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Could this iconic Marvel Hero’s X-MEN ’97 cameo mean a spinoff?

Spoiler alert

It was just a wordless cameo in a stacked episode, but fans of ’90s Marvel animation jumped for joy on episode eight of X Men ’97, “Tolerance is Extinction, Part I.” During a pivotal moment, when Magneto uses his immense powers to disable all electrical devices around the world, we cut to several cameos from Marvel characters. One of these is our friendly neighborhood Spider-Man. However, it’s not just any Spidey spinning his web. As fans of ’90s Marvel cartoons know, Spider-Man is in the X Men cartoon is the same from the Spider-Man: The Animated Serieswhich ran simultaneously on Fox Kids at the time.

Brief cameo by Spider-Man in episode eight of X-Men '97.
Marvel animation

The 90’s X Men And Spider-Man Animated series were connected

Spider-Man only appeared as a hand shooting web fluid X-Men: The Animated Series. The X-Men: TAS producers snuck in the cameo because they technically didn’t have the rights to use Spidey. However, the entire X-Men team from the ’90s cartoon appeared in the two-part Spider-Man episodes “The Mutant Agenda” and “The Mutant’s Revenge” in 1995. X Men: BAG voice actors returned and their designs were identical to their own show. This was the first connection between two ’90s animated shows, showing that the X-Men and Spider-Man at least existed within the same continuity. As for the other Marvel cartoons from the 90s, that’s up for debate.

Spider-Man's cameo from the 1990s X-Men: The Animated Series (L), and the full X-Men appearance from Spider-Man: The Animated Series (R).
Marvel animation

Spider-Man: The Animated Series Remaining questions X Men ’97 Could solve

So what does this mean for ’90s Spidey? X Men ’97? Former showrunner Beau Demayo confirmed on social media that this version of Spider-Man is the same version originally voiced by Christopher Daniel Barnes in the classic show. As fans may recall, Spider-Man: TAS ended on a bit of a cliffhanger. After a long and complicated adventure through the Spider-Verse, Madame Web appears to Peter Parker. She takes him to find Mary Jane Watson, who was lost in the multiverse earlier this season. Viewers never found out if Peter and MJ actually reunited, let alone if their planned wedding would ever happen. It’s a bit of a big question mark.

Key artwork from Fox Kids' 1994-1998 Spider-Man: The Animated Series.
Marvel animation

Could be X Men ’97 Lead to one Spider Man ’98 Spinoff?

When Spider-Man shows up X Men ’97 in a larger role (hopefully voiced again by Christopher Daniel Barnes) they could use this appearance to resolve some of those lingering questions. Not only that, but a bigger Spider-Man appearance could be a “backdoor pilot” to set up a spinoff show. Spider-Man: The Animated Series the final episode aired on January 31, 1998. Could Marvel Animation be planning something bigger for the ’90s version of Peter Parker? There is certainly reason to think this is at least possible.

While Sony owns full rights to Spider-Man in film, Marvel Studios retains the rights to TV animation. Therefore the next one Your Friendly neighborhood Spider-Man animated series coming soon to Disney+. This is the series formerly known as Spider-Man: Freshman Year. The upcoming new Spidey cartoon is probably the biggest hurdle to getting a full one Spider Man ’98 series. Would Marvel Animation have two competing Spider-Man cartoons at the same time? The enormous success of X Men ’97 may cause them to reconsider their plans. Spider-Man was as much a beloved cartoon hero for ’90s kids as the X-Men.

Could Peter Parker teach at Xavier’s School in the future? X Men ’97 Seasons?

Cover art for the Spider-Man and X-Men comic series.
Marvel comic books

Even if we don’t get an A Spider Man ’98 series, there’s room for a continuation of that version of Peter Parker in the future X Men ’97 seasons. After all, in the comics, Peter Parker became a teacher at Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters (then renamed the Jean Gray School) for a while, in the series Spider-Man and the X-Men. Why not make the Christopher Daniel Barnes version of Spidey part of the supporting cast? X Men ’97? Peter was able to learn various new mutants, teenagers discovered their powers during puberty, as he once did.

Cyclops at the forefront of the X-Men in a shot from X'Men '97
Marvel Studios

Of course, Spider-Man isn’t technically a mutant. He got his powers as a teenager during a lab accident, as everyone knows. However, that didn’t stop the comic book creators from giving him a teaching job at the school. Of course, we’d love for him to have a revival series like X Men ’97. But if the other Spidey series on Disney+ makes that unlikely, we’ll go with option B. Whatever happens, Spidey is officially part of the X Men ’97 world now. We highly doubt this will be the last time he swings through the New York skyline in this series.