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Logan marks the tenth X-Men film--a landmark that many far older franchises never reach. To date, it is the second superhero franchise to reach ten straight entries (the only other being the Marvel Cinematic Universe). With 4 films on the horizon (Deadpool 2, X-Men New Mutants, X-Men Supernova, and X-Force) and that Gambit movie forevermore in development, the future looks bright for these mutants.
But if they're pushing on like this, surely they will run out of ideas sooner or later. That is what a casual viewer may say. Any fan of the comics knows that, since the saga has been running for decades, there are plenty of stories to draw from when making future X-Films. With no end in sight for the X-Men saga, it is time to look to the past of the comic books to see what may be in store for future X-Men movies.
The Dark Phoenix Saga
With the announcement of the upcoming film X-Men Supernova, as well as the ending of X-Men Apocalypse, it is clear that they are gearing up to redo the Phoenix saga right. X3 mucked it up--one of many reasons X-Men the Last Stand is awful.
The original Phoenix Saga starts with Jean Grey being overtaken and brainwashed by the Hellfire Club (who previously appeared in X-Men First Class). They use her as the Black Queen of the Hellfire Club, using her as a trump card against society. However, they inadvertently create an uncontrollable fiend who, upon being released, wreaks havoc across the universe.
While the space element may be a little goofy for the lure developed until this point in the series, everything else seems pretty suited for the lore developed. It offers a chance to bring back the Hellfire Club after an absence of several years, as well as an opportunity to do the Phoenix Saga right. A film like this can have intense repercussions for the rest of the franchise. Considering the lackluster Phoenix Arc in X3, it is time for a redo.
The Mutant Massacre
The Morlocks appeared briefly during X-Men: The Last Stand, though their nature was not well-explained. The Morlocks are a group of mutants so grotesque that they have fled underground to seek safety. They are a mutual society that elicits sympathy from other mutants. In X3, Magneto uses them as cannon fodder--one of many reasons why X3 sucks.
The Mutant Massacre storyline is an arc where a group of villains known as the Marauders plunged into the Morlock's home, and killed all of them. Among their numbers were Sabretooth--all too eager for bloodshed--and Gambit--who, following this, spent the rest of his life trying to atone for his sins. The Marauders are organized by the enigmatic Nathaniel Essex--otherwise known as Sinister.
With a Gambit film in active development, it seems inevitable that the Mutant Massacre will be on its way. After all, he is a major player in the event. It will also give a good excuse to bring Sabretooth back into the fray.
But most important of all is Sinister. Essex Corp has had an influence in both Apocalypse and Logan, so it's clear that Sinister is coming. What better way to bring in this insidious villain than with one of his cruelest acts?
Another Sinister storyline, this one actually ties in with Cable, who will be soon joining Deadpool in Deadpool 2. In this complicated mess of a story, a mutant Stryfe--in reality Cable's long-lost clone--comes back in time, and shoots Professor X. At the same time, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse come, and kidnap Cyclopes and Jean Grey. Turns out, however, that they were summoned by Sinister, not Apocalypse... for enigmatic reasons.
This story is a mess, but it is also a culmination of many of the plot threads that ran rampant through the 90s. For the films, it is a chance to culminate the whole Sinister arc that they seem to be building up, as well as a way to incorporate Cable into the plot in an effective way. This can be adapted into the X-Force movie, if need be.
Also, it introduces a disease known as the Legacy Virus: a mutant disease that turns mutants into messes of metal growths.
A massive crossover between the X-Men and New Mutants, this story featured an all-out war between the island of Genosha and the mutant population. The government, ruled by a regime that despises mutants, creates a device that can control the minds of mutants, and uses it in some attempt to eradicate mutant kind.
While the island of Genosha would later become known as a sanctuary for mutants, this is the story that first presented Genosha as a mainstay in the X-Men universe. After this, Genosha would be recreated as a mutant sanctuary.
With a New Mutants film in development, this crossover seems like a logical next step. It can combine the new and old characters together for an epic story.
This story can be tinkered around a little, but it serves as an excellent human-focused X-Men story, presenting mankind's cruelty against mutant kind. The best X-Men films put humanity's prejudice front and center as the primary danger. Who knows? Maybe it can be an excuse to bring back the Sentinels into the mix? Or Colonel Stryker?
