Monday, January 31, 2022

Why the X-Men Should NOT be in the MCU

Let’s start with a history lesson:

Once upon a time Marvel comics was losing money. Well, no comic book company was doing well but that’s it’s own blog. So to try and bring in an income Marvel sold the movie rights for the X-Men to Fox and the rights of Spider-Man to Sony. They tried to sell the Avengers but nobody thought that movies about Iron Man and Captain America would make any money, so Marvel kept them. 

A different time, I know. 

So Fox made the X-Men movies, which arguably helped set up the age of super hero movies we’re currently riding now, and now that daddy Marvel has all the money ever and teamed up with Rich Grandpa Disney they have the X-Men back home and are talking about bringing them into the Marvel Cinematic Universe and bringing the whole family back together forever. 

I’m here to say why that’s a bad idea. 

Man, that was a long intro…

In The Comics

If you’re only familiar with the Marvel universe through the movies (No judgment) you may not know that in the comics the Avengers, the X-Men, Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four and even Blade live together in one big crazy world, and have done since the beginning of Stan Lee. This makes for a lot of fun stories where Wolverine and Hawkeye hang out and makes the whole Civil War storyline actually feel like a civil war and not an extremely violent disagreement between friends. 

Here’s the issue though: 

In canon, the public are generally positive towards the Avengers and superheroes. She-Hulk appears in open court, her pencil skirt showing off her green legs. However, mutants, who are people born with a special X-gene that gives them powers, are ostracized like a DC fan at an Avengers cosplay speed dating event. So the public in this universe is fine with a woman who can shoot space beams from her hands and a guy who took performance enhancement drugs to fight Nazis but a little girl born with cat ears and a tail they’re going to chase with literal torches and pitchforks. 


In the Movies

In Fox’s X-Men movies mutants are the only super powered beings in the world. This gives X-Men the room to explore the themes of bigotry and racism that Xavier’s students are famous for exploring. The public’s reaction to mutants makes sense as a mix of fear and fascination because we see the destructive capabilities of mutants and what those powers can do when in the wrong hands. When a villain (Okay usually it’s Magneto) starts acting up and the X-Men roll in, the public doesn’t root for the X-Men, they look at the entire conflict as just mutant violence and think that everyone needs to be locked up. 

Sounds familiar? Let’s not get political that’s yet another post. 

What Will be Lost

If the fan theories ever come true and Xavier rolls out of one of Dr. Strange’s portals, we’re going to lose all those great qualities the movies gave us. The messages of the outsider will get lost in the fun exuberance the MCU is known for. Alternatively, the Avengers may need to slow down and take heavy, contemplative thoughts about the price of power and responsibility, maybe even address heavy topics, which would take away from the fun exuberance. 

When Marvel separated the X-Men from the Marvel universe, it was seen as a tragedy. I know a lot of Marvel fans that want the mutants to come home, and I won’t lie that I didn’t geek out when Evan Peters showed up in Wandavision as Quicksilver and trolled us all, but in the bigger picture I think this separation gave us the best X-Men concept we could’ve had, despite the hits and misses the films themselves ended up being. 

I know I’m being a hypocrite preaching segregation for a story that’s about the evils of segregation, but can we please keep or Avengers and X-Men apart? 

At least until we get a decent Gambit. 

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