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Fortunetelling is a superb trick, but it surely solely works if you know the way to chilly learn — absorbing every little thing in entrance of you and dropping some meaty guesses about what’s on others’ minds. Determining what’s subsequent for one of many greatest media franchises on the planet is analogous. Solely President of Marvel Studios Kevin Feige (and people below NDAs) know what’s subsequent for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Nevertheless, we will take the hints they’re leaving and ship some enjoyable concepts about what’s coming subsequent.
We’re about to current twelve educated guesses concerning the subsequent period of the MCU. Based mostly on what the franchise has already proven us, hints from occasions like 2022’s San Diego Comedian-Con, well-sourced filming rumors, and (plenty of) hypothesis drawn from Marvel’s in depth comedian e book historical past, we predict what’s subsequent for Marvel Studios. We’re barely scratching the floor of potential storylines with Kang the Conquerer’s rise to energy, so in case your theories do not match ours, yours nonetheless matter! Simply keep in mind: Being fallacious is half the enjoyable.
“Thunderbolts” is slated to complete the MCU’s fifth section, releasing in theaters in summer season 2024. The movie follows “Captain America: New World Order” and the (possible) Skrull nightmare of “Secret Invasion.” Each motion pictures may present clues to what these villains-turned-slightly-heroic characters are as much as subsequent. If the MCU’s Thunderbolts borrow from their comedian e book counterparts, they could assist fill out a world that not trusts superheroes.
Peter David and Mike Deodato Jr.’s “The Unbelievable Hulk” #449 launched the Thunderbolts. Initially, the group hides their villainous backstories. However that is not one thing the MCU can get away with — particularly given what we have already seen of those characters on the large display. The second Helmut Zemo (Daniel Brühl) makes use of his genteel accent to verbally-murder, we’ll know it is him. As an alternative, it is likelier he’ll act extra fairly as soon as he leaves Wakanda, positioning himself because the chief of a brand new squad. He may use his Sokovian tragedy to show he was proper to mistrust superpowered folks — a few of whom might have been changed by Skrulls to deepen the general public injury.
Baron Zemo, John Walker (Wyatt Russell), and the Abomination (Tim Roth) are shoo-ins for the group. Rumors recommend Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) would be the Thunderbolts’ chief. Traditionally, Baron Zemo’s taken cost greater than as soon as, so it is a protected guess he’ll attempt to take the reins from Belova. Walker’s involvement additionally means Valentina Allegra de la Fontaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) would possibly management the group diplomatically. Regardless of the latest death of William Hurt, the return of Thunderbolt Ross and the Crimson Hulk continues to be potential if Marvel Studios recasts him. Watching Hulk destroy blood samples within the premiere of “She-Hulk” felt like one thing assured to return again up — particularly after gaining samples of Jennifer Walter’s gamma-radiated blood.
After that, we will speculate freely. If Daredevil: Born Once more” would not deliver Punisher into the MCU, the Thunderbolts’ dedication to creating a greater world below a brand new order may. Ghost Rider may tag in too. However a extra enjoyable query is whether or not or not Batroc the Leaper (Georges St-Pierre) survived his closing encounter with the Energy Dealer (Emily VanCamp). Because the Krillin of this supercharged group, it might be a terrific gag to see this fella yet another time.
Marvel’s been teasing virtually each single member of the Younger Avengers line-up since “Ant-Man” launched Cassie Lang (Abby Ryder Fortson), aka Younger Avenger’s Stature. We have seen Kate Bishop/Hawkeye (Hailee Steinfeld), Elijah Bradley/Patriot (Elijah Richardson), Billy/Wiccan (Julian Hilliard) and Tommy Maximoff/Velocity (Jett Klyne), America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez), and a pint-sized child Loki (Jack Veal) within the MCU. Additionally, 2019’s “Captain Marvel” probably laid the groundwork for the arrival of the Kree-Skrull hybrid Teddy Altman, aka Hulkling. Nevertheless, there’s one main exception lacking from the group.
