X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

If you’ve been an X-Men fan for life, then X-Men ‘97 hits harder. That’s because many of the episodes are fairly direct adaptations of the original X-Men comics.

In the same way the original X-Men animated series adapted stories from the ‘70s, X-Men ‘97 is adapting classic X-Men tales of the ‘80s. 

If you’re curious if you missed any or just want to get caught up, here are the comics that inspired Marvel Studios’ X-Men ‘97. 

Comics that inspired X-Men ‘97 Episode 1

X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

Because so much of the first episode, ‘To Me, My X-Men,’ is meant to wrap up elements from the previous episode, there’s not a lot here that comes from comics. 

Cyclops contemplating his role as team leader is an ongoing theme in the comics. Perhaps the most recognizable example is Uncanny X-Men #201, in which he and Storm duel to determine who will lead the team. In that instance, Cyclops actually loses and leaves the team with Madelyne. 

The inciting incident for Scott and Storm determining who should lead is Xavier being taken to space by Lilandra to recover from an illness. That event is from Uncanny X-Men #200, which is much more important in episode 2. 

Comics that inspired X-Men ‘97 Episode 2

X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

The bulk of this story, where Magneto is put on trial for his crimes, is based on 1985’s Uncanny X-Men #200, appropriately titled ‘The Trial of Magneto.’ In the story, Magneto faces an international trial for his crimes. Ultimately, the charges are more or less dismissed, with Magneto agreeing to take charge of the X-Men. 

Storm losing her powers is from Uncanny X-Men #185. Here, she and Rogue are trying to save a boat after a mishap caused by Rogue, who had absorbed Storm’s powers. Henry Peter Gyrich, using a neutralizer designed by Forge, attempts to take Rogue’s powers. However, he misses and hits Storm instead. 

Comics that inspired X-Men ‘97 Episode 3

X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

Most of X-Men ‘97 episode 3 is an adaptation of Inferno, a story in which Madelyne Pryor makes a deal with the demons of Limbo to find her kidnapped son. This leads to Madelyne becoming the Goblin Queen after discovering she is a clone of Jean Grey. 

Cyclops’ sending his son to the future stems from 1991’s X-Factor #68. In the comics, Nathan is infected with a techno-organic virus and transported to an alternate Earth, where he is raised to be a soldier who battles Apocalypse. He actually returns to the present in New Mutants #86 as Cable, which was released two years before this issue. 

Comics that inspired X-Men ‘97 Episode 4

X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

‘Lifedeath’ is a somewhat earnest adaptation of the story of the same name from Uncanny X-Men #186. In the issue, Storm is staying with Forge, who has saved her from drowning in the ocean and is nursing her back to health. 

Much of Lifedeath is about Forge’s guilt over his actions during the war and his role in developing the weapon that stole Storm’s powers. 

Comics that inspired X-Men ‘97 Episode 5

X-Men comics that inspired X-Men ’97 explained

Magneto’s becoming the leader of Genosha stems from the 1999 mini-series Magneto Rex, in which the UN gives him the island to foster a mutant nation. 

Magneto and Rogue’s relationship is inspired by an arc where they’re in the Savage Land together, notably explored in Uncanny X-Men #274. The two nearly form a romantic relationship, but Rogue leaves when she sees Magneto still willing to kill. 

The destruction of Genosha and the Wild Sentinel design originates from E is for Extinction. Running in New X-Men #114-116, the story sees Cassandra Nova force the son of Bolivar Trask to make a new Sentinel to destroy Genosha as a means of getting back at Charles Xavier. 

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