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Juggernaut In Animation - A Retrospective

Part One - Part Three

The Juggernaut has proven to be one of the most popular and entertaining rouges in the vast gallery of X-Men villains since his debut in Uncanny X-Men #12. As the half-brother to Charles Xavier, The Juggernaut’s main motivation is that he hates Xavier because he received more attention from his Father than he did, and Cain’s own Father abused him, rather than Charles.

Juggernaut’s animated exploits begin with Spider-Man And His Amazing Friends in an episode entitled A Firestar Is Born. We get a brief retelling of how he came to become The Juggernaut and as soon as he reclaims his powers, he goes straight after Charles. Luckily for Xavier, both Iceman and Firestar returned to his school for gifted youngsters on this day as they were both members of The X-Men, which left Spider-Man to battle The Juggernaut on his lonesome, which brought back fond memories of an old, brilliant story in Amazing Spider-Man “To Stop A Juggernaut” in which Spidey must… well…you can probably figure out what he had to do from the title.

Juggernaut proves to be one of the shows best villains as he actually came across as threatening unlike most of the villains in the show. Networks in the 1980’s didn’t like villains to be too villainous, and there was no violence allowed so it became difficult to develop the bad guys, but they didn’t do too badly with Juggernaut – his voice was a little lacklustre. When the villain roared it clearly wasn’t William Marshall providing his voice – they simply used clips from The Incredible Hulk cartoon, with Bob Holt providing the character’s mighty roar. You’ve probably read this dozens of times by now but no one ever quite roared like the late great Bob Holt. As far as I’m concerned, you’re never to going to hear a better roar and you’ll probably never find a better Hulk voice.

This version of The Juggernaut is probably most famous for how quickly and embarrassingly he beat Wolverine. Arsenal does a better job of explaining than I could over at our Spider-Man And His Amazing Friends site so head on over there for an amusing summery of the events.

The design is very faithful to the original comic book designed by Jack Kirby, aside from not having full-length pants, and this episode features much, much better animation than the average Spider-Friends episode. The odd lumpy shot of Spider-Man aside, this episode looked great!

A Firestar Is Born isn’t the only great looking appearance of The Juggernaut in the 80’s, oh no, The Juggernaut is featured as one of The Brotherhood Of Evil Mutants led by none other than The Master Of Magnetism, Magneto.

Aside from looking much better than Spider-Friends episode there’s not a lot to this version of Juggernaut. He’s still Charles step-brother of course, as indicated by this line

Juggernaut: What's wrong Charlie? No warm welcome for your dear step-brother?
Professor Charles Xavier: You've always been welcome in my home Cain. It's your choice of friends I question.

They did a better job casting Juggernaut this time, but beyond that he’s nothing to write home about – he’s just the strong one in a group of Magneto’s thugs. Considering they had the establish The X-Men, The Brotherhood and have Kitty annoy the hell out of us in 22 minutes, it’s no wonder the characters are a little of the thin side.