New teaser images for M. Night Shyamalan's upcoming film Glass recently dropped, the most compelling of which has left fans wondering: what is Bruce Willis' David Dunn doing locked up in an insane asylum with James McAvoy's Kevin Wendell Crumb and Samuel L. Jackson's Mr. Glass?
Glass is both a sequel to Shaymalan's 2017 hit film Split and the conclusion to his superhero trilogy that began with Unbreakable in 2000. In Unbreakable, David Dunn, a Philadelphia-based security guard and family man, survives a tragic train accident without a scratch. This launched him on a journey of self-discovery where he learns he has great strength, can't be physically harmed, and has the ability to sense evil in others. Dunn is tutored in his abilities by Elijah Price, a comic book aficionado who suffers from an affliction opposite to Dunn's powers: his bones are so brittle, he can be easily injured, hence his nickname "Mr. Glass". Dunn eventually discovers Elijah is criminally insane, responsible for the train crash and numerous other terrorist acts in his quest to find David, his opposite number.
The animosity between David and Elijah spans almost two decades, which is why the sight of the two of them incarcerated together is so shocking. Meanwhile, sitting between the Unbreakable man and Mr. Glass is the main character of Split, Kevin Crumb, a.k.a. 'The Horde', who has 24 split personalities, some of them criminal, including a monstrous incarnation dubbed The Beast. Split ended with people in a diner watching news reports of the Horde loose upon their city, one of whom was David Dunn. This amazing reveal not only linked Unbreakable and Split together as a shared universe, it also provided a quick update on the status of David Dunn and Mr. Glass 17 years later: Elijah is still locked away in an asylum while David remains a blue-collar working man whose true abilities are not publicly known.
So how then are all three incarcerated together - especially David, the only heroic one of the group? David was obviously a free man at the end of Split - could age and or a weakness in his powers be how he was captured? Was he possibly hiding his abilities all this time? If so, it could be David choosing to fight the Horde brings attention to himself that he was avoiding all along. David's physical appearance indicates a time jump since Split as David looks noticeably older and greyer. Is he possibly even weaker than he was when fans saw him in his heyday?
The key to this mystery is the unseen fourth person in the photo, a psychologist (Sarah Paulson) who specializes in individuals who believe they are superheroes. As Shyamalan himself explained to EW, people styling themselves as a superhero or supervillain is "the modern-day equivalent of ‘I think I’m Jesus’ or ‘I’m an emperor'." The people of the Glass universe seem to have rejected the notion of people with powers and those who believe they are real-life comic book characters are locked up for psychological treatment.
While Kevin and his split personalities, including some Glass will introduce for the first time, are a wildcard, the prospect of resuming hostilities between David and Elijah is what has longtime fans of Unbreakable are excited for. After all, Mr. Glass is the title character this time. Even though he seems much older and even more physically helpless than before, no doubt his diabolical mind has a plan for revenge almost two decades in the making. Whether Glass concludes the story began in Unbreakable is anyone's guess, but David Dunn must rue the fact that Mr. Glass is still a part of his life.
- Glass (2019) release date: Jan 18, 2019