Comic book fans are truly living in the golden age of comic book cinema. Before the ‘90s we were lucky to have a cartoon based on our favorite vigilantes in spandex — especially if it was from Marvel. We got The Incredible Hulk and a couple Spider-Man shows in the ‘70s from them, but that was about it. Now there are shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the short-lived Agent Carter, Daredevil and the slew of Netflix shows that come with that. Needless to say, Marvel has truly stepped up their television presence ever since they were bought by Disney, and that includes the properties currently owned by Fox.
Coming in October we are going to be graced with the premiere of The Gifted. It’s a story about about family, the government and mutants. Judging from the trailer, it looks like Fox may have a hit on their hands. A little bit of Heroes mixed with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. — what can go wrong? We’ve done some digging for you and found some of the more interesting tidbits about the series. Some are facts from the mouths of the creators, others are hopeful possibilities, so take some of the rumors with a grain of salt and fingers crossed.
15. FACT: THE PILOT IS DIRECTED BY BRYAN SINGER
The director that started it all, that orchestrated the X-Men mythology for the big screen will be directing the premiere episode of The Gifted. This is a good thing because it shows that the studio is passionate about the series taking off to bring new X-Men stories to the fans and that they want this show to have just as good quality as the movies.
It is undeniable that the X-Men films directed by Bryan Singer rank higher amongst majority of fans than the rest. If he can bring the quality and creativity that he brought to the movies, there is no reason why this show can’t be a success, not to mention he gets to use a cast of new characters, which can only be refreshing for him and the audience.
14. RUMOR: THUNDERBIRD WILL BE MORE LIKE WARPATH
John Proudstar, better known as Thunderbird, looks to be the leader of the underground team of mutants in the show. In the comics he wielded superhuman strength, stamina and speed, and it can be presumed that he will be bringing that same power set to the show. Unfortunately, his comic book counterpart was killed off shortly after his first appearance. It is uncertain he’ll suffer the same fate in the television series, but his brother, James Proudstar, or Warpath, has similar powers and a slightly — okay, vastly — longer lifespan.
Warpath also had a prominent role in X-Force, which could be the reason it’s suspected that this Thunderbird is inspired by his brother. No one connected to the series has said anything about this and not too much has been revealed about Thunderbird from the trailer, but his demeanor will reveal all because Warpath and Thunderbird had two opposing personalities.
13. FACT: IT’S CONNECTED TO X-MEN MOVIES… SORT OF
One of the big things fans look for in television shows based on comic books these days is that connective tissue to the big blockbusters on the silver screen. We get honorary mentions of the larger MCU in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Netflix shows. Even Legion had a teaser of it being connected to Fox’s X-Men franchise. The Gifted looks to be doing the same by name dropping the X-Men in the trailer.
The difference here, however, is that Nix and company are sidestepping the whole “will there be a crossover” question by admitting that their series is one of many possible timelines that Days of Future Past proves exists. It’s not perfect, but it can prove to be better than the line Marvel Television tiptoes with the MCU.
12. RUMOR: LEGION CROSSOVER
As we know, FX’s Legion revolves around David Haller, whom is known to be the son of Charles Xavier. The founder of the X-Men and all-powerful telepath extraordinaire. They even gave us a fun teaser near the end of Legion’s first season with a glimpse of Professor X’s wheelchair that looked awfully identical to the wheelchair from Bryan Singer’s X-Men.
Then there’s Polaris whom is known to play a role in The Gifted, and with her comic book counterpart known to have had an interaction or two with Haller’s comic book counterpart, it would be interesting and might even be possible to see the two shows crossover in some capacity. An interaction with those two characters could be fun, too because you know, her dad is the master of magnetism (possibly, maybe) and his is Charles Xavier.
11. FACT: FAMILIAL CONFLICT OF INTEREST
Another tidbit of information that we can gleam from the trailer is that Stephen Moyer, the patriarch of the story’s central family, works for the government agency that bags and tags mutants. It is reminiscent of Jack Coleman’s character from Heroes that had a daughter that played a pivotal role in every season of the show.
Moyer’s Strucker looks to play a similar role once he learns his children are mutants. He abandons his job to go on the run with his family to keep them safe. Family plays a large role in a lot of X-Men stories because mutants have an unfortunate tendency to be disowned by their bigoted families. This show looks to be no different with that theme taking a central role.
10. RUMOR: A MAGNETO CAMEO
You can’t have a character like Polaris without at least the very mention of Magneto — in every single episode. It’s like having David Haller as a main character in a show and not mentioning that his dad is Professor Xavier… nevermind. It is eventually revealed in the comics that Magneto is the father of Polaris, which most suspected for the sole fact that she has identical powers.
Of course the first time it is revealed by Magneto that he is her dad, it turns out that it wasn’t really Magneto but an android. Eventually it is truly revealed and Polaris has mixed feelings about fighting her dad despite him being a bad guy. If they did decide to bring in Magneto in some capacity, it would be interesting to see if he would be considered a villain or ally.
9. FACT: MATT NIX
Matt Nix will be the showrunner for The Gifted on top of being the creator and executive producer. Probably best known for his series Burn Notice and its TV movie Burn Notice: The Fall of Sam Axe, Nix brings with him proven experience with successful television shows and a passion for stories about mutants. Executives at Fox have full faith in Nix bringing a quality X-Men TV show to us with their praise of him being a “brilliant procedural writer who is also an expert at genre”.
