Be it Marauders or New Mutants, the feeling is good knowing that there are X-Books to look forward to which can be fun and light. Each books gives you a little something different from the rest and that is not an effort to overlook. As I said last month, mutants in space is nothing new, but you have to give credit where it is due that not many are willing to have fun like this with it. This month I wanted to see how they could continue pushing forward.
What we ended up getting out of this third issue was a surprise, but I couldn’t argue with the boldness of also stepping outside of the actual New Mutants team to focus on some other mutants who are enjoying the new opportunities afforded to them. I’m sure that some out there will find some disappointment in not picking up from where the previous issue left off, but this issue was really a good departure from the space adventure. I only ever had one concern about these books, and that was how we wouldn’t have enough room to focus on all the mutants we wanted to see more of. There had to be one or two books out there that wouldn’t just focus on one specific team or group of mutants. Right now New Mutants is taking that bold step forward to deliver more than what its namesake assumes.
Personally I was very happy that this story centered around Armor. It goes without saying that for an X-Man as old as her, it is a crime that she isn’t a central character in more books. This issue took the perfect opportunity to show what happens when someone like her steps back into the spotlight to show that not everyone simply fades off into obscurity. It even made a big difference to see that even Glob could find some attention given to him. Not a mutant I would think twice of, and that is actually what makes him such a welcomed choice. It also only felt natural that someone like her would take some extra measures to make sure that others who didn’t accept the invite to Krakoa are alright out there. They could be living their best life out there, but it is still a dangerous world where there is no help if they run into it. It matters that in at least one of these books there is some outreach for the sake of continued world-building.
The kind of trouble that she runs into with Glob and the rest of her outreach party was a breath of fresh air too. As the weeks progress, these are the times to keep pressing the fact that new enemies should be expected big and small. In this case, the threat is small time, but important nonetheless when mutants now have new targets painted on their backs for more than just being mutants. Now was a great time to take advantage of the chance to show what it looks like when humans get desperate to have what the mutants have.
Something else which takes you by surprise is how we change-up the art team for this specific story. One could argue that it’s not necessary, but is it really when neither style really influences the impact of the story? By the end of this issue, you could have either art team and still experience the same level of excitement and endearment because the goal from both is ultimately to capture the youthful vigor from this corner of the mutant world. Flaviano did a wonderful job rendering these characters, everything that is now pretty ordinary about their lives, the even the island itself. As for Carlos Lopez, I loved the bold and vibrant colors he was able to put into every scene and setting. The action popped, and he really knew how to capture the elegance of the Krakoa which most colorists seem to be able to nail successfully.
All in all, New Mutants #3 takes a step back to focus on some other characters, and it didn’t hurt the story one bit. I found a new appreciation for this book knowing that this creative team had greater ambitions than just indulging in a space adventure. Whenever they jump back into that? I’m willing to wait for it since both halves are as important as the other.