The Top 5 X-Men Characters Who Should Get Solo Films

It’s actually simply a more modern take on the same sort of question I would ask myself as a teenage reader of the X-Men comics franchise – what characters should get their own title or one-off special? In fact, Marvel Comics tended to give every character under the sun their own moment in the sun eventually, even if for just a standalone graphic novel, and these were often a significant departure in quality from the main ensemble titles.

As far as the X-Men film franchise goes, Wolverine was always the logical commercial choice for solo features, being the populist character and poster-boy for the series. I happen to think X-Men Origins: Wolverine was substandard fare and that the X-Men films themselves are a touch Wolverine-heavy. In an ideal world, where depth and character was somehow more commercially lucrative than testosterone and rage, the first, most obvious, choice for a standalone feature would be Magneto – the ‘villain’ who has always raised the X-Men mythology a cut above most of the comic hero competition through his sheer depth and gravity of character and richness of backstory. However, X-Men: First Class was essentially a Magneto Origins movie already; merely repackaged and re-titled to make it more audience-friendly by sprinkling various younger, sexier characters into the mix, some of the character choices seeming almost arbitrary.

So then, who beyond Magneto? If it was a question of which characters from the array of past and present X-Men comic-book titles deserved a movie all to themselves, it wouldn’t be hard to come up with around ten candidates at least.  But drawing solely from the existing big-screen adaptations, an immediate standout candidate is…


5. Mystique


Mystique. Who hasnt watched her from the first moment she appears in that first X-Men movie and wanted to know where she came from, how she came to be the Raven Darkholme we know and love? We got a small taste of her origin story with Jennifer Lawrence‘s portrayal in X-Men: First Class, but Mystique has a, well, mystique about her and a past that deserves to be explored in its own film.

How about this for suitable screenplay fodder – Mystique and her lover Destiny (another fascinating character from the annals of X-history) traveling back in time to prevent a Nazi plot with the Shadow King to replace the British Monarch with Oswald Mosley and the British Fascist Party in order to make Britain an ally of Nazi Germany. No? Well, throw in Kitty Pryde/Shadowcat and a plot to assassinate Hitler and surely we’re getting somewhere.

– Sajeel Awan


4. Cyclops


Not before you start throwing things, just hear me out. I loathe Cyclops as much as the next sane man. He’s dull, full of himself, and we won’t even start on what the comics are doing with him right now. But essentially he’s a leader with great fighting skills and the ability to shoot freaking lasers out of his eyes! Lasers! I think what he really needs is to be adapted, for someone to take his character and start afresh without all his history and most importantly without Wolverine. We’re always going to side with Wolvie over straight man Cyclops, but alone we can finally see his as the competent individual, leader and successor to Professor X that he really deserves to be. Plus his dad is a space pirate, come on.

– Joe Swindell


3. Psylocke


First of all just look at her. Purple hair, cool outfit, crazy magic spikey thing coming out of her hand; Psylocke has a memorable and interesting look. She’s a mutant ninja superhero (you already know that concept alone is worth a movie) and this really opens up the movie’s action to something new. Our past telekinetic movie mutants Professor X and Jean Grey weren’t trained in combat whereas Psylocke can bring both elements to the party; leaping through the air, force-pushing guards into walls and landing with two psychic-katanas drawn. That’s just cool. Lastly, and perhaps most importantly, she’s British and the sister of Captain Britain! That’s right; we could potentially have a true international superhero on the big screen kicking arse outside of America for once. We foreigners can dream.

– Joe Swindell


About the author

Sajeel Awan