My top 5 X-Men
I’m getting ready to watch X-Men: First Class for the first time, went out and rented it on bluray today. I was never big into the X-Men comic books, but right at the same time as I started watching Batman: The Animated series, there was the X-Men animated series. I watched both of them every time they came on. They were very different from each other, but they both treated subject matter in a very adult manner. It made complicated issues understandable without being too childish. It’s where I learned about all of these mutants before I ever thought of someone playing a mutant on the big screen. But I haven’t actually gone back and re-watched any of the cartoons so the live action movies are much clearer in my memory. While many of the characters are very different from each other, there are a lot of great characters to choose from. I’ve said before that I’m not very keen on making lists, but I thought this was a list I could handle.
This is one character that I never really got a handle on in the cartoon series. It wasn’t until the amazing opening sequence of X-2 showed what a total badass he could be when he put his mind to it, or technically someone else’s mind to it. Bryan Singer showed how one could use acrobatics and teleportation to be an extremely formidable opponent. His look is pretty sweet too, a blue demon circus performer. I never really clicked with his pacifist personality though or he may have been higher on this list.
This may seem like an odd choice. He only really appeared in like two or three X-Men episodes, but he made an impact on me. It may have been the fact that it was a kids cartoon and they killed off a character in the first episode. I’ve always had a fascination with shapeshifting. There’s always that question that goes around at some point in your childhood “If you found a genie and had one wish, what would it be?” My wish would have been the ability to shapeshift. I also really loved the one episode where they actually brought Morph back and he proved he could be a great asset to the team even though he didn’t stick around. But since he was only in a couple episodes, I could even justify adding him to the poll.
This is most people’s favorite X-Men, he’s currently leading in my poll here on this site, and it’s pretty obvious why. He just oozes awesome. He is a natural action hero with the bad boy attitude. The only things he cares about are his loved ones and he will fight to the death for them. He’s got the near immortality like the ever popular vampires, without any of the negative effects, and he has a metal skeleton and claws. He’s gone one of the most complex backstories of any of the X-Men and he’s one of the fiercest fighters. The only reason he’s not higher on my list is that he’s just a little too good to be true for my tastes.
When I talked about my history with comic books, I realize that I left a few out. This miniseries was one of them. Rogue is one character that played quite a bit differently between the cartoon, the movies, and the comics. I think the cartoon followed the comics more closely though. She is such a tragic character, more so than any of the other X-Men. She has one of the strongest powers and yet she lacks any sort of control. She drains the powers of any mutant she touches. Not only that, but she takes the essence of the person along with their powers. She lives with a little bit of all of these people she’s ever touched in her head. And in the cartoon, she is constantly with the guilt of the one time she found out what happens if she holds that touch for too long. She permanently has another mutant’s powers while they remain helpless and in a coma, a hidden part of her past but never forgotten. I never connected with Anna Paquin in the movie nearly as much as in the cartoon, though I never thought she did a bad job, she just wasn’t given the chance to really make Rogue as memorable a character.
If you ask me why, I might not exactly be able to tell you. But from his Cajun accent, to his feelings for Rogue, to his nonchalant attitude, he has always struck me as the coolest X-Men, hands down. It actually came as a bit of a shock when I learned that many of you feel the same way. As I write this, Gambit is just one vote shy of Wolverine in my poll, and there’s a small chance he could take the top spot in the next few days. Too bad in live action he got stuck with current box office Kryptonite Taylor Kitsch. I’m hoping that maybe in the First Class series, he’ll be able to make a return to live action in a bigger role. But in the animated series, when he was used, he was just great. He was rarely the main focus in any story but he was often around bringing in his certain gambler charm to any situation. He was smooth and a great fighter, his power may not be the most impressive but he was always right there in the middle of things holding his own no matter what. And that’s what makes him my personal favorite X-Men. One final honorary mention is Mystique, she shares a lot in common with both Morph and Nightcrawler, but since she’s most often considered a villain I decided not to include her in my list. Until next time, this has been Bubbawheat for Flights, Tights, and Movie Nights.