It’s been a while since we’ve had an all-new team of X-Men characters arriving on the big screen.
Sure, we got half a new team with First Class, but the presence of Magneto, Professor X, and Mystique meant we pretty much knew what we were getting, even if all roles had new, younger, sexier actors.
Although obviously, sexiness is dependent on personal tastes—some people have weird fixations on Captain Picard or Gandalf that means they’d prefer thinking naughty thoughts about the older actors who’ve played those roles, and even though she’s literally old enough to be Jennifer Lawrence’s mother, Rebecca Romijn is still perfectly capable of turning heads.
Perfectly capable indeed.
I got distracted, where was I?
Oh, yes, that’s right—new X-Men team lineups in movies.
The only time we’ve ever seen a completely fresh roster of characters that have never been seen on-screen before, was all the way back in the original X-Men movie.
Perhaps this is one of the big reason for the franchise’s success – from that point onwards, there’s always been some degree of recognition within the public consciousness for the characters on display. Plus, inevitably, Hugh Jackman’s glorious Australian face has appeared in every single movie, at least for a few seconds.
I got distracted again, didn't I?
Now, though, we’re getting a completely original team of New Mutants, in the inventively titled New Mutants movie.
It should probably be stated that in this context, “original” means that these characters haven’t been seen in a movie – they’ve all been bouncing around for years in the comics, to the point that even a half-specific casting call can be used to instantly identify which characters appear in the movie.
Here’s a breakdown from That Hashtag Show, which rips away the fake names attached to these roles in order to reveal the delicious, sparkling true identities they each possess. Kind of like Lex Luthor touring the Daily Planet and stopping to swat glasses off the nose of everyone he passes:
Just in case you’re at work, viewing this article on your cell data plan, or simply can’t be bothered to sit through the above video when all of its information can be compiled into a single bullet point list, here are the characters that the casting call suggests will be in the movie:
It’s also been confirmed that Mirage is in the movie too, but she’s apparently already been cast, so she doesn’t appear on casting calls.
Eagle eyed fans will note that this collection of characters matches up well with a list of the original New Mutants from the comic of the same name, that was penned by Chris Claremont—albeit with a few exceptions.
This is kind of fun—even in the original X-Men, Bryan Singer cherry picked his favorite characters from several iterations of the core X-Men team. It looks like John Boone’s take on New Mutants is pretty darn close to the source material, which does at least inspire some tiny additional burst of optimism among those who grew up during a certain era of Marvel comics history.
It’s also worth noting that, with a team that is sixty percent female characters, New Mutants is shaping up to be a more progressive movie than many of those concocted by the aforementioned Singer.
The X-Men movies have always bafflingly struggled with the Bechdel test, which is in and of itself impressive considering that the comics are in fact one of the more gender diverse facets of superhero comic books.
It takes some real skill to have Mystique, Storm, Rogue, and Jean Grey all share significant screen time in X2, only for them all to decide it’s best to keep quiet and let the men do the talking.
So if you’ve been wanting to see women take a more progressive, significant role in X-Men movies, beyond watching Magneto choke out Emma Frost while she’s in her underwear, New Mutants is the movie for you.
And if you’d prefer just to sit back and look at all the sexy teens, that’s probably an option too. Especially if you’ve got a thing for werewolves.
There I go getting distracted again.