In what can be charitably described as a poorly executed attempt to create a daring new “environmentalist” mutant anti-heroine, the most recent storyline featured in Marvel’s X-Men Unlimited digital series sees Nature Girl shamelessly murder a random store manager after finding a piece of trash from his establishment, only to be freed from punishment thanks to the sentient Krakoa’s intervention.
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The story written by Gerry Duggan, illustrated by Emilio Laiso and Rachelle Rosenberg, titled X-Men: Green, not so subtly titled, begins in the fifth issue of the exclusive digital series when the botonopath, sitting on the beaches of Krakoa with a group of other mutants, sees a dying sea turtle fall to shore.
After comforting the reptile in its final moments before death and mourning its passing, Nature Girl discovers the cause of the ocean creature’s death: asphyxiation via a bag of groceries, courtesy of the fictional Owens Grocery in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Opening a door from Krakoa to Sin City, Nature Girl is then seen bursting into the store, confronting the manager and blaming him for the litter, despite being, at best, a middleman between the producer of the bag and the litter. individual who probably threw.
“Do you know where I found this bag?” Nature Girl asks the naturally indifferent store manager. “It was lodged in the throat of a beautiful sea turtle.”
In response, the manager shoots back, “well, maybe that was nice, but it wasn’t so smart if he ate a plastic bag, now you can buy something or—” before being interrupted mid-sentence by Nature Girl, who proceeds to fatally stab the man in the neck.
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After escaping Las Vegas and charming a K9 unit, Saorise, to her side along the way, the young mutant is soon confronted by Wolverine, who has been sent by Professor Xavier to find her and bring her back to Krakoa. for a trial.
However, Nature Girl manages to elude the longtime member of the X-Men, stealing his motorcycle as he battles a black bear who is the fugitive mutant – in a rather hypocritical move coming from someone claiming to be on a crusade for protect the planet’s flora and fauna. – manipulated to fight him to the death.
After briefly returning to Krakoa to collect some of her belongings — and in the process of recruiting the mutant Curse to her cause — Nature Girl then takes her crusade “somewhere in the Dakotas,” joining a group of protesters to demonstrate against the construction of a pipeline by the Cynadine Oil Company.
The assembly then turns violent, with pipeline workers turning to physically attack the protesters in an attempt to disperse the crowd.
It is here that Nature Girl kills her second victim, for under the threat of being struck from behind by a construction worker armed with a wrench, the eco-warrior turns – quite literally – to the offensive use of her horns, fatally slitting the throat of his assailant.
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Declaring war on the Dakota-based oil company’s fictional refinery, Nature Girl soon encounters the facility’s resident metahuman security guard – Black Mamba – who attempts to use his ability to manipulate the Darkforce to take on the mutant’s sense of guilt.
However, faced with a vision of her first victim, Nature Girl sees her actions as a necessary evil.
“I died because of you!” shouts the ghost of the clerk generated by Darkforce. “I didn’t kill a turtle. Sure, single-use plastic did the trick, and it could have come from our store, but don’t you think you overreacted? »
Unmoved by his arguments, Nature Girl – who has lost her hair due to what she describes as “evolution” – replies: “I’m not sorry you’re gone – you were just one of the problems that infected the planet.”
“I would kill you again,” she declares.
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After her successful destruction of the refinery, Nature Girl is eventually captured by Wolverine, who sends her and Curse back to Krakoa to stand trial for the murder of a man (it is never stated whether she is held responsible for the clerk’s murder or of the pipeline worker’s murder) before the Island’s Quiet Council.
Although Nature Girl attempts to justify her crimes on the grounds that Earth must be defended because it is the only planet she must live on, as even terraformed places such as Mars do not mesh properly with her abilities based on nature, his arguments do little to sway the council, which eventually finds the two mutants guilty and condemns them to the usual Krakoan punishment of eternal waking confinement in the dark depths of the sentient island.
The two mutants are soon abandoned at their new prison, only to soon wake up alive and fully conscious to the sight of Saorise and Cypher, the omnilingual translator who serves as the communication link between Krakoa and its resident population, who announces, ” It’s your only free get out of jail card. You have to go. Now.”
“Krakoa gets you on parole,” the former New Mutants member explains to the two. “The island will not bear the destruction of this world. Like you, he has nowhere to go. But that’s the end of your story in paradise. You are disavowed. You can’t come back, you can’t use portals, you can’t even be spotted. You will have to adopt other identities and sink.
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Despite this, the island refuses to leave them completely out in the cold, gifting Nature Girl with “a bespoke cudgel with a few surprises” made from a piece of Krakoa itself before the two fugitives go into hiding, hunted smuggled out of their old home by boat courtesy of Pyro.
Concluding with a single shot of Saorise, Curse, and Nature Girl – Krakoa staff in hand – landing in an unidentified town, the X-Men: Green arc finally ends with the group’s de facto leader declaring, “Let’s get started. “
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