X-MEN: 10 Key Steps To Success For The Marvel Cinematic Universe Debut Of The Mutant Team
We're still waiting for the X-Men to make their presence felt in the MCU, but when mutants do join the Marvel Studios franchise, we have some specific ideas for how they should be portrayed on screen...
There's a huge amount of excitement about the X-Men's eventual arrival in the Marvel CInematic Universe, but we still don't know when exactly it will happen. It's certainly possible that Eternals will lay the groundwork for the X-Gene's introduction, but it's looking like Marvel Studios is understandably hoping to create as much space as possible between Dark Phoenix and this eventual reboot.
It goes without saying that we 100% trust Kevin Feige and company to do the team justice, but there are certain requirements we definitely have for how the team should be portrayed on screen. As well as learning from what's come before, it's vital Marvel turns to the comic books in a way Fox never did.
So, we're now breaking down everything we need to see for this eventual X-Men reboot to succeed.
From certain characters to creative decisions and even big changes to some key heroes and villains, you can find an in-depth look at what should come next for the X-Men by hitting the "NeXt" button!
10. Hated And Feared
The X-Men are every bit the heroes the Avengers are, but they shouldn't be perceived that way by the public. Whether it's because they're the next stage in human evolution or because they didn't receive their powers through a scientific experiment gone wrong, mutants need to be hated and feared.
That automatically makes them way more interesting, and there's a lot Marvel Studios can say about racism and bigotry in a movie like this they might otherwise not get the chance to do.
Despite the way they're treated, the X-Men will fight for everyone...even when those people want them dead. That's a strong message to send to moviegoers, and one that's worth tackling in the reboot. The original movies certainly touched on this, but not in a way that was meaningful.
It's still early days for the concept of Krakoa in the Marvel Universe, but we've already seen enough of it to safely say it could work really well outside of the comic books.
Think about it for a second; just the idea of mutants living peacefully on an island Charles Xavier has secretly been transporting them to for years would explain why they've been off the radar until now, and we're sure some sort of cataclysmic event could be what brings them out of hiding.
The notion of them being fish out of water is also interesting, while the outside world believing that Professor X has amassed an army of powered beings on a hidden island would explain why they're feared and hated. This is a concept with a lot of potential on the big screen (and a much-needed departure from the mansion in Westchester we've spent so much time in before now).
8. Comic Accurate Costumes
Some of the recent X-Men movies tried to head down this route, but it was either only briefly or in a way that disappointed. Thankfully, Marvel Studios has never shied away from comic-accurate costumes and they've been known, on occasion, to actually improve them (Captain America).
With the X-Men, there are plenty of places to turn for inspiration, but rather than the mutants all wearing the same uniform, we're hoping for a sight not all that different to the one you see above.
Each member of the team has their own distinct personalities and powers, and that can be emphasised through their costumes. It's about time we get to see Wolverine's classic blue and yellow duds, and with Marvel Studios' talented team of concept artists on the jobs, there's no excuse not to deliver.
7. The Original Five (And Maybe A Few More)
Matthew Vaughn's X-Men: First Class was a fun ride, but it failed to deliver what 99% of fans wanted: the original five X-Men! It all started with Cyclops, Jean Grey, Angel, Beast, and Iceman, and putting the focus on them in the reboot seems like the smartest possible move.
Now, we're not saying we can't see other mutants, but going too big, too soon, could be a major mistake.
Throwing the likes of Storm and Wolverine into the mix definitely wouldn't hurt, but for the most part, this first movie should reinvent and reboot these characters in a way that will ensure that they're a big part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe for years to come. That's particularly important with Scott Summers, as he's a character who has been overlooked time and time again on screen.
6. Avengers Vs. X-Men
Given how much baggage the X-Men franchise has thanks to Fox's movies, it's not going to be easy convincing the vast majority of casual moviegoers to check out another of the team's adventures regardless of which world it's set in. So, why not kick things off with an Avengers Vs. X-Men film?
