How the Marvel Cinematic Universe Can Incorporate the X-Men (and Fantastic Four)

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Doane Gregory/Marvel

With the completion of Disney’s purchase of 21st Century Fox looming on the horizon, and the end of a major arc of storytelling coming up this spring in Avengers: Endgame, there is no doubt that Marvel Studios is going to be looking for a good way to incorporate their Merry Mutants and First Family into their Cinematic Universe.  Speculation is rampant that Captain America will die, or Iron Man will die, or both, and there will be a need for fresh blood sooner rather than later.

While the MCU is not known for exact adaptations of famous Marvel Comics lore, they do take the best ideas, like Winter Soldier, Civil War, and the Infinity Gauntlet and adapt them for use within their pocket universe of the Marvel Multiverse.  Many have speculated that Feige and crew will be using the Quantum Realm to introduce the X-Men and FF to the MCU, I’d like to posit two alternative options.

First, a little scuffle called Secret Wars.  Not the 80’s version with the Beyonder, the Hulk holding up a mountain, and Spidey getting a black alien costume, no.  I’m referring the the Jonathan Hickman-penned miniseries from 2015, wherein the heroes all have to deal with the Marvel Multiverse collapsing in on itself.  It, too, was the culmination of an Avengers storyline, so it seems fitting that this would bring in new blood.  Secret Wars brought alternate heroes (including one Miles Morales) to the mainstream Marvel 616 universe, and ended (albeit temporarily) the Ultimate Universe, and it can help bring the X-Men into the MCU.  This route has the added bonus of the potential to re-cast any actors whose contracts have ended, or will soon end, explaining away any variation in look or acting style as “that’s Tony Stark from XYZ universe, but it’s still Tony Stark”.

Another option, of course, already has a major player in place.  Scarlet Witch, whose powers have not been shown to their full potential in the MCU.  Wanda’s powers are reality-based.  She can manipulate reality, and thereby “create” the X-gene herself if she chooses.  She used it to similar effect when she wiped out all but a handful of mutants in Brian Michael Bendis’ House of M mini-series from 2005.  This would be a fitting way to introduce the X-Men, and maybe re-christen Wanda as a mutant, post Endgame.  Because we all know she’s coming back.  Maybe from an alternate dimension, with new powers and a new genetic makeup?

However they decide to do it, it’s time to get excited.  The X-Men are coming home, and there’s great stories to be told on the horizon.