We have but to satisfy Iron Lad. For that to work, we’re on the lookout for one thing to occur earlier than “Avengers: Kang Dynasty” in MCU’s Part 6. “Ant-Man Quantumania” or an unannounced mission may present a springboard for a variant to emerge. Within the pages of Marvel comics, Kang the Conquerer has a stunning blood tie to the Unbelievable 4. Kang’s a descendant of the Richards household, and Iron Lad is a child-aged Kang. Courtesy of his future self, Iron Lad receives a tour of his villainous future, inspiring him to unite the Younger Avengers and cease Kang’s (and his) future. With variants in play courtesy of “Loki” and “Physician Unusual within the Multiverse of Insanity,” the complicated time journey side may very well be laid apart in favor of a child prepared to alter his Sacred Timeline.
A number of plot threads may turn out to be a part of Harry Types’ tapestry of Starfox. Given the identify of Eros by his Titanian dad and mom — to steadiness his brother Thanos’ identify, which suggests demise — the Everlasting is an even bigger deal within the comics now greater than ever. Author Kieron Gillen, who beforehand steered Child Loki onto their fan-favorite path right this moment, will take a brand new method to Starfox in October’s one-shot comedian “Starfox.” Previous Starfox is a manipulative playboy. In an interview with GamesRadar, Gillen identified how writers misused his pheromone sexiness. “We see a personality whose energy set circled pleasure, and to lean into fairly than away from the creepiness speaks to the sex-phobic nature of our society,” Gillen shared.
Though the casting of Types is not a think about how Gillen will method his tackle Starfox, his work may result in Starfox’s subsequent MCU look. Whereas Styles is coy about when he’ll return, there are openings. “Eternals 2” is a given, however there is a comic-canon probability Starfox turns up in “She-Hulk.” In Dan Slott and Will Conrad’s “She-Hulk” run, Starfox goes on trial for his previous sexual assault. Whereas it is much less humorous right this moment, the MCU can give you a greater riff. Additionally, he may seem in “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3,” which may see him therapeutic the bridge between Quill and the brand new Gamora.
In the event you or anybody you already know has been a sufferer of sexual assault, assist is on the market. Go to the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN’s Nationwide Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
Odds are good that Marvel Studios’ upcoming “Wonder Man” television series goes to be a meta-comedy. Within the comics, Simon Williams is an entitled nepotist brat with cash to spare. He turns into a supervillain and finally an honest Avenger with a tanky energy set. Nonetheless, he is sort of a jerk. What most individuals recall — and what’s changed into a sight gag in “Guardians of the Galaxy 2” — is his appearing profession. On the intense facet, he can do his personal stunts. Bringing back Trevor Slattery (Sir Ben Kingsley) amps the probabilities. What “She-Hulk” did for procedural authorized dramas, Simon might do for a fictional Hollywood craving superhero biopics. If we’re blessed, that is additionally a terrific place to get that subsequent Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani) cameo.
Most significantly, this may very well be the place the mysterious White Imaginative and prescient (Paul Bettany) of “WandaVision” returns. It is the West Coast Avengers “Vision Quest” arc by John Byrne that rebuilds Imaginative and prescient (and inspired the chilling “WandaVision” scene that confirmed the disassembled android on a slab). Byrne’s story focuses on Imaginative and prescient discovering his lacking humanity. Right here, Marvel Man initially supplied the baseline for Imaginative and prescient’s thoughts, however now he refuses to assist. Within the MCU, the White Imaginative and prescient would possibly flip up in William’s life, on the lookout for items of his Ship of Theseus within the thoughts of a flawed actor.
When followers right this moment consider Blade, they don’t seem to be pondering of some English dude in ski-goggles. Wesley Snipes gave Blade a badass lease on life, upgrading the daywalking dhampir into one thing the evils of the Marvel Universe feared. Generally, it is arduous to take the Blade of Marvel comics significantly with occasions just like the “Curse of the Mutants” — when Dracula’s son turns the X-Males into vampires.
The MCU’s upcoming “Blade” movie is probably going going to place a recent however acquainted spin on the daywalker with Mahershala Ali within the main function. Placing him in London with Dane Whitman (Package Harrington) opens up a number of paths for the story, as Dane’s burdened with the Ebony Blade. Whereas recent comic events give the Ebony Blade a connection to the Necrosword, it could be simpler to riff on Arthurian legend with a model of Merlin that may very well be a information or villain. Darkish magic is one thing Blade, way more than a vampire hunter, can deal with.
