Am I ageist if I prefer the young versions of Xavier and Magento (McAvoy and Fassbender) over the older ones played by Stewart and McKellan?
Two pretty good X-men reviews that I mostly agree with:

One of the reviews mentions how great it is to see the X-men fighting as a team. I loved that too. We got a lot of that in "The Last Stand" (the 3rd movie which everyone but me hated), and it's great to see.
I thought of another reason why I should really embrace movie-Mystique and stop thinking of her as a bad guy/not-an-Xman as she was in the animated series. I wholeheartedly embraced movie-Bobby right from the start, even though he's really different from TV series Bobby. Why not do the same with Mystique?

The only similarity between movie-Bobby and TV show-Bobby is that they're X-men; their personalities are totally different, yet I was cool with that. I can give Mystique the same benefit, right?

Since I'm typing away, I'll do my gratitude list:

1. Did 55 minutes on the elliptical today

2. Cute cat slept on top of me.

3. Doris gets me teeth whitening stuff for free, which is great because my formerly-yellowish teeth look a lot better now
1. I really really am digging James McAvoy as Xavier and Nicholas Hoult as Beast. I'd love to see a TV series with them in the positions they're in when "Apocalypse" opens up. I really love both characters and what we've seen of them in the movies.

2. Okay, I think I finally understand why I haven't loved Mystique despite her screen time and development in the last 3 movies. It's because I still keep returning to X-men: The Animated Series and my brain keeps saying "She's not an X-man or a hero!" Her portrayal in the movies is so far from XTAS - only Rogue rivals her for having been changed so completely. If I can get over that, I'd really love movie-Mystique.

And this one is a bit spoilery, so I'll cut it.About Magneto )
Things I can be upset about in the X-men movies:

1. The best couple (Rogue and Gambit) are never even in the same movie

2. The best bromance (Iceman and Beast) never exchange a sentence of dialog with each other

3. One of the best female heroes ever (Storm) gets plenty of screen time but absolutely no development

4. The female character who has gotten the most screen time (Mystique) is one of the last I’d have chosen. (Nothing against Mystique or Jennifer Lawrence, but why so much focus on her and not an actual X-woman?)

I can come up with a hundred others, but these are the ones that come to mind first. I debated doing an addendum to the first one, about how they messed up Rogue’s personality.

Yet despite all this, I love the X-men movies. I love them. I could make a list of what I love about the X-men movies and it’d be twice as long as the above.

And if they do somehow get Rogue into the upcoming Gambit movie, I will absolutely forgive all of the above!
Back in 2008, there had been three X-men movies released (X-men, X2, and The Final Stand) and so I decided to do an LJ post on what I liked about them, what I didn’t like, and stuff that gave me mixed feelings. Now, seven years later, we have three more X-men movies (Origins: Wolverine, First Class, and Days of Future Past), so I’ve decided it’s time to dig up my old post and add a few new thoughts - in bold font. Since I still love the X-men and their flawed-but-kinda-awesome movies.

Oh, and several times I refer to my beloved X-men: The Animated Series – or XTAS for short. Because as much as I love the X-men movies, my heart is always with XTAS and my brain thinks it is – or should be - canon.

I liked :

- The movies are what got me into the fandom in the first place. For that reason alone, I have to love them. I’ll never forget going to see the first X-men movie 4 times (and dragging [ profile] nytshd3 with me 3 times, though I think she wanted to go at least for the first 2). Then she told me about XTAS, but the movies first captured the essence of what I love about this fandom – a group of people who have special powers and who are hated and feared by society but who do the right thing and work to make things better. I think the movies make their point – about oppression, about acceptance -- very well. Amen. I said it well in ’08 and I have nothing to add, Your Honor.

- Making a big generalization, I felt all the movies had solid plots, good effects, a few nice twists, cool music, well-choreographed battle scenes – just overall as movies they were good, especially the first two. I still agree with this too. Yes, there are plot holes in all of them and I know a ton of people disliked X-men Origins: Wolverine. But I still say that overall these are good movies. Despite all their many flaws, I never walked away feeling like I saw a dud. (Well, except that I hated “The Wolverine” and basically will spend the rest of this post pretending that film never happened….)

