Atomic Blonde was one of my most anticipated movies of 2017. It was also one of the rare examples of a movie that delivered on exactly what I felt was promised by the trailer.
I plopped down into my theater seat demanding to see nothing more than Charlize Theron punching her way across 1980s Berlin while kissing girls, and looking good doing it. And since I got that, I now understand that I seemingly have the power to literally manifest my own perfect Atomic Blonde movies. With that in mind, and with a sequel on the horizon, here are just a few things I hope to see in the next one.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are the author's, and do not necessarily reflect those of SYFY WIRE, SYFY, or NBC Universal.
A simpler plot
Atomic Blonde managed to pull off a series of intricate plot twists and double crosses, but just barely. There are certainly a few internet videos dedicated to breaking down exactly what was going on, and the fact that they don’t all agree hints that the movie was a wee bit of a mess. As someone who doesn’t mind a few plot holes now and again or need every detail explained to her, I was still pretty on board with all the twists. But this feels like a one-and-done sort of trick. Don’t try to out-convolute the story—the big reveal at the end of the first movie should be Lorraine putting her cards on the table for the audience, and the sequel should be her and us against the world. There are other spy movie plot standards to play with.
It’s also very possible her name won’t even be Lorraine anymore in the sequel since that was an alias, but we’ll let lt lie there for now for simplicity's sake.
Keep it in the ‘80s
One of the things that made Atomic Blonde so fun was its ability to work as a mostly low-tech spy thriller. In an age where everything a spy carries has wi-fi and contains more tech than the newest iPhone, Atomic Blonde’s analog approach to espionage was a very welcome throwback and helped raise the stakes for Lorraine and her mission. Plus it means you're gonna have a kickass soundtrack.
More queer stuff
Don’t let the scenes in the first movie between Lorraine and Delphine be a fluke. It should be an essential and consistent part of her character, otherwise it feels like a sensationalist marketing ploy. By her own admission in one of the Delphine cutaways, Lorraine is letting her guard down the most when she’s with her. This sort of vulnerability could just have been part of her long game, sure, but it’s also juicy character development that should make its way into further sequels.
No more burying your gays, though
Delphine’s death in the first movie was brutal, but considering that pretty much every character Lorraine interacted with while in Germany also died, it’s one that the plot almost gets away with. She was an in-over-her-head rookie spy in a dangerous city, after all. But this is a one-time Get Out of Jail Free card. For the next movie, how about giving Lorraine (and us!) a love interest that is more than a disposable plot device to throw at the villain while leaving one last trace of evidence for the hero? If not to avoid the trope, at least do it to give us something different with the story this time.
Even more outfits
Lorraine doesn’t just kick ass, she looks amazing while doing it. Every one of her looks was stunning, from those over-the-knee leather boots and that military-inspired trench to the white-on-black strappy turtleneck, which also doubles as a mask when she's escaping from the Berlin police. I expect to leave Atomic Blonde 2 amped up to dig through every vintage store I can come to in order to find that perfect Lorraine cosplay, just as soon as I finish bleaching my hair.
More Atomic John (Goodman)
The big reveal at the end that Goodman’s CIA character was Lorraine’s handler all along was very charming. And now that we know who he is to her, that professional relationship should be cultivated to give the sequel a whole other realm of story possibilities. It would be a slight tonal shift but one consistent with their interactions thus far. The dynamic between Goodman and Theron after she drops the charade of being an MI6 agent who couldn’t stand his presence would be a great foundation to tell a new story in a sequel. If we’re jettisoning the whole plot twist aspect mentioned above, Goodman’s character could fit in very well with a potential Blonde franchise, serving as the M to Lorraine’s Bond. Besides, I understand Goodman may have room for a new job these days.