Thursday, March 17, 2011

"X-Men First Class".......God, Really?

Also, that's a terrible fucking poster.
So, I cover a lot of comic book related things on this site. I mean, like, 90 % of articles on this site are about comics and comic book films. Marvel Studios should be paying me, with all the love I've rained down on Captain America, Thor and The Avengers, etc. I even posted on the new Spider-Man film, even if every shot of that costume looks more and more awful; it's like Spidey went to Vegas and wore a fat old Elvis jumpsuit version of his classic duds.

But there's been no love for the upcoming X-Men flick. Why? Because I really can't wrap my head around the whole concept. First off, there's the fact it takes place during the Cuban Missile Crisis. That's actually a pretty cool idea, but the mathematical gymnastics you have to go through is insane.

Okay, so the first X-Men film was released in 2000, and supposedly took place "in the near future". Let's be conservative and say it took place five years in the future, so that's 2005. Now, when that movie starts, it shows Magneto in a concentration camp in WWII. Let's say that he was thirteen at the time, and that the year was 1944. That makes Magneto 74 when X-Men starts! Some of you may argue my using 13 as his age during the concentration camps scene, but mutant powers, we are told, typically manifest during puberty. Even taking three years off still means Mags is 71 when X-Men takes place. Following this logic, in X-Men First Class, Magneto should be 28 years old, but he's being played by Michael Fassbender, who's 34.

Now let's take Professor X. In X-Men First Class, he's played by James McAvoy, who is 32. I'll shave a couple years off and say Charles Xavier is supposed to be 30 years old in 1962. This means by 2005 he would be 73 years old. That's older than Patrick Stewart is right now.

Okay, now here comes some issues that I really don't get at all. According to all the material I've seen or read, three of the students in this first class are Mystique, Beast and Havok. Mystique and Beast both appeared in previous X-Men films. Let's say they are 16 at the time of this film, high school age. This means that by 2005, they would both be 59 years old. Beast I could buy that being the case, but did Mystique look 59 to anyone in any of those films?

And let's take Havok, or Alex Summers. Wait, some of you may be saying, wasn't Cyclops from the first three films called Scott Summers? Yep, and Alex is supposed to be his brother. So, I guess, he's an older brother. Like a 39 year older brother.

Maybe they'll explain all this. Maybe they'll state that mutants somehow age slower, though I don't think this has been mentioned anywhere at any point. Maybe Alex will be Scott's dad or something. But this is my big problem with the way 20th Century Fox has handled the X-Men franchise. That Wolverine film stuck all sorts of X-characters into it with little rhyme or reason. Emma Frost was a teen in that film, but a grown up January Jones plays her in First Class, and the Wolverine film certainly seemed to take place after 1962 to me.

I wouldn't have a problem if they indicated that X-Men First Class is a sort of one-off film with no connection to the other films, but watch the trailer, look at the poster:

Yeah, that's pretty connected.

So, what it seems to me is that someone thought it would look cool to set this film during the 1960s, and while normally I don't get my panties in a twist over continuity, this is just a defiance of basic biology! It seems arbitrary, as if Fox wanted to put out a movie in order to hold on to the franchise rights, and didn't want to pony up the dough for the original cast.  It seems ill-considered. I'm hoping I'm wrong, but I'm not seeing anything to change my mind.

1 comment:

Timelords said...

I know exactly what you are saying. I scratched my head trying to figure out the chronology of it all. Finally just shrugged and figured its a movie, and a comic movie at that. It's not that comics explain their chronology well either, though I guess its at least linear.

What bugged me though: It's set in the 60s and doesn't really look like the 60s at all. Look at the clothing the students are wearing watching Kennedy on TV. Hoodies!?! Really???

I like the premise of Magneto destroying a Russian sub. If anything it will probably be worth seeing the movie just for that scene. Plus he did destroy a Russian sub at one point in the comics. Putting it in the midst of the Cuban crisis I guess was just meant to highten things.

And not that you don't make several good points on character age for several of them, but Mystique is meant to be very old. I think its established she first met up with Wolverine in the 1920s. And she has mentioned she is over 100. Plus she's a shape-shifter, so is it a stretch she doesn't look like an old crone.