NEW MUTANTS #9
As Magik faces off against Cyclops in defense of the others recent actions in Nebraska some of those concerned hear of a mutant who is under threat and hastily form a rag tag team to rush to her aid. Only to fall victim to her burgeoning powers, due to some unforeseen side effects. Time to call in the cavalry!
At first glance this seems all too familiar territory, with the team going into the unknown and coming up against a mutant who’s powers they are unprepared for. But on closer inspection there is much more going on here. Some intriguing dynamics, with both character interplay, art and writing. As well as the underlying irreverent humor inherit in any tale including Boom Boom. Another mix and match team pulling some rather different characters from each of the stories that have gone before in this run. And while the cover by Rod Reis looked perfect for the theme of this story and made me think he would be better suited to it, Flaviano stepped right up and from the very first surreal panel owned every page. Details such as the flow of fabric and the shading of Karma’s leg were enough to draw my eye and make for a more organic feel than I’ve seen before from him on this title and I was mightily impressed.
He also revels in the weird as Natashia’s plight is revealed. And as this one also has a lot in common with Legion in terms of mindbending powers, it also adds some fresh peril, while still giving us some body shock imagery reminiscent of Magik on the cover to New Mutants volume one #15 as Karma succumbs to the trauma. And here they have such an adverse effect on all the kids, which again is gloriously splashed across the page. The art overall has more of a layered look and feeling of depth than the Bohem Cartel story, which is quite an eye opener and helped the credibility of the action and plot. Illyana’s body language alone in the debrief with Cyclops was perfect. But it does leave me with the question where does this conversation even come in terms of the current Brood story?
The frosty way she acts to Cyke is a little in contrast with the way they bounce off each other in X-Men, which for me was more heart warming and reminded me more of their time in the Extermination team. But aside from this the voices all rang true thanks to Ed Brisson keeping the faith. Magma completely ignoring to invite Chamber in favor of her older friends is immediately picked up on. And as Doug and Mondo again try the meld with Krakoa we see it isn’t going any better and Mondo is still as mistrusting of him. There is also some relief to finally have old Cable mentioned, even just in passing. And Tabitha’s shady past comes to the fore again as we find she knows some Russian.
I also love the offhand way she brushes off Mirage’s concerns about going off without asking permission, definitely our girl. What could easily become a confusing menagerie is actually shaping up to be cohesive blending of some very disparate characters. Already the team mix is at once another chop and change from the Bohem/space stories, as well as giving a shout out to last issue. Which speaks volumes for the build up and Russian Roulette method of pairing up the disparate teams. I am finally beginning to see the payoff and welcome each new addition to the story. And though my interest was mostly held by the space story, this is already fast becoming my second favorite so far. I’ll be most interested to see how the MLF fit into the next part of this story.
Once again the story involves the kids going on a mercy mission to gather more stranded mutants, which is beginning to seem like their theme and I quite like it. Who better to look for those who are just coming into their powers amidst the fear of the outside world than those who are more relatable to them and relatively closer to them in age?
New Mutants #9: Calmer Chameleon
Writing - 9.5/109.5/10
Storyline - 9/109/10
Art - 9/109/10
Color - 9/109/10
Cover Art - 8/108/10
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