Season 2 Episode 5

Repo Man

Aired Saturday 11:30 AM Nov 20, 1993 on FOX
out of 10
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Episode Summary

Wolverine is led back to his homeland of Canada, and is attacked by his former teammates from the supergroup Alpha Flight. The government wants the secrets of his adamantium skeleton back, and are willing to take him apart to get it.

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  • Don't expect Wolverine to tell all of his life's story.

    Repo Man could have been the best episode of the season. It had everything going for it. It was the first real in-depth look into the most popular character in the series. It was even written by the one person who knew him better than anyone. It turned out to be a sad waste of potential, amidst several plot holes.

    If you consider that Len Wein knows Wolverine better than anyone else, you should probably expect this to be a perfect character piece. It still is, but the episode was poorly edited and there's evidence of some lousy rewriting. The blame probably falls on story editor Eric Lewald.

    The episode opens with Wolverine evading his former comrades from the canadian superhero group well known as Alpha Flight. Unfortunately, he lets himself get caught by his old friends. Wolverine actually thought that hiding on a treetop could actually provide him any safety.

    Wolverine's brought back to General Chasen and his former significant other(I can't recall her name). She's married to the leader of the Alpha Flight, whom Wolverine hates as much as he hates Cyclops. They plan to collect an old debt, by harvesting Wolverine's adamantium skeleton.

    Meanwhile, Jean keeps searching for Xavier telepathically. This actually works well in the episode, as it provides a connection to the Wolverine storyline when Jean feels his pain. Plus, it's always fun to hear one of Gambit's one-liners, that serve to balance this heavy episode.

    Dramatically, Repo Man works to a certain extent. We finally see what how Wolverine got his skeleton. The Weapon X flashback sequence is the most overused in the series, but it works well in this episode and the third season finale as well. We never see what happens to Dr. Oyama when he flees to a security area as the base begins to blow. This foreshadows the events of Out of the Past. We understand how Wolverine's learned to deal with this gruesome transformation. This leads to the best part of the episode as his former mistress helps him get back on his feet. It led to his joining Alpha Flight. It worked for a time, until it was time for him to move on.

    This is where I simply don't understand. The members of Alpha Flight seem irrationally driven to have Wolverine back as part of their team by any means necessary. The X-Men would never act this way, unless Wolverine was in serious danger. This is a bout of selfishness by these guys. It's probably part of the reason why I never liked the Alpha Flight comic books. They're too one-dimensional.

    Former General Chasen has an ulterior motive for having Wolverine captive. The harvesting of his skeleton. This guy is worse than any right-wing military type I've ever seen. Just because Wolverine once refused to join his army, he thinks Wolverine is required to give something in return. It doesn't make sense. This borders on pure madness. And that becomes evident as the conflict between the members of Alpha Flight rebel against Chasen's battle droids, messing up his plans. Wolverine uses this confusion to get himself cut loose and attempt to escape.

    The ending was way too abrupt, but it actually saves the episode from an even worse ending: A prolongued one. Wolverine's background and character development always deserved such treatment. Otherwise it would have become an unbearable soap opera.

    Meanwhile, Xavier and Magneto continue to survive their vacation on the Savage Land. This time, they're confronted by the deadly mutant known as Vertigo. They barely escape alive from this meeting on top of an Indiana Jones-esque bridge. The story continues...

    Len Wein did his best to delve into his old character and build a dramatic story. While some of it works, it feels wasted. It's a pity. It could have been the best character piece in the series.moreless
  • Wolverine was Canadian? That's frikkin awesome.

    Wolverine was called up by one of his old friends, but it turns out the reunion was more violent and harsher than he thought when his old Canadian team shows up instead of Heather, the one who supposedly established the meeting. When he was captured, he was taken to a lab, and it was Heather after all who set it up! She seems to be affiliated with this experiment concerning Wolverine, which orginates back to his past. In a lab, scientists infused his bones with the most powerful metal. After he made his escape, he encountered Vindicator and his wife, Heather, who treated him well, and allowed him the opportunity to join Alpha Flight; his old team. Jason, the general of the department, was too impatient, and even suggested to rip open Wolverine to find the secret to his bones. Alpha Flight busted into the lab, and Wolverine was free from his chains. He threatened anyone to come after him again, and made his way again.

