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The Original Mutant-Led MCU That Marvel Fans Never Got To See

Before the Hasbro character Jem (of "Jem and the Holograms" fame) became a promotional superstar complete with animated series, toys, and merchandise galore, there was Dazzler. The Marvel comics creation was poised to be a trendsetter as she paved a way for cross-promotional opportunities. It all came about thanks to a late '70s push for music and comics to merge into one unstoppable package.

The idea — from then-Marvel executive Alice Donenfield — was that of a superhero with the gifts of a pop star. What Jim Shooter, Tom DeFalco, and John Romita Jr. eventually created in 1979 was Dazzler. The plan included the character starring in her own comics while also releasing music through an actual record label (via SYFY Wire).

Of course, any promotional opportunities lead directly back to film and TV. As Marvel sought to build a cinematic universe, some characters seemed destined to find their way on the big screen. It all came down to the question of whether a pop star with powers could bring the company to a new medium.

Dazzler could have been an MCU leader

The superhero was set to be a central figure in an MCU forming well before the one led by Disney. At the forefront of this idea was Neil Bogart, the founder of Casablanca Records who perceived an opportunity that reached well beyond music.

Initially, Bogart saw a chance to expand Dazzler into animation. That idea grew as his aspirations reached familiar names from the music world. At one point, he wanted to include Donna Summer and Cher as voice actors (via CBR). The record producer's guidance was enough for Marvel to try out a plot that would bring together some of their biggest characters.

Unfortunately, a set of issues outside of Marvel itself would lead to the end of the project. What remained was an unrealized move into TV and possibly films, if Bogart's initial idea had made it past early drafts. Writer Jim Shooter detailed his own experience with the project in a post to his webpage — even including the treatment for a film that never was.

Another chance to join the MCU

There have been several opportunities for Dazzler to make her way to the MCU since that failed attempt. Writer Simon Kinberg set up the character for "X-Men: Apocalypse" before seeing her disappear as the story underwent changes (via The Playlist). Some fans were even convinced she was set to make an appearance in the next "X-Men" project, animated or otherwise.

Kinberg would try again with "X-Men: Dark Phoenix." The film finally gave Dazzler (Halston Sage) a chance to shine, albeit briefly, in the MCU. In that appearance, the singer is giving a performance — complete with her gift for lighting — before being left unconscious due to Phoenix Force, as noted by The Wrap.

While Dazzler may not have led the MCU's arrival, she's still a possibility for future projects. A current theory suggests the singer could make it into "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania." It all stems from a casting announcement that hints at someone who has many of the same qualities, including "comedic skills," per Inverse.