The Matrix is probably getting a reboot whether we like it or not, so let’s explore which awesome ideas might be on the table.
We recently learned that Warner Bros. was planning a Matrix reboot. Many fans are, understandably, upset about the idea. The Matrix is sacred; it’s one of the most iconic, beloved, and groundbreaking science fiction movies in recent times.
Warner Bros. has tried to recreate The Matrix’s success in the past. It produced two more movies following the original, Reloaded and Revolutions, though fan and critical reception was never quite as high as the first.
Still, though, the Matrix universe has opened itself up to dozens of potential spinoff ideas. Here are 12 of the best ones we think should be explored in the Matrix reboot.
1. The Oracle
The Oracle is a constant presence in all three Matrix movies, even if her face changes in the final film. The Oracle is another program in the Matrix, but is one of the rare few that actually works with the resistance in order to end the war against the machines. We know the Oracle has been around since the beginning of the Matrix, analyzing the human psyche and providing insight into the choices that humans would make.
As with many of the ideas on this list, a film about the Oracle will probably have to take place prior to the original films. How interesting would it be, though, to watch a movie centered around this program? Her ability to see what is to come and direct key members of the resistance toward their destiny has always been one of the most intriguing and mysterious aspects of the franchise. Seeing the Matrix from the Oracle’s point of view wouldn’t just be an interesting story to tell, it would also provide more insight into the original films.
2. Morpheus’ origins
The Matrix introduced Morpheus as a confident, loyal, just, and insightful leader. He always knew what to say and do, and he always had faith that he would one day find The One. Once he was convinced that Neo was the person they were waiting for, there was nothing Morpheus wouldn’t do to make sure his newest recruit fulfilled his destiny.
It would be interesting to see Morpheus meeting the Oracle, struggling to accept her advice, and then subsequently setting out on his journey to search for The One. The sequels showed us Zion, the Council, and Morpheus’ various detractors, but what if Morpheus’ origin story showed us where all of that began? It would further add to Zion’s history, and flesh out Morpheus’ character, whom we still know very little about.
3. A Battery awakes
In The Matrix we learned that humans were harvested as batteries in what the Resistance called Power Plants, but were essentially vertical gardens, so to speak, full of the machines’ food source. We see Neo wake up inside his isolation chamber, covered in goo and plugged into the machine that is draining his energy. He escapes and is quickly picked up by the Resistance. They nurse him back to health and explain the way the Matrix works.
What would happen if a person accidentally woke up in a chamber and had no idea where they were or what they were meant to do now? A meeting with the Resistance would be inevitable, it would seem, but prior to that, how would a person adapt and survive in the wasteland? Are there others who have woken up without guidance? A story such as this would allow a different perspective from those at Zion who either woke up purposefully or were born in Zion, but it would also have to add something else to the franchise, either by answering a question from the originals or bridging the gap in a story. It could even be the origin story of a character we already know.
4. Trinity’s origins
Another fascinating and mysterious character comes in the form of Trinity, the woman who fell in love with The One. Much like Morpheus, we are told aspects of her beginnings, but we never explore them. We see how she grows as a person once Neo is introduced into her life, and we see what she’s willing to sacrifice in order to make sure the prophecy is fulfilled. It’s a great arc full of love and compassion, but we never get more information about her past.
We know Trinity was a hacker in the Matrix, and we know Morpheus was the one who pulled her out. Throughout the franchise, their relationship remains solid, built on trust and loyalty. There is nothing they won’t do for each other, but that relationship had to have been established at some point. What did these two characters go through together that made them absolutely devoted to one another? Plus, imagine how badass a movie would be centered around this character. We could definitely use more female-led action movies, and this would be a great pick.
5. A natural-born Zionist
Tank is the first person we meet in the real world that doesn’t have holes across his body like Neo does. When he inquires, Neo learns that Tank was born naturally in Zion, meaning he grew up in the real world and never experienced what it was like to be pulled out of the Matrix. In fact, because Tank does not have a headjack, he can’t enter the Matrix.
So what would happen if another natural-born citizen of Zion found a way to get into the Matrix? Just like with the story of the person who is accidentally awakened in a Power Plant, this tale would have to bring something unique to the table. Perhaps they’re able to do something a jacked-in human can’t? Would the machines be extra vigilant about tracking them down if they realized it was someone they had never had the chance to get a hold of to begin with?
6. Birth of the AI
We learn in the original movie that artificial intelligence was developed by humans in the early 21st century. In usual fashion, the machines began to think for themselves. Once this happened, they moved on to their own civilization. The machines and the humans could not get along, and thus the Machine War began.
