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The Phoenix Saga Part Two, Dark Shroud
Review and Media By Stu

Episode #30 - The Phoenix Saga Part Two, Dark Shroud
Original Airdate 6th Semptember 1994

Xavier's dark side takes over as The X-Men return to Earth.

Written By: Michael Edens
Music Composed By: Shuki Levy
Animation Services By: AKOM
Guest Starring: Lawrence Bayne as Erik the Redd, Rick Bennett as Juggernaut, Lally Cadeau as Dr. Moira McTaggart Jeremy Ratchford as Banshee, Camilla Scott as Lilandra

Review: The Phoenix Saga has many problems that run throughout the 5 episodes, but the main one is if often feels like the story often feelís that itís moving in too many directions, and often wavers off topic. Sometimes however, this can be a good thing. This is my personal favourite of the Phoenix Saga, which is odd because it has very little to do with the actual Phoenix story, as Jean is still recovering from her space crash.

The episodeís main focus is Xavier and his dark side, which he is projecting into the X-Menís brains. It really helped develop a lot of the group and it felt more like a personal story, rather than some big intergalactic adventure. The 3rd act tends to lead into the bigger story, but the first half is more entertaining, in my opinion. I thought Evil Xavier was a very good idea, and it translated well to the screen. I loved his exchange with Wolverine, which to me was the best part of the screen.

This episode does a fine job of building up the mystery behind the entire saga. Is Xavier simply going crazy? I liked how the writers portrayed his character here, in that even Xavier thought he couldnít be trusted, as so off he goes to Muir Island. This also allowed us to be see one of the shows many guest stars in Banshee. He gets a basic introduction here, but is expanded upon in the following episode. Thankfully, Eric The Red barely appears, but he too gets an extended role in the next part.

The conclusion is one of the cooler parts of the episode, with Juggernaut returning. It comes out of nowhere, and instantly gives a sense of dread for the viewer, given that the X-Men are all still over in America.

This episode stands as the best of the entire arc, and moves the story along nicely.