How recent events can inspire Creed 2Feature of the week
2017 has seen a number of events that have defied the odds and pushed untold boundaries. Influences on both sides of the Atlantic have made such revelatory events a possibility. Transatlantic relations have also seen the birth of Creed, the sequel of which is set to be released within the next two years.
With plenty of real-world events to inspire elements of a new storyline for Creed 2, film lovers can but speculate as to what lies in wait for Adonis Creed. Regardless, every source of inspiration must relate – however tenuously – to the series’ original idea of an underdog defying the odds. This year, there have been two instances of this happening.
Firstly, in July, came Jeff Horn’s shock defeat of Manny Pacquiao. Then, nearly two months later, came the hotly-anticipated bout between UFC fighter Conor McGregor and (now) record-breaking boxer Floyd Mayweather Jr.
Conor McGregor has seen his popularity soar after adopting an “antihero” persona.
An outsider before the fight, McGregor was stopped in the tenth round but won near-universal plaudits for his efforts, having come from an entirely different fighting background to his opponent. Though absent from today’s online bookmakers list, McGregor will be a prominent feature on bookmakers’ offers closer to the time of his next fight. Already, he is the heavy favourite with one bookmaker (which is also offering a £30 free bet for registrants) for his upcoming bout with Nate Diaz.
Such a price is a further reflection of McGregor’s superlative popularity, and also represents an opportunity Creed 2 to capitalise on the residual hype from #MayMac. The idea of having a cage fighter as the primary antagonist in Creed 2 has the potential to work well if handled with good care.
While the angle of an “honourable defeat” has been used no less than three times (in Rocky, Rocky Balboa (or Rocky VI) and Creed), the differential element needed, to avoid stagnation and negative reviews, lies in the fallout after it manifests. When the angle was first used in the original film, Rocky’s trajectory in subsequent instalments was largely upward and very much life-affirming. Balboa’s in-film popularity also remained consistent, even after the Italian Stallion was annihilated by James “Clubber” Lang (Mr T) in the third film.
It would, undoubtedly, be interesting to see Adonis Creed forced to overcome open hostility from boxing fans. For the purposes of continuity, such hostility would be fuelled by the public’s belief that his loss to Ricky Conlan (Tony Bellew) in the first instalment was mere luck.
Adonis Creed prepares to go the distance against Ricky Conlan
Horn’s win over Pacquiao provides a precedent for such an inversion of the usual “beloved underdog” angle, and may be a source of inspiration for those tasked with the huge responsibility of keeping the Creed series fresh and relevant. By extension, Adonis Creed could even become more of an antihero as the series progresses.
Such a development would not be unreasonable. In the real world, Conor McGregor appears to revel in his status as an antihero, using brash language and mannerisms in his promos. Nonetheless, this has proven to be one of the cornerstones of his profile’s growth.
With the character of Adonis Creed set to get financially richer, the conversion of the titular character from a humble babyface to a decidedly more divisive antihero would be a process with justification. Ultimately, audiences should not rule out a similar trajectory of character development in the next film.
The editorial unit