This year’s Comic-Con was light on big announcements, and that trend continued with last night’s Fox panel. They showed a new Fantastic Four trailer, a Deadpool trailer (more on that later) and got the whole cast of X-Men: Apocalypse out to show off some footage and talk about the movie. Absent for most of the panel was Wolvie himself, Hugh Jackman, and that’s for one very good reason: he’s quitting. Throwing in the towel. Reclining back on millions of plushy Wolverine toys filled with dollar bills. Notice I said ‘most of the panel’ – he was there for a little bit and had three words which could mean a heck of a lot…
Old. Man. Logan.
That isn’t me being dramatic, either; he came out and said “I have three words for you”. What does this mean? We’re pretty sure that Jackman wouldn’t just turn up to stir shit with the fans, so it’s a safe bet that the next solo movie and his last appearance as the character will be adapting the famous comic arc.
Old Man Logan is a really cool but also stupid and fucking weird story. It’s set in an alternate, dystopian future (ringing any bells?) where supervillains have conquered America and the heroes are all but extinct. Logan hung up the Wolverine persona years ago after accidentally slaughtering all of the mutant in the X-Mansion, and he’s roped into one final mission by a blind Hawkeye. Then there’s some stuff about Hulk eating him and incest-born-Hulk-grandchildren.
Jackman and director James Mangold are gonna need to jump through a lot of hoops to make it work as the comic relies on a lot of characters that they don’t own – and the story just gets really weird. However, the concept is really cool and it would provide a fitting conclusion for the Wolverine character. By the time this movie will be released Jackman will have been wearing the claws for 17 years. That’s a long-ass time, and it works for his final turn as Wolverine to be where he’s nearing the end of his life. We were with him right at the beginning when he first joined the X-Men and we’re gonna be with him right at the end when he goes. It’s unlikely that we’ll ever see such devotion to a character again (perhaps in any franchise) or sticking with one actor and one character for so long, giving an arc that spans almost two decades. This movie has the potential to be fucking great, and just thinking about it makes me a little choked up.
The big question is how they can do the story, especially because the studio are finally paying attention to continuity and trying to establish a long-lasting series of films. They can bring in more time travel shenanigans but that would likely be too reminiscent of Days of Future Past. Or they could just play it straight and set the movie fifty years in the future – I really have no idea, but I’m intrigued into how it’ll play out.
The movie seemingly also has a title – ‘Wolverine‘. Very creative and original there.