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DVD Review

DVD cover

The Animated Series
Season 5 - Volume 1


Starring (voice): Cedric Smith, Cathal J. Dodd, Norm Spencer and Iona Morris
Clear Vision
RRP: £14.99
Certificate: PG
Available 04 January 2010

Season 5 was the last of this sadly under-achieving animated outing for X-Men from the 1990s. In this first volume we get six 20-minute episodes amounting to approximately 1 hour 45 minutes running time on a single disc. Professor Xavier, Beast, Wolverine, Storm, Cyclops and a handful of other regulars return in a series of stories which, ironically, seem to improve slightly the closer we come to the conclusion of the show...

In Phalanx Covenant (2 parts), bad guys Sinister and Magneto help Beast and Forge to combat a symbiotic life form which is determined to assimilate the human race and eventually all life. They receive an unexpected ally in a friendly individual from the collective race. This is a pretty enjoyable story, but it jumps the line back and forth between serious and silly. As you will have guessed, the idea is stolen from Star Trek’s the Borg, and includes elements of the Venon/Carnage sybiote which originated with the black costume saga from the Spider-Man comics.

In Storm (2 parts), the X-Men’s Storm is abducted and taken to another world where the weather is in constant angry turmoil, wrecking cities and killing people. After pleas from the warrior king, she agrees to help, and in return becomes a champion of the people. Storm falls in love with the king, but when other X-Men track her down they discover that the citizens are frightened slaves, controlled with an iron fist by the king.

In The Fifth Horseman, a hidden Mayan temple and its people are dedicated to the return of Apocalypse. The power of a mutant boy is needed to smooth the transition, but when the boy is lost and Jubilee and Beast wander into their midst, Jubilee is taken as the new conduit and Beast is transformed into a large feral version of himself.

As I said, a definite improvement on previous seasons, with more ‘people’ stories that are slightly more character driven - as should be. But it is too little too late.


Ty Power

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