In this issue of New Mutants, one of my all time favorite X-Ladies, Boom Boom, takes the lead. Yes, you heard me right. Tabitha Smith aka Boom Boom aka Chaos Incarnate leads the New Mutants to the country Carnelia to save a mutant whose powers have manifested.
Dani Moonstar steps aside, or more accurately is shoved aside, by Boom Boom stepping up to the plate in this issue of New Mutants. The Island of Krakoa does not recognize Carnelia as a country, and Carnelia doesn’t appreciate mutants or their super-powered nation, so Boom Boom decides it is time to matters into her own hands. Dani asks if the mission had been approved by the Mutant Council, to which Boom Boom has a great line: “Dani, have you ever heard the expression that’s it’s better to beg forgiveness than to ask permission?”
This is a great moment for Boom Boom. Not only does it perfectly fit her character, but she is following in the footsteps of Cable, who she had worked for numerous times on X-Force. She even takes Cable’s ship, the Pac-Rat II, to fly them off to the country of Carnelia. I have always considered Boom Boom a quintessential part of X-Force, and have loved her relationships with both Cable and Domino. It brightens my day to see her following in both of their footsteps, especially in Cable’s absence.
At the same time, Magik is having a conversation with Cyclops, who is concerned about the New Mutants team putting themselves and humans in danger, especially after a previous stunt involving Boom Boom, Glob and Armor. Magik reassures him that her team in under control, unknowing to the situation that Boom Boom is now presenting. It is a perspective only we, the readers, can see. What will happen to Boom Boom when they return from their mission, or worse: What if she doesn’t succeed?
Fast forward to the New Mutants arriving on Carnelia. Boom Boom lands the Pac-Rat II where government officials are screaming at them in Russian. This is when Boom Boom reveals that she learned to speak Russian in the past, which only increases her completely bad ass nature. Cable and Domino taught her well.
Then they meet the mutant, Tashi.
Here we have a girl who can warp reality around her. You would think this idea would get stale after having similar story lines with the Scarlet Witch, Legion, and Franklin Richards, yet Ed Brisson brings this power set into a new light with the help of the beautiful illustrations by Flaviano. The way he illustrates every curve and tiny detail in Tashi’s powers is downright beautiful, dark, and with nice gothic twist. This mix of vibrant watercolor-like textures are frame-worthy. The New Mutants are left in peril when most of them are pulled into this nightmare reality Tashi has created around her. It is supposed to be abstract and frightening, but the artwork is just too gorgeous to take my eyes off of it.
I am left with so many questions (the good kind): How will the New Mutants overcome this obstacle and reason with this teenage mutant girl? Will Boom Boom lose her status on her team, or will she succeed and evolve into a leadership role? What is Magik going to do when she discovers the whereabouts about her team?
This issue is well written, beautifully illustrated, and I am ready for more.