- Most of the Xmen were portrayed pretty well, in my opinion. Getting Patrick Stewart to play Xavier was a dream. I felt that the essence of Cyclops and Wolverine were captured too, more or less. Hank was really good, though he’s not in the movies enough. I also really like their Bobby. Nightcrawler was pretty good, I liked what we saw of Colossus. Also, he’s not an X-man but movie-Magneto was outstanding, far outshining TV-Magneto. But see below for the one X-man who got the worst of it – Gambit. Ditto – and adding that I also love Nick Hoult’s Hank, Fassbender’s Magneto, and McAvoy’s Xavier. More times when the movies got it right!

- The costumes were a hundred times better in the movies than the dork-ass outfits they wear on TV. (For the record, I like the TV costumes of Rogue, Storm, and Gambit. The rest of the team look like fucktards. Worst TV costumes include Cyclops’ underwear-on-the-outside ensemble and Wolverine’s goofy mask with the cutesy ears sticking up). This. I love XTAS but I can’t bear the wackadoodle outfits my heroes wear in it. I love that in the X-men movies, it doesn’t hurt my eyes when I look at the team.

- This one is new and it might be a small point, but I was really intrigued by the future-timeline in Days of Future Past. I loved the glimpses of the ‘new’ characters we see in it – Blink, Bishop, Warpath. I felt there were layers to each of these characters, and I enjoyed their interactions with the more established X-men too. This aspect of the movie especially left me wanting more, but in the best way.

Didn’t like:

- Can movie-Jean possibly suck any worse? I thought she was dreadful. Easily the character they botched the most and maybe even the worst thing about the entire movie series. Maybe it’s because TV-Jean was so amazingly good -- the voice actor for the animated series was Catherine Disher and she was the bomb; she somehow conveyed warmth, strength, vulnerability, a powerful femininity . But I can’t stand movie-Jean. Her voice sounds all wrong, and she doesn’t even look the part. The personality is off. I think this is one of the movie’s biggest misses and I kind of want to throttle the casting director for this choice. I’m sticking with this one too.

- Rogue. Can I simultaneously like movie-Rogue and wish that movie-Rogue had been animated-series-Rogue? I like Anna Paquin and felt she did the best with what was given to her in the movies. They created an interesting character. But she’s not Rogue. Movie-Rogue is so different from TV-Rogue. I like both versions, but TV-Rogue would have been better. Seven years later, I have another thought to add along these lines. I was willing to enjoy this quite-revised version of Rogue, but it sure would’ve been nice had the movies not just dropped her! She’s barely in The Last Stand and is reduced to a cameo in Days of Future Past. The first movie featured a good Uncle-Niece type relationship with Wolverine and Rogue, and then they just leave it. It’s like they changed her personality to force-fit her into this spot and then they dump her. That officially sucks.

- No Gambit!! Wtf?? No Gambit! I don’t know. Did the movie-makers feel that they already had too many strong male leads? Did they hate Cajuns? Did they not know what to do with him given how they screwed up Rogue? Whatever the case, it leads us to the next point. Well, I am glad that Gambit makes an appearance in X-men Origins: Wolverine. I liked Taylor Kitsch’s take on him. It sure would’ve been nice had he been in it for like more than 20 minutes though! I understand that a Gambit movie is scheduled to come out with a different actor and it will be nice to see him get the screentime he deserves.

- No Rogue/Gambit. They are arguably the best X-couple ever and the couple is non-existent in the movies. That sucks. Bring back the animated series! This has to be tied with movie-Jean as the thing I like least about the X-men movies. There’s so much they could’ve done with a Rogue/Remy relationship on the silver screen. I guess it wasn’t meant to be. But if the Gambit movie includes Rogue or if they ever do an X-men reboot...

- I could sure have done without all the deaths in X3. Did the filmmakers decide it would be really neat to just kill off several pillars of the X-men? Hey, no worries, they fixed it all in X-men: Days of Future Past! (In all seriousness, I actually teared up at the end of DoFP because of this, how I felt they fixed what had gone wrong).

