Movie Reviews

New Deadpool & Wolverine Theory Explains Where The X-Men Have Been In The MCU All This Time


  • Deadpool & Wolverine is the MCU’s first film featuring characters from Fox.
  • A new theory suggests Jackman’s Wolverine may be from the MCU and have killed the X-Men, explaining their MCU absence.
  • There is a precedent for that in Marvel Comics.



An interesting Deadpool & Wolverine explains why the X-Men have yet to show up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe aside from multiverse cameos, and the reason for that is directly connected to Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. The actor has become the face of the X-Men in live-action. Jackman comes back to co-lead Deadpool & Wolverine‘s ensemble for his first time back as Wolverine since 2017’s Logan. That movie was originally thought to be the actor’s last in the role; however, Jackman was not able to say no to being part of the major MCU event alongside Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool.

Since Disney acquired Fox, Deadpool & Wolverine will be the first movie to focus on characters that became available to Marvel Studios after the deal. The 2024 MCU movie is expected to feature several cameos, with many of them coming from Fox’s X-Men movies. However, there has been no word on Marvel Studios’ own versions of the X-Men appearing. The mutants have been absent from the main MCU so far, and Marvel will have to explain that absence like it will do for another team in 2025’s The Fantastic Four. A Deadpool & Wolverine theory suggests how that might happen.


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Deadpool & Wolverine Theory Claims Hugh Jackman Is Key To The MCU’s X-Men Absence

There Might Be A Tragic Answer

A new Deadpool & Wolverine theory shared by the user yoyofro25 on Reddit claims that Jackman’s new Logan variant in Deadpool & Wolverine could help explain where the X-Men have been in the MCU all this time. The second Deadpool & Wolverine trailer, which broke records for Marvel, showed a lot more of Jackman’s Wolverine. The trailer revealed that the Wolverine variant from the movie let his world down. That reveal has led to an influx of theories that include Logan having killed the X-Men, the character having been sent to the MCU, and more.

Those theories play a role in the premise of this new Deadpool & Wolverine theory. According to it, the Wolverine seen in the trailer was not sent to the MCU after an event in his original world but rather has been the MCU’s version of Logan all along. As Wolverine does not recognize who Deadpool is when he comes to recruit him at the bar, that cements the characters come from different universes. As the TVA from Loki recruits Deadpool to help save the Sacred Timeline — seemingly from before Loki season 2 — Wade Wilson could meet Wolverine in the MCU.

That is when the theory explains how the reveal of a tragic event in Wolverine’s past could have affected the MCU’s X-Men. According to the Deadpool & Wolverine theory, Wolverine killed all of the MCU’s X-Men in the past, which is why they have not shown up in the franchise after all this time. Wolverine then spent the rest of his life going from bar to bar to drink away his sorrows. The Logan variant would have killed all of the MCU’s X-Men after having been mind-controlled by Cassandra Nova, who was then sent to the Void by the TVA.

This theory explains why
She-Hulk: Attorney at Law
featured a Wolverine MCU Easter Egg.


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Both Wolverine And Cassandra Nova Have Killed The X-Men In The Comics

X-Men ’97 Just Used A Version Of Cassandra Nova’s Attack

There is a precedent for Wolverine killing the MCU’s X-Men. One of the most popular stories for the character in the comics is “Old Man Logan,” which was the main inspiration behind 2017’s Logan. In the alternate universe series, Wolverine kills all the X-Men. The character was tricked into doing so by the Spider-Man villain Mysterio. The villain used his illusions to make Wolverine think he was saving the X-Mansion from dozens of supervillains, with Wolverine fighting viciously to save the mutant children after not finding the other X-Men; however, he was actually brutally murdering his family.

Like Wolverine, Cassandra Nova has also been part of a major genocide of mutants in the comics. Cassandra is Charles Xavier’s twin sister, sort of. After Professor X attempted to kill her still in the womb, Cassandra spent several years rebuilding herself and biding the time for her revenge. Fully grown, Cassandra Nova unleashed a flurry of deadly Sentinels on Genosha after taking control of a Master Mold. Millions of mutant lives were lost. Recently, Marvel Studios’ X-Men ’97 adapted that event, though Bastion was the villain behind it, reserving Cassandra Nova for Deadpool & Wolverine.

Marvel Studios’ Use Of The X-Men Would Be Explained By The MCU Theory

Some Mutants Have Appeared In The MCU

The Deadpool & Wolverine theory’s explanation for the X-Men’s MCU absence helps clear up Marvel Studios’ decision about how to use the mutants since the characters from Fox became available for the MCU. Marvel has yet to debut its own versions of the X-Men, instead opting to use members of the team with the help of the multiverse as supporting characters or cameos. Patrick Stewart’s Charles Xavier and Kelsey Grammer’s Beast have appeared in MCU films as variants. Disney+’s WandaVision saw the return of Evan Peters as Quicksilver; however, he was later revealed to be a mind-wiped Ralph Bohner.

If Jackman’s Wolverine variant from Deadpool & Wolverine does indeed come from the MCU and murdered the X-Men like the theory suggests, then Marvel Studios not using the mutants despite having the ability to do so would be easily explained. Deadpool & Wolverine should continue that practice. The movie’s trailers have already revealed that many characters from Fox’s X-Men franchise will return for cameos, with some villains becoming part of Cassandra Nova’s team in the Void. With many more rumored heroes for the film, Deadpool & Wolverine could serve as the last big adventure for Fox’s X-Men.


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How The X-Men Could Still Join The MCU Despite This Deadpool & Wolverine Theory

There Are Two Clear Ways

Doctor Strange watches a world collapsing on itself in an incursion

The Multiverse Saga has already introduced a concept that could bring the debut of new actors as the X-Men. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness revealed that incursions exist in the MCU. The concept consists of two worlds colliding and one or both being destroyed. The X-Men’s Earth could collide with the main MCU Earth in the Multiverse Saga, with the mutants staying on Earth-616 after their world is destroyed. There is also another possible path for Marvel Studios to cast its new X-Men.

An MCU reboot is rumored to be in play at the end of Avengers: Secret Wars, which would be in line with how that event played out in the comics. A reboot could allow Marvel to cast its new X-Men and recast major MCU heroes like Captain America and Iron Man. This way, major teams like the Avengers, the X-Men, and the Fantastic Four could be together from the start of the new MCU for a decade or more. It remains to be seen if Deadpool & Wolverine will explore the X-Men’s MCU absence beyond just Reynolds’ Wade Wilson.

Deadpool 3 Poster Showing Two Halves of a Heart Necklace with Wolverine and Deadpool

Deadpool & Wolverine

A sequel to the highly successful Deadpool and Deadpool 2 starring Ryan Reynolds as the Merc with a Mouth. The third film will be the first film in the franchise to be developed under the Marvel Studios banner following Disney’s acquisition of 20th Century Fox. Ryan Reynolds is returning to play the character, alongside Hugh Jackman, reprising his Wolverine role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe for the first time. 

Shawn Levy

Release Date
July 26, 2024

Rhett Reese , Paul Wernick

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