The Marvel Cinematic Universe is showing no signs of losing memento, with Phase 4 drawing to a close and Phase 5 set to follow. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is set to close Phase 4 of the MCU, where a new Black Panther will rise in place of the dearly departed Chadwick Boseman. Phase 5 is set to comprise of 6 films starting with Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and ending with The Thunderbolts. But these two phases are likely to be setting up the players that will join forces to end a massive threat much like how Phase 3 closed the arcs set-up in Phases 1 and 2.
So, the question is, what will be bringing the heroes together and what flag will all the heroes fly under in the film? As Phase 3 ended with the iconic words "Avengers Assemble!" So, let's first look at what threats could take the seat now Thanos is gone. The most likely contenders being Kang the Conqueror, Galactus or perhaps even a curveball, the Beyonder.
Kang the Conquerer
Kang is at present the biggest contender, having been introduced in the first season on Loki. His name pretty much says it all but is a time traveller with access to advanced technology. He also holds a super-intellect which allows him to develop devastating strategies and weapons with his advanced tech. It has also been clear for a while that Marvel have plans with their Young Avengers, and Kang holds strong ties to the young heroes.
The problem with Kang as the villain is what is his motive and how will he hold off powerhouses like Captain Marvel in a united battle. Thanos showed he could at least hold Captain Marvel off long enough if needed and would go to extremes when faced near defeat at the hands of Wanda. But Thanos is a more extreme mad tyrant style character who would go to those extremes. So, for Kang to work as the force unifying all the heroes Marvel may have to get creative and perhaps add a power of two to Kang's roster.
Galactus is one of the most powerful entities within Marvel Comics, but he has yet to be eluded to in the MCU. But his chances are good at appearing for a few reasons. One being Marvel amping up the cosmic and mystic sides of the MCU. Galactus has major cosmic factors and is essentially a force of nature more than a villain. His power levels are also high enough that Captain Marvel's photon blasts would feel mere bee stings to him.
Another reason Galactus could be chosen is the Fantastic Four. Out of all the superhero titles within Marvel Comics, the Fantastic Four is the one he has the strongest known ties with. Marvel have made it clear they have plans for both the Mutants and the Fantastic Four in the MCU. With us already getting a live-action Reed Richards in the MCU, it appears they may beat the X-Men to their MCU film first.
Now yes, this one is a wildcard, but I promise there is logic behind this choice. One thing that is standing out within the lists of Phase 4 and Phase 5. There are no repeating team films between the two phases. Avengers films anchored the first three phases of the MCU, but instead Phases 4 and 5 are jumping between solo hero films and team films, but none are getting 2 films within the two phases. Instead another theme continues to appear in these phases, morality and what is good or evil.
In several films and shows since Avengers: Endgame have focused on the morality behind decisions. This is true in both the films and the shows of the MCU at present. The Beyonder is an all-powerful being with a simple question, which is right, good or evil? With his powers he mashes a world together using parts of Earth and other planets, gathers various forces of good and evil on the planet and stages his own contest to see which is correct. This may be farfetched but at the same time when you consider the recurring question of morality in the MCU at the moment, it suddenly makes the Beyonder seem like he is being prepared to take centre-stage. It also does not mean they will not make him create his War World using parts from different Earths from different realities from the MCU.
These three evil forces are all likely candidates but there are plenty of other options, such as Doctor Doom & Apocalypse. However, coming off the back of the threat Thanos brought, the MCU you need aim big. But what banner will the heroes fly under when they join forces? This is a question with a few options.
The New Avengers
Given how the Avengers where the original team, it is likely the heroes will join forces once again using the same name. However, there could be a simple throwaway line of how now they are New Avengers, with so many of the veterans stepping away from the fight and new heroes taking their place. This option would be simple, safe and cash in on the MCU nostalgia from Avengers: Endgame.
The Future Foundation
Marvel's first family could be the ones to lead the heroes under their expanded hero title of Future Foundation. With the Multiverse being played with in Phases 4 and 5, the Future Foundation could be the ones needed to help save all reality. It would also show the Marvel have faith in the Fantastic Four and are on a mission to restore their reputation after their Sony film outing.
The Midnight Sons
The Midnight Sons comprises mainly of mystic wielders or those with strong ties to the realms of darkness. With magic seeming to go hand-in-hand with the MCU's multiverse fun. This team could be what brings all the heroes of the MCU together, with Doctor Strange taking centre stage to lead the heroes.
The Guardians of the Galaxy
This is perhaps the most unlikely option, but considering the Guardians started off as a haphazard joke of a team in the MCU. They have slowly become more prominent and more important as the MCU has progressed. Perhaps Quill and the gang’s final mission in the MCU could show how truly far they have come by leading the heroes of the MCU.
The final option is, if they go down the Beyonder route, the groups and factions would remain an aspect of War World, with the heroes having to slowly band together more and more while the villains expand their territory.
One thing that is certain, the Infinity Saga is considered iconic already amongst fans. It paid of years of work to cultivate into a massive brawl unlike any seen on the big screen before. Now Marvel have the challenge of keeping that standard, and so far, the nuggets seen in Phase 4 are not pointing towards any obvious plans. By this time in Phase 1 it was clear the Avengers were in the making. But so far, there is not clear indicator linking the easter eggs fans are collecting in Phase 4. Perhaps Phase 5 will start helping to indicate where we are heading, but until then we will have to keep on guessing.
What do you want to see following the Infinity Saga? How do you think it could all play out?
About the Creator
A guy who was raised on comic books, sci-fi and the love of superheroes, thanks for that dad. I am also studying Film Production and Cinematography giving new insight into the craft.
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