The X Men – tape 1570

Over to Sky One Saturday Mornings, and their resident puppet DJ Kat introduces The X-Men and Night of the Sentinels part 1. This is the first episode of the series, and wastes no time setting up the world, with a violent mutant (Sabretooth, although he’s not identified at the start) running wild in a city, and the parents of Jubilee are fretting over their daughter – they refer to her as Jubilee, which is a bit weird since that’s her ‘hero’ name. Her father has registered her with the Mutant Control Agency. “It’s an outreach program”.

Jubilee

An outreach program which sends a thirty-foot robot Sentinel to smash through a suburban house wall and snatch a young girl.

Luckily, she’s snuck out of the house to play video games at the arcade, but sentinels don’t give up that easily, and pretty soon it’s smashing its way into the mall. Luckily, that’s the mall where the X-Men go shopping.

After some superheroics, Jubilee wakes up at Xavier’s school – cue her running around, meeting the rest of the mutants, and helpfully introducing them to the viewers. It’s all the usual 90s characters – Storm, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Gambit, The Beast and Wolverine. Oh yes, and Morph.

Morph?

Morph

As his name suggests, he’s like a bargain basement Mystique, able to shape change, but he’s not a name I was familiar with from the comics.

And when the X-Men attack the Mutant Registration Headquarters, and are ambushed by sentinels, guess which of the X-Men doesn’t make it back alive?

This is the same ploy they used when launching the All New X-Men in the comics – Thunderbird was one of the team, and he gets killed very early on, but in that case it’s more of a shock because all of the characters are new to the reader, so one of them dying was a big deal. Here, all the other characters are firm favourites from the comics, so the new character stands out. It didn’t help that he looked weird and was a bit rubbish – he kept running into things. Sloppy writing.

Still, at least in this world, a woman is president of the United States.

The American President

Although I think they undercut her gravitas when the first time we see her in the Oval Office she’s exercising on a stairmaster.

The next episode is Enter Magneto. The Beast is in prison after he was captured during the break-in in the last episode, and Magneto comes to rescue him. Beast tells him he wants to stand trial, so that people can see that mutants aren’t a menace.

The other episodes on this tape are Deadly ReunionsCold VengeanceSlave IslandThe Unstoppable Juggernaut.

Before The Cure, there’s the end of an episode of the old Filmation animated Tarzan series, and a complete DJ Kat opening for the X-Men.

The Cure sees Angel return.

Angel

This episode covers a lot of the material later used in X-Men The Last Stand, particularly the cure, Rogue’s desire for normalcy, Angel as someone involved in the cure. But it also mashes up with the latest X-Men movie, as Apocalypse is revealed to be behind the cure, working with Mystique.

Apocalypse

Also mixed up in this is Cable, a character I never really warmed to in the comics as he appeared at about the time I stopped buying quite so many comics every week.

Cable

The next episode is Come The Apocalypse. Angel undergoes the ‘cure’ but in fact it transforms him into Archangel, one of Apocalypse’s four horsemen.

Archangel

And as if we hadn’t had enough source material for the movies, the next episode is Days of Future Past part 1. Starting as the movie does, in an apocalyptic future where sentinels are hunting and killing mutants, and many of the X-Men are already dead, and handily all buried close to one another.

Gravestones

As with the movie, someone returns to the past, the 90s this time, to stop a high-profile assassination, but it’s not Wolverine here, it’s Bishop, a newly introduced character. Which means he doesn’t have all the information he needs, and believes it’s the X-Men who are the assassins.

After this, recording switches very briefly to UK Gold, in the middle of Doctor WHo – The Deadly Assassin by the looks of it.

The Deadly Assassin

Then the recording ends.

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2 comments

  1. A couple of notes: Morph was intended to be the Changeling, the obscure villain who briefly joined the X-Men and then died in the 1960s in a continuity fix. However, DC had Changeling in the Teen Titans at the time, so for legal reasons, he became Morph.

    Also, since Jubilee’s real name is Jubilation Lee it’s not a huge stretch for her to be nicknamed Jubilee by her parents, although having a real name that so easily becomes her code-name is only a couple of steps below Otto Ocatvius for daft comic book names.

    Incidentally, love the website! Only just discovered it and have wiled away a rainy afternoon digging through it.

    1. Yes, Jubilation Lee has that same retro-fitted name feel as Harleen Quinzel and Edward Nygma. Nominative Determinism in action, they were all destined to be superheroes/villains.

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