New Mutants V1 # 62 - 70 (Oct '87 - Aug '88)
# 62 - Amara solo issue with the Hellions
# 63 - Illyana in Space
# 64 - Warlock's Weekend at Bernies with Doug
#65 - 66: Freedom Force and Forge
# 67 - 70: The SpyderSam Chronicles
NM # 62: Amara still in the comic?
Writer - Louise Simons
Pencils - Jon Muth
I assumed that Magma was being written out of the comic, but here she is with a solo issue so maybe I was wrong!
Issue # 62 begins with Magma training with the Hellions.
So here we go with Empath messing things up again. It actually made sense just how it was that Amara was a bit stuck up and felt that she would rather be at a school that could pamper her better. That made perfect sense, but now we learn that Emma was having Empath push her in that direction. We saw this with Magneto making bad choices after Secret Wars 2, and in X-Factor with Scott and Angle. It's ok for our heroes to make bad or questionable decisions. We don't always need a villain behind the scenes pushing the heroes to make bad choices.
Well, of course the flight to Nova Roma doesn't go smoothly. There is plane crash and of course Empath and Magma are the only two survivors. Out in the wild, falling for each other.
This whole issue features the two of them getting to know each other better and fighting off various creatures living in the Amazon.
In the end they make it to Nova Roma and Amara introduces her father to Empath.
NM # 63: Illyana Goes to Space
Writer - Louise Simonson and Chris Claremont
Pencils - Bo Hampton
This is another one off issue that features a flashback, explaining how Illyana came in possession of an alien spacesuit in her closet. To date, I'm not sure if this is supposed to be a fun excursion from the main plot or if this spacesuit will prove important in the future.
Here we see Kitty pushing Illyana to tell the story of how she got the space suit. Two little things to point out from this panel.
First, while tickling Illyana, Kitty speaks in a Dracula voice. This is kind of surprising considering Kitty ACTUALLY MET DRACULA AND HE WAS SCARY AS HELL. (I covered this in 19: UXM 158 - 173 (Storm's Transformation! Also Rogue, Wolverine in Japan, and the Morlocks)).
Second, there is a lot of online chatter (that I mostly try stay away from to avoid spoilers) that speculate on whether Illyana and Kitty were lesbians while living together as roommates all these years. At first I thought this was really annoying because they just appear to be two normal girls who are good friends, but I guess both of them have come out as being at least bi-sexual in newer comics, so it's more of a legitimate conversation. Regardless, if you prescribe to that theory, here is some red meat.
The story talks about the night that Warlock landed on earth. Apparently Illyana's arm touched Warlock and she had become infected by the Transmode Virus. She escaped to Limbo and used her soulsword to try to mitigate the effects.
After returning from Limbo, she wandered off into the forrest and found another spaceship in the woods.
She claims that she ran into a spaceship inhabited by Broods, which she fought off, and stole a spacesuit. There is a bunch more in this issue that is slightly entertaining, but definitely not important to the core NM mythology so I'm not going into it any deeper.
NM # 64: Warlock's Weekend at Bernies
Writer - Louise Simons
Pencils - Brett Blevins
As sad as this is, I love it because it's such a great portrayal of how a 14 year old girl would process grief. Rahne is having a REALLY hard time coping with the fact that Doug died for her. Due to this, she is running danger room sessions on repeat going over the final fight with the Animator where Doug died. She is seeing all of the different actions she could have taken that would have resulted in Doug surviving. Poor kid. Roberto of all people finds her down there and consoles her.
Illyana is another person dealing with grief in her own way. She used her VCR (lol) to record the X-Men's last stand and just keeps watching it over and over on repeat. While she's sad about Doug, she seems most devastated by the death of her brother.
