Warning: spoilers for Netflix’s 6 Underground are in play. If you haven’t checked it out yet, feel free to ghost this article and come back once you’ve seen the film in action.
Some movies just can’t wait to tease what might be a viable franchise, and in the case of director Michael Bay’s new Netflix film 6 Underground, it only takes a little under a half-hour to get into the meat and potatoes of what could set up a slew of follow-ups. We're not sure if that's a record, but someone may want to start doing some digging on proving or debunking that this is the fastest set-up for a franchise in cinematic history.
More specifically, there are eight more sequels that Ryan Reynolds and his team of Ghosts could find themselves shooting their way through; provided this film is a monster hit. But even if that particular method of continuation doesn’t work out, there’s another method that Netflix could use to bring more 6 Underground themed content to the masses.
Last call for spoilers, folks, as we’re about to go into just what this movie did to set itself up as a franchise, and how that idea could come to fruition.
6 Underground’s Concept In A Nutshell
At the heart of 6 Underground’s Michael Bay-hem fueled story is a group of six operatives led by Ryan Reynolds’ enigmatic “One.” Known as “Ghosts,” their mission is to take out the bad guys in power throughout the world.
Their greatest advantage is that to the world, they’re technically dead. Not exceeding a count of six members at a time, the Ghosts work together to right the wrongs most political or military parties wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole.
6 Underground’s Ghosts answer to no one but themselves, and each of the six have joined up to atone for moments where their hands were tied or they went down bad paths. Together, their skills form the ultimate team for espionage and mercenary diplomacy; as well as a hell of a center for an action-packed franchise.
The 6 Underground Hit List
In order to make good for their past mistakes and misdeeds, 6 Underground’s ghosts have a list of nine men they’re looking to take out. We see this list in the film, as well as get the name of the first target on One’s hit list: Rovach Alimov (Lior Raz), the dictator of Turgistan.
Throughout 6 Underground, we see the various steps taken to ultimately eliminate Rovach’s reign of terror and put his more agreeable brother, Murat (Peyman Maadi), in power. It’s only the second mission of the group’s tenure as a team, with one target down and eight more remaining on the hit list.
While this first entry focused on 6 Underground’s process with one target, and the remaining eight targets have not been named, there’s a shot that if Netflix feels this movie has done its job, we’ll get to see those other bodies fall into their well-earned demises.
What It Means For Potential 6 Underground Film Sequels
Eight targets could be covered two different ways in a potential 6 Underground universe, and the most obvious is through further movies that Michael Bay may or may not direct. According to whatever workload the man himself has set up over the next couple of years, we could see Bay return to franchise filmmaking with these subsequent installments.
Should that be the case, perhaps Netflix will approach the remaining eight targets as individual adventures, with films of their own. Or, if the budget-conscious studio is more pragmatic, it could consolidate several targets across two compact films of non-stop action.
The latter option would make the most cinematic sense, as two all-out action spectacles would be more reasonable than the potentially overreaching eight films that 6 Underground could lead to. Though there is one more option that could make even more sense when it comes to dealing with the remaining targets the Ghosts are looking to retire.
Could 6 Underground Become A Limited Series Instead Of A Franchise?
Between telling the origin stories of most of the 6 Underground team members and the mission that they execute in the name of Turgistanian democracy, there’s a rhythm that makes the Michael Bay film feel like an extended pilot for a really slick TV show.
As such, Netflix has another option on the table, should it want to wrap the story in an efficient, but thorough way: it could turn it into a limited series. Eight episodes, all written by 6 Underground writers Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese, would be a simple, but exciting fix that completes the story with proper resolution. Each baddie could easily be disposed of in a chain of adventures, ultimately culminating in the potential "rebirth" of these so-called Ghosts.
Whether Michael Bay would direct any or all of the eight episodes that 6 Underground’s potential series could entail remains to be seen. But even if Bay wasn’t involved, other action directors could be drafted to maintain the spirit and production value the first film set as a precedent.
Either option for the continuation of 6 Underground would easily wrap up the story of the Ghosts and their quest to clear out the full list of nine high level threats to world peace. So long as there’s an audience willing to watch the continuing adventures of these six mercenaries, there are ways of fulfilling the promise that’s been implicitly made in this first adventure.
That leaves us with one final task: asking you, the audience, if you would like to see another 6 Underground adventure, and which method of delivery you’d prefer. Feel free to sound off in the poll below, and don’t forget to leave some comments describing your feelings in more detail. We'll be sure to let you know about any developments on the sequel front.
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CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.