Deadpool 2 writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick have debunked a popular fan theory about Shioli Kutsuna's character, Yukio, which suggests that she's actually the X-Men hero Surge. Instead, they've pointed to a classic Japanese assassin created by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller as the inspiration for Negasonic Teenage Warhead's girlfriend.
The tone and style of Deadpool 2 may be comic-book-accurate with regards to specific characters, but not all of its heroes are. Even major characters like Cable and Firefist have been radically redesigned for the big screen, but nobody has changed more than Yukio. There's only one Yukio in the X-Men comics, and Kutsuna's portrayal is so different that it led viewers to speculate she was actually a completely different character altogether. A popular fan theory suggested she was actually the young mutant Surge, explaining her electrical powers. But that's not the case.
In an interview with CBR, Deadpool 2 writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick have officially confirmed that their version of Yukio has nothing to do with Surge. "That’s not right," Reese responded when asked about the theory. "She’s a super-minor character. The character’s name is actually Yukio, an assassin — but who’s an adult assassin, so we just aged her down. She’s such a minor character, we thought we could pretty much get away with anything."
Deadpool 2 certainly takes liberties when it comes to adapting the assassin Yukio. In the comics, Yukio is a tough-as-nails Japanese assassin who's addicted to the adrenaline buzz she gets when her life is on the line. She has nothing to do with Deadpool; in fact, Yukio is more commonly associated with Storm, Wolverine, and Gambit, of all characters. Yukio has often been portrayed as a love interest for Wolverine, but legendary X-Men scribe Chris Claremont also wrote a close friendship between Yukio and Storm that had homosexual undertones. Reese's description of Yukio as "a super-minor character" is certainly open to dispute, given Rila Fukushima already portrayed a (far more comic-book-accurate) big-screen version of the character in 2013's The Wolverine.
Wernick gave further detail as to just how the writers chose to use Yukio, explaining that 20th Century Fox has a bible of "all 400-plus characters that they have rights to." It seems he and Reese worked through the list, looking through the characters, and Yukio jumped out at them. While it's long been known that Fox has a list of available characters, this is actually the first time anyone has indicated just how many names are on it. In the case of Yukio, the writers clearly chose to change almost every element of her character. The Yukio of the comics isn't even a mutant.
"Shioli's amazing," Reese added, "I really think we have to do her more justice going forward — not as though we did her injustice, but she just didn’t have a lot of screen time. I’d love to explore the Yukio character more." It's commonly believed that the team seen at the end of the film - Deadpool's so-called "family" - will be the stars of the studio's upcoming X-Force movie, in which case, Yukio is sure to be further developed down the road.
- Deadpool 2 (2018) release date: May 18, 2018
- X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019) release date: Jun 07, 2019
- Gambit (2020) release date: Mar 13, 2020
- New Mutants (2020) release date: Apr 03, 2020