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Monday, January 26, 2009

Wolverine and the X-Men

The new vehicle for one of Marvel Comics's cash cows, the merry mutants that are the X-Men, debuted this weekend.

Wolverine and the X-Men is the newest cartoon for the X-Gene challenged, and I find it so far to be a good mix between my beloved 90s series, and X-Men: Evolution (from which it takes some heavy visual cues).

The series has some serious talent on the acting side (Nolan North, Liam O'Brien,Richard Doyle, Kari Wahlgren, etc.), same writer (Craig Kyle, also a comic book scribe) as X-Men: Evolution. I'm a big Steve Blum fan, though I think he's more of a Cowboy Bebop / Spike guy than a berzerker canuck, so his emoting felt a little off in the first two episodes. I'm hoping he flexes into it (and I know he can, so it's not a talent issue at all).

Not that everything's rosy with the series. Marvel is going to have a serious challenge of doing the series justice, without bending it too much on its ear to support the X-Men Origins: Wolverine film vehicle in May (example: Cyclops is a leader of the X-Men; Storm is a leader of the X-Men; Wolverine is not so much).

Marvel also has a glut of animated content available or coming down the pipe (the current Spider-Man series; the new Iron Man series that has me concerned; all of the Lions Gate direct-to-DVD fair (they already had to smartly combine the two "Hulk Versus" films; etc.). I do have a concern that people will get saturated with it, and we'll have a late-1990s(ish) tailing of interest in all things comic book. That would make me sad.

I think what will mitigate it is companies treating these things for what they are -- not comic book properties, per se, but intellectual properties with various expressions, one of which happens to be comic books. The dark horse is whether the fanboys will give the properties that latitude.

Lookit me -- I start out with quick impressions, and wind up with the start of a biz dev article. I'm complex that way.

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