X-MEN ’97 Clip Finds The Team Under Sentinel Attack; Original Series Showrunner On “Woke” Morph Backlash

The first clip from X-Men ’97 has been released online ahead of the animated revival’s March 20 premiere, and it finds the team facing off against the giant mutant-hunting robots known as the Sentinels.

Cyclops, Wolverine, Bishop, Beast, Gambit, Rogue, and Morph (there’s no sign of Storm or Jubilee) make short work of the mechanical menaces, but it looks like another enemy is keeping a close eye on the fight.

In a recent interview with Variety, original series showrunner Eric Lewald weighed-in on the backlash to shape-shifting mutant Morph – who was created for the show – being reintroduced as a nonbinary character.

“For me, the word ‘nonbinary’ is the same as the word ‘shapeshifter.’ Every character that can change from one gender to another, or from human to animal, that’s just another word for ‘shapeshifter’ for me.”

“He attacks Wolverine, his closest friend, in the most dramatic way by turning into Jean Grey and putting his hand on Wolverine’s neck and leaning in for a kiss,” he adds, recalling a scene from season 2 of the ’90s series. “That’s as nonbinary as you can get. It’s Morph turning into a woman and coming onto Wolverine to freak him out,” he says. “It was all there in Morph’s character. Now it’s become such a social thing that I think people will be more sensitive to how it’s used. That’s the only difference. We didn’t see a problem in reading him and didn’t feel he was any different.”

The first reactions to the show (see below) have been very positive so far, and it sounds like fans of the original ’90s animated series have a lot to look forward to.

X-Men ’97 will serve as a direct sequel to X-Men: The Animated Series’ five-season run.

Returning voice cast members include Lenore Zann as Rogue, Cal Dodd as Wolverine, Catherine Disher as Jean Grey, George Buza as Beast, Chris Potter as Gambit, Adrian Hough as Nightcrawler, Alison Sealy-Smith as Storm, Christopher Britton as Mister Sinister, and Alyson Court as Jubilee.

The official synopsis reads: “Storm and Wolverine try to continue the X-Men. Magneto comes in and wants to step up for Charles Xavier. [Mister] Sinister comes in to try to end the X-Men once and for all.”