‘X-MEN’ WHO’S WHO

The Commercial Appeal - Go Memphis - - GO SEE - By An­drew Smith Tri­bune Con­tent Agency

Quick! Name the X-men still on the team af­ter the events of the last movie, “Days of Fu­ture Past”!

If you can’t do it, you’re in good com­pany. In the eight X-movies so far, we’ve seen the se­ries re­booted (“X-men: First Class”), the time­line rewrit­ten (“X-men: Days of Fu­ture Past”), one movie con­signed to the mem­ory hole (“X-men Ori­gins: Wolver­ine”) and an­other that breaks the fourth wall (“Dead­pool”). Even the comics are no help: The X-movies, from their in­cep­tion in 2000, have thrown X-men his­tory into a blender.

So, in the dreaded words of pro­fes­sors ev­ery­where, let’s re­view. Here are the Drama­tis XPer­sonae who will ap­pear in “X-men: Apoca­lypse,” open­ing today:

THE RE­TURNEES

Charles “Prof. X” Xavier, Erik “Mag­neto” Lehn­sh­err: These t wo char­ac­ters have been in all six movies with “X-men” in the ti­tle, although James Mcavoy and Michael Fass­ben­der play them in the past, while Pa­trick Ste­wart and Ian Mckel­lan play them in the present. (“First Class” takes place in the 1960s, “Fu­ture Past” in the ’70s and “Apoca­lypse” in the ’80s.) The two are usu­ally played as for­mer friends now at odds over con­flict­ing philoso­phies, who must some­times work to­gether against a greater threat (when not try­ing to kill each other).

Raven “Mys­tique” Darkholme: An out-and­out villain in the comics, this shapeshifter had the good for­tune to be played by Jen­nifer Lawrence in “First Class” in 2011, be­fore J-law be­came a su­per­star. Now Mys­tique is a lead char­ac­ter with Chaotic Good im­pulses and a ro­man­tic past with both male leads, be­cause, hey, no­body puts baby­face Jen­nifer in the back­ground.

Hank “Beast” Mccoy: An orig­i­nal X-man in the comics, The Beast has made only spo­radic ap­pear­ances in the movies. He was played by Steve Bacic as hu­man in “X2: X-men United,” and by Kelsey Grammer in full blue fur in “X-men: The Last Stand.” “First Class” in­tro­duced a younger ver­sion (played by Ni­cholas Hoult) who be­came Pro­fes­sor X’s as­sis­tant in “Fu­ture Past.” You may rec­og­nize Hoult from Jaguar’s “Bri­tish vil­lains” se­ries of com­mer­cials that also star Tom Hid­dle­ston (who played Loki), Ben Kings­ley (The Man­darin) and Mark Strong (Sine­stro).

Alex “Ha­vok” Sum­mers: In­tro­duced in “First Class,” Alex also ap­peared in “Fu­ture Past.” He’s the brother of Scott “Cy­clops” Sum­mers, and his power works in much the same way; the Sum­mers broth­ers ab­sorb so­lar or cos­mic rays, and then ex­pel the en­ergy — Cy­clops through his eyes, Ha­vok from just about any­where.

Pi­etro “Quick­sil­ver” Max­i­moff: In the comics, Pi­etro and his fra­ter­nal twin sis­ter Wanda (aka Scar­let Witch) were in­tro­duced in 1963 as mu­tants al­lied (re­luc­tantly) with Mag­neto, but then changed their spots and be­came Avengers in 1965. They ap­peared so fre­quently to­gether in the 1960s and ’70s that they were al­most one word — “quick­sil­verand­scar­letwitch” — although as time went on, Quick­sil­ver From the top: Apoca­lypse (Os­car Isaac), the orig­i­nal and most pow­er­ful mu­tant; Psy­locke (Olivia Munn) is a pow­er­ful telepath and trained ninja as­sas­sin; Cy­clops (Tye Sheri­dan) and Jean (So­phie Turner) are in the midst of an epic bat­tle.

be­came more in­de­pen­dent and less heroic, while Wanda re­mained a main­stay of the Avengers. Well, un­til she went crazy. (Long story.) Any­way, both were re­vealed to be the chil­dren of Mag­neto in 1982 …

Which is no longer true. When Twen­ti­eth Cen­tury Fox ac­quired the X-men movie rights, they claimed the twins be­cause they are mu­tants. Marvel Films also calls dibs, as the sib­lings are more closely as­so­ci­ated with the Avengers than the X-men.

On the screen, Twen­ti­eth Cen­tury Fox is keep­ing Quick­sil­ver (played by Evan Peters, and in­tro­duced in “Fu­ture Past”) as an il­le­git­i­mate son of Mag­neto, while Wanda (El­iz­a­beth Olsen, in­tro­duced in “Avengers: Age of Ul­tron”) stars in the Marvel Cin­e­matic Uni­verse as a prod­uct of Hy­dra ex­per­i­men­ta­tion. Wanda is sim­ply miss­ing in the Fox movies, while Pi­etro is stone dead in the Marvel ones.

Don’t think about it too hard.

THE RE­BOOTED

Scott “Cy­clops” Sum­mers, Jean “Phoenix” Grey: Scott and Jean, played by James Mars­den and Famke Janssen, were play­ers in the first three X-movies and very sim­i­lar to their comics coun­ter­parts. Both died in “X-men: The Last Stand,” but cameos in var­i­ous post-re­boot movies have al­ready in­di­cated their lives are play­ing out dif­fer­ently. Tye Sheri­dan and So­phie Turner (Sansa Stark in “Game of Thrones”) play them as teenage-ish in “Apoca­lypse.”

Kurt “Nightcrawler” Wag­ner: The tele­port­ing Ger­man, played by Alan Cum­ming, had a star turn in “X2.” But that was then. His first post-re­boot ap­pear­ance will be as a younger man (but still a blue one) in “Apoca­lypse,” played by Kodi Smit-mcphee.

Warren “A n g e l ” Wor­thing­ton III: Ben Fos­ter played the winged X-man in “X-men: The Last Stand,” although he was never ac­tu­ally called “An­gel” on screen. In the comics, An­gel was a found­ing X-man who was later brain­washed into be­ing Apoca­lypse’s Horse­man of Death and trans­formed into the mur­der­ous, metal-winged Ar­changel. The char­ac­ter has never re­cov­ered from the trauma, and it looks like some­thing sim­i­lar will hap­pen to the postre­boot An­gel in “Apoca­lypse,” played by Ben Hardy.

Ororo “Storm” Mon­roe: Fa­mously played by the fa­mously re­luc­tant Halle Berry in the first three X-men movies, the weather-con­trol­ling mu­tant has only made a few cameos af­ter the re­boot. But in “Apoca­lypse,” a young Storm (Alexan­dra Shipp) gets re­cruited as a Horse­man.

PHO­TOS COUR­TESY TWEN­TI­ETH CEN­TURY FOX

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