In my blog covering Doug's death (47: NM 52 - 61 (New Mutants Dropping Like Flies)), I talked about how much it bothered me that Warlock wasn't more involved in the grieving of Doug. Louise Simonson (who took over for Chris Claremont with Issue # 55) must have gotten some reader letters, because this is practically an entire issue focused on how an immature alien would deal with the grief of losing a friend. In the above panel, you see him freaking out on Dani about his guilt.
The team attends Doug's funeral and we see Warlock taking the news especially hard, wondering again if this is what's in store for all of mutantkind. Maybe time to go evil again!? I know we're not too far off from that happening so excited to see how that goes down.
Alright...So let me walk you through this one. Warlock doesn't understand human death. He assumes that all he needs to do is find the body of Doug, give the body some of his lifeglow (like Doug had done for him when he was low on energy) and it would bring him back. Poor guy. But...what he ends up doing is taking Doug's body, hovering outside of Doug's mom's window and holding the body out there hoping to "cheer up" his mom.
WHAT THE FUCK WARLOCK. Lol, this is so messed up. I actually think it's a pretty reasonable thing that Warlock would do, but OMG is this messed up. Doug's poor mom is completely freaked out.
After seeing Doug's mom freak out, he still didn't get it because he immediately went to the mansion and creepily did the same thing to Rahne, causing her to freak the fuck out as well.
The team had to explain to him what was wrong with this and they went with him to return the body.
NM # 65 - 66: Freedom Force and Forge
Writer - Louise Simonson
Pencils - Bret Blevins
With Illyana watching the VCR recording of the X-Men dying, she becomes fixated on killing Forge as she blames him for her brother's death.
We learn (as Illyana freaks out on Magneto, again) that Illyana actually tried to teleport to save her brother but was blocked by the magic dampening fields created by the Adversary.
When the New Mutants and Magneto refuse to help her, she teleports to newly healed Kitty in Muir Island to help her. This ends up being a strong example of why Kitty has been on the Senior team and Illyana is with the kiddos. Kitty understands that it's not necessarily Forge's fault and that attacking him wouldn't help anything. Illyana predictable gets pissed at Kitty too and takes off to settle the score herself.
We see here that every time Illyana takes the Soulsword from Limbo, Sym gets a little stronger.
The New Mutants follow Illyana to Dallas, moreso to stop her from doing something stupid than to help her kill Forge. The Brotherhood (sorry Freedom Force) is there to stop her. Quick thought on this...remember how much I loved seeing Mystique yell "MURDERER!" at Forge for killing Rogue? Not sure why they are so hell bent on protecting him. Maybe cooler heads prevailed?
Sam tries to stop her from killing Forge.
Destiny has a vision of Magik opening up a hole from Limbo to our dimension, ultimately starting the Inferno storyline (which I only barely started so not sure if that's accurate). She says something about how Magik "must leave and learn" which the team interprets to mean that Illyana should go to space, which she does in the next arc (covered below in this post).
Forge has his own guilt and ends up stopping the fight and letting Magik kill him if she wishes. Her first stab removes all of his magical protectons, then she gears up to make the killing blow.
She is about to kill him when demons start gathering and egging her on. It is this (and not her friends telling her not to or being hurt by the steps she took to keep them at bay) that ultimately stays her hand.
NM # 67-70: The Spydersam Chronicles
Writer - Louise Simonson
Pencils - Bret Blevins
We are introduced here to Spyder and Gosamyr. If you recall in New Mutants Annual # 1 (as covered in 24: NM 18 - 21 (Demon Bear)), Lila Cheney was an inter-planetary criminal who was trying to sell the earth. Well, I never expected this plotline to re-surface, but here it is! Spyder is an inter-planetary banker and financier who believes he is owed the Earth and wants to collect Lila as a down payment on what he believes he is owed. Gosamyr is an alien slave of Spyders, with a sassy side, who is allowed to escape and contact the New Mutants.
Spyder's alien goons show up in the middle of a concern to kidnap her and she ends up pretending it's part of the show and continues rocking, but she is ultimately captured.
Gosamyr, who Roberto naturally tries to bang immediately, promises the team that she can help them get Lila back.
