The Ant-Man franchise is somewhat unfairly viewed as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s least important solo series in the grand scheme of things, but that all changed when it was announced that Jonathan Majors had joined the cast. Not only is the rising star a solid addition to the ensemble, but the news came with the tantalizing tease that he could be playing iconic supervillain Kang the Conqueror.
Naturally, fans went wild over the idea that one of the most powerful bad guys in comic book history may be on their way to the MCU, and there’s already been plenty of speculation that this could even start laying the foundations for the Fantastic Four’s debut. Furthermore, there was chatter some months back that Kang might be positioned as the next Avengers-level threat, and a new theory claims that Ant-Man 3 could just be a stepping stone towards assembling Earth’s Mightiest Heroes once more.
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Admittedly, much of this theory is based on the idea that Kang is too big and important of a villain for the Ant-Man movies, which seems a little harsh, but Scott Lang’s adventures have always been much narrower in scope that the majority of his contemporaries. As per the theory, having been a formidable foe for the Avengers over the years in the pages of Marvel Comics, a one and done showing in the MCU would be a massive waste of potential for Kang. Instead, the theory claims that he could be seeking Hank Pym’s technology in order to infiltrate the Quantum Realm, which makes sense given that he’s no stranger to time travel. Kang could then handily defeat both Ant-Man and Wasp before disappearing, having accomplished the first step in his plans for world domination.
As ScreenRant explains:
It’s possible that his conflict with Scott Lang and the others in Ant-Man 3 is just one minor phase in his plan. Whatever his intentions may be, they’re sure to be connected to the Quantum Realm in one way or another, especially since Kang is a time-traveler and the Quantum Realm, a plot device that was introduced in Ant-Man is used for that very purpose. It could be to get what he needs to complete his master plan – whatever that may be – Kang needs technology from Hank Pym. It’s possible that Kang will operate as a side villain who aids Ant-Man 3’s real main antagonist.
If that’s the case, Kang doesn’t have to be defeated in the movie. In fact, Kang may actually win. That would help get the point across to audiences that Kang the Conqueror is a villain who isn’t to be trifled with. After he accomplishes his goal, he could flee the timeline. His victory over Ant-Man would create a loose end to be tied up in Avengers 5, where he would finally put his scheme into action.
So, it seems Kang’s appearance in Ant-Man 3 could lead to recurring roles in future movies, as the MCU slowly starts the build towards Avengers 5 by having the man born Nathaniel Richards show up everywhere from Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness to Loki, the latter of which has already been heavily rumored to feature him.