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Jul 22

New Mutants #11 annotations

Posted on Wednesday, July 22, 2020 by Paul in Annotations

As always, this post contains spoilers, and page numbers go by the digital edition.

COVER / PAGE 1. The New Mutants inside Tashi Repina’s candy-coloured happy dreamworld – which does happen in this story, but only for a couple of pages. Magik isn’t present for the actual scene, either.

PAGE 2. Armor’s parents tempt her to drop her shield.

Picking up from the cliffhanger in issue #10. As we’ll see later, they’re just an illusion. What’s interesting is that unlike most of the nightmares in Tashi’s psychic orb, this seems to be calculated to interfere with the New Mutants’ attempts to help. We’re told later on that once Tashi is asleep (and her powers are active) her body seems to try to keep her that way. But this feels as if something a little more directed is going on. Note also that there’s a vague parallel with the fate of Tashi’s own parents.

PAGES 3-4. Credits and recap. This is “Ice Cream Dreams” by Ed Brisson and Flaviano.

PAGE 5. Cypher encourages Mondo to act.

On a first reading, it reads as if Cypher’s got a prior plan in mind. But in context of the story as a whole, it seems more like he’s just prompting Mondo because he has useful powers.

PAGES 6-7. Mirage, Boom-Boom and Wolfsbane deal with the Carnelians.

PAGES 8-10. Mondo and Wildside give Tashi good dreams.

Mondo is apparently able to use his powers to absorb the remaining parts of Armor’s force field. I’m… not quite sure how that works, since it’s an energy field, and she’s supposed to have dropped it already, but… okay.

Tashi remains in her nightmare form even when the dreams turn nice. Note that we saw a photo of her in issue #9 and she looked completely normal, so apparently her transformation is very recent. In fairness, given the way her powers have been described, she couldn’t have been wandering around for very long without coming to attention.

Also worth noting is that Mondo only asked Wildside to give Tashi good dreams – but taking her out of nightmare mode also turns out to wake her up, almost immediately. That seems significant. Has it broken the control of the persona that was keeping her under?

The dream sequence features cuddly toy versions of Black Widow, Colossus, Squirrel Girl and Spider-Man, among others.

PAGES 11-16. Magik shows up to rescue the team.

The New Mutants who were inside the Nightmare Sphere are all completely exhausted, presumably due to the anaesthetic mentioned in the next scene. Chamber’s fire seems to have gone out, which has sometimes been portrayed as involving hideous injury in the past; he’s still able to speak, somehow, so his psi-powers must be working to some degree.

Quite reasonably, Dani wants to surrender rather than fight the Carnelian army. Even if they’re going to ignore Carnelian law, they might as well do it the safe way by sitting peacefully in a cell and waiting to be teleported home.

PAGE 17. Data page. Another extract from Dox, which is reporting the Carnelian government’s party line on the incident. As with the Pilger incident, Dox’s story is wrong, but it could conceivably be what they honestly believe based on their second-hand sources.

“Mirage (a.k.a. Psyche)” Psyche was Mirage’s codename in the very early issues of New Mutants vol 1.

“Boom-Boom (a.k.a. Boomer, Time Bomb, Meltdown, Firecracker)” The same list we had in issue #4 (minus the facetious “Dr Madame McSplode”).

“Traskwuzright” The commenter is presumably thinking of Bolivar Trask, the original creator of the Sentinels and a high-profile writer of doomsday books about mutant domination.

PAGES 18-19. Debriefing with the Healer.

The Healer is the guy in the bandages, more often seen in X-Force during the Krakoan era. As in that series, he seems to be treated here as an actual knowledgeable doctor in addition to his mutant healing powers.

Cosmar. Tashi has taken – or been given – the name Cosmar. We’ve seen before some degree of encouragement for newcomers to embrace a mutant name.

The languages of Carnelia were said in issue #9 to be Russian and Ukrainian. And Tashi’s surname, Repina, is ethnically Russian. Despite that, “Cosmar” is Romanian. It means “nightmare”, though it can also mean “incubus”.

PAGE 20. Another excerpt from Boom-Boom’s diary, in which she’s noticeably more reflective than she ever is around other characters. Note that the header describes this as the diary of “Tabitha Smith”, although she does still sign off as “Boom-Boom”.

The Brazilian mutant-hunting monsters appeared in issue #8.

PAGES 21-22. Mirage briefs Maxime and Manon.

Putting the dangerous psychic girl in the hands of the dangerous psychic kids! What could possibly go wrong?

“I used to pull people’s nightmares from their heads.” Again, in the early issues of New Mutants vol 1.