Illyana teleports the ship Gosamyr came in into space at Spyder's last known location and they set out to find her. Somehow all of these kids know how to pilot a spaceship!? I'll try not to think about that.
Gosamyr seems to have bad judgment right away. She picks up on a new plotline where Rahne has a crush on Sam and is jealous of Lila and convinces her to wear a pretty dress. Also noted that she can tell Dani is a strong female challenger to her dominance and she repeatedly tries to shit on her.
I'm getting a tad out of order in my blogging, so I'm going to take a second to catch you up on something. In New Mutants Annual # 4 (which I'll be covering soon as part of a larger Evolutionary War story), Dani gets her powers amped up. She is now able to truly manifest one of her illusions into actual matter. She can only do this once at a time because when she manifests something new, the old thing disappears. This is a big plot point for the immediate future.
Dani accidentally manifests Rahne's greatest desire, which apparently is Sam hitting on her. Rahne doesn't realize it's not real and ends up getting very emotional, because that's what she does.
The team gets stopped by some alien dock workers asking for documentation. In another slip up, Dani gives the dock worker what he most wants. She assumes it will be the proper documentation, but it ends up being a bribe. When the dock worker's supervisor sees what happens, the ship is targeted to be destroyed.
The team quickly runs off to the nearest planet, which happens to be where Spyder is at to. Illyana attacks a robot and accidentally turns it's various parts into a living creature/monster. This is a precursor to things that will be happening during Inferno.
The team is captured and it's up to Gosamyr (who by this time everyone but Roberto hates) to save them.
It turns out that Gosamyr is part of a rare alien species that is high deceptive in it's youth, but grows into a bunch of terrible monsters, which are now set loose. It's made clear that these monsters were supposed to hibernate for hundreds of years, but now that they are awake they won't stop until they destroy every planet in their path.
Lila, recently freed, teleports herself and the monsters to the Sun.
Holy crap. Lila just totally died. I didn't see that happening. New Mutants characters are still dropping like flies. I was pretty shocked by this, so I looked her up on the Marvel database to see if she is truly dead. It looks as though she definitely won't appear anymore in this comic series, so as far as Sam and her relationship, that must be done. It does look as though she will pop up years in the future in other titles, so perhaps she did escape death but we won't hear about that for a while. Regardless, Sam and the team has someone else's death to grieve. Really wasn't expecting this.
I'm also curious if this was done due to Rahne's crush on Sam. Is that going to end up going somewhere!? I have no clue, we'll have to keep reading to find out.
This issue ends with Sym making his move, opening up Inferno.
Meanwhile, Magneto had learned that the team is gone again. He is getting pretty ticked off that they NEVER listen to him. He's actually worried it will make him look weak to the Hellfire Club. He manages this anger by dressing up in his evil costume and looking at himself menacingly in a mirror, lol. Is he going evil now!?
Meanwhile, Selene (or is that Tessa?) is concerned that Emma is trying to turn the White King/Queen against the Black team (Shaw and Selene).
My Connections and Creators
Alright so the New Mutants comic is a little weak right now. Not only are the main plots a little weak, but I really looked for opportunities to highlight character development and I just couldn't find any. It's not all bad though, I do like that Doug's death is getting the proper weight it deserves with the characters taking numerous issues to grieve. Also pretty crazy that in a few short issues we've gone from 9 core team members down to the 6 we have right now.
This was just bad. Even Simonson herself knew it, as evidenced by this quote in Comic Creators on X-Men:
“That was the most misunderstood comic I’ve ever done and I’ve done some whoppers.”
Magneto almost seems like he's getting a bit evil again, so we'll need to keep our eye on that. Illyana is also the most interesting character, not that that's really anything new to me. The things happening with Limbo appear to be setting up the upcoming Inferno storyline (which I haven't read yet so I'm not positive). Let's dig in!
My Rating - 1/10. Woof
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