The New Mutants are a group of teenaged mutant superhero-in-training published by Marvel Comics. They have been the main characters of three successive comic book series, which were spin-off of the popular X-Men franchise.
The first team of New Mutants characters was created by Chris Claremont (long-time writer of Uncanny X-Men) and artist Bob McLeod. They first appeared in 1982's Marvel Graphic Novel #4 and were subsequently featured in their own title from 1983 until 1991. Also, like its parent title, The New Mutants highlighted interpersonal and group conflict as well as action and adventure, and featured a large ensemble cast. With the end of the first series, the characters were relaunched as X-Force in a new, eponymous series.
The second New Mutants series, launched in 2003, featured a new group of teenage mutants; but unlike the original New Mutants, they were only part of a huge cast of students at the Xavier Institute. At first, they were notable for their drive to become superheroes, but soon rival internal groups played a large role in the series. In 2004, it was relaunched as New X-Men: Academy X, after which the central group was formally dubbed the "New Mutants". In the aftermath of the "M-Day" crossover storyline in late 2005, the remaining students were merged into one junior team, the New X-Men.
The third New Mutants series, reuniting most of the original team, launched in May, 2009.
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Official Site: Marvel Comics
Links: Wikipedia Entry on New Mutants Marvel Database Entry Original New Mutants Info