Adam Kubert's cover art for New Mutants #2
Return of the Legion, Part 2: “Security Blankets”
New Mutants #2 maintains the heat from the re-launch of this classic series (essentially Vol. 3), so #1 was not a fluke. This is everything that I’ve always wanted in a New Mutants comic book, but that Marvel Comics would not give me.
First, the particulars: the current New Mutants lineup is Cannonball (Sam Guthrie), Sunspot (Roberto Da Costa), Magma (Amara Aquilla), Magik (Illyana Rasputin), Karma (Xi’an “Shan” Coy Manh), and Dani Moonstar. In issue one, Cannonball, Sunspot, Magma, and Magik, rush to the aid of Shan and Dani Moonstar, who are in Westcliffe, Colorado, only to find themselves attacked by the locals. Cannonball and Sunspot eventually find Shan in a catatonic state and tied to a chair in the back of a bar. Meanwhile, Magma and Magik are in the basement of the home of Marci (the little girl at the center of this drama), where they hear Shan’s voice coming from a concrete box.
As Part 2 of Return of the Legion begins, the New Mutants face the return of David Haller AKA Legion. Shan and Marci are trapped inside Legion’s mind, where his fractured psyche has unleashed a mob of characters that want to capture Marci. But most of all, they want vengeance on Dani Moonstar.
Back in the day, I enjoyed New Mutants co-creator Chris Claremont’s work on the original, 1980s title; his character writing was good, and he always came up with interesting worlds and environments as settings for New Mutants’ adventures. On the other hand, I always wanted more intense, kick-ass action, but I wanted it well written without a loss of good character drama. Finally, I’m getting that from Zeb Wells, scribe of the 2009 New Mutants series. From the first issue, Wells threw his new readers into the fire right along with this reconstituted team of now-veteran mutant fighters.
In issue two, Wells creates such a captivating rhythm by constantly moving the action among three settings: the bar where Cannonball and Roberto wait with Shan’s body, Illyana and Magma at Marci’s home, and Shan and Marci trapped in Legion’s mind. The narrative moves at a breakneck speed, while the plot twists have the reader sitting on the razor’s edge of suspense. These reviewer-favorite euphemisms are perfect for convincing people. This new, New Mutants series is turning out to be the best New Mutants series.