Using Krakoa, the team could be quickly introduced, and immediately square off with Earth's Mightiest Heroes (who believe they're a threat before realising they're wrong). With a final act team-up against a bigger threat, this could be exactly what's needed to give the X-Men a makeover.
Alternatively, the Secret Wars movie the Russo Brothers want to make might be a good option. The Multiverse is another possibility, but there's really no need to make this team part of another reality (unless we're getting a Crisis on Infinite Earths-style movie that combines universes).
5. A New Love Interest For Cyclops
At this point, Cyclops and Jean Grey's romance has been done to death both on screen and in the comic books. In recent years, he's seemingly been involved in an open relationship with Jean, Emma Frost, and possibly even Wolverine, but that's not something we expect to see in the MCU.
However, Emma has always been a great fit for Scott Summers, and seeing as she's a character who has been underutilised on screen thus far, the chance is there for a fresh take on the anti-hero.
If Marvel Studios wants to move away from Jean, she could be replaced by Emma, and that would certainly be something fresh. Moving forward, she could become a pivotal part of the team, and there's a lot of potential with Scott and Emma. She's more than just a love interest, though, and is a powerful psychic and powerhouse with the ability to turn her entire body into diamonds.
4. A Rival Brotherhood Of Mutants
The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants never received their due in Fox's movies, and we'd definitely like to see a fresh interpretation on the Brotherhood in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
For starters, they shouldn't be "evil." Instead, we would like them to just serve as an alternative, rival group to the X-Men, not all that dissimilar to how the group was handled in the Ultimate X-Men comic books. A heroic Magneto who descends into being a villain is an exciting prospect, and far more exciting than him immediately being someone Professor X's team is at war with.
Characters could jump between both teams, and the different ideals Charles and Erik have is something Marvel Studios needs to explore in a way that isn't necessarily black and white.
We saw a version of the Sentinels in X-Men: Days of Future Past, and they were...okay? The redesign was understandable, but the movie never really took advantage of the premise of these mutant-hunting robots. In the MCU, we want to see them patrolling the skies, and possibly even as big as a skyscraper to really get across how much of a threat they are to the team.
Ultimately, their involvement could lead to Nimrod showing up, and we're sure that could be tied to Ultron somehow. Failing that, there are ways to link up to the Celestials and Deviants that could better explain the place of mutants and these robots (or Marvel Studios can keep things simple and make them a man-made threat enhanced by some familiar MCU technology).
In terms of appearance, minimal changes to the Sentinels should be made, and they're something we're confident Marvel Studios could make work on screen. Whether they're primary or secondary antagonists, there's so much which could and should be done with these massive robots.
2. A Fresh Take On Professor X
Patrick Stewart's take on Professor Charles Xavier is iconic, but the next actor to play him shouldn't emulate what's come before. James McAvoy was also superb, but having to play a younger version of the character obviously meant that one hand was tied behind his back.
This next Professor X should be American, and quite possibly non-white. It also wouldn't hurt to ditch the wheelchair to begin with, and a visual overhaul similar to recent comics makes sense too.
Xavier isn't someone who should be left on the shelf, so doing something new with him is a must, and it would also be great to see him butt heads with Cyclops when it comes to leading the team. The alternative is moving forward minus Charles, but that robs the X-Men franchise of a key player.
1. A Sinister New Threat
Down the line, we definitely want to see Magneto break bad, while there's plenty of opportunity for new takes on the likes of Bolivar Trask, Apocalypse, and Dark Phoenix. In the meantime, we need something different, and a baddie like Mister Sinister definitely fits the bill for us right now.
His obsession with the Summers bloodline could be fun to explore, while recent takes on the villain have made him wonderfully eccentric and camp, automatically resulting in an antagonist we've never really seen in the MCU before now. If he's played by Bryan Cranston, that would be even better.
To kick things off for the X-Men here, we really can't think of a suitably more sinister foe than this, and it's essential Marvel Studios does something new after two decades of Magneto stories.