The Guardians of the Galaxy‘s Mantis has always had a wide array of powers, but one new ability is allowing her to put more of them to use than ever. By literalizing a part of her complicated backstory, Mantis’ new abilities make her power potentially limitless.


In Guardians of the Galaxy vol 7 #1 by Jackson Lanzing, Collin Kelly and Kev Walker, Mantis demonstrates the ability to swap between personas, gaining different abilities in each. This new power ties directly into Mantis’ history. In Steve Englehart and Marshall Rogers’ Silver Surfer vol 3 #9 Mantis was separated into splinters of herself after an attack by the cosmic being the Grandmaster, with these aspects scattered across the universe, each part of her but also separate beings. Guardians vol 7 simply takes this idea to its logical extreme, with her disparate selves now a part of her powerset, as well as canonizing the idea that they’re explicitly linked to different emotional states, with her appearance and powers changing when she switches from happiness to anger.

Mantis’ Different Personas Redefine Her Powers

guardians of the galaxy mantis switch personalities

Related: Nebula’s New Power Makes Her the Guardians of the Galaxy’s MVP

In the current Guardians of the Galaxy volume, Mantis has rejoined the team following Empyre‘s disastrous attack on Earth by her son Quoi, the Celestial Messiah she was prophesied to bring into the world by the Priests of Pama. However, the series takes place after a one-year time jump, in which the team have abandoned their heroic roles and Groot has somehow become a planet-destroying monstrosity. His former friends are now working to evacuate planets in his path, with Mantis having returned to help out, both as a friendly face when needed, and as the team’s muscle when things get rough. Mantis’ personas seemingly have separate identities and memories – when she switches to her bruiser persona in issue 2, she mentions that she “just arrived.” Indeed, even Mantis’ outfit and weapons change when she makes the switch.

Marvel Is Actually Fixing Mantis

guardians of the galaxy star-lord mantis powers

In the real world, Mantis is likely back on the team thanks to her recent appearance in James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, played by Pom Klementieff, however fans don’t yet know why she’s officially back with the Guardians in Marvel continuity, working to protect backwater planets from Grootfall. Mantis previously held more of an advisory role, giving the team often cryptic advice, but her new role sees her acting as Star-Lord’s back-up, pounding any alien that crosses him. This is a much more involved role for Mantis, and one that works well so far.

This development could actually help reestablish Mantis as a character with set limits, allowing her to appear more often. Mantis has so many powers, it can be tough to keep track of what she’s capable of, from controlling plant life to seeing the future to rapid healing to setting fires with her mind. If each of these powers now comes with its own persona, that could ironically make it easier to write the character, as while Mantis can maintain her powers, they wouldn’t constantly be at her fingertips. With a fascinating new role for Mantis, Guardians of the Galaxy is reinventing the team for a new era, and hopefully giving the Celestial Madonna more of the spotlight following her big-screen debut.

Guardians of the Galaxy #2 is on sale now from Marvel Comics.

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