Fox and Marvel have united to bring the X-Men to the small screen and, to celebrate that fact, there’s a new trailer full of hints and clues as to the direction of the new show, The Gifted.
The trailer opens with a young girl attacking a police officer while a shadowy government agency intones hat she’s a “troubled young woman” and he’s there to help her...which apparently involves encasing the young woman in a giant plastic bag after shaving her hair to make way for an implant of some kind. Say hello to the main antagonists of The Gifted!
Thanks to an Instagram post from X-Men director Bryan Singer – who is also working on the show and directing the first episode – we know that the bagged girl is Polaris (Emma Dumont), a longtime member of the wider X-Men team. Real name Lorna Dane, Polaris is actually a child of Magneto’s in the comics and shares his powers of magnetism, which we see a few times in this trailer as she moves cars around and stops bullets.
The trailer later reveals that the man in the suit doing all the intoning was in fact Stephen Moyer, one of the main members of the cast, playing a character named Reed Strucker, a father of mutant children who has to go on the run to keep his family safe. So it seems like, before discovering his children were mutants, Reed’s job was hunting them down and imprisoning them.
We’re then treated to a scene of two children, Lauren (Natalie Alyn Lind) and Andy (Percy Hynes White), who look as though they’re in a motel which seems to suggest that they’re on the run. Lauren then demonstrates her powers, which she describes as being able to manipulate air molecules and other elements, and “push them together” at will, on a snack machine.
Reed and his wife, Caitlin (Amy Acker) are then brought into school to deal with an issue with poor Andy, who is being bullied by his fellow teens. Andy brushes it off but, after a few shifty agents show up do we learn that it’s a little more than Andy being beaten up. While his powers aren’t really explained now or during the rest of the trailer, it seems, thanks to the bent shower fittings, he has some telekinetic abilities.
We’re then given a glimpse of two other mutants, first, Marco Diaz aka Eclipse (Sean Teale) – a mutant created especially for the show, who, despite not showing his own powers here, can manipulate photons and then Clarice Fong aka Blink (Jamie Cheung), who has the power to teleport.
The trailer then deals with fallout from the discovery in the Strucker household, that yes, they are mutants and yes, dad kind of rounds them up and conducts weird experiments on them. Yes, things explode – what’s interesting to note here is that Polaris has her hair back, which, while not that interesting in and of itself, seems to suggest that there are two timelines at play in this story.
We then get a brief glimpse of Blair Redford’s character, known only as “Sam” when he was first cast. He’s believed to be very short-time X-Men member John Proudstar, a.k.a. Thunderbird (he died after two missions).
That’s not the only nod to the wider world of the X-Men; we also get perhaps the most interesting line in the whole trailer, delivered by Eclipse:
“The X-Men, the Brotherhood, we don’t even know if they exist anymore.”
So, the answer to the question of where The Gifted fits into the world of the X-Men is, well, the more famous X-Men have disappeared. Okay…Another such nod comes in the uniform of Jace Turner (Coby Bell), an agent tasked with hunting down mutants for the government that is presumably linked to Reed’s old job. It clearly says Sentinel Services – the sentinels being the giant robots charged with hunting down the X-Men. However, it seems they may have taken an altogether different form in The Gifted.
Then, after spindly robo-drones attempted to murder everyone, the rest of the trailer flies by in a flash of mutant vs. government showdowns complete with teleportation, robots being torn apart, and the embracing of a gift.
The Gifted airs on Fox this fall.