E is for Extinction
Grant Morrison is arguably the best comic writer currently working. His controversial run on Uncanny X-Men led to some rather intriguing stories. Among the most intriguing is his fist story, which introduced Professor X's unborn sister: Cassandra Nova.
Cassandra Nova is an incredibly powerful psychic who, in essence, tries to cause mass destruction. Basically, it's what would happen if Professor X went crazy and attacked the X-Men.
Of note is what Nova does to the island of Genosha--now a sanctuary for Mutants. She basically tries to destroy it and cause mass panic. The usual for a super villain.
The idea of the X-Men taking on a purely psychic threat is pretty interesting, as most of the X-Men film fights usually culminate in mutants facing off against each other using their respective powers.
Who Shall Stop the Juggernaut?
X-Men 101-103 is noteworthy for kicking off the Phoenix Saga, but it also featured a fairly cool Juggernaut story. In the story, Juggernaut teams up with Black Tom Cassidy, Banshee's cousin. They do things, fight the X-Men, and... it's pretty standard stuff from there.
Juggernaut remains an underutilized character in the X-Men films. His only appearance up until this point was X3, which, as we have already established, ruined everything it touched. Juggernaut in that barely reached the scale of power he possesses in the comics. Now is a chance to present an indestructible force in all its glory. A raw physical powerhouse who can only be subdued by psychic power.
Black Tom Cassidy also offers some potential as a villain, as he'd be the brother of the currently deceased Banshee, who, in the X-Men films, died thanks to Bolivar Trask's experimentation. Black Tom could be the brains to Juggernaut's muscle, perhaps.
Proteus remains one of the last great X-Men villains that have not been touched yet in some form by the films.
Proteus is Moira MacTaggert's son. Kept on an island in seclusion, his abilities begin to reach critical, uncontrollable mass as time passes. One day, he breaks free, and wreaks uncontrollable havoc upon the planet.
Moira MacTaggert, as we understand it, was married between her appearances in First Class and Apocalypse. Who is to say she didn't have a son during that time, and that son didn't turn out to be Proteus? He'd prove a personal threat asa mutant who is a hazard to himself and the world around him.
Reality warping abilities in general can lead to some bizarre things. After all, the X-Men universe is already a little out of wack after all that time travel and mutant stuff. Who knows what else can happen with some reality twisting... ?
The Apocalypse Solution/Dark Angel Saga
With X-Force coming, the new team needs an edgy, R-Rated threat to confront to live up to Deadpool and Logan's vicious example. What kind of threat can Deadpool, Cable, and any number of darker characters confront?
Why not Apocalypse? Why not Dark Angel?
The two arcs are a conjoined saga where Apocalypse returns in the form of a young child. Part of the X-Force sees now as the only chance to stop Apocalypse from returning, while another part rationalizes "Well, it is a kid..."
All the while, Angel, one of the former horsemen of Apocalypse, starts undergoing some fairly grotesque transformations, and is driven by an alternative personality to just destroy everything. It's a fairly dark, twisted arc full of some potential nightmare fuel.
Hugh Jackman has finished his tenure as Logan, but a new mutant may be able to fill in his shoes. X-23 will be making her appearance in Logan, and it would be a waste to introduce this new mutant without bringing her back to carve some faces up.
In the modern comics, X-23 has replaced Wolverine as the Wolverine of the franchise. Thanks to time traveling, it's very possible that she can come back to the past and join, say, X-Force. Perhaps she wants to get revenge on the people who made her back in the past? Or some other objective of hers?
Perhaps something awful happens in Logan, and she goes back in time to stop it? Something like that would be pretty cool to see on the big screen. All I know is this: we need more of her.
Age of Apocalypse
Apocalypse introduced the X-Men to Apocalypse, but that cannot be enough.
Apocalypse is a titanic villain in the X-Men universe. With reoccurring villains a mainstay in the X-Men films, it seems obvious that the ancient mutant has a chance to strike back, especially with time travel taking a larger role in the X-Men universe thanks to Cable's upcoming appearance.
In Age of Apocalypse, Apocalypse takes over the planet, creating a mad mess of a universe where the strong thrive and the weak die. Sinister plays his insidious plots under Apocalypse's nose, while the survivors struggle to rise against the mutant overlord. Professor X is dead, and Magneto leads the X-Men.
The potential for this film to succeed is unbelievable. It could be on par with Days of Future Past, should it be done correctly. With the ever expanding cast of X-Men in the series, the potential is limitless.