The Indiana Jones franchise is a fascinating one to talk about—primarily in that it was so good until … it wasn’t. They tried to make Indy happen again and when it did, it failed so hard that they basically stopped trying for a while. But now we’re gearing up for 2023, when we will see Harrison Ford don his hat and whip once more.
Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny has a lot of work to do—mainly because the last movie we saw Indy in wasn’t exactly the best in the franchise, and if Harrison Ford is returning, you better make what might be his last outing a great one. I’m obviously talking about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and how the only good thing to come out of it is my own false sense of security in learning that, if it came down to it, I could survive a nuclear explosion by climbing into a fridge.
There’s a lot about Crystal Skull that is not great, but one of the things that makes little to no sense at all (and if I’m saying this, it is shocking) is the inclusion of Mutt Williams. Now, I love a “Here’s the kid you didn’t know about” storyline, but this one just didn’t work because it was clear what was happening from the jump. Luckily, though, Mutt is not going to be in the next Indy movie, to which I say: GOOD.
In a new interview with Entertainment Weekly, director James Mangold promised that audiences would “find out what happened” to Mutt, but that’s it. So, does that mean we don’t have to sit through a push for a new Indiana Jones this time around? Because that’s all it was—a means to give the mantle to someone else—and the reality is that Indiana Jones doesn’t need that.
Mutt never needs to come back
Not only does Mutt need to stay gone because, well, he’s played by Shia LaBeouf, but the character itself is just … pointless. It was a weird way of bringing Marion Ravenwood (Karen Allen) back into the story and giving her a connection to Indy, instead of just having her choose to come back on her own. They could have just made it so that Indy had a son with Marion off-screen and the two could’ve been in a relationship for years.
Frankly, it was unnecessary and probably tops a ranking of the most disappointing parts of Crystal Skull, which is saying something given how this movie was received by Indiana Jones fans. Mutt was there for the torch to be passed on to, and when it was clear that fans did not want that to happen, it kind of made his inclusion pointless. I’ve said before that if they’re passing the torch to anyone, it should be Short Round, though I do understand what they were trying to do with Mutt.
It didn’t work, and I’m glad that Mangold and company are making it clear that Mutt was a thing that happened in the lore of Indiana Jones, but we don’t have to see him again.
(featured image: Disney)
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