With Psylocke’s re-introduction into the X-Men cinematic universe, casual fans will likely have a lot of questions and diehards will probably have tons of speculation.
Apocalypse marks the final film in the current trilogy of X-Men movies and the second appearance of a the character Psylocke (the first was in The Last Stand). Like any good franchise, this is probably not the end, and we can only hope that Psylocke will be seen again given her rather vague exit at the end of the movie.
But who is Psylocke? What is she capable of? What sort of role did she play in Apocalypse, and how could she possibly be incorporated in later films? We aim to answer all these questions and more.
Psylocke’s true name is Elizabeth “Betsy” Braddock. She was born in England and lived an easy, wealthy lifestyle with her parents and two brothers. After her parents died, Betsy was kidnapped by Red Skull and subsequently saved by Captain Britain, who turned out to be her twin brother, Brian.
Betsy began to come into her own powers at this point, which started with precognition and evolved into telepathy. She was kidnapped again by Mojo, who brainwashed her and gave her the name Psylocke. She was rescued by the X-Men and taken to their mansion to recover. After initial hesitance, Wolverine saw her bravery in battle and nominated her to become an official part of the team.
After reconditioning and spending time as Lady Mandarin with The Hand, Psylocke developed advanced martial arts capabilities and learned to focus her telepathic energy into forming her iconic psychic blade. A fight against Wolverine revealed her memories and she was able to escape the influence of The Hand.
When we first meet Psylocke in Apocalypse, she is working for Caliban, the mutant who Mystique gets travel papers from. At first, she attempts to protect Caliban by threatening Apocalypse with her psychic blade, but Apocalypse is nothing if not a smooth talker. He entices Psylocke by showing her how much more powerful she could become and convinces her to be one of his Horsemen.
Though Psylocke did not have much to do in the movie, her abilities were obviously great enough that Apocalypse saw the potential in her. She returned in full force during the final battle scene, spending the majority of the time going toe to toe with Beast while the others fought Angel, Storm, Magneto, and Apocalypse.
In the end, Angel died and both Magneto and Storm turned against Apocalypse. They helped to destroy him while Psylocke stood idly by. When the battle was finished and Apocalypse was defeated, Psylocke did not join Magneto and Storm in being welcomed by the X-Men. In fact, she looked on suspiciously and walked away from the prospect of joining the heroes.
Psylocke’s future is, currently, incredibly unclear. She could’ve walked off that battlefield and gone back to Caliban. Or she could’ve wandered off somewhere else to cause some destruction. Or she could be working through her issues and attempting to figure out if she’s a hero herself.
While we don’t know what’s in store for Psylocke at the present moment, we have learned some details about upcoming X-Men projects. First and foremost, with the introduction of Deadpool in his runaway hit solo film, and confirmation that Cable will be in Deadpool 2, it isn’t a huge leap to think an X-Force movie could finally be made sometime in the near future. And, if that is the case, Psylocke’s current position on the team in the comics means she has a fighting chance to be featured in the film, as well.
More likely, Psylocke could end up being a part of the next set of X-Men films, which are meant to take place in the ’90s. We don’t yet know if this is in reference to the New Mutants film, or if it’s something more closely related to this last X-Men trilogy.
Then again, maybe we’ll get super lucky and Fox will add a solo Psylocke film to the roster. We’ve had Wolverine and we’ve had Deadpool, and with Gambit still in the works, this roster feels light on badass female mutant solo films. Storm would certainly be the more popular choice, but with Psylocke’s complicated and ambiguous entrance and departure, her story would make for a good solo film, too. Or maybe we can just have both. That’s not too much to ask, right?