Samuel Guthrie's father attempted to defend his family from the forces of Apocalypse when their genetic culling of humans reached the doorstep of the Guthrie farm in Kentucky. While his parents were killed, Sam, his sister Liz and brother Joshua were recruited by Apocalypse. The trio became members of the Elite Mutant Force, Sam (calling himself Cannonball) and Liz (calling herself Amazon) were placed in the Slave Pens, answering to Prelates Cyclops and Havok. Their primary function was to maintain order in the slave pens. During an attempted breakout, Cannonball and Amazon helped to quell the uprising using violent means, earning the ire of Cyclops.
When Cyclops began freeing prisoners in the slave pens, he was witnessed by Polaris. Havok brought Cannonball and Amazon to force her to reveal Cyclops's role in the freeing of slaves. Polaris, mentally unhinged even before her incarceration, was unable to tell them, forcing them to bring her to the Dark Beast for memory extraction. When Havok learned that his brother was responsible for freeing slaves, he persuaded Cannonball and Amazon to side with him in trying to take down Cyclops and turn him over to the Dark Beast. Cyclops and Jean Grey managed to escape and free the prisoners in the slave pens. When the Bedlam Brothers defected, siding with Cyclops, they used their powers to take down Cannonball and Amazon.
After the downfall of Apocalypse, Cannonball and Amazon were reunited with their brother, Joshua (also known as Icarus), and joined up with Sinister. They also learned that their sister Paige was prisoner in the Portland Core after being abandoned by the X-Men; they quickly rescued her from starving to death. Paige then began plotting to get revenge on the X-Men, disguising herself as another mutant named Xorn and infiltrating their team. Cannonball and his siblings attacked Washington, D.C., drawing the X-Men to battle them while Paige captured Rogue and her child, Charles. Cannonball and his siblings escaped the X-Men's counterattack in D.C. and joined their sister at the mansion; the X-Men followed close behind. Before Cannonball and the other Guthries could kill Rogue and Charles, Rogue's husband Magneto appeared and attacked them. After Amazon was incinerated by Sunfire, Cannonball and Icarus attempted to fly away. Magneto encased the pair within a ball of metal, crushing the life from Icarus. Cannonball tried to remain alive, fighting back against his rapidly shrinking prison, until Magneto convinced him to give up. He was subsequently crushed to death.
Powers and Abilities
Sam can expel energy from his body, allowing him to travel through the air at high speeds, and was considered to be indestructible in this form.