Actor Jonathan Major is already spilling secrets about playing Kang variants, as he will not only star in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania but become the primary villain in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and the next Thanos in The Multiverse Saga. It comes at a time when the multiverse has been a prominent theme in MCU’s Phase Four, only making Kang the best candidate to set this chain of events.
The time-traveling nature of Kang makes him one of the MCU’s deadliest villains yet, and there have been hints that he may have secretly played a part in previous occurrences within the franchise. These potential involvements range from exploring different realities to the first undertakings in time travel, which means that Kang was lingering as the next threat this whole time, and Avengers must prepare for battle against him.
The Invention Of Time Travel
one of Avengers: Endgame‘s biggest leaps in logic came in a surprisingly short scene in which Tony Stark invents time travel. This moment would go on to inform the entire second act of the film as he and the Avengers leaped to past moments in the MCU to gather the Infinity Stones.
In the years since Endgame‘s release, fans have lightheartedly made fun of the film’s casual relationship with time travel, though this could very well have been the intention of Kang himself. As one of the most experienced time travelers ever, Kang was certainly aware of the Avengers’ discovery and perhaps dropped hints along the way that would have led to Tony’s ultimate realization. The comment made by He Who Remains in the Loki season premiere similarly seems to support the theory that Kang was involved in the Avengers’ time heist.
The Darkhold plays a massive role in corrupting Wanda and turning her into one of the MCU’s most powerful villains, as seen in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. The evil book is first seen in the possession of Agatha Harkness during the events of WandaVisionthough its whereabouts beforehand are completely unknown.
Given that it is never revealed how Agatha came to be in possession of one of the most powerful artifacts of all time, she may have indeed been guided by Kang himself, knowing that the Darkhold would eventually fall into the hands of Wanda Maximoff. It would make sense for Kang to seek to corrupt the most powerful member of the Avengers before confronting them himself, and, as it would seem, his plan worked to perfection.
Janet Van Dyne’s Disappearance
Janet van Dyne, the original Wasp, disappeared during the Cold War after going subatomic on a mission with her husband, Ant-Man. It would later be revealed in Ant-Man and the Wasp that Janet had spent decades lost in the Quantum Realm, where much of her history is left completely unexplored.
Many fans have theorized for years that Kang’s base of operations, Chronopolis, can be seen in the background of the Quantum Realm during the events of Ant-Man and the Wasp. The possibility became even likelier with the revelation that Kang will be the main villain in the upcoming sequel, Quantumania. With so much of her time in the Quantum Realm left a mystery, Janet possibly has a history with Kang that she has kept quiet until now.
The Creation Of The Ten Rings
In the mid-credit scene of Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Shang-Chi, Katy, and the Avengers discover a deeper mystery regarding the titular hero’s signature weapons. The rings, as it turns out, are made of an as-yet-unknown metal that seems to be sending out a signal to something or someone.
Some fans have theorized that the rings may have originated from Kang himself, perhaps acting as a signal drawing him to the Earth-616 reality for his next conquest. While answers are slim regarding this mystery at the moment, all will be revealed if MCU’s Kang shows up in Shang Chi 2.
Many Different Futures
Just before the climactic final battle of Avengers: Infinity War, Doctor Strange uses the Time Stone to peer ahead into possible futures. Of the 14,000,605 possibilities that the Sorcerer Supreme foresaw, the Avengers are victorious only once, leading Doctor Strange to secretly orchestrate the cliffhanger finale of the film.
Despite Thanos’ incredible power, it seems statistically improbable that, out of so many possible futures, only one included the Avengers’ victory. This anomaly could be easily explained as another manipulation formulated by Kang, leading the Avengers on a path toward the Decimation for some as-yet-unknown purpose that could be revealed in The Kang Dynasty.
Knowhere is a location frequently visited by the Guardians of the Galaxy, though its history is far more interesting than many audience members realize. The space station is built in the decapitated head of a Celestial, the very same race of cosmic beings seen in Eternals and Thor: Love and Thunder.
The nagging question still remains as to what exactly managed to kill a powerful Celestial in such a gruesome way. While the comics explain the symbiote god Knull to be responsible, this is an unlikely reality in the MCU, given that the symbiote movie rights belong to Sony. The likely possibility is that this Celestial is leftover from a previous conflict against Kang, perhaps acting as the lone remnant of a shattered reality after a multiversal incursion event triggered by the villainous mastermind.
The Illuminati is a major part of the second act in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, arresting the titular Master of the Mystic Arts on Earth-838. The clandestine council is comprised of six superheroes, including Mister Fantastic, Captain Marvel, Captain Carter, Black Bolt, Baron Mordo, and Professor Charles Xavier. However, a seventh seat is left empty in the council chamber.
This empty chair has led to endless fan speculation regarding the seventh Illuminati member’s identity. A prominent theory contends that a version of Kang may have been the missing member of Earth-838’s Illuminati. Kang has many variants throughout the multiverse and could have easily planted one within such a major superhero group. His absence in Multiverse of Madness would suggest that either the group discovered the truth about their seventh member or that he was tipped off about their impending demise.
Captain Marvel’s Lost Years
Captain Marvel is clearly being set up as one of the Multiverse Saga’s leading Avengers, with her next confirmed appearance in next year’s The Marvels. However, there remain many mysteries surrounding Carol Danvers in the MCU, especially her whereabouts between 1995 and 2018.
At the end of Captain Marvel, it is implied that Carol sought to orchestrate the downfall of the Kree Supreme Intelligence. However, nothing is spoken of her crusade or what she did thereafter. One explanation for his absence could be the work of Kang, who certainly has the power to capture the powerful Avenger in a time vortex for several decades and thereby also explain her lack of aging.
In the surprising ending to Ms. marvel‘s fourth episode, Kamala Khan finds herself suddenly blipped backward in time to the day that her family left Pakistan during the partition. There, she participates in a brand of time travel quite different from that explored in Avengers: Endgame or Lokiwherein she alters the events of history without creating a branching timeline.
Ms. marvel‘s rule-breaking time travel may seem like inconsistent writing on the part of Marvel Studios; however, it could actually be planting the seeds for the coming conflict with Kang, who may have mastery over multiple forms of time travel. Via an interview with New Rockstars on YouTube, Iman Vellani has teased that this apparent plot hole will be explained in The Marvels next year, perhaps indicating that Kang could show up in that film as well.
Cap’s Time Travel Shenanigans
At the end of Avengers: Endgame, Steve Rogers embarks on one final mission to return the Infinity Stones to their rightful places in the timeline, so as not to allow any further branching timelines. However, he also opts to live out his life with his long-lost love Peggy Carter, eventually returning to the present day as an old man.
There are several decades left completely unaccounted for in Steve’s history and, having meddled so profoundly with the timeline, it is highly likely that Kang or the TVA would have pursued him at some point in that time. Many fans have speculated that they haven’t seen the last of Steve just yet, implying that a future avengers film could explain how he managed to evade Kang’s forces all that time.
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