New Mutants Special Edition #1
Issue(s): New Mutants Special Edition #1
Since he is bound to leave the X-Men in peace, he summons the Enchantress to do his dirty work for him.
I don't like how the Enchantress is handled. In the Thor book, we just saw her counter-scheming against Loki; here she's a willing subservient ("only a fool questions the will of one who may yet sit upon Lord Odin's throne"). I also don't like that Art Adams passed on dressing her in her classic costume in favor of a generic mini-skirt.
Meanwhile, the New Mutants are recuperating with Storm on the island of Kirinos (This is probably a coincidence, but Kirinos is part of the Cyclades Islands off of Greece, which is where Jean Grey was corrupted by Mastermind in Classic X-Men #24). Karma is still feeling suicidal over the way Farouk abused her body while he possessed her.
The rest of the Mutants are hanging out at the beach. There's a weird sequence regarding Warlock's clothes. First, Warlock seems to be wearing perfectly normal beachwear. Then Magik tells him that the sort of swimsuits that girls wear aren't appropriate for boys, and then we see Warlock wearing a gigantic pear of jean-shorts (which look like they might have been drawn over something else?). And finally, he is actually shown wearing a bikini.
Anyway, the Enchantress attacks, delivering Storm to Loki...
...and taking the rest to her dungeon. Magik tries to teleport everyone away, but the Enchantress's defenses screw things up, keeping Magik in the dungeon and causing the rest of the Mutants to be scattered across the Nine Realms. Everyone has a mini solo adventure, some of which turn out to be quite significant. In a direct parallel to Balder's tribulations from Thor #346, Karma rescues an innocent from a sand devil and in the process chooses life and loses her excess weight.
Wolfsbane meets Hrimhari, Prince of Wolves, and feels an influx of contradicting emotions.
Dani Moonstone frees a pegasus and unwittingly becomes a Valkyrie.
And Sunspot lifts Volstagg and his chair off the floor.
In less significant news, Cannonball meets Eitri the dwarf, Magma gets turned into an elf, and Doug Ramsey is forced to become a serving wench. The group eventually manages to get back together, and they take on the Enchantress.
Magik banishes her to Limbo under the loving care of S'ym, and then they head off after Loki.
While Warlock's on his solo adventure (which involves disintegrating a dragon in Hela's domain), he transforms himself into Longshot. It's really just meant to be a promotional jokey thing since Adams is also drawing the Longshot series, but in-story it raises the possibility that Warlock is somehow aware of Longshot.
Later, while fighting, Warlock forms an armored shell around Doug that allows him to participate in the battle.
This is a densely plotted issue, with lots of significant events, and Claremont handles his own characters well enough. But i'm not at all impressed with the Asgardian elements, especially reading this in parallel with Simonson's Thor. Loki is generically evil and not at all clever. Enchantress is disappointingly servile. Both villains seem content to sit around and watch on their crystal balls as they wait for the good guys to rally and come back to fight them. The other characters (Hela, Eitri, the Valkyries, etc.) exist mainly to further the plot along or provide narrative and don't really have their own voices (with the exception of the Warriors Three, who seem impossible to write poorly).
Art Adam's art is very nice (better than the scans here show), but he's got kind of a wild, open style that would benefit from terser scripting than Claremont provides, and there's cases where it feels like the art and script are fighting each other (like the pants scene above).
This is far from horrible, but i leave it somewhat unsatisfied.
In this book and the subsequent X-Men annual, Claremont refers to the Casket of Ancient Winters saga as the "Surtwar", which is an overly casual fan term that doesn't seem appropriate, although i guess it could be Dwarf-slang when Eitri says it.
I don't know why this book was "Special Edition #1" instead of just "Annual #2".
Quality Rating: B-
Chronological Placement Considerations: Storm and the New Mutants appear here after freeing Karma from the Shadow King in New Mutants #34. This story continues in Uncanny X-Men annual #9, which runs concurrently with Thor #361-362. The New Mutants then briefly appear in Uncanny X-Men #200 before returning to their own book in New Mutants #35.
Continuity Insert? N
My Reprint: N/A
Inbound References (10): show
Later on, when Warlock meets Longshot in Uncanny X-Men Annual 10, it becomes obvious that he has no clue who Longshot is- it was just an in-joke.
Posted by: Michael | July 5, 2012 8:45 PM
Kirinos is also where Forge and Banshee meet Cylla Markham and survive a Fenris assassination attempt in Uncanny 260. Wonder what Claremont's attachment to the location is?
Posted by: Walter Lawson | July 8, 2012 2:26 AM
Claremont never explains how Karma doesn't wind up with gargantuan amounts of loose skin after losing all that weight. Her norn thing is never referred to again either(as far as I know).
Art Adams puts Brutus and Olive Oyl cameos in the Doug Ramsey sequence.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | July 14, 2012 9:07 PM
"And Sunspot lifts Volstagg off a chair."
That seems a bit generous, the chair is clearly still intertwined with his buttocks in that image.
Posted by: Max_Spider | November 11, 2012 6:40 AM
This was indeed announced as New Mutants Annual #2, but evidently the story got too big and Marvel created this format/price to contain it.
Posted by: Mark Drummond | October 30, 2013 7:06 PM
You've got the Norns listed as their Greek counter-parts. They should properly be listed as Urd, Skuld, and Verdandi. It's been suggested that the Norns are the same beings as the Greek pantheon Fates so you could probably list them as Skuld/Lachesis, Urd/Clotho, Verdandi/Atropos.
Posted by: Jay Demetrick | November 4, 2013 12:52 PM
In fact, the little girl was probably Urd and the sand devil was possibly Skuld in disguise, which means Verdandi would be behind the scenes. When Karma finally leaves the desert, she discovers she is holding a piece of string which means the Norns have found her worthy and literally placed a portion of her fate in her own hands.
Posted by: Jay Demetrick | November 4, 2013 1:18 PM
See my note about the Norms/Fates on Thor annual #11. I do like the idea of listing them by both names, though.
Posted by: fnord12 | November 4, 2013 1:19 PM
"In the Thor book, we just saw her counter-scheming against Loki"
I think it's more accurate to say that she schemed against her sister and Loki simply got in the way.
I do also love the Adams art - the first person to really do a fantastic job drawing New Mutants, especially Dani as a Valkyrie. I don't know that she's ever been drawn better, before or since.
Posted by: Erik Beck | June 2, 2015 3:21 PM
Art and Terry knocked it outta the park! Just beautiful stuff, and you have to love the homages to the recent Simonson issues.
He makes Farouk/Karma super gross. Walter Hudson cringes when he sees that page.
I especially appreciated the price; I think I bought 5 of these.
Posted by: VtCG | April 14, 2016 12:08 AM
The valkyrie Mist is another name of Krista, Hildegarde's sister.
Posted by: Moira Brandon | May 19, 2016 7:53 AM
So who's been looking after Leong and Nga this whole time?
Posted by: ChrisW | July 11, 2016 3:29 AM
The armor Warlock turns into reminds me of the VF-1A Valkyrie from Macross & Robotech.
Posted by: Mortificator | December 8, 2016 12:12 PM
To be honest the solution for karma being overwight always bothered me
Posted by: adriano | October 7, 2017 2:36 AM
The Enchantress ought to fight The Avengers more. One of their forgotten foes.
Posted by: OrangeDuke | January 14, 2018 11:39 PM
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