SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Mister Miracle #7, by Tom King, Mitch Gerads and Clayton Cowles, on sale now.
It feels like it was just yesterday that Big Barda revealed to Scott Free that they were poised to face their most laborious (in more ways than one) challenge yet – parenthood. In actuality, though, Tom King and Mitch Gerads dropped this life-changing bombshell just over two months ago, in Mister Miracle #6. But whether because of a time jump or the New Gods’ accelerated gestation period, Issue #7 kicks off with the pair making their way to the hospital to welcome the newest addition to the Free/Barda family. (Yes, Barda is her actual last name.)
As we’ve seen from King in past issues, the narrative is carried along by way of genuinely relatable dialogue between Scott and Barda. In this instance, it comes in the form of a debate over what the couple will name their child when he finally arrives. Scott throws out several suggestions, including Ironbreaker, Starrazer and Axelblow, to name a few.
However, as many parents will surely tell you, sometimes, you don’t realize what name will suit your child best until you lay your eyes upon them for the first time. For Barda, that name turns out to be Jacob – a nod to Jacob’s Ladder, which was used to escape from the X-Pit on Apokolips. Scott, on the other hand, sees something else when he looks at his newborn son.
“I don’t know,” Scott says to Barda. “He looks more like a… just like a lump.”
And suddenly, just like that, it appears as though we finally have a major clue as to what’s behind the false reality that’s been plaguing Scott since the start of the series.
Created by Jack Kirby, the creature known as The Lump first appeared in 1972’s Mister Miracle #7. It was essentially a living weapon, forged by Granny Goodness as a means of finally trapping Mister Miracle for good through the use of its immense psychic powers. After being hooked up to The Lump, Mister Miracle found himself trapped in a false reality that the creature was in complete control over. The only way he was able to escape was by showing it a reflection of its grotesque physical appearance, which ultimately drove The Lump mad.
Of course, there’s already been some speculation that The Lump could be behind Scott and Barda’s current predicament, but this is our first solid clue indicating the creature’s involvement in the current "war" between New Genesis and Apokolips. However, the revelation also, inevitably, raises even more questions. For example, is Scott’s comment just a simple bit of foreshadowing, or are we to believe that his and Barda’s child is actually The Lump, summoning itself into the very reality it created?
If it’s the latter, Scott’s going to need to find a more creative solution than showing an adorable little baby its own reflection in order to save the world -- and himself.