Thursday, December 30, 2010

X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men

So I stumbled upon this and decided to give it a watch. X-Men: Pryde of the X-Men first aired back in the 80s as what was intended to be a pilot for an animated series for X-Men. Like with almost every single X-Men cartoon out there the lineup is kind of odd. You have Charles Xavier, Cyclops, Storm and Wolverine – all of them have been staples of the various X-Men cartoons over the years; the rest of the lineup is what always changes. The team is fleshed out by Nightcrawler, Colossus, Dazzler and we’re introduced to their world via the arrival of Kitty Pryde. The villains are also a little random: Pyro, Blob, Toad, Juggernaut, Magneto, the White Queen and Lockheed the dragon.

Some of the casting choices are odd due to their lack of explanation. Obviously they included Lockheed because he is Kitty’s pet/friend in the comics, but why is he with Magneto up until the very end? Dazzler, who at the time in the comics loved being a mutant as long as she could perform her music and have nothing to do with the X-Men or super heroics in general is suddenly an active member of the X-Men. Scott is around yet there’s no Jean or hints of the original X-Men so who knows if they would have dealt with the whole Phoenix/Dark Phoenix thing. The Brotherhood of ‘Terrorist’ Mutants (I’m not sure why ‘terrorist’ was less harsh of a word for children in the 80s than ‘evil’) seems to be a smash up of the original incarnation of the Brotherhood: Magneto, Toad; and Mystique’s incarnation of the Brotherhood by using Blob and Pyro. Juggernaut was never a member of the Brotherhood, but considering he was a frequent rival for the X-Men I can see why they included him.

There were two things that I had huge problems with and if the show did get turned into a series it would have wrecked the ability to rewatch the show. The first one wouldn’t have been too bad, I could have always used fast forward or the mute button to get through the HORRIBLE theme song. The other thing though – that would have really ruined it for me; for some reason Wolverine - you know the Canadian super spy government lab rat who is the best at what he does… and what he does isn’t very nice has an Australian accent for no reason whatsoever. On the other hand the inclusion of Dazzler was a plus because Alison had always gotten the shaft (she was in like 2 episodes of X-Men the Animated Series, I don’t remember if she was in X-Men Evolution, and it’s a shame Wolverine and the X-Men was cancelled before season two since it was supposed to be the Age of Apocalypse arch and Dazzler was very noticeable during that arch. The White Queen also hasn’t had the best luck with her turn in the cartoons, she had an odd accent in Pryde of the X-Men, was only in a handful of episodes (4 max) of X-Men the Animated Series, was completely omitted from X-Men Evolution, she was a huge part of Wolverine and the X-Men but also she’s got an odd accent, for some reason she’s British.

The art, even for the time was really good which surprised me. Another surprise was the actual voice cast. Almost every single voice sounded familiar to me and when I looked up the cast and I could see why. If you watched TV at all from the 80s up until 2000 you have heard almost every single one of the cast’s voices. This first came out in 1989 when I was seven but for some reason I never saw it up until today and I was actually entertained by it today. I can see if this had been turned into a series and I had known about it when I was a kid I totally would have gotten into it.

Rating: C+

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