- This one is new. I hated X-men: First Class the first time I saw it because I felt it was infested with sexism, even considering the time period in which it takes place. Sure, there are plenty of counter-arguments one can make, but there are counter-arguments back at them. (“What about Moira – she’s a CIA agent!” What about her….she gets downgraded by her own coworkers. “But what about Emma – she was Shaw’s ‘right hand woman’!” Okay, but why does she have to spend the whole movie in her underwear; you’d never see a male character treated that way. “Angel’s a strong character!” They’re all strong, yes, but again why do we need to have yet another scene of a woman being objectified? As for Raven, she deserves her own bullet point, which she will get below). I came around to loving XMFC for other reasons, especially when I decided to ship Azazel/Riptide, but one still can’t help but to feel like the male characters in these movies get all the depth while the female characters get lots of scenes in their underwear.

-Despite the fact that it surprised me not in the least, the fate handed to Azazel, Angel, Emma (and presumably Riptide? The guy apparently still doesn’t merit a mention by name) as we discover in Days of Future Past seriously harshed my buzz.

A few minor points:
1. Why does Shadowcat look like she’s about 13 in X3? And if Bobby is romantically interested in her, shouldn’t he be carted off to jail for that? Ewww. Fortunately Ellen Page did age a bit by Days of Future Past.
2. I would’ve liked Jubilee to have a line or two, though I realize I may be alone in that opinion. I still like Jubilee in XTAS, call me crazy.
3. Some new small points: It would’ve been nice to see Nightcrawler in more than one movie. And hey, since in the comics Northstar has joined the X-men, it’d be a dream to see him on film too. And speaking of gay mutants and speaking of stuff I can only dream about, since comic-Bobby is out now, let’s have him be out on the silver screen too.

Mixed feelings:

- Storm. She’s so much better than movie-Jean and movie-Rogue that she kinda seems to be the pick of the lot in terms of movie-X-women. And at least they showcased her powers well in X3. But they still could’ve done a lot more with her, and as much as I like movie Storm, she really seems like a totally different person than TV Storm. It kind of sucks how she was always a peripheral character in the films. On the other hand, when you have 47 main characters, it’s kind of hard to focus on them all. I still feel the same way here too. I still get that it’s hard to focus on one character when you have so many lead characters, but you’d have a hard time convincing me that they couldn’t have done a bit more with Storm in the movies.

- The movies did a decent job of showing us how strong and powerful the women in the X-men realm are. But I also thought that the women in general didn’t come through quite as awesome and powerful as they do in the TV show. In addition to the four strong X-women, the TV show gave us a female US President in early episodes, Llandra who ruled over an entire Empire in space, even powerful female baddies like Lady Deathstrike and Callisto who were the leaders of their own groups. Every time you turned around on the TV show, there was a strong woman in charge of something. In the movies, less so - unfortunately. One more example of this is how Rogue’s powers are so greatly reduced in movie-verse. I still have mixed feelings on this one. XMFC and X-men Origins: Wolverine were pretty disappointing from this perspective, but Days of Future Past was a lot better – we get some powerful women there. Overall I wanted to see more awesome badass women like we get in XTAS!

- Jean/Scott. I was tempted to put this in the “bad” category but the movies got a few aspects of their relationship right, and movie-Cyclops is good. The second movie gives us an idea of how much they care about each other. But the movies also could have done a better job portraying their love and illustrating that they are soulmates. I also thought the movie put too much emphasis on the Cyclops-Jean-Wolverine triangle, but I realize that I am just tired of the triangle and that other people think it’s cool. At least Days of Future Past ended with them together.

- What’s with Wolverine always running off at the end of the movies? I’ve been re-watching the Animated Series, and was surprised at how loyal he actually is to the team. He has his episodes of needing to get away early on but generally he’s quite loyal to the X-men as the series progresses. He even states in one episode that the X-men mean more to him than anything. But in the movies, it’s like he’s always just passing through. DoFP finally gets this right. There is a great scene where Wolverine talks with Xavier in the 1970’s timeline, urging him to spend the next years forming the X-men (like he tells young Xavier to go out and find Scott, Jean, and Storm and to make the X-men happen), and you can tell how much it means to Wolverine. So maybe he’s come around on this one.

