Connecting Imaginary Dots: Theo James’ Role in ‘X-Men ’97’

The attack on Genosha in Episode 5 of X-Men ’97 took the lives of an as yet unrevealed number of mutants. Despite Cable’s attempt to warn his mother, Madelyne Pryor joined key players such as Magneto and Gambit as casualties of the Wild Sentinel’s devastating attack. While mutants and fans alike are still mourning the dead and recovering from the massacre, the question of who orchestrated it remains.

Though the Genoshan genocide seen in “Remember It” was partially inspired by a similar event seen in Grant Morrison‘s “E is for Extinction” arc in New X-Men, X-Men ’97 supervising producer Jake Castorena made it clear that the mastermind behind the attack was not Cassandra Nova, who perpetrated the terror in the comics.

A close look at some clues have led to the theory that the Sentinel Android known as Bastion could be behind the attack. There’s plenty of compelling evidence to suggest Bastion as a possibility but continuing to connect the dots has lead us to not only double down on the identity of the perp but also wonder if the voice actor for the villain hasn’t been in front of our eyes all along.

Theo James Is Bastion

Before the first episode of X-Men ’97 debuted on Disney Plus, showrunner Beau DeMayo revealed that Theo James was set to voice a “fan-favorite” character. Through five episodes, the identity of that character has remained a mystery but DeMayo’s insistence that the role would “surprise people” ties nicely into the idea that James will voice Bastion.

Connecting the dots from James voicing a surprising fan-favorite character to Bastion isn’t really all that crazy. With only five episodes left and the big bad behind the attack on Genosha left a mystery, there’s plenty of reason to think it was Bastion. From the picture of him in Forge’s lab to his brief presence at the gala to the use of “Tolerance is Extinction” as the title of the three-part season finale (Bastion was introduced in the comics in an event titled Operation: Zero Tolerance), plenty of markers point in the direction of Bastion.

If we accept it’s Bastion, the idea of James voicing him is the easy part. James likely didn’t sign on to voice a blink-and-you-miss-it cameo character and there just aren’t that many major characters left to come into play in this season. While the idea of him voicing Captain America gained some traction online after Cap’s shield was seen in a recent sneak peek, it’s preposterous. James is as British as tea and strumpets and though he’s grown into a bloody brilliant actor, his American accent is a bit rubbish, innit? While he’d be chuffed to bits to voice Cap, he is not.

James‘ career renaissance has been impressive. He recently led Netflix’s The Gentleman for which he received high praise. However, it was his role as the bad guy in White Lotus: Sicily that showed his range. We won’t have long to wait to find out if we connected the dots well or not but the idea of James as the voice of Bastion is just too good to pass up.

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