Along with Jacky Nightblade and Ministry, today’s subject got his start in the same 1995 notebook drawing seen above.
When I decided to break the characters from this drawing into separate characters, I called this guy “Army Skull,” with the intend of doing a bunch of thematically-different-but-similar designs, kinda like Todd McFarlane was doing with his various Spawn interpretations (Medieval Spawn, Ninja Spawn, Commando Spawn, etc). I’ll definitely share some of the other “Skulls” in the future.
Eventually, I decided that it would be cooler if the characters had unique names. Since this guy was given too much ammo like everybody in the 1990s, I went with the name “Military” when I drew him in September of 1997. The dots around his name are supposed to be like bullet holes.
Also, that gun is 100% based on the one that came with the 3rd Edition Cable action figure from Toy Biz’s X-Men: X-Force Wave 2 line.
We eventually incorporated three of my “Skull” characters into New Hawk & Croc Chapter 4, and even used the name Death and Destruction as both the name of their team AND the chapter. We renamed the characters, though; The Medieval Skull character became “Sir Kel,” (as in S.KEL-eton) the Ninja Skull became “Endo,” (as in, “Endo-Skeleton”) and this guy became “Cage” (as in, rib cage).
I decided that since he was using an energy-blasting gun, he didn’t need a bandolier full of bullets. But otherwise, his basic character design has remained intact since his original creation. He even showed up in H&C with a gun that’s inspired-by-but-totally-isn’t Cable’s.