By Vanessa Rupertus
Elm Staff Writer
Ever since the announcement of the newest installment of the “X-Men” series, “Dark Phoenix,” and the release of the first trailer in September 2018, rumors have surfaced concerning a potential major death in the film.
In the second trailer released by 20th Century Fox on March 1, fans finally seemed to get an answer. It was heavily implied that the character of Mystique, played by Jennifer Lawrence, will be the one to get killed off.
Considering the previous attempt at adapting “The Dark Phoenix Saga” comics, “X-Men: The Last Stand”—known as the “infamous trash-fire” of the franchise—Fox hopes for redemption through this installment.
“Dark Phoenix” is based off of an extended X-Men storyline written by Chris Claremont. Scheduled for release in theaters on June 7, the film follows the story of X-Men member Jean Grey, played by Sophie Turner.
After being exposed to a solar flare during a space mission, Jean begins to lose control of the dark and dangerous powers within herself.
The X-Men are a superhero team of mutants, humans with superhuman abilities committed to fighting for peace and equality between humans and mutants in a world where anti-mutant bigotry runs rampant.
Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) has insisted on helping Jean with her powers, but in meddling with her head, it seems he’s triggered something far more chaotic within Jean’s worsening psyche.
This darkness is the Phoenix, the source of her power as a mutant. The Phoenix influences her to adopt a more aggressive behavior, and entices her to lose control.
The second trailer for the movie shows Jean losing control when Mystique attempts to comfort her, resulting in Mystique’s death.
Director Simon Kinberg explained that Mystique’s death was revealed for the purpose of unveiling the stakes in “Dark Phoenix,” unlike other X-Men movies.
“It’s a movie where shocking things happen, where intense, dramatic things happen,” Kinberg explained. “People don’t just fall off buildings and dust themselves off and walk away. There’s a reality to this movie and a consequence to this movie.”
“Dark Phoenix” marks Kinberg’s first time in the director’s chair. He was the producer for multiple “X-Men” movies in the past, including “X-Men: Apocalypse” from 2017, and he wrote the screenplay for “X-Men: The Last Stand” in 2006.
Kinberg’s bold move has raised some eyebrows, however, from fans and critics alike. Response online to Mystique’s death has been mild at best. Screen Rant’s Cooper Hood pointed out that the death has been a popular fan theory even since the first trailer.
Not to mention, Lawrence has expressed multiple times that she wished to part with the role.
Despite the big spoiler, fans still have plenty of theories to throw around concerning what might happen in “Dark Phoenix.”
Many fans are feeling anxious about Quicksilver, played by Evan Peters. Hardcore fans have analyzed both trailers carefully and are suspicious of the fact that the fan-favorite speedster is absent in most of the scenes shown.
If Kinberg does decide to kill off Peters’s character, he might have to prepare for some rabid backlash.
Kinberg warned fans earlier that “Dark Phoenix” would hold a somber tone with a healthy dose of “reality.” Whether this claim will ring true is yet to be determined.
Fans of the franchise hope that this fresh attempt at “The Dark Phoenix Saga” will at least tell a good story in the midst of the chaos.