Writer: Vita Ayala
Art: Rod Reis, Jan Duursema and Ruth Redmond
Letters: VC’s Travis Lanham
Publisher: Marvel Comics
Release Date: June 22nd, 2022
New Mutants #26 continues last issue’s cataclysmic events, as Magik, Madelyne Pryor, Dani Moonstar and Wolfsbane are trapped in Limbo, Magik’s Soulsword has been shattered, and an army of techno-demons are on the verge of attack. And that’s the least of their problems!
New Mutants #26 suffers from the same burden as most other X-books: it requires an encyclopedic knowledge of past issues to understand what’s going on.
Last issue was wonderfully stand-alone and free of the massive weight of past X-events. This issue, however, Warlock and armies of tech demons enter, apparently having infected Limbo years ago. Having read New Mutants and other X-books off and on throughout the years, I missed this story, so I was a bit lost reading this issue. It wasn’t a total bust, thankfully, I was able to decipher most of what was going on.
The main star of this issue is Magik’s older self, who wields a massive techno-sword and stands solo guard against the armies of demons. This was the part that was most confusing to me. Is this an alternate-universe version of Magik, or is this just an older version of our Magik who travelled back in time to the present? I’m guessing she’s an alternate universe version, because she refers to “the other versions” of Dani and Wolfsbane.
She’s an interesting character, having Magik’s dark and grim manner but with a surprisingly good sense of humor. It’s fun seeing her and our version of Magik interacting. In one scene, a representative of the demon army swoops in and offers them a proposal, and the pair basically laugh in his face, intimidating him so much he speeds off in terror.
The other characters don’t have much to do this issue. Madelyne Pryor is her usual annoying overbearing self, treating everyone around her like inferior peasants, and Dani and Wolfsbane are mostly relegated to the background.
The techno-demons are more bizarre than terrifying, all having the warped look of Warlock, though more streamlined and skeletal looking. A great battle takes place towards the end of the issue, and it reminded me of those old Ray Harryhausen stop motion films like “The Golden Voyage of Sinbad”, where armies of skeletons sling swords and shields in choppy motion against armored warriors. Good stuff all around.
Rod Reis handles the bulk of the art on New Mutants #26, and his art has an angular sketchy style that fits the techno-demons more than the other characters in the book.
I’m not a fan of his particular art style (it reminds me too much of Bill Sienkiewicz’s style), but considering the characters are in the hellish fantasy landscape of Limbo, the style fits that location more than a real world setting.
Jan Duursema draws pages where Magik flashes back to her childhood, and those pages are spectacular. As always, Jan draws fantasy worlds like no other.
New Mutants #26 continues Magik’s quest in Limbo in grand fashion. Though it’s a bit confusing in parts, there’s enough good character interaction and action to make this a recommended book.