Episode Guide
Episode Reviews
Character Bios
DVD Releases
Discussion Forum
MAA Home Page

Proteus, Part One
Comparison By A. Magik, Media By Stu and James Harvey

X-Men often adapted stories from the comic to the screen. But due to the different nature of each medium, no episode could be directly translated. Presented in the list below is a list of changes from the comics to the episode. This episode is based on Uncanny X-Men #125 - 26.

-The X-Men in both versions of this story had Wolverine. Banshee is also present in this story.
-Proteus (real name Kevin) is Dr. Moira MacTaggert's son from her marriage to John MacTaggert. His mutant ability is to manipulate reality as well as possessing people. He had been contained in Moira's Muir Isle center until this story. One of his forms is a being of energy.
-Moira tries to help her son at Muir Isle. But Proteus breaks out from the center.
-Through the Blackbird, the X-Men head to Muir Isle.
-The cartoon's scenes of Professor Xavier's origin is accurate. His relationship with Moira, his period as a soldier in war, his recieving a 'dear john' letter from Moira. There is also his post-crippled-legs recovery with nurse Amelia, their romance, and her departure over disagreements on mutants (though this part was revealed years after the publication of the Proteus story).
-Moira kept Proteus a secret for years, only revealing her familal tie with the mutant when he escaped.
-Proteus escapes from Muir Isle, passing the wharf village of Stornoway by possesses a seaman (Angus MacWhirter) and others in search of his father.
-The X-Men search the countryside for Proteus separately.
-Wolverine encounters Proteus and falls victim to his reality-shifting powers. It's a horrible experience.

-The comic version's X-Men consisted of Cyclops, Phoenix, Storm, Colossus, Banshee, Wolverine, Nightcrawler, Havok, and Polaris. The cartoon version had Wolverine, Rogue (not a member yet), and Beast (a member of the Avengers at the time, though he almost had a chance to join the team in this adventure, but missed it).
-Comic book Banshee had temporarily lost his sonic powers during this story.
-Contrary to his appearance in the cartoon version, Professor Xavier was not in the original story. At the time believing most of the X-Men were killed in a battle with Magneto, he went into space with Lilandra. He eventually returned to Earth to keep Phoenix from abusing her powers (that certainly worked out!).
-Comic book Proteus was not the 'misunderstood scared kid' like his cartoon conterpart. Fueled by his mother's hatred for his father, he became a psychotic monster who cared for no one but himself. He didn't care about helping anyone, instead relishing how he would control, manipulate, torture, or kill people.
-Proteus' powers are different in the comic. Lacking a real body after consuming his original one, Proteus' true form was energy that needed a new host body. The comic book's body possessions instantly kills the host (though Proteus has access of the host's mind and feelings). Proteus' power leeches the host's energies until it becomes a burnt-out corpse, discarded for another. Until his encounter with the X-Men, he possesses/kills seaman Angus MacWhirter, a duplicate of Jamie Madrox, drunk civilian Ferdie Duncan, and a police officer.
-Proteus' escape is different. The comic version had his containment cell damaged during the 2nd X-Men group's 1st encounter with Magneto (in Uncanny X-Men #104). The cartoon escapes by his own powers.
-In the comic, the X-Men went to Muir Isle because of a phonecall the vacationing Polaris made at the Isle, which ended with her scream (Proteus had attacked her, only to be successively repulsed).
-Comic book Proteus never possesses Banshee (Good for Banshee).
-In the comic, Proteus' escape through Stornoway was quiet. In the cartoon he causes a ruckus.
-Despite her silence of 20 years, the comic book Moira instantly tells the X-Men about her son right after his escape. The cartoon Moira keeps it a secret for as long as she could (Evidently, it was pride that kept her from telling the truth to anyone for all these years, out of hatred and shame on how she concieved Proteus).
-Unlike her cartoon counterpart, Moira is not hesitant about killing her son.
-Comic book Joseph MacTaggert never divorced Moira. Despite a separation of about 20 years (beginning with a nasty...uh, farewell that put Moira into the hospital, with a pregnancy to boot), he was possessive with Moira. Also, being married to a Nobel Prize winner helped in his political ambitions.
-Comic book Joseph MacTaggert didn't know about his son until Moira told him at the time of Proteus' escape. His cartoon counterpart knew about it, but kept it a secret to protect his political ambitions.
-Comic book Proteus' 1st X-encounter is with Wolverine, Storm, and Nightcrawler. Cartoon Proteus fights Wolverine, Beast, and Rogue.

Interesting facts:
-In the comic, Jason Wyngarde made a few appearances in the story, manipulating Phoenix with his illusions, leading to her corruption in the Dark Phoenix Saga. He unknowingly crosses paths with Proteus in the village, his psychic abilities protecting him from the mutant.
-Much of cartoon Proteus' characterization is based on the mutant David Haller, also known as Legion. He was the son of Xavier by Gabrielle Haller, who kept his existence a secret from the father. Even when Xavier treated the boy at Muir Isle (summoned by Moira- who knew), Gabrielle kept silent about his tie with David, until the boy sent parents and several New Mutants into his mind-world (this occurred in New Mutants #26 - 28). Later, Legion would escape from Muir Isle, causing a ruckus at Stornoway until he was restrained by the New Mutants (New Mutants #44).
-The comic book version also had Jamie Madrox, a mutant who could duplicate by impact. He stayed at Muir Isle for the time. Eventually, he would join X-Factor. In this story, one of his duplicates gets possessed/killed by Proteus.
-The comic book version has Beast and Phoenix learn that the X-Men were not killed in a battle with Magneto (in Uncanny X-Men #112 - 113).

Return to X-Men Comparisons: Comics to Cartoon