We’ve had plenty of stories about the rise of AI and the potential downfall of the human race, but considering this is a precursor to The Matrix, the story would probably still be welcomed by fans of the franchise. It’ll also be interesting to see how they can make the story different from what we’ve seen before, as well as give us more insight into the machines that become such a huge threat later on.
7. The Oracle’s kids
Neo gets insight into how the Matrix works in a lot of different ways, but one of the most well-known moments is when the little boy says, “There is no spoon.” This is a trademark of The Matrix movie and everything it tries to tell us about this so-called reality. There are plenty of other kids hanging out at the Oracle’s, and I always wondered what their stories were.
Are they programs or are they humans? Have they been unplugged, or were they special to begin with? A story like this could take place either before or after the movies and essentially go in any direction. They could tie the tale to Neo’s journey, or provide us with a savior of another sort.
8. Other programs
In Revolutions, we meet Rama-Kandra and Kamala, as well as their daughter, Sati, who was created without purpose. Because of this, Sati was exiled in order to avoid deletion. The Oracle attempted to help Sati escape Agent Smith, and although she was overtaken by his powers, she eventually returned to her natural form once Neo defeated his long-time enemy.
At the end of the film, we see the Oracle and Sati enjoying a sunset the little girl had created for Neo. She’s obviously special, someone the Oracle believes could play a part in the future. Is this not the perfect opening for the next installment? Just like with the idea surrounding Trinity’s origins, it would allow for a female-led Matrix movie full of kickass moments. Count me in.
9. ‘The One’
This idea would have to be executed with great care. All three of the original Matrix movies are about Neo finding out he’s The One and deciding what to do with that power. We know from the Oracle that there has been previous “Ones” before him, and that the Matrix has, in fact, had several different versions. This would obviously allow for a reboot franchise to get away with making another movie (or trilogy) without it actually being a remake.
The choice would be whether to go back or forward. Do we explore previous Ones or do we look to the next one? If a prequel movie is made, it could potentially feel stagnant. We already know what’s to come, so how would they make this unique? Then again, it would be cool to build upon the history we’ve only heard of before — never seen. If a sequel is made, there will need to be a good reason to bring The One back in another form. It could be a repeat of a journey we’ve already experienced, but it would also allow them to find ways to surprise us.
I always loved the idea of Zion. Everyone there had to be a warrior, whether they wanted to or not. When the machines finally attacked, Zion’s citizens took up arms, trained or not, and found a way to defeat their enemy. The city has seen low, low times, but that makes the celebrations of its successes all the sweeter. How hard it must be to live there, but how fulfilling as well.
A story about Zion could take on any form, really. A prequel could explore its founding and the establishment of the Council. Amidst the war with the machines, this could allow for a harrowing story of triumph for the humans who decided to band together and start the resistance. A sequel, on the other hand, may tell the tale of a traitor in their midst, someone who wants the Machine War to begin anew, and the story of those who try to stop him.
11. Another Machine War
The Matrix Online explored what happened during a Second Machine War, but there’s no indication this canon would hold true if the reboot comes to fruition. After the Machine War in the original films, the Architect asks the Oracle, “Just how long do you think this peace is going to last?” The Oracle responds, “As long as it can.” This definitely opens up the story to the possibility of another war.
This idea is linked to the one about the introduction of another One, which would be needed if a second (or third) war was initiated. The same problems arise in that we’ve seen this story before, so how can the writers keep it interesting? If there is no One to save them, what will the people of Zion do? Who will rise to the challenge despite not having the powers of the savior?
12. Neo returns
Look, I’m not going to lie and say I wouldn’t love to see Keanu Reeves reprise his role as Neo. The last time he donned the trench coat was back in 2003, but 15 years isn’t that long between movies these days — just look to Independence Day: Resurgence or Trainspotting 2. Keanu himself has signed up for another Bill & Ted, more than 25 years after the fact. And because of John Wick we know he can still fight alongside the best of ’em.
If Neo returns, I would find it interesting to see what he’s been up to for the past 15 years or so — assuming they go with a time jump for the next film. They’ll also have to answer the question of what he’s doing back in the picture. Is he there to fight for the humans once more, or is it simply his job to pass on his knowledge to the next person meant to take on the moniker of The One?
What would you like to see from a ‘Matrix’ reboot?
Out of all of these ideas, I like the prospect of exploring a corner of The Matrix universe that we have yet to fully see or understand. The stories with unknown origins and lingering questions would shed light on characters we’ve already fallen in love with. On the other hand, The Matrix and its sequels have created a vast universe with an infinite amount of possible stories to tell, and as much as I think a reboot is unnecessary, there’s also plenty of potential here for the creation of a movie that could do for cinema now what The Matrix did back in 1999.