'The New Mutants' Isn't Just Bad, It's Surprisingly Racist

As further evidence that the world really just couldn't be any worse right now, the current number one movie at the U.S. box office is The New Mutants, the critically-lambasted last gasp of Fox's X-Men franchise. The film was actually made back in 2017 and has had a production history more turbulent than a plane ride with Harrison Ford. The story about a group of young mutants held in a creepy hospital was so troubled that at one point, the studio considered "throwing the entire movie out" and starting from scratch. This thing's been delayed so many times one wonders if they should legally be allowed to use the word "new" in the title.

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Now the movie is finally out, and unsurprisingly, it sounds pretty ... not awesome. Not only is it, according to one critic, as fun as "a warm can of diet soda," but as reported by The Mary Sue, it also features more randomly racist lines of dialogue than you might expect from a comic book horror movie for teens dropping in 2020. The film focuses on Dani Moonstar, the Indigenous superhero who becomes Mirage in the comics. While it's great that Dani is the star of the movie, her heritage is, unfortunately, the subject of repeated pot-shots from Illyana, who calls her "Pocahontas" and "Standing Rock" and even crafts a baffling insult involving Buffalo Wings.

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We get that Illyana is supposed to be a dick here, but that doesn't mean her attempts to antagonize Dani need to manifest as putdowns that seem plucked from a 50-year-old Don Rickles routine. That is a very specific choice the writers made, for some reason. Even more uncomfortably, at one point, she asks Dani to show them "where daddy touched you." You'd think the X-Men franchise, of all franchises, wouldn't want to make light of the sexual abuse of minors. Then there's the fact that the movie whitewashes characters from the comics ...

... but at this point, it kind of feels like we're just beating a horse that is both dead and no longer canon.

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Top Image: 20th Century Studios

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