When Fox's The Gifted premieres in October, it will bring fans into the world of the Mutant Underground via a family shaken by the revelation that their children are mutants. At Comic-Con International, actors Sean Teale (Incorporated) and Blair Redford (Satisfaction) weighed in on the series, specifically explaining how their characters (Eclipse and Thunderbird) fit into this world, what it was like working with director Bryan Singer, how socially relevant the show is, and where it falls in relation to the film timeline.
Speaking with the press, Teale, who plays Marco Ramirez (aka Eclipse), was asked about how the show will follow in its comic book inspiration's footsteps and reflect modern society's issues. "People keep asking why X-Men is still relevant and why it deals with social issues. I think the reason why is because of its conception. Magneto and Charles Xavier were made, that was Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. If that’s the way that this concept was conceived, then that’s going to emanate throughout the mythology later on.
"In this show, we have that same thing," Teale continued. "These civil rights issues and these people who aren’t superheroes, who don't don super suits or magic jets or save the world. They are human beings that are persecuted for doing nothing other than being themselves. They’ve been bestowed this X-gene that they did not ask for. We’re dealing with issues that exist on the planet already. That persecution of age, weight, gender, sexuality or disability is relevant on our show because they don’t have a choice. It’s human beings being persecuted for being nothing other than themselves and coming together and trying to fight for their rights as people. I think that’s quite relevant."
Asked what drew him to the series, Tease responded, "the world -- the characters not only live in this world but are derived from this world. They are molded and poked and prodded and manipulated by the world that they live in and the circumstances that they are in. What’s interesting is how these people are going to react. Not only do they have this thing that they don’t know if they control yet, they live in a world where people resent them and they resent themselves.
"Why wouldn’t you want to play someone that’s trying to do good in the world when the world is trying not to do good by them," Teale asked before alluding to the fact that some mutant freedom fighters like himself might compromise their altruistic intentions as they push back against Sentinel Services. "How far can these people go before they jeopardize what they believe in? We’ve all seen people crack and change because of that, so it’s really fun to have that dynamic happen. I think Thunderbird and Polaris -- through this underground network -- their relationship does fracture. Thunderbird has this way of thinking, which in my opinion is a good one, Polaris has another. Eclipse gets torn between the two opposing factors, and that’s really fun to play. Who doesn’t want to play in these extreme situations of ordinary people in extraordinary circumstances?"