The SDCC 2020 went digital for the first time in 50 years. But, the release of the opening clip from The New Mutants brightened our dampened moods within no time. With so many questions to answer from the clip, let’s delve straight into it.
1. The end is the beginning
The New Mutants is special in many ways. First and foremost, The New Mutants marks the end of the X-Men saga as all the characters are now under the roof of Marvel Studios. Secondly, if the trailers and the opening clip are to be trusted, the comic-book accuracy deserves thunderous applause. Created by Chris Claremont and Bob McLeod, The New Mutants were first introduced back in 1982.
The popularity of The New Mutants soared during The Demon Bear Saga which plays a pivotal role in the X-Men storyline. Marking the debut of artist Bill Sienkiewicz’s art, his abstract and uncommon art-form revolutionized the comic-book industry. To pay homage to Sienkiewicz, the opening clip is eerily similar to his art, which also includes the Native-American quote read by Blu Hunt. For now, The New Mutants seem promising under the direction of Josh Boone.
2. Who is Dani Moonstar?
The X-Men saga of Fox has been a bumpy ride. From universally acclaimed Logan to the forgettable X-Men: Dark Phoenix, consistency has never been their strong forte. But, Fox has never been shy to introduce new characters to the silver screen. The New Mutants shall be introducing a few more characters too, including the Native-American hero Dani Moonstar aka Mirage.
As a mutant, she can project people’s deepest fears which can traumatise them or go insane. As a new mutant sans training, there’s a theory which claims Dani might be the real antagonist of the movie. Haunted by the Demon Bear who killed her parents, she becomes a part of the New Mutants to fight off this evil. Also, she has been a Valkyrie in the comics which shows her capabilities.
3. Beware, the Demon Bear!
The Demon Bear is probably the major antagonist of The New Mutants who is terrifying the teenage mutants with his psychic powers. Created by Chris Claremont, the Demon Bear was created by demonically mutating Dani’s parents.
More of an astral threat rather being a physical threat, the Demon Bear feeds on negative emotions. He also has the abilities of teleportation, immense strength, and shapeshifting. The movie might stray away from his origin as the opening clip shows Dani’s father being mauled and thrown away, instead of being absorbed by the Demon Bear.
4. Enter, Wolfsbane of House Stark
You can take a girl out of Winterfell, but you can never take Winterfell out of the girl. Game of Thrones actress Maisie Williams who played the role of Arya Stark is back with lupine powers in The New Mutants. The co-incidence is mind-boggling.
Raised in a devout Christian family, Rahne Sinclair had a traumatic past. Abused by her pastor, her mutant gene was triggered turning her into a wolf. Her violent childhood and a devout family often puts her at an emotional conflict whenever she comes across mutants with demonic powers. Her powers help her transform into a complete wolf or a transitional wolf (werewolf). As a wolf, her senses, strength, and agility are heightened.
5. What is Jonathan Byers doing here?
Stranger Things star Charlie Heaton is playing the role of Cannonball in The New Mutants. Resembling some of the characteristics of Jonathan Byers from Stranger Things, Cannonball is the co-leader of New Mutants alongside Dani Moonstar.
His powers include the ability to generate thermo-chemical energy which helps him project energy blasts. These energy blasts help him travel long distances within seconds while encasing him in a nigh-invulnerable energy field. He can also absorb kinetic energy and use as offensive measures.
6. Superman from Brazil, well almost
Roberto da Costa aka Sunspot is a Brazilian mutant who has the ability to store solar energy in his cells which he can use as augmented physical energy. Using the stored solar energy, he can also fly, project heat and light, and deal explosive blasts of solar energy.
Sunspot hails from a rich multi-racial Brazilian family. His mutant gene was triggered when he was assaulted by racists during a football match, transforming into a solid, black mass of solar energy. Unable to control his powers, he accidentally killed his girlfriend which haunts him till date.
7. Cecilia Reyes, friend or foe?
A Latin-American doctor who specialises in trauma surgery, she is also a mutant who can create a force field around her. Uninterested in the superhero life, Cecilia Reyes wishes to continue as a doctor.
In the movie, she seemingly allows the other mutants to explore their powers. Yet, her constant supervision of Dani Moonstar’s powers using specialized sensors and the force field created to keep all the mutants inside the secret facility confuses us with her true allegiance.
8. It’s Magik time, baby!
The younger sister of Colossus, Illyana Rasputin aka Magik is a formidable member of the New Mutants. In the comics, she is trapped inside a limbo state for seven years. There, she learns sorcery and becomes a fearful warrior.
In the clip, she proudly tells the group about the number of people she has murdered. It might indicate her time in the limbo or even the Badlands, the place where the Demon Bear teleports the new mutants to fight him. As a mutant, she has the ability of teleportation enabling her to travel across both time and space.
9. The Fault in Our Genes
Director Josh Boone is famous for his John Greene’s adaptation of The Fault in Our Stars. His transition from a teenage love story to a horror-esque superhero movie is surely surprising.
In the clip, there are multiple instances where Dani and Rahne share tender moments, pointing towards their mutual affection for each other. Featuring a same-sex teenage couple is welcoming move for the superhero industry. Considering Boone’s acclaimed work on The Fault in Our Stars, a teenage love story set against the backdrop of a horror-meets-mutants story would be surely an interesting aspect of the movie.
10. Whenever in doubt, go Russian!
Remember that Magik was trapped in a limbo for seven years? There, she did not just practice dark sorcery but also created a powerful weapon which can slay the Demon Bear.
The extended trailer shows a glimpse of Illyana jumping straight into a climactic action against the Demon Bear with her Soulsword. Created from a fragment of her own soul, the Soulsword is a powerful magical weapon which affects anything remotely magical. Its ability to damage powerful magical entities makes it an effective weapon against the Demon Bear. Magik is also seen wearing a magical armour which we believe is the Eldritch armour which protects her from both physical and magical attacks. The armour’s strength grows proportionally to its usage by Magik. Wicked!