and very very thin. Almost stick-like in appearance. He's dressed in a 19th century black broadcloth suit, with a stovepipe black hat that makes him look even taller. He's wearing a ruffled white shirt and black bow-tie. His face is very lean and narrow, with deep-set eyes and sallow cheeks (maybe some thin lines going down the side of his face to emphasis the gauntness of his face?). He has thin lips which are twisted in a slight smile. He's looking straight forward, as if having his photo taken.

Profile by: Somebody

 

Clarifications:

He should be distinguished from:


Images:
Cable II#83, page 21 panel 1 (main)
Cable II#86, page 14, panel 3 (in action)
Cable II#85, page 18, panel 1 (head shot)


Appearances:
Cable II#82 (August, 2000) - Robert Weinberg (writer), Michael Ryan (pencils), Andrew Pepoy (inks), Mark Powers (editor)
Cable II#83 (September, 2000) - Robert Weinberg (writer), Michael Ryan (pencils), Walden Wong (inks), Mark Powers (editor)
Cable II#84-85 (October-November, 2000) - Robert Weinberg (writer), Michael Ryan (pencils), Nathan Massengill & Andrew Pepoy (inks), Mark Powers (editor)
Cable II#86 (December, 2000) - Robert Weinberg (writer), Esad Ribic (pencils), Lary Stucker (inks), Mark Powers (editor)


Last updated: 10/25/12.

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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