The Old Guard features a group of immortal warriors, most of whom have been alive for centuries but how old are they exactly? The marketing material and movie itself offer several clues to the immortals’ ages. Charlize Theron’s Andy is the oldest, but most of her companions have had very long lives as well.
Directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood and based on the comic book series The Old Guard, by Greg Rucka and Leandro Fernández, the Netflix movie follows a team of warriors who have lived in the shadows for centuries, taking part in conflicts on whichever side they feel is right. The Old Guard is set in the modern-day, where a new immortal — soldier Nile Freeman (Kiki Layne) — joins the group after miraculously healing from having her throat cut. She is quickly initiated into the small group of warriors and learns how they have influenced history. While she’s still learning about her new family, they come under threat from a greedy pharmaceutical executive called Steven Merrick (Harry Melling), who hopes to discover the secret to their immortality, bottle it, and put a price tag on it.
Unfortunately for Merrick, he’s not the first bad guy that the Old Guard has run into during their very long lifetimes. Here’s a breakdown of when each member of the group besides Andy was born, and how old they are in the modern-day setting of the movie.
How Old Is Andy In The Old Guard?
While the movie form of The Old Guard keeps Andy’s age ambiguous, it is known that she is the oldest member of the group. Her full name, Andromache of Scythia, refers to a Central Asian empire that ended in the second century CE, making Andy at least 1800 years old but likely older. A potential The Old Guard sequel could expand the mythology by exploring this, however the comics suggest that Andy is even older than her name suggests.
Rucka and Fernandez’s comics depict Andy as being born circa 4500 BCE in the Western Steppe of Scythia. Andy developed immortality after being “killed” in battle, and led her tribe for hundreds of years. However, after centuries she left her position to seek justice and find other immortals. Andy even gives a precise age in the comics of 6732, meaning that she has been serving humanity for over six millennia.
Quynh – Approx. 1500 years Old (In The Comics)
Seen only in flashbacks and in The Old Guard‘s final scene, Quynh’s (Veronica Ngo) age is perhaps the hardest to pin down out of all the immortals. In the comics she’s called Noriko, and Andy recalls that they first met at the end of Amr ibn al-As al-Sahmi’s conquest of the Byzantine Empire in 642, at which point Noriko had already been an immortal for a century. That puts her date of birth some time in early 500 AD, which would make her around 1500 years old during the events of The Old Guard.
However, in the movie it’s not specified exactly when or where Andy and Quynh met, except that Andy found Quynh when she was wandering through the desert, and that she was the first other immortal that Andy ever met. Many have speculated that Andy and Quynh will fight in The Old Guard 2. In the comics, Andy met Lykon (Micheal Ward) before she met Noriko, and they fought together for two thousand years. Lykon also appears briefly in a flashback in The Old Guard, with Andy and Quynh both being present at the time of his death. If Quynh has been aged up in order to have been born before Lykon, she could actually be several thousand years old during the events of the movie. Hopefully, audiences will learn more about her backstory — including her age — in The Old Guard 2.
Yusuf Al-Kaysani a.k.a. Joe – 954 Years Old
According to his character poster, Joe (Marwan Kenzari) was born in 1066, making him 954 years old at the time The Old Guard takes place. Originally called Yusuf Al-Kaysani, Joe was a Muslim warrior during the First Crusade, who met the love of his life on the battlefield — and killed him. However, fate chose them as the next immortals to join the Old Guard, and after repeatedly slaying each other they realized that neither they nor the enemy soldier could be killed — at which point their enmity turned to love.
Nicoló de Genoa a.k.a. Nicky – 951 Years Old
Younger than Joe by only a few years (which grew even less significant as the centuries pass), Nicky (Luca Marinelli) is 951 years old during the events of The Old Guard, based on a character poster that gives his year of birth as 1069. This means that he would have been in his late twenties — 30 at most — the first time he died. Like Joe and Andy, Nicky changed his name at some point from Nicoló of Genoa to the more common name of Nick Smith, in order to aid his anonymity. This period of the Crusades has been a popular setting for movies as well as video games like Assassin’s Creed and Crusader Kings. Hailing from the city of Genoa, in what would later become the unified country of Italy, Nicky fought in the First Crusade until he fell in love with one of the enemy, and instead began fighting new battles alongside him. After settling their differences, Joe and Nicky both met Andy and became part of the Old Guard alongside her and Quynh.
Sebastien le Livre a.k.a. Booker – 250 Years Old
The baby of the group (at least, until Nile comes along), Booker (Matthias Schoenaerts) is 250 years old during the events of The Old Guard, with his character poster marking his year of birth as 1770. His treacherous actions make it unclear whether he’ll return for a potential The Old Guard 2. Born Sebastien le Livre (his nickname comes from his surname, which is French for “Book”), Booker was a soldier under Napoleon who deserted during the campaign into Russia. He was caught and hanged, but came back to life still hanging from the noose, being 42 years old at the time of this first death in 1812. As he lived on without ageing, Booker experienced the trauma of watching his sons die and being helpless to stop them, even as they grew to hate him for not sharing his gift of immortality. Being a young immortal, the 100-year penance that Booker is sentenced to at the end of The Old Guard would still be a significant amount of time for him.
Nile Freeman – 26 Years Old
A pivotal part of The Old Guard‘s cast is Nile, who acts as a viewpoint character. A brand new member of the Old Guard, Nile Freeman is 26 years when she dies for the first time, having her throat cut while trying to save the life of a man she has just shot. After she wakes up in the infirmary without a mark to show for her injury, she’s shunned by her fellow soldiers and about to be sent away for some probably very unpleasant testing when she’s abducted by Andy. Nile has a military legacy to uphold, with her father having been killed in action, but also has a family that she’s at first keen to return to. By the end of the movie, however, she has decided to stick with Andy and the other immortals, having seen the good that they’ve managed to do in the world.
There are plenty of unanswered questions from The Old Guard that could be addressed in The Old Guard 2, and the precise ages of Andy and Quanh are among them. The sequel could also fill in the centuries of backstory that each of the immortals have, making their ages very important for the franchise going forward.
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