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Episode #18: Backlash
Original Airdate - August 28th, 2009

WX-017 “Code of Conduct”:
LForge has managed to break the code of the Sentinel data they stole from the Trask Lab and reports that Master Mold is an AI computer that operates all of the city’s Sentinels and appears to be same Master Mold Xavier is battling in the future. The timing couldn’t be worse, Senator Kelly has been given the green light for project Wideawake; his mutant registration program that is actively using the Sentinels. The X-Men find Master Mold’s location form the data and head out to stop the future war by destroying it. But the location is a set-up from the AI mind of Master Mold itself and they walk right into a warehouse full of activated Sentinels! The team isn’t faring well against their intelligent enemies who are sharing their data back to the real Master Mold to modify their fighting techniques. Surprisingly the Brotherhood show-up to save the X-Men from the devastating Sentinels. Quicksilver has been shunned by Magneto for the last time and he’ll be damned if he’s going to watch the X-Men, the bane of his father’s existence be defeated in one battle. Together the Brotherhood and the X-Men shut down all the Sentinels and the Master Mold… or so they thought. When Wolverine reports back to Xavier in the future nothing has changed. The Master Mold must have somehow survived…

Credits
Story by Greg Johnson, Craig Kyle, Chris Yost
Written By Chris Yost
Directed by Steve Gordon
Music by Dean Grinsfelder
Animation By Noxxon Entertainment

Voices
Steve Blum as Wolverine
Kieren van den Blink as Rogue
Fred Tacasciore as Beast
Nolan North as Cyclops
Danielle Judovits as Shadowcat
Jim Ward as Professor X
Liam O'Brien as Nightcrawler, Angel

Review: Arsenal - In X-Men: Evolution’s first, dismal season, “Survival of the Fittest” was a promise of what the show would become. Instead of pitting the Brotherhood and X-Men in a predictable conflict, it forced them to work together.

Despite some similarities, Wolverine and the X-Men is a very different show from Evo. Firstly, it’s off to a much stronger start. Secondly, it’s much more ambitious than Evolution was by its 18th episode.

However, “Backlash” has two things in common with “Survival.” It pairs the Brotherhood and X-Men together, and it hints at the show’s potential.

Wolverine has certainly not been a bad show. Quite the contrary, Wolverine has been good, but sometimes it suffers under the weight of its own ambitions. This show very rarely fails due to lack of effort. (The only exception might be “Code of Conduct.”)

“Backlash” is thus far the best the creators have managed to juggle multiple characters, plot lines and factions. There are four groups at play in “Backlash”—the X-Men, U.S. government, Genoshan government and Brotherhood. Each has their own distinct rivalries and alliances.

This episode shoves as much as it can into a short period of time. We get father/son drama from Magneto and Quicksilver (and more subtly from Warren Worthington Jr. and Warren Worthington III.) We get Kitty in “Adventures in Babysitting,” as she makes sure Tildie doesn’t have a city-stomping tantrum when the MRD attack. We get the Brotherhood shifting from Magneto’s lackeys to free agents, (the same role they played in much of Evo.) We even get a quick flash of Cyclops re-establishing himself as a field leader.

The X-Men/Brotherhood vs. Sentinels throwdown is slightly more disjointed than we have seen in the past. And Storm continues to draw the short straw, but this is otherwise a very good episode.

Final note: I have grown to adore this version of Kitty. Tough, smart and a tad smarmy, she’s racking up quite a rap sheet by stealing most of her scenes.



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