How should The X-Men Make Their Introduction Into The Marvel Cinematic Universe?

by Ryan.L on December 19, 2017

So it’s not news that Disney now has the rights to the X-Men, something that fans have wanted for a long time. While some of the films have been received well there is a general consensus that Marvel could do a much better job with the merry mutants.

Now that this dream to have the mutants home is coming true many people are discussing how should they be introduced into the MCU? The X-Men debuted in 1963 and since then there have been many different iterations of the characters. Each writer seems to give the X-Books their own look and feel while keeping the essence of the characters the same.

So where do we start? One would argue at the beginning and introduce the X-Men as they were originally in the comics. Charles Xavier, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Beast, Angel and Iceman as young mutants new to Xavier’s School for the Gifted. We would follow more of the more modern version of this origin like the Season One comic of X-Men. This is where the X-Men began but is this the right direction to go?

There is no denying that even though Stan Lee and Jack Kirby created one of the most popular franchises at Marvel comics, but it’s Chris Claremont who developed them into the team we know and love today. So does that mean that Claremont’s version should be the one to be brought into the MCU? Claremont was on the books for so long and that team changed rosters so many times that really the best option would be to have a mixture of the Blue and Gold teams from Claremont’s and Jim Lee’s 1990s run. We do run into an issue of who to pick. At that point there were so many popular characters they had to be separated into two teams and that just doesn’t seem logical for the films right out of the gate. We would want to stay around 6 to 8 members as we would need to have back story for each character. If I had to choose from Claremont’s epic run I would go with Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, Wolverine, Rogue, Gambit, Nightcrawler, and Colossus. What we run into though is all these characters have been on screen before and we don’t really get anything new. Also what story do we choose? There are so many to choose from and some of the most popular have already been done on film such as Days of Future Past and the Phoenix Saga. Also some of the best stories from Claremont take some setup and for a first film that is not realistic. Claremont will always get huge props but is this really the correct direction to go?

Some people suggest to start where the Ultimate X-Men took things. Have a mixture of popular X-Men and bring them into a more realistic version. We all know that the movies are a different interpretation of the source material so it doesn’t have to be exactly the same. Take Guardians of the Galaxy changing Star-Lords father for the movies and it really worked. So instead of Cyclops, Jean Grey, Angel, Beast and Iceman being the original members go with Cyclops, Jean Grey, Beast, Colossus, Iceman, Storm and Wolverine. This would give us a mixture of the original five but also bring in fan favorites Storm and Wolverine. Have the movie follow like the comic and have a few members already at the school and Jean off recruiting some of the other members. It is a very interesting idea and reboots the X-Men entirely for the MCU but again is it the correct direction?

With the MCU being around for 10 years now could we get away with the X-Men already being established? In the comics the X-Men have always operated in their own part of the Universe with only some interaction with the rest of the Marvel Universe. So we could possibly introduce them that way and that S.H.I.E.L.D. already knows of them but there have been much more important things to take care of than a group of Mutants who obviously want to be left alone. That or Charles Xavier has done a great job at concealing the team and their missions from S.H.I.E.L.D. and the world. That an event happens so big that the mutants are revealed to the world at large. With this idea we look to Grant Morrison’s outstanding run as the inspiration for the movie. There wouldn’t be time to set up Genosha and have Cassandra Nova decimate the mutant population but we could have the school set up and running under the radar and Cassandra Nova do something to expose the mutants. The major part of this idea is to have more of a focus on the school and less on the super hero aspect of the X-Men. We would be able to bring in a lot of lesser known characters to populate the school that could then eventually branch off into their own movies like an X-Men Academy X direction as the main team becomes more public and a traditional X-Men team saving the world. Who would be on the team though? I would suggest sticking with who Morrison originally chose. Charles Xavier, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Emma Frost, Beast, Wolverine and Xorn. With this team we get a unique dynamic with these all being characters that are strong teachers and also a new character who has never been on screen before to give audiences something fresh to experience. We wouldn’t need a full origin story and it would also lead to other popular characters making cameos as teachers. These cameos could then possibly turn into other X-Men films. Again though, is a movie centered on the school the right direction to go?

You could go with an idea right out of left field and go with a modified version of Brian Michael Bendis run of All-New X-Men. We could have after the Infinity War events in the MCU something happen with the time stone and the original five X-Men from the 1960s get brought to the present. We would need someone like Vison (if he makes it through the war) to take them under his wing and act as a mentor and train them like Charles Xavier would have. For the MCU version of this we could then introduce popular characters as time goes by and the team could expand. This would give a fresh new take on the X-Men for the films and easily slide them into the MCU. But is a unique to the MCU version of the X-Men the right direction to go?

Some fans argue that Fox did an alright job at creating the X-Men universe and that we should have a Universe altering event like Secret Wars to combine the MCU and Fox X-Universe together. This way we would keep the current casting and roster of Charles Xavier, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Storm, Beast, Quicksilver, and Nightcrawler and supporting characters in Psylocke, Mystique and Magneto. This does pose some questions like Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. They are twins and for a long time they were thought to be mutants but then that was changed in the comics. The MCU version of Quicksilver was killed and bringing in a Quicksilver from another reality that is still a mutant would complicate things too much. There would also be the New Mutants who are to be introduced into Fox’s X-Universe later this year and if that movie is successful taking the X-Men into the horror genre it would be a smart idea to keep it going. Especially if New Mutants has little connection to Fox’s other X-Films it could easily be feathered into the MCU. So is more of the same the right direction to go?

Ultimately there are so many options and so many characters to choose from. This is no easy task and every fan has their opinion of what Marvel should do. I think the best thing right now is that the X-Men are home and Marvel can start to rebuild one of the biggest and most popular franchises in the Marvel Universe. If you want my opinion start where it all began, the school but with a fresh updated version. For this I am a huge fan of going with the idea of Grant Morrison’s run being the big influence for the X-Men’s introduction into the MCU.