As Hugh Jackman throws down his claws and walks off into the sunset, so ends his 17-year reign as Wolverine with a near-perfect swansong. As James Mangold's #Logan slices through the box office, even its adult premise and depressing setting haven't put off die-hard #XMen fans. It was a grim look at Logan's later years, but if newly released concept art is to be believed, it was set to be a whole lot more barren.
Not that there was anything wrong with Logan, believe me, but the concept art shows a completely different world, which seems more expansive than the tight-knit world we ended up with. The work of designer Shae Shatz, it offered a more dystopian look at Jackman's final road trip, which also somehow seems more colorful than the burnt oranges of the Mexican desert we got. Everything here also seems a little more run down and dystopian, similar in vibe to the Old Man Logan comic book, which Mangold based his film on. You can check out the work below, but Warning: mild Logan spoilers ahead!
A Bark Worse Than His Bite
Perhaps the best talking point is the early inclusion of a canine counterpart. There is definitely a Fallout 4 vibe to the artwork, while the possibility of Logan heading out into the desolate wasteland with a dog by his side emphasizes the whole "man's best friend" thing, but also his loneliness. It would certainly have been interesting to see Logan, the Prof, Laura Kinney, AND a pooch cram into a limo, but who knows how that would've turned out. While we all may want a dog for the end of the world, it isn't exactly helpful to have one barking as you try and take on X-24.
Secondly, you may notice that although Mangold stated there will be no #superhero costumes in Logan, you can spot #Wolverine sporting a cowboy hat in the concept art. Although a stetson never made it into the final cut (nor did the yellow lycra), you can see the nod to a cowboy hat as an homage to the film's spaghetti western pastiche.
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Home Sweet Home
While most of the work remains as just a concept, you may spot where some of the designs weaved themselves into Mangold's final product, including Logan's bachelor pad and the bright neons of the casino. Interestingly, we also see some form of base that looks all-too-familiar to Alkali Lake, Wolverine's old stomping ground and basically the origin of his character.
Perhaps Mangold wanted to move away from the likes of X2 and X-Men: Apocalypse (most certainly X-Men Origins: Wolverine), which all featured Logan's Weapon X history. As the end of the story, it makes more sense to go forward than back. Otherwise, it could have been one of Transigen’s hubs of operations. With the Weapon X program frequently picking arctic locations it makes sense, but I guess we will never know; for sure, wherever this facility was, it was certainly a million miles away from Mexico!
The fact that it was #HughJackman's last film as Wolverine will undoubtedly have helped Logan top $250 million in its opening weekend, but you also get a sense that Mangold knew it was "the final chapter" and wanted the setting to reflect that. The film certainly nailed that it was certainly end of the road, while Shatz's art seemed to take that as a mood board for his drawings, bringing the concept art one step further.
While we may pine for a pooch pal or an evil arctic lair, the Logan we are left with is no less impressive. As a fitting tribute to the legacy of Jackman and the character, what difference would a dog make anyway? Logan is (for now) retiring from the X-verse and doing it in style!
Check out the Easter Eggs you may have missed from Logan), and don't forget our poll below!
Which version of 'Logan' do you prefer?
[Poll Image Credit: Shae Shatz]