“I can change her memory…” Maxime did this with Angel and Beak in issue #6. Armor and Glob Herman found out and gave them a lecture, but evidently didn’t pass it on. At least Maxime asks this time – and seems to accept Dani’s flat rejection.

Presumably the Krakoan greenery on Cosmar’s head is some sort of monitor.

PAGES 23-24. The New Mutants discuss Dox.

“There’s no law against it…” That would (obviously) vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction. Other countries have rather stricter laws on data protection, privacy and online harassment than the United States.

Glob Herman was cooking for the team last issue too. It seems to be his thing now.

PAGES 25-26. Trailers. Do you really need a cypher to know that the Krakoan text says “NEXT: DOX”?

Bring on the comments

  1. MichaelWayne says:

    Already 8 comments for Hellions #2 and no love (or hate) for New Mutants?
    I’m enjoying New Mutants, and I enjoy this group of mutants together. After the tag team writer structure at the beginning of the series, I’m beginning to dig what Brisson is cooking up.
    The design for Cosmar is so odd. I can’t take my eyes off her and am slightly repelled at the same time, and I like that. I’m glad Dani acknowledged the similarity of her own original powerset to Cosmar’s, I had been wondering if that might be important b/c Dani was the one left standing outside!, but it was nice for the similarity to be acknowledged even if it wasn’t important to resolving the crisis. And, yeah, one can only imagine what kind of trouble Cosmar can cause, particularly if Maxime & Manon remove those memories.

  2. Josie says:

    My guess is that the lack of interest in this write-up reflects a lack of interest in the title, but specifically due to Brisson being pierced as the fill-in guy to Hickman’s lead, and Hickman disappearing from the book after his beautiful but underwhelming first (and only?) story.

  3. Josie says:

    *perceived, not pierced, although both could be true

  4. neutrino says:

    Why didn’t Mirage use her power to pull out the mutant girl’s desire?

  5. Col_Fury says:

    Personally, I was digging this book pre-coronavirus, and haven’t gotten any new books post-shutdown (yet). I don’t really want to comment until I’ve read the books. Hopefully I’ll get them (and read them) soon.

  6. Chris V says:

    Wolverine only got one reply, and it’s only one issue ahead of Hellions.
    I think outside of the main titles or recently launched comics now, the “Dawn of X” books ancillary titles are losing interest.

    They might be competent, but there also isn’t a great deal to really discuss with each issue.

    A lot of books feel like they are killing time before something important happens with Krakoa again.
    Maybe this next cross-over, but then again, maybe nothing important with happen there either.

    I think the problem is that no one is really sure if this is the new status quo, so these types of stories are just the norm. Or, if there is a grand over-arcing conspiracy behind Krakoa which is slowly being revealed, and so books like this seem sort of pointless (regardless of the quality of the story-telling).

  7. Loz says:

    I’ve enjoyed this story, I imagine it would have looked horrific if Bill Sienkiewicz had drawn it but it has echoes of early New Mutants and I prefer this offbeat angle to the all-out comedy of the earlier issues.

  8. Krzysiek Ceran says:

    I much prefer this book under Brisson than when it was under shared custody – but I also overall prefer Brisson’s character-focused approach to Hickman’s grand designs. (Also, the cosmic road trip was, I think, a taste of Hickman attempting to do a character-focused story arc and it was all over the place).

    Though as a resolution to this story arc, this issue felt kind of… lacking. Maybe it’s trope expectations – I sort of assumed all plans will fail and the heroes will have to come up with a completely new solution to the problem, but in the end Wildside did what Wildside was supposed to do from the very beginning and that was somehow slightly disappointing.

    Other than that – good issue, pretty good art. I hope Brisson has a plan for Cosmar that goes beyond having her be a source for problems – it seems like there is something to explore in a character with a troubling power, a power which seems to have a parasitic element – but it won’t be interesting if she’s in the book just so the creepy twins can cause problems, and then she’ll be ‘fixed’ by, I don’t know, Beast giving her a gizmo that switches off the bad part of her powers.

    Which is a long way to say, I hope Brisson will do something interesting with her. And seeing how he brings Glob and the creepy twins to everything he writes, I’d wager he has plans to at least keep Cosmar around.

    Anyway, creepy twins. It’s kind of dumb that the heroes leave Cosmar in their care, but… well, it’s an instance of ‘there wouldn’t be a story if everybody behaved perfectly rationally and always made the right decisions’. And the creepy twins say they want to help and their previous interference has apparently been kept a secret, so it still kind of works anyway.

    Huh. I thought I came here to write ‘solid issue, liked it’, but apparently I had more to say.

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