It's full steam ahead for the next tentpole #XMen film, X-Men: Dark Phoenix. As Fox's second shot at adapting the dearly-loved 'Dark Phoenix Saga,' the movie already seems to be deviating a lot from the original comic book version. Leaked casting calls have suggested a major international element, including characters such as 'President Anderson' and someone who must surely be the Japanese mutant Sunfire.
Even as the rumor-mill churns to life for Dark Phoenix, though, there's one character whose name isn't being mentioned and that's Jubilee, who was played by Lana Condor in last year's X-Men: Apocalypse. Now, it's true that Jubilee has about as much to do with the original 'Dark Phoenix Saga' as Sunfire, but here's why I think it's a mistake to leave her out...
1. Jubilee Is Actually A Tremendously Popular Figure
Created by the legendary Chris Claremont and introduced as a sidekick for Wolverine, Jubilee is one of the most dearly loved characters in the X-Men franchise. Countless fans were introduced to #Marvel's Merry Mutants through Jubilee's eyes in the classic X-Men Animated Series, and as a result, she's always been a real fan-favorite.
Jubilee's traditionally mocked on websites all over the world, largely because her ability to generate bursts of plasma — or 'fireworks' — seems kind of lame. Only fans remember that those 'fireworks' were sometimes powerful enough to blow up entire buildings back when she made her debut, and that we were later told she had the power to detonate matter on an atomic level. In other words, this 'lame' powerset includes the potential to generate nuclear explosions.
In the current 'ResurrXion' range of comics, Jubilee's lost her powers but has been turned into a vampire (because... comics). The legendary character now acts as a mentor figure over in Christina Strain's excellent relaunch of Generation X.
2. Dark Phoenix Is Set In The 1990s
The X-Men films are skipping decades at speed, with Dark Phoenix set in the 1990s — and that's the age of peak Jubilee. The X-Men were Marvel's bestselling range back in the '90s — 1991's X-Men #1 is still the best-selling comic of all time — and Jubilee was a part of that iconic team. She was also one of the core heroes transplanted into the X-Men Animated Series a year later, and as we previously mentioned, Jubilee ended up playing a major role.
In 1994, Jubilee was one of the major characters shuffled into the new Generation X series, a comic that featured the next generation of X-Men. The series was zany and fun, with deep character moments and your traditional X-Men soap opera style; the first few issues are generally viewed as comic book classics, something which Jubilee was also part of.
Dark Phoenix is set in 1991, and Fox know full well that the year is seen as the moment that the X-Men took center-stage at Marvel. They'd be wise to choose to include Jubilee.
3. Jubilee Was Criminally Underused In X-Men: Apocalypse
Lana Condor was cast for X-Men: Apocalypse, and fans of the Mall Rat were thrilled. To our sorrow, though, most of her scenes got cut — including this wonderful Mall Scene. So far as I'm concerned, Fox missed a chance to give us a fun, upbeat portrayal of the character here. Given that Jubilee clicks so readily with Scott and Jean, she'd hopefully still be a close friend of theirs by the 1990s. With Dark Phoenix promising to focus on Sophie Turner's Jean Grey, it would be good for the X-Man to have friends at her side — including Jubilee.
Come on, Fox, this is your chance! You've teased us with hints of Jubilee for years, and in X-Men: Apocalypse you came so very close. Set in the 1990s, Dark Phoenix is one film that really needs a good, healthy dose of Jubilation Lee. Bring it on!
Do you agree we need to see Jubilee in 'X-Men: Dark Phoenix'?