With the acquisition of 20th Century Fox finalized, Dark Phoenix released and already forgotten by the masses, and a brand new comic book relaunch earning a lot of buzz, the X-Men are ready to return to prominence in the Marvel Universe. And there's one way that Disney can capitalize on that buzz while making a lot of longtime fans very happy.
Very simply, they need to bring X-Men: The Animated Series back to streaming services. And what better way to do that than to add it as part of the Disney+ streaming service's growing library. Announcing that at the Disney D23 Expo would certainly create a lot of buzz for the franchise.
The series has not been on streaming services since it left Hulu in 2017, though it can still be purchased digitally on services such as iTunes and Amazon Video. In fact, the other popular series X-Men: Evolution and the cult-favorite Wolverine and the X-Men are both unavailable on streaming platforms as well.
Now that Disney owns Fox's entertainment assets, it seems like it's only a matter of time before they put these popular animated shows back on a streaming service. Disney+ seems like the most likely option, but Hulu would also be a viable option as they were previously available there.
But raising awareness of the X-Men brand would only serve Disney well as they gear up for their introduction in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It's been a while since Marvel itself has raised the profile of this franchise, as political infighting from the company's executives saw the X-Men's presence diminished in recent years. Even with 20th Century Fox pumping out hits like Deadpool and Logan, merchandise and promotional material featuring other X-Men was few and far in between.
“It’ll be a while. It’s all just beginning and the five-year plan that we’ve been working on, we were working on before any of that was set,” Feige previously said to io9. "So really it’s much more, for us, less about specifics of when and where [the X-Men will appear] right now and more just the comfort factor and how nice it is that they’re home. That they’re all back. But it will be a very long time.”
But now that the movie rights are back with Marvel, it makes sense for Disney to start trying to bring in those lapsed X-Men fans with the fan-favorite animated series. The comic relaunch with Jonathan Hickman is already earning a lot of buzz — the animated series would be a good way to bolster that momentum.