Stoll's Ant-Man character (Darren Cross) has not been seen or heard from since he was perpetually shrunk down at the tail-end of Paul Rudd's super-powered debut; however, that is all about to change with Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania.
As shown off in Quantumania's latest trailer, the Ant-Man actor is finally back, this time taking on the villainous role of MODOK (Mental Organism Designed Only For Killing). Stoll previously hinted that he would be back, saying he suspiciously "couldn't answer" if he had any future MCU involvement.
Now, fans will be excited to see Stoll back and MODOK's MCU debut; but for those eagle-eyed Marvel Studios devotees, his return should not be all that surprising.
Corey Stoll's MODOK Return Teased in Loki
Corey Stoll's MCU return has been a long time coming, so much so that he was included as a subtle Easter egg in Loki.
Back in Episode 5 of Loki Season 1, the helmet of Stoll's Ant-Man villain Yellowjacket appeared in the mysterious interdimensional plane, the Void.
The piece of his Yellowjacket costume sits planted in the hills of the Void, looking to be sized way up.
Taking a closer look, it is unmistakable; this is the Yellowjacket helmet, sporting bright yellow eyes and a silver gas mask-esque mouth and chin piece.
Back when the Multiversal Disney+ series was airing in June 2021, it was written that Stoll would be back for Quantumania, with certain reports pointing to this giant-sized Loki Easter Egg. So it is reasonable to assume that this could have been Marvel Studios laying those first breadcrumbs for the actor's MCU comeback as MODOK.
How Did Yellowjacket Pop up in Loki?
This does not explain just how Darren Cross made it from the end of Ant-Man to becoming MODOK in Quantumania or if this is even the same Variant of the character in the MCU blockbuster (something there is already precedent for in Ant-Man 3). But there is enough connective tissue here that one can start to craft some theories.
One way that Stoll's MCU villain could have made it to where he is has to do with his final moments in Ant-Man. As Paul Rudd's Scott Lang takes down Stoll's Yellowjacket, the MCU big bad is shrunk way down, seemingly in perpetuity.
As has been explained by Marvel Studios up to this point, the Quantum Realm is as small as one can go, so if Stoll's Ant-Man character had continually been shrunk down, it would make sense that he would ultimately end up in the Quantum Realm.
Then as he was shrinking, going smaller and smaller, it's not a far logical leap to think that his helmet may have been thrown from his body, ending up in a place like the Void in Loki.
It doesn't explain why he becomes the deformed and grotesque MODOK, but it could hint at how the villain ended up in Quantumania.
Hopefully, all will become clear when Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania debuts in theaters on February 17.