Although Ryan Reynolds is trying to distract us with fake set pics featuring Predators and Mickey Mouse, the leaked images are out there and we all know that Sabretooth is returning for Deadpool 3.
In many ways, we shouldn’t be surprised as Victor Creed and Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine go back all the way to the very beginning of Fox’s X-Men franchise, with Logan and Sabretooth squaring off in the original 2000 film. Likewise, Logan faced an alternate incarnation of the character in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which of course brought him together with Ryan Reynolds’ Wade Wilson for the first time too.
As we find out in Origins, Wolverine and Sabretooth don’t just hate each because they have the same kind of animalistic shtick. Like many comic book foes, they were once allies, with a personal betrayal fueling the feud between them. But are they also family? Well, it depends on which version we’re talking about..
Wolverine and Sabretooth’s history in the comics
Image via Marvel Comics
In Marvel Comics, Wolverine and Sabretooth are not brothers. In fact, in the source material, Victor Creed hates Logan because Wolverine killed his brother.
Victor and his sister Clara once worked with their older brother, Saul Creed, a tracker and animal hunter, to track down James “Logan” Howlett for a circus. However, the Creeds end up joining forces with Logan after they find out he’s really being hunted by Nathaniel Essex (aka Mr. Sinister). When Logan grows closer to Clara, though, Saul turns against Logan and betrays him to Essex. When a furious Logan discovers this, he drowns Saul, breaking Clara’s heart and causing Victor to swear vengeance on him.
Wolverine and Sabretooth’s confusing connection in the movies
Screenshot via 20th Century Fox
In the movies, however, Wolverine and Sabretooth are brothers. Well, half-brothers. And only half the time.
In 2000’s X-Men, Sabretooth (Tyler Mane) is very much just there as a physical foil for Jackman’s Wolverine. Although the pair clearly knew each other and were old enemies before Logan lost his memories, the film never digs deep into their past. While he presumably survives the climax, he’s never seen among Magneto’s Brotherhood of Mutants in future films.
Instead he returns in 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, a prequel ostensibly revealing what happened to Logan before 2000’s X-Men, even though the only way to make sense of its many continuity changes is if it takes place in a different timeline. Here, we learn that in the mid-1800s, James Howlett and Victor grew up together as the son of wealthy landowner John Howlett and the son of groundskeeper Thomas Logan.
As the film’s opening reveals, a drunken Thomas, who was having an affair with Howlett’s wife Elizabeth, killed John, which activates James’ mutant ability, causing him to impale Thomas with his bone claws. A dying Thomas then admits the truth, that James is his son. Fleeing from the scene, newly discovered brothers James — now Logan — and Victor stick together and, thanks to their long lifespans, spend the next century as soldiers, fighting in war after war, with Victor becoming more and more savage over time.
Eventually, Logan turns his back on the bloodthirsty Victor during the Vietnam War, and even agrees to bond his skeleton with adamantium in order to be strong enough to stop him. Of course, thanks to a bullet to the head, Logan ultimately forgets their shared history, which is why it doesn’t come up in X-Men. Although exactly why Victor looks so different and appears to have lost a lot of intelligence isn’t so easy to explain.
By the looks of things, Deadpool 3 is returning to the classic Sabretooth, rather than the Origins version, so once again their brotherhood will probably be forgotten about. To quote Deadpool himself, these timelines are so confusing!