- This bullet point is new. Bravo to the movie-makers for doing a much better job on Raven/Mystique in the last two movies! In all my years as a fan of XTAS and the first three movies, I sometimes wondered why I never cared more about Mystique. Thanks to the writers finally putting some “meat on the bones” of this character, and Jennifer Lawrence’s acting, we get a Mystique with some depth. We see more complexity in Raven during the last two movies than we see of all the other female characters combined in all the X-men movies!

A few minor points:
1. Lady Deathstrike was so cool in X2. And it so sucked that she gets killed. I’ve always had a thing for her, for some reason.
2. It would’ve been nice if they’d shown Hank and Bobby’s friendship. The two don’t really interact in the one movie that they both appear in. But again, when you have 94 main characters this type of thing often gets overlooked so I can’t get too upset. Same. I would’ve been immensely pleased had Hank and Bobby had a movie-verse friendship. But given their age gap, maybe I can hope for an off-camera uncle/nephew thing.

X-fans, what do you think?
I’ve finished my reviews of episodes of X-men: the Animated Series. I’m going to wrap up my reviews of it with this big miscellaneous post, in which I’m going to cover a few random topics like the X-men’s appearance on Spiderman, some phluff on cataloging each team member’s love interests, and a few thoughts on why I love the show so damn much.

Read more... )
It's time for Parts III and IV of "Beyond Good and Evil". I realized that I'm not quite done reviewing XTAS though. The X-men appeared in some episodes of Spiderman. I remember enjoying watching them a lot, and I think I'll review them next. But I am looking forward to starting on doing Evolution afterwards!

Read more... )
Here is my penultimate review of episodes of X-men: The Animated Series. For today it’s Parts I and II of the four-part “Beyond Good and Evil”. I think it is very fitting to end my reviews with this one since I hear it was originally intended to be the series finale.

Looking back at the list of episodes, there are two that I am going to take a pass on reviewing: “Descent”, the Mr. Sinister origin story in which virtually no X-men appear (why exactly was this episode made?) and “Old Soldiers” (Wolverine meets Captain America; I watched this one once 9 years ago and remember only being bored to tears…but seriously, if someone reading this thinks this episode is worth a re-watch, please tell me). Every other episode has been reviewed!

Read more... )
What do I got goin’ on for my Friday night? Reviews of “X-men the Animated Series”.

And we’re getting down to the very end here. After this, the only XTAS episode I’ll review is the four-part “Beyond Good and Evil”.

Episodes: Parts I and II of the Phalanx Covenant

Brief summary: The X-men face a new and most deadly foe that has the power to wipe out all life on earth, and they might have to work with some of their enemies to defeat it.

Behind the cut.

Read more... )
I just have two more episodes of XTAS to review after this: the multi-part “Beyond Good and Evil”, and the two-parter “The Phalanx”. But today’s episodes are Parts I and II of “Sanctuary”!

Episode: Parts I and II of Sanctuary

Brief summary: Magneto decides to overtake a space station and use it as a sanctuary for mutants – much to the horror of the non-mutant world.

Behind the cut!

Read more... )
Nooooo! I am nearly done with my reviews of episodes of “X-men: The Animated Series”. I’ve had such a blast watching and writing about them. For some reason, I began the reviews at the start of Season Four, and these two episodes here are the last two of Season Three.

But this won’t be my last XTAS review post because I skipped some episodes in my initial run-through due to either not having a watchable copy at the time (like “Sanctuary”, an episode I loved) or due to really disliking the episode (“Descent”, the Mr Sinister origin story comes to mind – which I still have no desire to re-watch). So I’ll go through and review a few more episodes. After that, I’m not sure. Maybe I’ll review the movies, and then maybe delve into “Evolution” or even “Wolverine and the X-men” (the former I have watched all the way through, the later I’ve never seen even one episode of).

Today’s episodes are Nightcrawler and Weapon X, Lies, and Videotape )
More reviews of the animated series!

Today’s episodes are Parts I and II of The Savage Land )

XTAS Review

Oct. 1st, 2010 10:41 am
I’m on a roll with the Phoenix Saga, so this reviewcloses it out with Part V: Child of Light  )
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