The X-Men have officially invaded the world of live-action TV with The Gifted. Fox's highly-anticipated TV series based on the famous Marvel mutants has finally debuted and, so far, people seem to be enjoying it. That is fairly impressive, considering that the most recognizable mutant in the bunch is Blink, and she isn't exactly an A-lister, even if she is a fan-favorite. Now for the big question; does The Gifted exist in the same universe as the X-Men movies?
Warning: spoilers ahead for The Gifted and its mutants. At the moment, there's no easy answer, but the best answer is a simple no at this point. The Gifted very much seems like it takes place in an alternate timeline of sorts. Or it just flat-out isn't connected to the X-Men movies we already are quite familiar with. So don't expect Patrick Stewart to cameo as Professor X anytime soon or anything like that. With that being said, the show is clearly doing its best to build out some connections to elements from the movies that X-Men fans are familiar with.
At the present time, the biggest connection that fans of the X-Men movies will be able to trace to The Gifted is Magneto. For now, it doesn't look like the famed metal-controlling bad guy, played by both Ian McKellen and Michael Fassbender respectively, is going to appear on the show, but he does have a kid appearing on the show. Lorna Dane, a.k.a. Polaris (Emma Dumont), has similar magnetic powers, though not as powerful, and is said to be the daughter of Magneto in the show. So that provides a tangential connection to the larger X-Men universe we're more familiar with.
The Gifted centers on a suburban couple, Reed and Caitlin Strucker, whose lives are shaken up by the sudden discovery that their children, Lauren and Andy Strucker, possess mutant powers. Very strong mutant powers at that. They are forced to go on the run from a hostile government, as Reed Strucker is actually a man who rounds up mutants for the government. Or was, prior to discovering that his own children are mutants. The family joins up with an underground network of mutants and have to fight for their own survival. In this version of the universe, the X-Men and their evil counterparts are gone, but the show has yet to reveal what happened to them exactly.
There are some other small connections to the X-Men universe. The Sentinel program still exists, but they take the form of tiny robot spiders, instead of huge robots. That could be for cost reasons, no doubt. There's also the aforementioned Blink, who also appeared in X-Men: Days of Future Past, but this time she's being played by Jamie Chung.
The point is, The Gifted doesn't exist in the same universe as the movies. Fox probably didn't have any other choice, as it would be very hard to make the continuity work. Not only that, but now viewers can watch the show without having to worry about knowing everything about the movies. We'll see if the decision pays off over the course of The Gifted season 1. The Gifted airs Mondays on Fox.