Mad Max: The Future of the Franchise after Furiosa

Spoiler Warning for all Mad Max movies

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga is a very different film to Mad Max: Fury Road. The latter was told over a matter of hours, maybe days, 85% of it an ultra-violent and explosive car chase. Furiosa is a film told over decades – detailing Furiosa’s life from when she was captured as a child to moments before Fury Road starts. The use of the word “saga” in the title is very telling as that is what the film is, whereas Fury Road is a frantic glimpse at that world. So where does the world of Mad Max go from here?

Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga //credit: Warner Bros Pictures

Looking at the original Mad Max trilogy we have three very different films. In Mad Max, some semblance of order remains with Max trying to maintain that, in Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior roving bands of psychotic raiders control the world and Max is trying to survive and help a community threatened by these raiders. And in Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome the weirdness is turned up to 11 and we have Tina Turner and Max becoming embroiled in the politics of survivor communities. Fury Road switched things up with Max hardly being the protagonist at all and a new feel to this world. Furiosa explored more of the locations of this world, in Fury Road we saw the Citadel, in Furiosa we The Green Place, Bullet Farm and Gas Town. There are all major locations that we get to explore. Going forward it’s likely we’ll see more places, a more fleshed-out world, assuming the original trilogy is canon we know there are more locations. And with more places will come more conflict. Perhaps the Mad Max saga will turn into films about the wars between these different places in the struggle for control of diminishing resources.

The obvious choice for the next film would be to carry on Furiosa’s story. Fury Road ends with Furiosa back at the Citadel seemingly poised to become its leader with Max purposefully leaving. This might be as close to a happily-ever-after as you’re going to get in this world and to have another film follow Furiosa will mean that something goes wrong. The Citadel was built on an odd quasi-religion built around Immortan Joe and what will those people who worshipped him do now? Will they be angry with Furiosa? Will Immortan Joe’s death prove he was a fraud but they simply turn their blind devotion to Furiosa? What of Immortan Joe’s “wives” and the women from the Green Place Furiosa brought back? All will have opinions on what should happen next.

Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior
Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior // Credit: Kennedy Miller Entertainment

As already stated, Fury Road and Furiosa are very different movies and it is certainly possible to take on different kinds of stories. Could there be a Suicide Squad ensemble cast of wasteland survivors (although the bizarre and dire-looking Borderlands may have gotten there first)? The Max Max saga is constantly pushing the line between dark and ridiculous, in Beyond Thunderdome clearly the needle had been pushed towards ridiculous but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

It wouldn’t be unusual for George Miller to simply forget about all of these characters and places and simply follow wherever Max goes next. The original trilogy dotted about the wasteland, never explaining what had happened since the end of the last film to bring Max to his new location. If the next film would put the focus back on Max it will be interesting to see what new locations Miller comes up with in this post-apocalyptic world.

Babe 2: Pig in the City //credit: Universal Pictures

Of course, the terrifying answer to what George Miller might do next might be what he has done before after Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome…namely, co-write Babe and then direct Babe 2: Pig In The City. Surely this is a horror far greater than any post-apocalyptic wasteland?

Also Read: The Enduring Appeal of Post-Apocalyptic Movies

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Richard Norton

Gentleman, podcaster and pop culture nerd, I love talking and writing about pretty much all pop culture.