“This isn’t anime”: Kevin Feige Dodged a Major Bullet in X-Men ’97, Even Marvel’s Most Diehard Supporters Wouldn’t Have Been Able to Forgive Them

X-Men '97 actually won so many hearts because of this one trait!

kevin feige, x-men ’97
Image by gage, licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic, via Wikimedia Commons.


  • X-Men '97 actually sports a similar style of the animation as the original series, bringing back the nostalgia.
  • Opting for this middle-approach helped Kevin Feige save himself from the wrath of die-hard Marvel fans.
  • This decision seems to have worked perfectly judging from the 99% score the series holds on Rotten Tomatoes.
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X-Men ’97 is unarguably one of the best shows released by the MCU to date. Succeeding its original animated series from 1992, this show became a massive fan favorite almost as soon as it dropped. The reason behind this was pretty understandable: It brought back all of those themes that the original series sported, bringing back nostalgic memories along with newly created storylines.

X-Men '97. | Credit: Disney+.
X-Men ’97. | Credit: Disney+.

If anything, one of the greatest reasons why this show received such immaculate critical success was because it didn’t try to modernize its animation and themes too much. That being said, the President of Marvel Studios, Kevin Feige dodged a major bullet by opting for this take, considering how choosing otherwise would have been something many fans wouldn’t have been able to forgive.

Kevin Feige Dodged a Major Bullet with X-Men ’97

One of the biggest reasons why X-Men ’97 managed to garner so much love from fans globally was because it brought back those memories that fans had from the original series from the ’90s. However, this decision didn’t come easy to the show’s creators and was actually decided on after stellar critical analysis.

X-Men '97. | Credit: Disney+.
A still from the series. | Credit: Disney+.

During a recent appearance on The Official Marvel Podcast, Jake Castorena and Dana Vasquez-Eberhardt, producers of this smash hit series, talked about the same, explaining how hard they worked to perfectly incorporate this theme into the series.

As Castorena said:

So, that was the wonderful task I had of coming onto the show was: What does that look like? What does that feel like? What’s too modernized? What’s not pushing enough?

He then went on to explain how the bar in animation has been set up incredibly higher than what it was back in time, leading to more people understanding that “animation isn’t a children’s medium, it is another form of storytelling.” That said, they had to work extra hard to make sure that they didn’t over-modernize the series and kept its original touch as alive as before.

X-Men: The Animated Series. | Credit: Disney+.
X-Men: The Animated Series. | Credit: Disney+.

According to what Castorena continued to explain during the same interview:

So, to that point, and finding the visual style for the show, it was, Yes, we absolutely have to be relevant. We absolutely have to be able to hold the bar whilst everything else is being made. But, at the same time, if we are too modern, too out there, we are no longer that nostalgic ’90s show.

That being said, they eventually decided on a much more neutral approach: They kept the original nostalgic element in the animation from X-Men: The Animated Series leading to fans loving it just as much as the ’90s show. That being said, Kevin Feige ultimately agreeing to this approach most certainly paid off and helped him dodge a major bullet.

Co-Producer Dana Vasquez-Eberhardt Feels the Same Way

Marvel Comics' X-Men '97
A still from the sequel series. | Credit: Disney+.

During the same interview, co-producer Dana Vasquez-Eberhardt also echoed Castorena’s thoughts. While emphasizing how the original show was “very much our North star” in the making of this reboot series, she also pointed out how they wanted to “honor the original series, but frankly, bring it up.”


As Vasquez-Eberhardt continued to say during the interview:

This isn’t anime. Like, we’re trying to achieve something that, there’s a way these characters move in the original series. There’s a way these characters fight. This show is something different, it’s something unique.

A still from X-Men: The Animated Series
A still from the ’90s series. | Credit: Marvel Entertainment Group.

That being said, their main concern was keeping those cool vibes from the ’90s show all the while also modernizing it just a teensy bit. As Vasquez-Eberhardt elaborated:

So, we weren’t trying to reinvent anything. We were literally trying to make the best version of the show for today’s audience. That includes honoring that animation style and bringing it up to date.

Effortlessly enough, they managed to bring about this element with such perfection judging from the 99% score the series holds on Rotten Tomatoes along with remarks deeming the series as being “an Omega-level of superhero excellence that mutates to remain the same” (Nestor Bentancor), “fearless” (Griffin Schiller), and “the quintessential X-Men experience” (Joseph Garcia).


You can stream X-Men ’97 and X-Men: The Animated Series on Disney+.


Written by Mahin Sultan

Articles Published: 1295

Mahin Sultan is a News Content Writer at FandomWire. With more than a year's worth of experience in her field, she has explored and attained a deep understanding of numerous topics in various niches, mostly entertainment.

An all-things-good enthusiast, Mahin is currently pursuing her Bachelor's degree in Commerce, and her love for entertainment has given her a solid foundation of reporting in the same field. Besides being a foodie, she loves to write and spends her free time either with her nose buried in a good book or binging on COD or K-dramas, anime, new movies, and TV serials (the awesome ones, obviously).

So far, Mahin's professional portfolio has 1,000+ articles written on various niches, including Entertainment, Health and wellbeing, and Fashion and trends, among others.