Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

I’ve been hearing some murmurings about the next X-Men movie.

I really give X-Men: First Class a lot of credit. I couldn’t have asked for a better portrayal of a young Xavier and Magneto. And I really dug that 1960’s old-school feel. It sort of FELT like the beginning of that comic book, didn’t it?

Of course, as usual there was a ton of X-Men stuff just sort of thrown in there, which, again, is a tactic that I just don’t understand. I appreciate Sebastian Shaw and Emma Frost as big bad guys for the X-Men to take on.

And yeah, okay, I can get behind a rewrite that puts Mystique in Xavier’s corner in the beginning. Because it really plays up her penchant for treachery. And young Hank McCoy, my personal favorite X-Man--nay, CHARACTER--of all time? Totally awesome.

But Nightcrawler’s father? Shaw killing Magneto’s mother? Havok without Cyclops? Angel (Granot Morrison’s)?

I just don’t know.

I hate to sound like a broken record but all that mixing of eras and characters just seems so haphazard to me. For some reason, Christopher Nolan can get away with this like it's nobody’s business. The Dark Knight Rises seems, to me, to be some sort of amazing fusion of Frank Miller’s The Dark Knight Returns with the backbreaking epic Knightfall. And it works, Incredibly so.

But with the X-Men movies I always feel like this kind of amalgamation is working against them, not for them. The fact that the whole last generation of X-Men films don’t seem to have quite been retired adds to the confusion. Nothing in X-Men: First Class explicitly contradicts anything you saw in the first three X-Men films. And Hugh Jackman is slated to star in The Wolverine.

The problem with this arrangement is that it doesn’t loosen the reigns well enough for them to take Days of Future Past and just DO IT, the way that they should. Oh yes, in case you didn’t hear, that’s the working title of the next film.

See, here’s what I want to see:

Act 1: Setting is New York City, distant future. Think Terminator, post-apocalypse here. Sentinels roam the street monitoring humans and rounding up mutants and genetic anomalies.(If Marvel was feeling ambitious, they could put cameos in here; grave site’s for Tony Stark and Steve Rogers could be seen). A handful of survivors strike back whenever possible. Their ranks include an aged Wolverine, Storm, Kitty pryde, Magneto and a few others.

Taking a desperate gamble, Wolverine and company amplify a device that will temporarily shift Kitty Pryde’s consciousness back in time. As Kitty is hooked up to the machine, the remaining X-Men and their allies flare out in a blaze of glory, fighting hordes of Sentinels intent on disrupting their plans.

Act 2: Kitty Pryde, newest addition to the X-Men, suddenly awakes in the night talking and acting strangely. Xavier and his current team consisting of Cyclops, Storm, Wolverine, Nightcrawler and Colossus listen to Kitty talk about the horrors that will befall the world if the X-Men don’t prevent the upcoming assassination of Senator Kelly. His death will instigate a series of events leading to the enslavement of all of humankind at the hands of the mutant hunting Sentinals.

Act 3: In a mad rush against time, the X-Men scramble to uncover the plot behind the Senator’s life. Their opposition? The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, consisting of Toad, Pyro, Avalanche, the Blob, Destiny, a very confused Rogue and their now de facto leader in Magneto’s name, Mystique. Who of course has gotten dangerously close to the senator by impersonating a close aide.

The movie builds to a frantic crescendo, with the X-Men doing everything they can to warn and save a mutant-hating senator knowing that the future is at stake. It takes lots of plot twists and there is plenty of misdirection as the X-Men try to retroactively reconstruct the events of the assassination from future Kitty Pryde’s unreliable memory.

Finally, it all comes down to a showdown with the Brotherhood right in front of the White House, broadcast on live television. The X-Men are likely to be misconstrued as terrorists attacking the senator, tarnishing their reputation forever, but they’ve got to fight anyway. Meanwhile, just ONE X-Man (Storm maybe) manages to slip after Mystique as she tails the senator whose bodyguards are trying to get him out of the action. It’s a race against time literally AND figuratively.

Can the X-Men prevent the future? Or is fate unchangeable? That’s the surreal thing the movie dangles in front of your eyes while you watch…

Now see you could do everything I just said and substitute all the people and places from all sorts of different writers and eras of X-Men.

But…WHY? Why fix what isn’t broken? I really think the chemistry Chris Claremont had between the 80’s team and the old-school Brotherhood is very classic and what I WANT out of a movie. There’s plenty of room to lay plot threads for the future (I still like the strange Mystique raised Rogue plotline, it gives Mystique this evil-stepmother appeal to Rogue’s past) and there’s just the right amount of powers for a big, knock-down mutant brawl. The kind you always saw in the comic.

So I hope if you’re out there, reading this, Hollywood, you get on board with this. Because tell me that wouldn’t be an awesome movie?