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Rachel Recaps X-Men: Evolution
S1E2: The X Impulse

You know how I said that X-Men: Evolution is really entertaining even when it’s really, really bad? This week, we’re gonna put that to the test. Prepare for more rock puns than you have ever heard in a single 22-minute stretch. Also, Transformers. Kinda.

In other news, I still have no idea what the titles refer to.

BUT FIRST, A PRETEND HORROR MOVIE!

We open with the Pryde home, in a fictional town in Illinois. The town has a name, but I don’t care what it is, and it’s never going to be relevant again, so I’m just gonna call it Fake Deerfield. Cool? Cool.

OH, MY GOD, IT'S CINEMATOGRAPHY!

OH, MY GOD, IT’S GRATUITOUS LIGHTNING!

Kitty dreams that she’s falling, and–spoiler–she actually falls through her bed and floor and lands in the basement. She wakes up screaming, and her parents rush down to comfort her. They think she was sleepwalking–until they look up and a PORTENTOUS FLASH OF LIGHTNING illuminates her blanket, embedded in the basement ceiling.

OH MY GOD! THAT’S–actually, wait, that’s not scary at all.

Okay, look, I get what they were shooting for here, but you know who has the least horror-movie powers of just about all the X-Men? Hint: It’s definitely Kitty, barring the stories where phased becomes her default state (which this isn’t). Framing this scene and the Prydes’ cheerfully generic suburban house like a horror movie reminds me of one of those recut trailers where you try to make a movie look like a genre it obviously isn’t; or a kid telling a shaggy-dog joke and then waiting for you to be overjoyed at the lack of punchline; or the entire movie White Noise.1 It’s all buildup, with no proportionate payoff.

NOPE!

Ew, Cerebro, no. Don’t do that.

Meanwhile, back at Stately Xavier Manor, Kitty’s late-night spill pings Cerebro. Does anyone else find it unsettling that Professor X has a psychic supercomputer that provides him with turnaround full body scans of teenagers?

Also, Cerebro accurately predicts the outfit that Kitty is going to wear to school the next day.2

“What am I?” wails Kitty. “What’s happening to me?” Just give it five seconds, kid–the credits montage identifies you quite clearly as Shadowcat.

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