In Hollywood these days, they like to toss the word reboot around indiscriminately. It's about as bad as how much they toss around the word remake.
I'm sure many of us have bad reactions to the word 'remake' as has been shown when news broke about Blade Runner getting a remake. Nearly the entire internet collectively screamed "WHY?!?". Well it turns out in Blade Runner's case it's not a remake at all, but another story within that universe. This means it's neither a remake, nor a reboot.
X-Men: First Class has a similiar scenario going for it. It's not a reboot of the franchise, though many confused it for such. It's about as much of a reboot as say Star Wars Episodes 1-3 were to the original trilogy.
But how you may ask? Simple.
Let's start off with one simple rule about the X-Films. Cameos are just that, cameos. They often have no bearing on the actual story itself. Hank Mccoy in human guise being in X-Men 2 didn't matter with X-Men 3's Hank Mccoy. Just as X-Men First Class has Hank Mccoy's transformation into Beast to setup X3.
That's just one of many instances of cameos not mattering previously. In X-Men First Class we have a small cameo of what we're led to believe is Scott Summers during the first initial Cerebro test. Is it really Cyclops though? Well that's debatable. There are a plenthora of mutants who wear sunglasses as well. Refrax from the Fox Generation X movie for one, but even besides that, it's simply just a cameo to nod the comics. It has no bearing on the story and doesn't really matter. So that's not a movie-continuity mistake. It ranks up there again with the above mentioned Hank Mccoy cameo in X2.
Now if you're picky like me. You typically don't like these types of useless cameos. Which is why I've presented other backdoor reasonings like other characters with how they use insinuations for assumptions. Unlike Hank Mccoy in X2, Scott Summers isn't named in the film directly. In Hank Mccoy's case for X2, one can sidestep the issue and say he used an Image Inducer to hide his appearance as a politician until he was ready to reveal himself. In First Class, you can just as easily assume the kid may not even be Scott Summers, but if it is, he's still younger (as he should be) than his appearance in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
The other small continuity issues aren't that bad at all either.
Magneto and Xavier's friendship is tested in X-Men First Class, with the great original Schism allegedly happening here. Which is true. The first break in ideals happens at this point prior to what we're shown with X3 of it being after Jean Grey's recruitment. Thr problem with that flashback is we weren't given any history of Xavier and Magneto at the time. Friends can often drift apart over ideals or seperate beliefs. That doesn't mean it'll remain as such. We have large possibilities in upcoming sequels that Magneto and his brotherhood could rejoin the X-Men again. The helmet for one being the main reason behind this. The helmet Magneto now has keeps Xavier out of his head, but it also gives the story potential from Magneto's actions of Xavier bringing him back into the X-Men's fold later to keep an eye on him after it's been removed.
Really, we won't know how it all connects until more sequels happen. All we do know for now, is that Xavier is paralyzed for now, and Magneto has started to create his brotherhood. That doesn't mean they won't work together ever again, and that Magneto won't help Xavier walk when they work together again towards the Jean Grey recruitment. All of which has ripe story potential to use and elaborate on.
As for Emma Frost. XFC's Emma Frost, is not the same as Emma Silverfox from X-Men Origins: Wolverine. For one, this Emma Frost has telepathy and her diamond form whereas the other only had her diamond form. While everyone else is crying foul, I see large story potential here with how Magneto cracked the diamond form. As we know from X3, a telepath can hop bodies. What's to say that's not what Emma does later to maintain her youth and Diamond powers once she found a host. She would need a new diamond form since Magneto cracked her current one. Emma is a vain character, and she would shop for a new body as she got older. She's not the type to age gracefully. It also gives the groundwork for the lesson plan Xavier taught in X3 about this. Why he makes it a point to push the coma patients, and not active mutants as that is indeed a scary thought that only a villian or vain person would do.
That's the majority of the continuity questionable spots that really have no bearing as yet until more sequels are made. X-Men First Class is now out on Dvd and Bluray, be sure to pick up a copy and enjoy this great film.
Thank you again Hollywood. You've proven that you are finally starting to understand the comic process. Why I say this? Well to put it simply, comic book movies fall into two catergories.
If you are making a miniseries because of how good it is, and how much it warrants a film, you should stick to a majority of accuracy. Whereas if you're doing a film of a comic series or characters that have had ample origins that are constantly being added to and changed even in the comics, it's best to go with something original in film as it really won't matter as much. So long as the movie continuity is intact at least. It's simple in that regard. Some films need direct accuracy and references to their origin or minis like say Kick-ass, or Watchmen, or even 300 and Sin City. Whereas others have more liberties that can be taken like say Superman, Spider-Man, X-Men, Wolverine, and Batman. Personally I feel X-23 falls into a catergory where both are true. Her origin could very much so be told with accuracy. Only a few scattered changes are needed, and her sequels can easily go in any direction so long as it kept the same vibe and continued the story. Thanks to this, she has the potential to both be moderately accurately told, and to have some drastic originality in sequels.
Did I miss something about X-Men First Class? Post it in the comments, and I'll answer or add it to this. Heck, maybe you can even find a scene that'll stump me!