X-Men: First Class and the 10 Things the Creators Got Horribly Wrong
X-Men: First Class has many fans all over the world which celebrate the X-Men film about the very first incarnation of the mutant team of superheroes on their very first mission. Still, this X-Men film isn’t without its fair share of issues and things they get horribly wrong. Here we go through the main things that X-Men: First Class film got horribly wrong.
1. Emma Frost
X-Men: First Class introduced us to the Hellfire Club, well sort of. In the film we were introduced to two main players in the Hellfire Club: Sebastian Shaw and Emma Frost. While the portrayal of Sebastian Shaw is questionable to say the least. It’s nowhere near as puzzling as the portrayal of Emma Frost by actress January Jones. While the onscreen CGI portrayal of her powers got it bang on, her personality fell by the wayside.
In the X-Men comics, specifically the 80s run by Chris Claremont, we are introduced to an aspiring vengeful villainess who owns herself and whose voice is quite dominant in the running of the mutant criminal organisation known as Hellfire Club. However, in X-Men: First Class she’s reduced to a quivering submissive simpleton who follows and obeys every word of Sebastian Shaw and doesn’t question him in any way. Proof the writers didn’t know the characters as well as they should have.
Banshee (the mutant with the worst singing voice) is famously Irish. As is his family. Yet in the X-Men First Class film we’re introduced to him as having an American accent which blatantly ignores the very roots of the character. This could’ve been incredibly problematic had the powers that be over at Marvel and 20th Century Fox decided to extend his character over several movies. Thankfully they didn’t and this horrible mess was put to bed as soon as end credits start rolling.
3. Moira MacTaggert
Moira MacTaggert is a famously Scottish character in the X-Men comic book series. In the comics she’s a scientist which specialises in providing therapy for Mutants on fictional isle, Muir Island. However, in X-Men: First Class she’s portrayed as a sexy CIA agent? Okay fine. Who is then charged with finding a way to end escalating tensions between the USA and the Russians by exposing the interference that Sebastian Shaw is causing between the two nations.
It’s an odd origin story as Moira is basically relegated to Hot Female Secret Agent for the duration of this film. Then there’s the issue of the age difference between her and Banshee as the pair become a couple in the comic book series and cartoon. And the accent? Yes, another American. Which is crazy to me when she’s portrayed by Australian actress Rose Byrne to play a Scottish character who for no identifiably good reason has an American accent in the film. WTF!?
In the comics, Azazel claimed to be one of the oldest mutants in existence. So old that he claimed to have once battled for the title of the Devil against Mephistopheles himself. However, in the X-Men: First Class film he’s relegated to one of Sebastian Shaw’s brainless henchmen. While getting his teleporting power looking really cool in the film, there’s something about an ancient devil-looking mutant obeying the orders of a mere mortal which never sat well with me.
5. Sebastian Shaw
While getting Sebastian Shaw’s powers was mostly correct, the character was changed to fit more in line with Magneto’s humble beginnings as an oppressed Jew forced to live in a concentration camp. At the beginning of the film he plays a Nazi Doctor obsessed with unlocking the powers of Jewish prisoners who happen to play Mutants. Whereas in the comics he’s a very large, muscly aristocratic evil villain and unfortunately Kevin Bacon‘s portrayal of Sebastian Shaw looks very little the part.
6. The Origins of Magneto’s Helmet
In the comics, Magneto’s helmet represents the very antithesis of the Charles Xavier’s Cerebro device. However, the introduction of the helmet by Sebastian Shaw as a device simply to block out telepathic powers is a bizarre choice by the writing team and belittles the storied history of Magneto’s sacred helmet.
7. Angel Salvadore
It’s not Zoe Kravitz‘s portrayal of Angel Salvadore that I’m disputing here. It’s the inclusion of Angel at all. Angel debuted in comics back in 2001 in the issue of New X-Men #118 and then appeared sporadically in following New X-Men issues #119-#150. So, unfortunately the inclusion of Angel Salvadore plays off more as an attempt to include a newish character than make any sort of logical sense.
The inclusion of Havok aka Alex Summers (who is also Cyclops’ brother) set in the 60s completely screws with the Summers’ timeline which is setup in the first three X-Men films and the Wolverine Origins film. As Havok is well into his late teens/early 20s in X-Men First Class, this would place him a good 10-15 years older than Cyclops who is portrayed as being a high school student in X-Men Origins: Wolverine – which is set in 1979.
In the comics, Havok is the younger of the Summers’ brothers. Even if they were the same age in the films that introduced their origins it still demonstrates a 17 year gap. In short, this is a clear royal screw-up by the writers.
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9. Beast and Mystique
In X-Men: First Class we’re treated to an intellectual romance between Hank McCoy (Beast) and Raven Darkholme (Mystique). When they meet Hank is questioning whether he wants to be a mutant at all whereas Raven is gradually coming around to accept herself as being a mutant. It’s a bit of quandary and it’s a relationship which feels a little odd. A little like the writers thought “oh he’s blue” and “she’s blue” – they should be together, right?
10. Professor Xavier’s Paralysis
X-Men: First Class is the first and only X-Men film we’re introduced to where Professor Xavier has the use of his legs. At least up until the end. In the film, Professor Xavier becomes paralysed after he gets between Moira MacTaggert and Magneto after Moira has released a volley of bullets from her gun. Whereas in the comic he’s originally left crippled after an alien calling itself “Lucifer” drops a boulder on Xavier’s legs.
Then in the 90s cartoon it’s established his powers are what causes him to lose his ability to walk. For me, I prefer that option than Moira’s gun just happening to hit Professor Xavier in the right spot and causing paralysis. Seems a little too convenient.
What did you think of X-Men: First Class?
Did you enjoy the origins the creators of X-Men: First Class established in the film? Did you hate them?
Let us know.