    As a former Canadian, I found it a little offensive when some of the members of Alpha Flight kept on using "eh?", but oh well, this was a pretty cool episode because it had Canadian mutants. Though that wasn't really the entire reason why this episode was good. I really enjoyed Wolverine's flashback, even though it was rather short lived, but it was short and sweet. It wasn't really emotionally moving, but it was really great how they filled in some backbone information on parts of Wolverine's past. Plus, I feel that the variety of different mutant powers were much more diverse this episode around with Puck, a midget that can using a rolling ball attack, and Shaman. Though like most episodes in the past, I was disappointed that such a great topic ended so quickly. I thought if another episode was added, this could have been a great two episode story. Plus, it gives another thing for Canadians to brag about besides Natalie Glebova (Miss Universe 2005), and Steve Nash (2 time NBA MVP).moreless
Chris Potter

Chris Potter

Gambit/Remy LeBeau

Catherine Disher

Catherine Disher

Jean Grey

Cedric Smith

Cedric Smith

Professor X/Charles Xavier

Norm Spencer

Norm Spencer

Cyclops/Scott Summers

Cal Dodd

Cal Dodd


Melissa Sue Anderson

Melissa Sue Anderson


Guest Star

Don Francks

Don Francks

Puck/Eugene Milton Judd; Shaman/Dr. Michael Twoyoungmen

Guest Star

Harvey Aitken

Harvey Aitken

Sasquatch/Dr. Walter Langkowski

Guest Star

David Hemblen

David Hemblen

Magneto/Erik Lenhserr

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (10)

    • Beast, Jubilee and Storm did not appear in this episode.

    • This episode features the first time the Weapon X project which gave Wolverine his adamantium skeleton is fully shown (along with its masterminds The Professor & Dr. Cornelius). More about it will be revealed in season 3's "Weapon X, Lies, and Videotape".

    • This is the first and only appearance (aside from later cameos) of the Canadian mostly-mutant superhero group Alpha Flight: Vindicator (electromagnetic spectrum controller), Sasquatch (orange beast-man), Shaman (mystic), Snowbird (transmorph who tends to become a white owl or wolf), Puck (super-dwarf), Northstar and Aurora (who previously made an appearance in "Slave Island", and together have blinding light powers), and Heather Hudson. Also, this is the first appearance of Vertigo, who'll appear regularly in this season.

    • Though Rogue appears in this episode, she doesn't speak.

    • When Jean Grey is psychically scanning the world for Xavier, cameo appearances of Domino, Nightcrawler, Archangel, Cannonball, Psylocke, and Quicksilver & Scarlet Witch appear.

    • There's literally no resolution to the General Chasen situation, nor what repercussions Alpha Flight going against his orders will entail.

    • Why didn't Alpha Flight know the security soldiers of Department H were androids? They've worked there for years!

    • What's the point of the water falling on the console? It doesn't weaken Wolverine's bonds much enough to matter, since he still has to snap himself out of them.

    • The shorts Wolverine wears during his flashback to the Weapon X program change from smaller underwear types, to longer ones with shredding on the bottom like they had been pants.

    • Wolverine is strapped to the bed shirtless then after the flashback, he has his shirt on again.

  • QUOTES (5)

  • NOTES (2)

    • This episode is based on The Uncanny X-Men #121, and the Marvel Comics Presents serial "Weapon X".

    • This episode, which focuses on Wolverine's history, was written by the comic book writer who created Wolverine in an issue of The Incredible Hulk (#181 to be exact, though he makes a cameo at the end of #180) back in the 1970s.


    • Title: Repo Man
      The title "Repo Man" refers to a person who repossesses an item when someone fails to make payment upon it. In this case, the Repo Men would be Alpha Flight.