While the new trailer for Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania is a great taste of what’s to come in next year’s movie, it also provides some teases of what villain Kang the Conqueror might have in store for Avengers 5.
Loki may have technically been the first to introduce Jonathan Majors’ villain to the MCU, but the upcoming threequel will introduce audiences to one of his meaner Variants—the Avenger killing type. Someone who will be giving the world some trouble in 2025.
Of course, this is in reference to Destin Daniel Cretton’s The Kang Dynasty, which will be the first Avengers movie since Endgame in 2019.
This time, as the project’s title implies, Kang the Conqueror will be everyone’s problem. But what does he have planned for his preferred future? Ant-Man’s trailer may have some big hints.
The Quantum Realm Connection
The first and most obvious piece of The Kang Dynasty puzzle is the Quantum Realm. The location played a key part in Avengers: Endgame, and in doing so, established that if an MCU story is going to have time travel, then it’s almost certainly going to involve the incomprehensible plane of existence that is the Quantum Realm (a connection many are still waiting for Loki to make with the TVA).
Quantumania seems to clearly explore the fantastical setting more than it ever has before. In doing so, it’ll set up fresh lore and, most importantly, new rules for the MCU to play with.
Seeing as Kang the Conqueror is THE time-traveling villain, they’ll need to establish how he does his schtick. Knowing the logic behind the ideas at play also helps to strengthen the plot’s stakes.
When it comes to the fifth Avengers movie, the writers will also likely want to set up important concepts early so they have as much space possible to service everything required for Marvel Studios’ next big epic.
In the recent trailer, a very advanced-looking city can be seen residing in the Quantum Realm. It’s not quite spelled out for the audience, but context could indicate that this place might belong to Kang.
If that’s the case, then this movie could serve as the introduction to Chronopolis. In the comics, this city is where the villain has often called home.
It also sits right outside of time, just like the Quantum Realm.
This fictional city will pop up at some point before Kang’s time is up in the MCU, and his first big film appearance could be a perfect time.
Defending the Multiverse Against Itself
When Loki first introduced Jonathan Majors’ He Who Remains, his intentions were immediately made clear: protect the Multiverse from a full-blown war across existence.
In the series, his key point of worry was regarding himself. He even revealed how at one point, he was part of a Council of Kangs—a gathering of his various Variants, one that turned sour and eventually threatened, quite literally, everything.
Obviously, given Sylvie’s reckless actions at the end of the Disney+ show’s first season, He Who Remains is no longer there to keep himself from getting out of control. So who will?
Well, it seems obvious that since he’s already tried stopping himself once, he may do it again. While the reasoning may be different this time around, the villain has been known to campaign against himself in the source material on several occasions.
While showcasing what could be Chronopolis, an entire army can be seen assembling. Could this welcoming party be meant to keep Kang’s own Variants at bay? Or something more immediate, such as a threat from MODOK or even Ant-Man and his crew?
Kang Wants Out
Majors’ villain seems to want help with something from Paul Rudd’s hero—which is made all the clearer in the D23 footage. Could Kang be trapped? After all, it’s been well-established how easy it is to get lost in the Quantum Realm.
Perhaps Scott has very particular capabilities the supervillain needs to get himself out of his predicament. With how powerful and intelligent Kang is, it’s hard to imagine what might have got him into that hypothetical pickle—but it’s possible!
So then, in theory, Kang’s primary motivation would be to escape back to Earth-616. This would, obviously, directly set this Variant up to be the key version audiences will see take center stage once again in The Kang Dynasty.
However, quite the opposite could end up happening.
Continuing the Introduction
Lastly, there’s the simple answer: he’s simply another example.
This version of Kang might only be a part of Quantumania. He could easily end up dying by the time the credits roll, with the Ant-Family believing they have won. Or, it will be very clear to Scott and his family that some version of Majors will be back.
This would make the size-changing heroes among the first to be introduced to Kang’s true Multiversal threat.
Creatives at Marvel Studios have previously talked about how great it’s going to be to play around with different Variants of Kang in key roles before a version of him truly takes the spotlight. This means that whatever version of the character the Earth’s Mightiest Heroes end up facing in the upcoming Avengers film, it’ll probably be the first time audiences see him on screen.
The Avengers Have a Lot to Worry About
One thing that’s important to point out is how Jeff Loveness is the writer for both Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and The Kang Dynasty. This strongly implies that the two will be heavily connected—potentially far more than audiences will realize even after the movie has finished.
The same observation can be made of Michael Waldron’s work across Loki, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, and Secret Wars.
There’s already a handful of ways Jonathan Majors’ big bad differs from Josh Brolin’s Thanos, but the ability for him to embody several versions of his character before even becoming a threat to the Avengers is one that will help make him an equally unique villain.
Audiences shouldn’t be surprised to see Majors show up a few more times before the big crossover event. Namely, Loki’s second season looks like the big contender following Ant-Man’s run-in with him.
Quantumania is set to hit theaters on February 17, 2023, while The Kang Dynasty lands on May 2, 2025.