After the continuity of the X-Men franchise was reset in X-Men: Days of Future Past, Singer had the unenviable job of directing a followup that continued to wow critics while still making logical sense — a task that ultimately proved to be rather difficult.
For the most part, X-Men: Apocalypse sidesteps a number of potential continuity issues due to the fact that X-Men: Days of Future Past essentially erased everything that came before it, giving Singer some leeway to reconstruct the X-Universe.
However, those who hoped that one key plot hole from X-Men: Days of Future Past would be resolved with the release of X-Men: Apocalypse will now be left even more confused than ever before.
Singer certainly receives brownie points for giving us a faithful version of Weapon X Wolverine, complete with the berserker rage audiences have always longed to see, but how did Logan fall back in the hands of William Stryker after Mystique saved him from the Potomac river?
This is one giant clusterf**k of a plot hole, but bear with us as we do Singer's job for him and try our best to explain how this could have happened.
Is It Really Mystique Who Saves Wolverine?
After Magneto flings Wolverine into the river, it looks like William Stryker is fishing Logan out of the water to capture him and set in motion the Weapon X experiments, but a glance towards the camera reveals that Stryker is in fact Mystique in disguise.
The yellow eyes have always been used to reveal Mystique's abilities in the past, but what if someone else captured Wolverine and we were just led to believe that he was being left in safe hands at the end of X-Men: Days of Future Past?
While there are no shortage of shape-shifters and psychics in the X-Universe who are capable of such a feat, this would have been a cheap shot and had this been intended from the start, there would have been some kind of reveal or payoff before Wolverine's eventual reappearance in X-Men: Apocalypse.
Mystique Betrayed Wolverine?
OK, so yes, it was definitely Mystique who rescued Wolverine, but what if she deliberately handed Logan over to the real Stryker for her own selfish purposes? There's a chance that she could have impersonated Stryker to gain access to the Weapon X base, where she could then make a trade of sorts.
Mystique is primarily a villain in the comics and this was upheld for the majority of her onscreen appearances prior to X-Men: Days of Future Past, so she certainly has a history of betraying those closest to her.
However, this explanation doesn't fit with Jennifer Lawrence's interpretation of the character, and one would imagine that Mystique and Stryker would be on better terms if this were true, yet the military commander still imprisoned her along with the rest of the team in X-Men: Apocalypse.
Mystique Messed Up Big Time?
OK, so Mystique is still one of the good guys, but then in that case, how did Wolverine's rescue fail so spectacularly?
In an Empire podcast recorded after the release of X-Men: Days of Future Past, screenwriter Simon Kinberg revealed that they had considered a number of potential characters who could have rescued Logan, but in the end, they had already...
"...set this thing up where Mystique is masquerading as a military character, saving mutants from going into some sort of experimental program in Saigon early on, so there’s a really nice symmetry there at the end.”
While fans may be reassured to discover that Mystique was definitely acting in Wolverine's best interests, the question of how he ended up in the hands of Weapon X still remains. Did Logan encounter Stryker again at a later date after his rescue, or did Mystique somehow mess up and accidentally leave Wolverine in the clutches of the Weapon X program, despite her best efforts to the contrary?
Singer Messed Up Big Time
The truth is, it's impossible to know how Wolverine wound up in the Weapon X program at this stage, unless the Blu-Ray release of X-Men: Apocalypse contains some deleted scenes that shed further light on this conundrum.
As things stand right now though, it appears that the ambiguous fate of Wolverine between the two films was down more to bad writing than anything Mystique did. Hopefully, more will be revealed in Wolverine 3, as we already know that the Weapon X program will still have a future impact in the X-Universe thanks to the post-credits scene in X-Men: Apocalypse.
The continuity of the X-Universe may be a colossal headf**k when you try to break it down, but at least X-Men: Days of Future Past wipes away the memory of films like X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Regardless of what reality you're from, that can only be a good thing. Check out the clip below if you need any reminders as to why.