X-Men: The Animated Series arrived on TV screens across the country 30 years ago, catapulting Marvel’s mutants into household names. Without the success of the cartoon, it’s unlikely the X-Men films would have ever happened. All roads lead back to the animated version of Xavier’s School. So it’s only fitting that Disney+ is continuing those adventures in the new X-Men ’97 animated series, coming to the platform next year. And at SDCC, we finally got our first details about the new show.
Cheers erupted when Brad Winderbaum spoke fondly of the legacy of X-Men: The Animated Series and presented a sizzle reel featuring cast and creatives from the popular ‘90s animated show. X-Men ‘97 writer and executive producer Beau DeMayo then spoke about the new series, and shared artwork. The main cast looks almost identical to the original ’92 series, but Storm seems to have a new hairdo. Of course, Ororo Munroe changing her hair constantly is very much a staple of the character. And Jean has lost her signature ponytail.
Aside from the main cast, returning X-Men include Cable, Bishop, Forge, Morph, Nightcrawler, and former New Mutant Sunspot, who never made it to the original series.
Magneto is now the leader of the X-Men, and is shown wearing his short-lived “hero” costume, from Uncanny X-Men #200, way back in 1986. This is the one with a giant “M” on the chest, and the opera gloves. He’s also got much longer hair, like his ’90s incarnation.
Emma Frost, the White Queen appeared, along with her fellow Hellfire Club companion Sebastian Shaw. Also, Morlock leader Callisto, government agent Val Cooper, and Mister Sinister images were shown. On the panel, they revealed that Val Cooper “has an agenda” that will learn about as the season progresses.
They presented an early animatic, showing the team fighting Sentinels. It was very rough, but gave the fans in Hall H an idea of what the show is — pure ’90s Fox Kids action. Although the show won’t debut until Fall 2023, X-Men ’97 already has a second season renewal.
Here’s hoping we learn just how X-Men ’97 ties into the wider Multiverse when the show debuts. We know there has to be a reason the cartoon theme song keeps playing in MCU films Like Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and shows like Ms. Marvel. We’ll just have to wait and find out in 2023.