One other potential risk is the fallout from the seeming destruction of the Darkhold in “Physician Unusual within the Multiverse of Insanity.” This mighty grimoire isn’t simple to destroy, a lot much less management within the comics. The likeliest idea of all is that “Blade” units up one other Disney+ restricted sequence, giving the “True Detective” star extra room to hunt.
Marvel Studios’ “Wakanda Endlessly” goes to harm. It is a bitter tablet that Chadwick Boseman’s Black Panther will not be the one to face Namor (Tenoch Huerta). Within the trailer for “Wakanda Forever,” Huerta expresses silent energy as a ferocious antihero that might earn a bigger place within the MCU — and a shot at a solo outing.
Plenty of that idea rides on the suspicion that, by the tip of “Wakanda Endlessly,” Namor and his kingdom — Talocan, an underwater Mesoamerican realm distinct from the comics’ Atlantis — is probably not the largest enemy Wakanda faces. Namor, within the comics, is fast to anger, however he is not a villain. He clashes with T’Challa, however there’s additionally respect. Huerta is fast to reference that in an interview with Black Nerd Girls. It is that mutual respect that may mend partitions when the kingdoms be taught there are larger fish to fry.
Afterward, Namor may have lots to do. With the Unbelievable 4 coming quickly to the MCU, he may flirt with Sue Storm – as he did within the comics. The Illuminati in “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” affords the possibility for a brand new model of this secretive group to offer Namor his rightful seat at that desk. That alone may very well be the idea for a Namor movie or restricted sequence, giving him an opportunity to turn out to be as large as Loki.
Depart it to Marvel to drop one of many greatest developments thus far in such a quiet manner. Whereas “Physician Unusual within the Multiverse of Insanity” gave us one other take a look at our favourite Professor Xavier (Sir Patrick Stewart), it was a last-minute reveal in “Ms. Marvel” that instructed us the mutant gene was again. However that opening — and a fast gag a couple of bar-brawling Wolverine in a “She-Hulk” newspaper — does one thing the X-Males have not had in a very long time: They have a recent floor flooring.
Whereas nonetheless unconfirmed, the rumors of Giancarlo Esposito as Xavier recommend Feige is a middle-aged tackle the main X-Man. That will set the tone for the mutant faculty — a grounded and assured place for these prepared to be taught. However the most certainly idea right here is the MCU utilizing mutants to focus on the range the X-Males themselves have all the time represented. Kitty Pryde, Jubilee, Bishop, and newer X-Man Tempo would possibly get seen. Nevertheless, the best X-Males debut within the MCU chance is Storm. Often called the Queen of Wakanda within the comics, we would possibly get to satisfy her in “Wakanda Endlessly.”
Will Loki ever return to the first timeline? If the comics are an inspiration right here, it is probably that a model will flip up in Thor’s life. Proper now, any hypothesis rides on the end result of the second season of “Loki.” Tom Hiddleston confirmed season 1’s “Loki” cast is returning. Set images have already proven Sylvie (Sophie Di Martino) and Agent Mobius (Owen Wilson) on location. However will all of the variants return too?
Alligator Loki is a heart-thieving breakout star, incomes a ton of merch and a silly comic. However Kieron Gillen’s reboot of the character in “Journey Into Thriller” leaves an opportunity for the child-sized Loki (Jack Veal), or one other variant of him, to return again into the God of Thunder’s life. As an alternative of the typically sensitive friendship between Loki and Leah, a grim woman with a secret darkish facet, Love (India Rose Hemsworth) has a bit of Eternity inside her. It would be a brand new dynamic, however simply as able to discover the theme of second possibilities in life. Plus, that is one other member of the Younger Avengers able to go!
Set to be launched in “Wakanda Endlessly,” Riri Williams, aka Ironheart (Dominique Thorne), is an engineering genius on the extent of Tony Stark. Her first comedian e book appearances have been in “Invincible Iron Man,” by Brian Michael Bendis and Stefano Caselli, the place she obtained her superhero stamp of approval from Stark. Within the MCU, she could also be a recipient of the packages Wakanda arrange on the finish of “Black Panther.” However Riri is already confirmed for her personal sequence, “Ironheart,” and thus far, the largest thriller is her villain.
