Jamie McKelvie on Cable (Really.)

Jamie announced that he would be drawing 2 issues of Cable on his Twitter feed. At first I said “hunh?” and then I thought, I better ask him some questions about this, and get a few things straight. Look for Cable #11 in February.

Josh Flanagan: Are you a closet X-Men nerd masquerading as an indie comics creator? Cable seems about as opposite as you can get from Phonogram and Suburban Glamour.

Jamie McKelvie: Nothing closeted about it — I’ve always enjoyed superhero comics for as long as I’ve read comics in general. The only requirement for me to read a comic is that it’s a *good* comic. The genre is less important. I was a huge fan of Morrison’s work on New X-Men, and when I was a kid I regularly read Claremont’s run.

JF: You’re not a typical X-Men artist, but there’s a history of that with this title, from Ladronn right through Ariel Olivetti. Will you be doing your work in the usual style, or will you make any adjustments for the book and the tone?

JM: Well, Cable’s not a skinny indie kid so I’m giving him some muscles. But of course there’s a different feel to the script than what I usually draw, so there are changes in the tone of the work.

Side note: Every time I see the name Ladronn, I read it as Ladytron (the band), and get excited.

JF: Cable is somewhat thought of as a throwback, and a symbol of what superhero comics were in the 90’s. He has sort of vague powers, a giant gun, and a complicated backstory. What can you as an artist do to get him to a place where modern readers will appreciate him? Or do you just revel in that former idea of what he was, and have fun with it?

JM: I think Duane’s doing a tremendous job of making Cable relevant without my help. For my part, I don’t have to do all that much as artists like Olivetti have cut down on the ridiculous pouches and guns the character used to be known for. He comes across as a functional soldier these days, and doesn’t have shoulder pads bigger than his head. My job here is to follow on from that, and hopefully imprint my own style on the issues I’m working on at the same time.

JF: Do you consider it a challenge to draw a book that’s more action based than most of the work you’ve published so far.

JM: Every book is a challenge — there’s always something I’ve not drawn before in any given script (including the ones I write for myself). That’s what makes the job so interesting. But I guess you could say it is outside of my perceived comfort zone — which is great. If I just stuck to that, I wouldn’t grow as an artist.
JF: Do you know who is coloring the book, and what sort of style they’ll be using? Will it be more like regular Marvel comics, with lots of shading, or possibly the flatter color style you used in Suburban Glamour? Do you take that into account when drawing the book?

JM: Yeah, it’s GuruFX, who did the colours on my Nightcrawler story for Divided We Stand. So it will be in a “regular” Marvel style, I suppose, but Lee at GuruFX does a great job of following my line work and applying the mainstream style to it.

It doesn’t affect my style too much — I’ve never been one for adding lots of heavy blacks (which I kind of see as a leftover from the old days when printing technology at the time meant the colours couldn’t handle shading and highlighting). I think it’ll also give a smoother transition from Olivetti.

JF: You’ve done Nightcrawler and now Cable… who is the next character you’ve always wanted to draw?

JM: Rachel Summers was always my favourite character when I was younger, but I think she’s still in space? So who knows when I’d get the chance. Of the current X-crop, either more Nightcrawler or Pixie — a Pixie mini or something would be great.

JF: Did you have to know how to pronounce “Swierczynski” to get the gig?

JM: Heh, yes, and also I had to learn Cable’s entire backstory. Luckily we have Wikipedia for that.

JF: Seriously, tell us who the baby is.  We won’t say a thing.

JM: It’s a sex-changed, de-aged Carrot Top.

Thanks a lot Jamie, and as always, we wish you more and more success.  Visit Jamie’s site at www.jamiemckelvie.com.


  1. I think Ron would die of an exploded head if the baby was Carrot Top.

  2. AHHHH!! No way!  This is great news.  He is such an amazing artist.  I’m curious to see what his Cable will look like, as well as Cable’s world.  Didn’t catch his Nightcrawler story, gonna have to pick that up somewhere.  Suburban Glamour was pretty 🙂  Yay for Jamie!

    And Carrot Top would totally save the mutants

  3. That sounds great, cause the art in Cable really made me not wanting to read it. It’s one thing to have a medicore story, but if your art is terrible then no chance will you get people to read it. Same problems with Punisher: War Journal when it first came out, I just couldnt get into it because of that artist.

    I’m sure this is gonna look gorgeous if he does this.

  4. Awesome news, I’m looking forward to it.

    @drakedangerz   McKelvie’s Nightcrawler story should be in the "X-Men: Divided We Stand" TPB that came out recently.

  5. What a sell out.











  6. Three cheers for the Rachel Summers love! Hopefully she’ll back back on Earth after War of Kings/Kingbreaker is over.


  7. Like mentioned on the show when they reviewed his Nightcrawler story… I hope they don’t screw up the colours on this 1 too…

  8. Wow – I will buy Cable just to check this out. I think it’s great when creators move freely between the ‘indie’ world and the ‘superhero’ world.

  9. "Well, Cable’s not a skinny indie kid…"

    They only want you when you’re seventeen!

  10. Oh crap, Guru FX is coloring it?


    That just pisses me off.