The New Mutants' headmaster tries to broker a shaky truce with the Hellfire Club, but their efforts for peace are hurt by the intrusion of a third party of Nazi assassins.
Al Rio's art is sharp and crisp, infusing the pages with a real sense of reality and place. I was especially taken aback by the early double-page spread of Magneto meeting with the Hellfire Club's council - - it had a startling sense of depth. And he draws a sexy Selene! Credit definitely has to be given to Guru FX for the top notch effects work. I never read Claremont's original run on New Mutants, but I was still enjoying the new directions he was taking here from his original plans - - the strange alternate reality being forged that's both classic and contemporary.
Claremont actually holds back on his trademark wordiness for this issue but, somehow, he seems to retain it for every time the New Mutants talk about their powers. They just seem way to self-aware and on the nose about the particulars of their abilities. If you make the argument about new readers needing an introduction to the nature of these characters' powers, the point's a little invalidated by there being a whole back-up feature for that.
The Verdict - 3/5
I think the editors on this did a great job on this one, because it feels a lot hipper to the times than X-Men Forever. Even though the issues I had with that title persist in this one, they were definitely less pronounced and I got wrapped a lot more in the story. And Al Rio's art is definitional class.