Anthony Ramos (“Hamilton”) will star in Ironheart, although his role is unknown. There are set images that indicate he’ll painting one in every of Marvel’s latest villains. Previously, the MCU has pulled some large swerves, and if Ramos is The Hood, the Disney+ sequence could be constructing to a warfare between Kingpins. The Hood, armed with demonic artifacts and a connection to Wilson Fisk (Vincent D’Onofrio), has large ambitions in life. He is devoted to his crime household and needs to overthrow Fisk. It may even be that The Hood, who’s beefed with the Defenders, will turn out to be one in every of Daredevil’s issues when he returns in “Born Once more.”
James “Conflict Machine” Rhodes (Don Cheadle) is our main hero for the upcoming Disney+ sequence “Armor Wars.” Set to be at the least loosely based mostly on the unique 1987-1988 “Iron Man” comedian arc, Cheadle will stand towards a sequence of threats that Tony Stark as soon as confronted. That loss will nonetheless have a job in Rhodey’s story. Nevertheless, if we’re voting for at the least one storyline from the comedian to make a return, it is Justin Hammer.
This idea is dependent upon whether or not or not Sam Rockwell is up for the function after his final sighting in Marvel’s quick movie, “All Hail the King.” If Sir Ben Kingsley continues to be having enjoyable, it is arduous to think about Feige not getting Sam again on board. In “Armor Wars,” Justin commercially advantages from stealing Stark design paperwork. In right this moment’s MCU, it is good cash that it is Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp) who would organize that theft — as an alternative of the comics’ Spymaster. That makes for a terrific place to proceed the storyline from “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier” and one other probability to take a deep take a look at the MCU’s disagreeable facet.
Agatha Harkness (Kathryn Hahn) has an open discipline for her solo outing, “Agatha: Coven of Chaos.” One large query that may probably get answered is: Can curses outlast their makers? Wanda left Agatha spellbound as the identical perky-creepy housewife neighbor she pretended to be. By the tip of “Physician Unusual within the Multiverse of Insanity,” the Scarlet Witch is seemingly useless (or down for the rely). Which will imply that “Coven of Chaos” opens with Agatha free of her magical binding.
Agatha’s by no means headlined a comic book, leaving her free to discover all of Marvel’s magical facet — probably with visits from characters just like the Salem Seven or different Darkhold worshippers. She may have run-ins with the Victoria Montesi-led Redeemers, which may arrange connections to “Blade.” Or she may even add context for the upcoming “Midnight Suns” online game. That sport’s a riff on the Midnight Sons, one other supernatural hero team-up that features Ghost Rider and Daimon Hellstrom, who had a short-lived Hulu sequence in 2020. They’re all potential antagonists!
However sly cash is on a particular cameo by the tip of Agatha’s reign of chaos. She’s additionally been the Richards’ household nurse in “Fantastic Four,” tending to little Franklin Richards about in addition to she did Wanda.
“Physician Unusual within the Multiverse of Insanity” makes use of its credit score cookies to arrange a sprawling dimensional future. Clea (Charlize Theron) is the niece of Dormammu, the dread lord of chaos and the grasp of the Darkish Dimension. Unusual bargained him right into a nook in his first film outing. However Dormammu is one in every of his large deal comedian e book nemeses, and it is unlikely that his risk to the MCU is over.
Re-upping Sam Raimi’s contract and a intelligent mixing of concepts may create a good grimmer narrative for “Physician Unusual 3” — if we’re fortunate. The Lovecraftian Cancerverse was launched within the 2010 “Realm of Kings” occasion, introducing Marvel’s cosmic secure to a universe the place Loss of life had died. Then, the eldritch Many-Angled Ones held sway. The MCU missed its probability to introduce Loss of life as an entity in the course of the Infinity Conflict, however “Thor: Love & Thunder” and the brand new Watcher has primed audiences for the bony immortal’s presence. Clea, a Sorcerer Supreme in her personal proper, might have opened the door to a world the place the Cancerverse and the Darkish Dimension overlap.