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Y: The Last Man – 9 Reasons Why Brian K. Vaughn’s Ex Machina Should Be Adapted Next

As FX and Hulu gear up for its debut season of Y: The Last Man, interest in the original comic series is bound to increase. Original's writer Brian K. Vaughan's other magnum opus happens to be the DC comic series Ex Machina, a political drama centered upon Mitchell Hundred, a former superhero who becomes the Mayor of New York in a post-9/11 world.

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With lots of real-world politics and multi-dimensional characters, the series would make for a good TV adaptation if executed well. And considering the positive buzz that Y: The Last Man has been generating, fans can still hope for Ex Machina's adaptation too.

9 It's The Age Of Unconventional Superhero Shows

Nowadays, there is definitely a growing market for adult-oriented superhero shows like Invincible and The Boys. Apart from just showing costumed heroes saving the day, new-age superhero series are also exploring themes such as the morality of violence and the subsequent damage that superhumans can bring with their powers.

Ex Machina's Mitchell Hundred is another such character who struggles with his responsibility as both a mayor and a superhero. Its dark themes and subversion of familiar superhero tropes would make for a compelling watch for fans of edgier comic-book adaptations.

8 It Has Socio-Political Relevance

Even though Ex-Machina's narrative is fictional, a fair share of its story arcs revolve around 9/11 and the American politics following this turbulent period. Brian K. Vaughn's writing explored not only the impact the incident had on New York but also its people. The story was ahead of its time. A major case in point can be the fact Hundred pushes for the legalization of gay marriage at a time when it still wasn't legally recognized in most of the American states.

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The Iraq War is also an important part of the comics. The initial storylines touch upon demonstrations while Mayor Hundred finds such criticism to be a foolish move. The clash of ideals would be a hot topic to explore in today's time of political and ideological rivalries.

7 It Has A Lead With Grey Areas

Hundred, aka The Great Machine, is by no means a perfect person and this is how the comic book sets itself apart from more mainstream superhero stories (especially in the DC and Marvel pantheons). In such comics, the binary between good and evil is clear but with stories such as Ex Machina, the protagonists do have their own grey areas.

This was the case with Garth Ennis comics such as The Boys and Preacher, both of which have turned into critically-acclaimed TV shows. How far can Hundred go to save his beloved city of New York and to what extent? The TV show can answer such questions from the perspective of a multi-layered character.

6 It Would Fit With The Diversification Of DC Shows

When it comes to DC Comics' live-action shows, the collection largely includes the CW Universe along with other standalone shows like Stargirl, Doom Patrol, and Titans. While the former two have a more comedic tone, Titans adds a darker and more violent touch to its titular superhero team.

Still, at the end of the day, all of these shows deal with costumed characters who are largely known among the usual comic book fans. Lucifer was one DC comic that was unique for its antihero and it spawned an adaptation that further popularized the character to new levels. Watchmen is another great example of a reinvented DC adaptation. Similarly, Ex Machina (that was published under DC's Wildstorm imprint) can be a successful experiment to introduce a DC classic to newer audiences.

5 Brian K. Vaughn Has A Great Reputation

An Ex Machina show would get some hype simply because its source material was written by Brian K. Vaughn. The highly acclaimed writer has served as the creative force behind not just Ex-Machina and Y: The Last Man on Earth but also other genre-defying works such as Saga and Pride of Baghdad.

However, his reputation goes even beyond comics as he has written episodes for Lost, Runaways, and served as showrunner for Under the Dome. Such vast experience only puts more credibility to his name and Ex Machina can be another highly marketable property from his bibliography.

4 It Alternates Between The Past And The Present

The original comic makes use of a parallel story format as it switches between Hundred's present political career and his past as the jetpack-wearing hero known as the Great Machine. The contrast in his two lives makes up for much of Ex-Machina's introspective parts and adds more substance to the lead character's personality.

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Switching timelines and adding regular flashbacks have proven to be useful in TV shows based on comic books such as Arrow, Daredevil, and Luke Cage. In all of these cases, the past reveals clues about the superhero's identity while leaving enough room for surprises. If a comic-accurate Ex Machina show is made, it is bound to be interwoven with Great Machine's flashbacks.

3 It Could Be First True Political Superhero Drama

While it can be argued that shows like The Boys and even The Falcon and The Winter Soldier have incorporated political themes, the central character is never a political stakeholder. Ex Machina, on the other hand, is all about a man who wields political power.

Be it his support for gay marriage or the Iraq War, Hundred's decisions push the story forward as he struggles with his former glory. No superhero drama has had a political character such as Mitchell Hundred and this is what can set a potential Ex Machina adaptation apart from the rest.

2 It's Set In A World With Only One Superhero

As Marvel and DC dominated the best superhero shows to watch right now, both brands reveal a multiverse with multiple superhumans. Similarly, adaptations like The Umbrella Academy focus on an ensemble of heroes rather than any specific one. But in the world of Ex Machina, the Great Machine is regarded as the first and the only superhero on the planet. This is yet another fact that makes the comic all the more unique.

As Hundred embarks on his political journey, his rare superpowers make others venerate him like a god. Some characters, like Connie George, even see him as a Christ-like figure. As people worship him, it's his choice if he wishes to lead his life like an ordinary human or use his powers to impose his own hegemony. Having only one superhero would add more scope for philosophy to the show.

1 The Positive Reviews For Y: The Last Man

With a favorable consensus on Rotten Tomatoes, it is safe to say that Y: The Last Man has been generating positive reviews from critics. Some look at it as a faithful adaptation while others also describe it as a worthy addition to the dystopian genre.

Maybe, a show like this would have failed if it came out years ago. Now, the times have changed and even unorthodox comic book shows that reinterpret the superhero genre have a market. So, it only makes sense for another Brian K. Vaughn adaptation to be greenlit, one that would deliver on drama, politics, and action.

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