Imagine a world without men. No, this isn't the start of one of my famous feminist rants. It's the premise to a critically acclaimed comic series — written by a man, no less — that's being made into a TV series at long last.
Y: The Last Man chronicles the epic survival tale of amateur escape artist Yorick Brown and his pet capuchin monkey Ampersand, the sole survivors of an unexplained phenomena that abruptly wipes out every mammal on Earth who has a Y chromosome.
In the 14 years since the release of this comic series, fans have been promised an adaptation that's never eventuated. In 2014, the film release was canceled, and the rights returned to its creators.
But everything happens for a reason, and that reason is that a film simply wouldn't do this phenomenal comic series justice. This week brought the exciting news that #FX has appointed #GreenLantern and American Gods writer Michael Green as showrunner and co-scriptwriter, alongside original comic creator Brian K. Vaughan.
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The show is still in development, and FX is keeping the details under wraps. In the meantime, here's a few enticing details to pique your interest in the upcoming series Y: The Last Man.
5. A Dystopian Sci-Fi Plot Like No Other
It's the end of the world — but not for everyone. With all but one member of the male population spontaneously wiped out in an instant, there's more than just new gender paradigms to consider. The world is a mess after the inevitable destruction that comes with dropping dead whilst operating heavy machinery (goodbye, male pilots), there's no way for any new humans to be made (even male embryos were wiped out), and there's a ton of dead bodies all over the place. It's a bit of a mess.
Yorick and his helper monkey must brave their way across the newly inhospitable world as they search for answers, solutions, and of course, Yorick's girlfriend. The world is a hostile, dangerous place for the last man, and not everyone is thrilled about his miraculous survival.
Y: The Last Man has got intrigue. It's got romance. It's got weird science. What else could you want from a sci-fi series?
4. A Critically Acclaimed Writer
Legitimate comic book nerds will no doubt have heard of Vaughan's critically acclaimed Saga and Ex Machina comics. The award-winning writer's other accomplishments include his works for #Marvel and #DC, and he was the first person to write one of #TheWalkingDead comics, aside from Robert Kirkman. He's even written episodes of Lost, which is hardly surprising, given the amount of mystery and crazy twists in Y: The Last Man. And the best news? He's co-writing the TV version.
3. Strong Female Characters Aplenty
In a sci-fi action series in which 99.9 percent of the characters will be female, you just know there's bound to be some legendary women in among them. Y: The Last Man contains an array of brilliantly written female characters, both central to the plot and randomly encountered throughout the series. That's not to say that every character is a flawless warrior goddess. The characters are complex and multifaceted, and often subvert harmful stereotypes found in the world of comics.
The show will also have a female producer in Nina Jacobson, who recently worked on The Hunger Games: Mockingjay - Part 2. Jacobson has said that aside from being a massive fan of the comics, her gender was a big factor in convincing Vaughan that she was the right person for the job, telling io9:
"To know that a woman would oversee it and therefore some of the pitfalls that could happen as you make a story in a world populated by women, you want to have some female subjectivity at the table."
2. Controversial Villains
There's more than one identifiable enemy in Y: The Last Man — including an actual ninja — but the most noteworthy would have to be the Daughters of the Amazon. They're exactly what a men's rights activist imagines radical feminists to be; a true misandrist's dream. The Daughters believe that the mass extinction of males was a natural and necessary occurrence to make way for the rise of women. They take it upon themselves to eradicate the last signs of the successfully smashed patriarchy — including sperm banks.
Needless to say, the Daughters of the Amazon aren't exactly thrilled to hear that Yorick survived the anomaly. They're a savage bunch, cutting off one breast as a bizarre symbol of sisterhood and brutality. While they're certainly depicted as extremists rather than "crazy feminazis," their TV interpretation will no doubt be met by viewers with more than a few accusations of politically incorrect stereotyping.
1. An Adorable Animal Sidekick
While the victims of his misbehaving and antics probably view him as more annoying than adorable, Ampersand the capuchin monkey adds more than novelty value to the comics. His relationship with Yorick is incredibly endearing, and the mystery surrounding his survival during the Y chromosome wipeout makes him a significant character to the story.
Considering Ampersand is portrayed as being an uncontrollable, diaper-wearing little brat, the only requirements for the monkey lucky enough to play him is to look cute. Baby #Groot is going to have some fierce competition in the tiny comic book character stakes!
Watch Brian K. Vaughan discussing Y: The Last Man at 2007's New York Comic Con.