X-Men’s 47-Year-Long Wolverine Plot-Hole Finally Gets A Good Answer

For decades, Marvel has ignored Wolverine’s most glaring weakness, and thanks to X-Men ’97, we now have an answer to why that actually works.

Hugh Jackman's Wolverine screams in pain in X-Men Days of Future Past

Warning: This article contains SPOILERS for X-Men ’97 episode 9

In the wake of X-Men ’97‘s stunning episode 9 and Magneto stripping Wolverine’s adamantium from his skeleton, we finally have a good answer to one of the longest-running Marvel plot-holes of all time. The three-part finale of Marvel Animation’s revived show – titled “Tolerance Is Extinction” – adapts 1993’s Fatal Attractions comics arc, which sees the same disturbing fate befall Logan at the hands of the veteran X-Men villain. And naturally, the vocal X-Men fandom community had thoughts.

X-Men ’97 episode 9 prompted a deluge of cynical discourse, once more questioning why the X-Men – a superhero team run by multiple genius-level intellects and battlefield experts – would send a mutant made of metal to fight a villain with the power to manipulate all metals. And X-Men ’97 creator Beau DeMayo has now responded to those questions, as Wolverine’s fate remains unconfirmed.

Clearly, the risk of using Wolverine against Magneto – rather than sending him to fight Bastion alongisde his other super-colleagues – was a carefully measured one, which almost fatally misjudged Magneto’s capacity for extreme measures. Even as the world still shook from his massive EMP attack on humanity, the X-Men simply believed Magneto to be too honorable to rip Wolverine’s metal out.

Wolverine’s Powers Outweigh His Weakness – It Makes Sense

Hugh Jackman as Wolverine in the Weapon X program tank in X2

Since Magneto and Wolverine first met in 1977’s X-Men 104, the pair have faced off many times, with almost every notable battle leading to the same question – particularly in the age of the Internet. But over the almost-5-decades since that first meeting, just two years after Wolverine joined the X-Men team, Marvel has subtly, if not directly, confirmed why Wolverine’s very specific weakness to Magneto was ignored.

As Beau DeMayo continued, the advantages Wolverine’s powers bring to the X-Men team outweigh the risk of him being incapacitated. Magneto’s superpowers are so impressive that every mutant, including other omega-level X-Men, is just as vulnerable as Logan. And Wolverine brings more to the table, because of his willingness to ignore the rules:

By forcing Wolverine to face Magneto repeatedly, Marvel’s creatives – and now X-Men ’97 – weren’t ignoring the obvious, they were underlining exactly what makes Wolverine Wolverine. His willingness to face someone capable of causing him such unthinkable trauma is a reflection of his loyalty to his team-mates – and the cause – and his rough brand of heroism. X-Men ’97 understands that simple truth, despite the accusations of plot-hole blindness, and the writing team should once again be commended.

Choosing his pain to underline how far Magneto would be willing to go in the name of his own cause, especially after the first 7 episodes reframed Erik as the reformed, more moderate leader of the X-Men, is further genius.

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