Wait! Shouldn’t The Kid be one of the leading characters in The Matrix Resurrections?
The world of The Matrix is full of complex and fascinating characters. While some of them manage their status through impressive feats of skill or thanks to some vague prophecies, none of them are as unique as Michael Karl Popper, aka Kid.
Much like Neo and most of the Nebuchadnezzar’s crew, Kid managed to escape from the virtual world the machines had designed to entrap humanity. However, Kid is unique in that he didn’t need the help of Morpheus or the Red Pill to free himself from the shackles of the Matrix – he is one of the only known cases of self substantiation in the franchise’s mythos.
With The Matrix Resurrections so close to release, we can’t help but wonder: what happened with Kid? After all, this movie is supposedly going to serve as an epilogue to the original trilogy, or maybe even the first chapter in a whole new trilogy. Let’s take a look at what makes this character so unusual in a world filled with exceptional individuals.
Kid’s story begins outside of the three mainline Matrix films, in Animatrix. A compilation of animated short stories set inside the Matrix, Animatrix expands upon the world built by the original Matrix trilogy, establishing a blueprint for the massive backstory that’s behind the Matrix mythos.
Written by the Wachowskis, “Kid’s Story” charts the journey of Michael Karl Popper: a young man who feels like something is off about the world. One day, he receives a message from Neo, and after a fateful sequence of events, he manages to escape the illusion of the Matrix.
What makes his escape so special, other than doing it without using a Red Pill, is that Michael’s body died inside of the simulation. As we know, dying in the Matrix is the same as dying in the real world, which makes Kid even more of an anomaly.
One thing to understand about the Matrix franchise is that the Wachowskis consider pretty much every piece of media about the series as canon. This means that every video game is considered part of the movies’ bigger picture.
Kid plays a pivotal role in the video game The Matrix Online. It is also revealed that he might have finally gotten his dream job as a fighter for the resistance, as he continues to emulate the path of his hero, Neo.
After the events of The Matrix Revolutions, Morpheus takes Kid under his wing, training him with the same challenges that Neo faced before his demise. As one of the most powerful red pills, it makes sense for Kid to become Neo’s successor in the fight against the machines.
Considering the sheer amount of backstory that’s behind Kid and his miraculous escape from the Matrix, one would expect to see him playing a key role in the upcoming Matrix film. However, it seems like there are some questions that might remain unanswered this time around.
Though Clayton Watson, the actor who plays Kid in the live-action movies, appears on the IMDb page of The Matrix Resurrections, it sadly seems like he only has an uncredited cameo in the film. This would mean that we won’t get to see what happened to Kid after the conclusion of the original trilogy – unless his character appears in some other capacity.
Whatever’s the case, Kid just goes to prove how rich the Matrix storytelling can be. This franchise goes beyond the philosophical questions and the cool action shots, as it has managed to build an extensive – and intriguing – mythology that’s absolutely worth exploring.