Luke Cage History: From Hero for Hire to Hollywood
TV, Comic Books
It looks like everyone’s riding high on the success of X-Men: Days of Future Past. Critics loved it, fans have praised it, and it looks like the experience has left the actors wanting more. Kelsey Grammer, who SPOILER ALERT reprised his role as the erudite elder version of Hank McCoy in Days of Future Past‘s coda, has recently revealed that he’d be game for more Beastly action, should the franchise ever return to his character’s time period.
“I hope to do another,” Grammer told Collider in a recent interview. “I hope they find some way to come up with a new story that involves Beast in my timeline.” That means a lot coming from the former Frasier Crane, who had to have spent more than a few hours in make-up getting his blue fur-covered face on. But if Grammer wants more screen time as Beast, we won’t argue with him. In fact, we’ll suggest five Beast-centric stories that we’d love to see adapted.
Fox’s X-Men franchise has yet to branch off into any of the X-Men’s splinter teams, and we think the original X-Factor unit, the one comprised of the five original X-Men, might be a great place to start. With modern day Cyclops and Jean Grey back from the dead and Grammer wanting to get back in the blue again, a movie focusing on the proactive mutant rescue iteration of the team could work. Considering that this is also the comic book series that introduced the world to Apocalypse, it might even serve as a fitting follow-up to the X-Men: Apocalypse film. Beast could even get some more romance in his life if the film adds ace reporter Trish Tilby to its cast. Come on, who doesn’t want to see Frasier Beast turn on the charm during a date?
If Fox wants to keep the time-travel adventures rolling, they could look to the current timeline defying adventure unfolding right now in Brian Michael Bendis’ work. With the X-Men at odds over the future of mutantkind, Beast uses a time machine to bring the original X-Men forward in time in order to remind the emotionally unstable Cyclops of where he came from. This would basically be the reverse Days of Future Past; instead of future Wolverine traveling to the past, we could see the past X-Men – perhaps whatever roster shows up in 2016’s X-Men: Apocalypse – brought forward to the era glimpsed briefly at the end of the last X-Men movie. If anything, this would give Grammer the opportunity to act alongside his young counterpart Nicholas Hoult. Two Beasts for the price of one!
There’s another way we could get two Beasts for the price of both one ticket and one actor. Fox could introduce Hank McCoy’s evil self from an alternate timeline, the merciless sociopath known as Dark Beast. In the comics, the character hails from the “Age of Apocalypse” storyline, an epic tale that’s rumored to serve as the inspiration for X-Men: Apocalypse. The bad McCoy even jumped from that dystopian wasteland into the X-Men’s main continuity, going so far as to replace the X-Men’s good Beast for a stretch of time. Playing Beast’s evil “twin” could give Grammer the opportunity to chew scenery like never before.
E Is For Extinction
Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely made quite an impact on Marvel’s mutants when they launched the New X-Men series. Professor Xavier’s twin sister Cassandra Nova debuted and killed an island nation full of mutants with reconstructed Sentinels, and a series of secondary mutations gave a few of the X-Men a whole new set of problems. Beast’s in particular, which mutated the scientist into an even more feline-esque creature, could provide for excellent material for Grammer to play with. One of the most heartbreaking moments in all of X-Men comics had to be when Hank McCoy realized he was slowly losing his dexterity as his hands mutated into paws. The extensive prosthetic could mean more time in the make-up chair for the actor, but hey, he seems down with it.
Hey, when Fox announced that they were also going to use Quicksilver in Days of Future Past they challenged everything we thought we knew. We thought that Fox owned the film rights to every mutant around, and then Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch got drafted to Marvel Studios’ Avengers. As mutant Avengers, they exist in a grey area. Beast is another mutant with heavy ties to the Avengers; he served on the team in the mid-to-late ’70s and recently ventured outside of the Jean Grey School grounds as a member of both the Secret Avengers and the Illuminati. It’s entirely possible that Marvel Studios can claim Beast as one of their own, even if they can’t call him a mutant. Of course, even if they did work him into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, they’d most definitely recast him. But come on, it would be pretty cool to see Kelsey Grammer’s Beast becoming the third science bro, wouldn’t it?