An unnamed soldier character from 'Civil War' cropped with Professor X from 'X-Men '97'

Did ‘Civil War’ Go Over Your Head? Watch ‘X-Men ’97’

There’s a good-to-fair chance that we’ve already gotten the most important film of the year in Alex Garland’s Civil War. Whether or not we all end up realizing that is another question entirely.

Recommended Videos

The thing about ideas, whether they come from a person or a piece of art, is that they don’t actually belong to us. Every idea exists independently of the person or entity that expresses them at any given point; we and the art we make are simply conduits. Civil War, with its red herring marketing as an exercise in spectacle, risked its value as a conduit to get as many eyes on the screen as possible, and while the film is screaming some of the most important sentiments of our time at the top of its lungs, it may also need to face the possibility of its memo being missed on a few more folks than it was okay with.

That’s no fault of said viewers, who may not have been prepared to dissect Civil War with the mindset it’s asking to be dissected with. If you feel like you were among said viewers, I challenge you to—even if you’ve watched Civil War and have written it off entirely—take another crack at it after watching episode six of X-Men ’97. At the very least, you’ll walk away having participated in what might be the most idiosyncratic double feature of the year.

At the very most, however, you’ll focus on that one scene in “Lifedeath – Part 2” in which Professor Charles Xavier—psychically portraying himself as the teacher of a classroom, which is the antithesis of subtlety—offers up his words of wisdom about what he calls the “messy” reality of coexistence, and how we’ve all succumbed to playing by such silly rules like “for me to be more, you must be less” or “we must pillage worth from one another.”

You, in turn, may take these ideas and keep them nestled in your mind as you watch Civil War, which contains scene after scene of the exact teachings that Xavier was giving, examining them in profoundly bleak, horrifying, and hopefully sobering detail.

Indeed, we’ve allowed “politics” to shift from its original meaning to a game of who’s better than the other, and each person has their own rules for that game. The only consistency across said rules is that we all must pulverize and invalidate the experiences that don’t mirror our own, because we’re all just that frightened about the possibility that our experience is somehow incorrect, and it can’t conceivably be incorrect if it’s the only experience.

It’s Professor X’s and Alex Garland’s wish that we all hold ourselves to our own individual duty as human beings by refusing to engage with such destructive rules. Who knew, however, that they would both sound this alarm one after the other in such quick succession?

For a fuller, more incisive breakdown of Civil War, check out our own Britt Hayes’ analysis of the film here.

(featured image: A24/Disney+)


The Mary Sue is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article All Us Tori Amos Fans Finally Have Our Delirium
Delirium, a rainbow haired girl in an oversized gray coat.
Read Article You May Know the Prodigal in ‘The Sandman’ by Another Name
The Sandman's Dream with a helmet
Read Article The Rest of Dream’s Family Has Arrived in ‘The Sandman’
Morpheus glares at something off screen in Netflix's The Sandman.
Read Article Is There an ‘NCIS’ Season 22 Release Date?
mark harmon with a cut on his head in ncis as gibbs
Read Article Dang It, Bobby, When Is That ‘King of The Hill’ Reboot Premiering?
King Of The Hill
Related Content
Read Article All Us Tori Amos Fans Finally Have Our Delirium
Delirium, a rainbow haired girl in an oversized gray coat.
Read Article You May Know the Prodigal in ‘The Sandman’ by Another Name
The Sandman's Dream with a helmet
Read Article The Rest of Dream’s Family Has Arrived in ‘The Sandman’
Morpheus glares at something off screen in Netflix's The Sandman.
Read Article Is There an ‘NCIS’ Season 22 Release Date?
mark harmon with a cut on his head in ncis as gibbs
Read Article Dang It, Bobby, When Is That ‘King of The Hill’ Reboot Premiering?
King Of The Hill
Author
Charlotte Simmons
Charlotte is a freelance writer at The Mary Sue and We Got This Covered. She's been writing professionally since 2018 (a year before she completed her English and Journalism degrees at St. Thomas University), and is likely to exert herself if given the chance to write about film or video games.