Despite playing coy for reasons unknown, the untitled Fox series about mutants is shaping up to be an X-Men show. First, there was the casting of Jamie Chung as Blink and now Emma Dumont (Bunheads) as Polaris.
First announced by The Hollywood Reporter, the casting news buried the lede. Sure, Amy Acker (Person of Interest) will play Kate Stewart, regular mom to teenage children exhibiting mutant abilities while also dealing with estrangement from her husband Reed (played by Stephen Moyer). But who cares about that? Magneto’s daughter Lorna Dane aka Polaris is the real story. Emma Dumont’s character is being described as a “strong-willed, brave, and loyal mutant who has the ability to manipulate magnetism.”
Created in 1968 by Arnold Drake and Jim Steranko, Polaris has a long history with the X-Men. For most of her tenure, the daughter of Magneto has fought on the side of good, with a foray to the dark side as Malice during the late ’80s then again due to mental instability after the defeat of Apocalypse. To be fair, the first time she was being mind-controlled and the second time she witnessed genocide. But how will that history play into the Fox show? It’s difficult to say. But the character’s history with the X-Factor group could give us our best clue yet as to what the show will be about.
As it stands right now, Marvel and Fox have played this series close to the vest. The official plot synopsis is infuriatingly vague:
The Untitled FOX Marvel Project […] will focus on two ordinary parents who discover their children possess mutant powers. Forced to go on the run from a hostile government, the family joins up with an underground network of mutants and must fight to survive.
Introducing Polaris to the mix may signal writer Matt Nix is taking a page from the X-Factor comics in which former X-Men pretending to be humans claim they know how to capture dangerous mutants. However, once in custody, the nascent mutants are recruited, protected, and trained how to control their powers. Of course, this is all pure speculation at this point but a covert group of mutants infiltrating the government in order to rescue and rehabilitate their brethren sounds like an underground network to me. Hopefully they’ll update Polaris’ costume, however. Double-sided tape is so last millennium.