X-Men ’97 Understands Wolverine Way Better Than Any Of Hugh Jackman’s Movies

A close up of Hugh Jackman as Wolverine bearing his claws

Hugh Jackman may be synonymous with Wolverine in live-action, but X-Men ’97 just proved that it understands the character on a far deeper level. Jackman’s iconic tenure as Logan is poised to continue with the release of Deadpool & Wolverine in July where he will don the classic yellow and blue suit and convey a far grouchier persona than the character has displayed thus far in his tenure with Fox’s X-Men franchise. This is evidence of the notion that Wolverine will be a variant more akin to the character of the comics in more ways than just physically.

Meanwhile, another version of Wolverine has appeared regularly in X-Men ’97, where he has taken on far less of a central role in the wider narrative. Despite this, Wolverine became the center of attention in X-Men ’97 Episode 9’s ending, “Tolerance is Extinction – Part 2,” where he ran Magneto through with his claws before having the adamantium in his skeleton forcibly extracted in one of the most gruesome turns of events that could befall Wolverine. This sequence, however, was where X-Men ’97‘s Wolverine proved to be far more faithful to his comic book counterpart.

X-Men ’97 Reinforces Wolverine’s Real X-Men Role

Người Sói giận dữ siết chặt nắm đấm trong X-Men '97 mùa 1 Tập 9

The final sequence of X-Men ’97 Episode 9 saw Charles Xavier task his X-Men with a two-pronged counterattack against Magneto and Bastion to avert global catastrophe. Despite going toe-to-toe against the Omega-level mutant responsible for an incoming apocalypse, Wolverine was able to remove Magneto’s helmet to expose him to Professor X’s psychic attack. Cyclops’ intervention then allowed Magneto to gain the upper hand, putting Xavier through a lot of pain before Wolverine resolved to end things by impaling Magneto, thus leading to the latter’s gruesome retaliation.

The episode carried a significant amount of emotional heft as it saw X-Men turn on X-Men, Magneto and Professor X let loose on one another, and ended in what may have been the deaths of some pivotal main players. Despite the series commencing with Magneto’s respectable attempts to continue Charles’ legacy and contradict his lifelong dogma that was ultimately vindicated in recent episodes, this ultimately led to Wolverine throwing caution and sentimentality aside to do what must be done: kill Magneto. While Magneto is unlikely to succumb to the wound, it was certainly inflicted with murderous intent.

This final sequence depicted Marvel’s Wolverine in all his rage-fueled glory. His unwitting transformation into an adamantium-infused weapon was ultimately successful, with the harrowing experience darkening his mind to a point where he would scantly consider the emotional repercussions of doing what needed to be done. His attack on Magneto, meanwhile, despite the arch-villain’s ability to control his very skeleton, is another comic-accurate example of Wolverine’s blind tenacity.

Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine Is Too Much Of A Straightforward Hero

Hugh Jackman as Wolverine in X-Men Days of Future Past looking confused

While it still holds up as an iconic rendition, Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine is not particularly comic-accurate. This is most starkly exemplified by his rampant heroism throughout Fox’s X-Men franchise as he became the de facto main character that Wolverine was never meant to be. Worse still was Wolverine’s penchant for leadership, a role that necessitated a level of empathy and compassion that is supposed to be in short supply with the stout berserker of Marvel Comics.

Wolverine boasts a unique capacity to operate outside the bounds of morality that typically constrain other X-Men like, most notably, his rival, Cyclops. While Jackman’s Wolverine was prone to a fit of lethal rage or two, as demonstrated in his defense of the X-Mansion in X2: X-Men United, the fact that he carried out his retaliation after orchestrating the students’ evacuation diminished the crux of his “snikt-first-ask-questions-later” character. X-Men ’97‘s Wolverine, meanwhile, did not think twice before attempting to murder the man who was once his leader, and whom the beloved Xavier cares for so deeply.

Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine is one of the most impressive X-Men for a reason, and their are multiple examples featured across his 8 movie appearances.

Deadpool & Wolverine Can Finally Give Us The Real Wolverine

Wolverine on the floor in Deadpool & Wolverine's official trailer

From what has been revealed thus far in trailers and exclusive footage aired at CinemaCon, the Wolverine variant set to appear in Deadpool & Wolverine looks like a much more comic-accurate rendition of the character. Ironically, the titular hero is more overtly the main character of this movie than he ever has been in Fox’s X-men franchise. This is despite being set up as an outlier more at liberty to deliver extreme punishment instead of the measured responses typical of his Fox franchise counterpart.

Deapool & Wolverine is set to be released on July 26 as Marvel’s only cinematic release of 2024.

The Wolverine in Deadpool & Wolverine appears to be especially aggressive, even dropping f-bombs aplenty thanks in no small part to the R-rating of the movie. After “letting down his entire world,” he also seems to have much less to lose than his Fox counterpart. It isn’t hard to envisage this Wolverine, therefore, making extreme and especially aggressive decisions in order to further his goals and, perhaps, those of whatever allies he may find in the events of the movie much like his animated counterpart in X-Men ’97.

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