It’s difficult to imagine a time when the X-Men wasn’t a powerhouse team of mutant avengers. Almost as difficult as it is to imagine a time when Marvel didn’t own all media. In our new world where comic book movies are the dominant genre, it’s easy to forget that comic books — particularly the X-Men — were struggling in the 1970s. Then, Chris Claremont came along.
He injected new life into “The X-Men,” crafting adventures that resonated with audiences, some of which would go on to become classics of the genre. One of those stories, “The Days of Future Past” is now the basis for the X-Men movie you’re planning on seeing this Friday.
In a striking parallel, Claremont sought to elevate comic stories by treating them seriously. By looking beyond the silly costumes and wacky powers to find the human beings underneath. Now, decades later, that same formula has made comic book movies some of the biggest franchises on the planet. Sorry, Mr. Schumacher.
To get a fuller view of the man who saved the X-Men, check out the trailer for Comics In Focus: Chris Claremont’s X-Men.
And like a wave of the future, you can watch the movie behind the trailer immediately. It’s for rent over at Vimeo. Perfect primer (albeit one that looks one-sided) for the time traveling mayhem to come this weekend.