X2: X-Men United (2003)

Episode 111 (April 19, 2024)

Content warning: We discuss the assault allegations against director Bryan Singer. 

As adults in their late thirties all around the world gush about X-Men 97 on Disney Plus, we take a look back at a movie widely considered one of the high points of superhero cinema: 2003’s X2 (a.k.a. X-Men 2, a.k.a. X2: X-Men United). We begin by unpacking our histories with the X-Men and comic books and superheroes in general, then take a look at the serious allegations against Bryan Singer. We also talk a lot about how surprisingly resonant mutants as metaphor is, and how movingly this movie deals with the metaphor. 

Time stamps:

00:07:22 — Our personal histories with the X-Men, and comic books

00:15:35 — Pre-movie predictions

00:22:25 — History segment: A brief history of the X-Men; career overview of and allegations against director Bryan Singer

00:41:20 — In-depth movie discussion

01:32:37 — Final thoughts and star ratings


Artwork by Laci Roth.

Music by Rural Route Nine. Listen to their album The Joy of Averages on Spotify (https://bit.ly/48WBtUa), Apple Music (https://bit.ly/3Q6kOVC), or YouTube (https://bit.ly/3MbU6tC).


Songs by Rural Route Nine in this episode: 

“Winston-Salem” – https://youtu.be/-acMutUf8IM

“Snake Drama” – https://youtu.be/xrzz8_2Mqkg

“The Bible Towers of Bluebonnet” – https://youtu.be/k7wlxTGGEIQ



“Nobody Is Going To Believe You” by Alex French and Maximillian Potter | The Atlantic, 2019 – https://bit.ly/3VSb1XP

“Was an indecent proposal made on Bryan Singer’s Apt Pupil set?” by Rebecca Ascher-Walsh | Entertainment Weekly, 1997 – https://bit.ly/3Q3ooAH

“Inside Bryan Singer’s Wild Hollywood World” by Adam B. Vary | BuzzFeed, 2014 – https://bzfd.it/3xCmJvx 

“How X-Men Director Bryan Singer Found Himself In The Middle Of A Legal Nightmare” by Ken Bensinger | BuzzFeed, 2014 – https://bzfd.it/49BeRrt

“Bryan Singer’s Traumatic ‘X-Men’ Set: The Movie ‘Created a Monster’” by Tatiana Siegel | The Hollywood Reporter, 2020 – https://bit.ly/3U0rerj 

“Fox Halts Production on Queen Biopic Due to Bryan Singer Absence” – by Aaron Couch, Mia Galuppo, and Borys Kit | The Hollywood Reporter, 2017 – https://bit.ly/3UhALvj

“Bryan Singer Fired From Directing Queen Biopic After On-Set Chaos” by Borys Kit and Kim Masters | The Hollywood Reporter, 2017 – https://bit.ly/4cRdoQR

“Bryan Singer Stands to Make $40 Million From ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’” by Borys Kit and Tatiana Siegel | The Hollywood Reporter, 2019 – https://bit.ly/3Q2anDn 

Egan V. Singer | 2014 Complaint – https://bit.ly/49BVI8H 

“Bohemian Rhapsody’s Terrible Editing – A Breakdown” YouTube video by Thomas Flight – https://youtu.be/4dn8Fd0TYek?si=ZFVbEQxm2G42eTWg