This combination of traits should go well with a show about mutants on the run from the government. He brings with him Burn Notice alum Coby Bell whom will play a government employee with second thoughts about his job. Here’s to hoping we get to see Bruce Campbell in a future recurring role.
8. RUMOR: IT’S BASED ON DISTRICT X
District X was a short comic book series that starred the mutant Bishop as an investigator in a ghetto known as District X. Matt Nix has stated that this series is loosely inspired by the District X storyline. Does that mean that we’ll get to see Bishop march through town like a sheriff in later episodes and hunt for mutants? It wouldn’t be the first time he turns against other mutants, but probably not.
Nix has also said that the series is not based “on any specific comic”, so we might not get an actual District X, but other characters from that storyline might make an appearance. It’s not unlikely that we could even get Bishop to play a role. We do after all have Blink played by Jamie Chung, so being in a previous movie doesn’t rule them out.
7. FACT: POLARIS IS A MAIN CHARACTER
As previously noted, Polaris is known to play a role in the show. She will be a part of the underground team of mutants alongside Thunderbird and Blink. Typically seen with green hair, she will not be sporting that look in her television incarnation — at least not right away. She will, however, be sporting her powers of magnetism which will hopefully lead to lots of talk and easter eggs about her dad being the master of magnetism, Magneto.
In the comics, Polaris has been a member of multiple teams, including the X-Men and X-Factor where she had a relationship with the brother of Cyclops, Havok. In the comics Polaris has a history of being mind-controlled and being kidnapped, which is a played out trope, and hopefully she plays a more important role and offers more than a damsel in distress for the team.
6. RUMOR: NO X-MEN EXPLAINED
Now, we’re being told that there will be no X-Men in the show and whether that means for the entirety of the series or not, who knows? We have also been told that their absence will be explained, but how much can we trust that? Is it going to be a mystery for only one season or will it run for the entire lifespan of the series?
Nix says, “It’s one of the central mysteries of the show” which is still kind of vague. He says that and we get this uncomfortable feeling that it’s going to end up like Lost where it’s going to be a question that is never actually answered. And if it is, it will be answered in one of its final episodes.
5. FACT: IT’S ABOUT BIGOTRY
Just as fiction always has an underlying theme, X-Men has always been about intolerance, overcoming hate and bigotry in general. The Gifted will be no different, and we get our first glimpse of this in the trailer when one of the main characters is being bullied during a school dance.
A couple of kids throw the character into a shower in a locker room and turn on the water, and that’s when his abilities manifest. We’ve seen this very theme play out in Singer’s X2 when Iceman’s mom asks, “Have you ever tried not being a mutant?” This is a daring move on part of Matt Nix and the writers, considering today’s political climate. It’s not the wrong move, and is probably more needed now than ever.
4. RUMOR: AN APPEARANCE BY THE HELLFIRE CLUB
Before the idea of The Gifted was brought up, Fox was workshopping a series called Hellfire that featured The Hellfire Club. Hellfire was going to be about a group of evil mutants hellbent on world domination. Some of the characters that were going to be used in the Hellfire show are actually being featured in The Gifted. So is it really a stretch to think that some of the stroylines that were going to be in Hellfire will be present in The Gifted? No, it’s not.
This could mean that we will see characters like Sebastian Shaw — not played by Kevin Bacon — and a more cunning Emma Frost than what we got in X-Men: First Class. Perhaps The Hellfire Club will even provide shelter to the main cast as they run from a government that likes to hunt down and capture mutants. For a price, of course.
3. FACT: NO X-MEN WILL BE IN IT…
If you’ve seen the trailer then you’ve heard one of the characters say “The X-Men, The Brotherhood. We don’t even know if they exist anymore.” That’s because there will be no X-Men in this show. At least, that’s what the producers are saying.
It might just be a way to avoid paying Patrick Stewart and Halle Berry exuberant amounts of money for a brief appearance or it might be a strategy to keep the fans from asking when the show is going to crossover with the movies. It could also be a clever way of giving other characters in the mutant pantheon a chance to shine, which is not a bad idea. Hopefully with a TV show we can have a little more continuity with characters.
2. RUMOR: …BUT THERE MAY BE A ROGUE CAMEO
You might remember Anna Paquin as Rogue from the X-Men movies. You might also know that she acted alongside Stephen Moyer in the HBO series True Blood. What you might not know is that her and Moyer are, in fact, married in real life. The same Stephen Moyer that is playing Reed Strucker in The Gifted. If you didn’t make this connection, that’s okay — we forgive you.
Reed Strucker is the father of the Strucker children in the show and an agent for the government. It can’t take too much for him to get his real life wife to make a cameo on the show for an episode or two. Someone to help them escape the government or even as a secret weapon the government is withholding.
1. FACT: THERE WILL BE ORIGINAL CHARACTERS
Without the X-Men center stage, this leaves room for new, original characters to come to the forefront, characters we haven’t even seen in the comics. We already have the Strucker family, which many might recognize from The Avengers: Age of Ultron, but these characters are completely new without any counterpart in the comics.
So there’s no reading up to see what has happened to them in order to get an idea of where the show might be headed. There also appears to be a character called Eclipse which seems to be a mutant created for the show. Who knows what other characters we will get to see and what other powers will make an appearance. It’s almost certain that we will see characters with familiar powers, but they will be new characters.
What are you hoping for when The Gifted premieres? Let us know in the comments!
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