Avengers: Endgame, the MCU backdoor pilot
Who has seen Avengers: Endgame, the culmination of eleven years of Marvel Cinematic Universe movies, also might have noticed that a number of things were highlighted during the movie and a number of plot threads were left dangling. These will most likely result in a number of future movies and/or original series for streaming service Disney+. Let’s see which we could find and yes, there will be major spoilers for Avengers: Endgame from this point onward.
Falcon & Winter Soldier
At the end of Avengers: Endgame Steve Rogers gifts his famous shield to Sam Wilson/Falcon. This is akin to the 2014 Captain America comic in which an elderly Steve Rogers also gifts his shield to Falcon. Only until recently, around the Secret Empire comic event to which Cap’s “Hail HYDRA” alludes to, a rejuvenated Steve regained his shield.
Before Falcon got the shield, Bucky got the shield and became Captain America for a time between 2008 and 2011, but this apparently gets skipped over in the MCU or becomes a plot point in Falcon & Winter Soldier, which will see the two characters teaming up.
With Steve Rogers now an elderly man, this does not mean he is necessarily out. After all, in the comics Steve became S.H.I.E.L.D.’s watchdog and led a team of Avengers in the 2015 comic Uncanny Avengers.
A notable absentee among Avengers: Endgame’s returning characters is the Vision. Of course, he is not a biological being, but that might be the key of bringing him back without the Infinity Stones. In the comics, he came back from a lot worse than “just” a dent in his head. In 2004’s Marvel comic universe shattering event Avengers Disassembled, Vision was ripped in half by She-Hulk. And in 2010 and 2011’s Chaos War event, Vision was blown to shreds. From both violent deaths, he came back.
When Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch actress Elizabeth Olsen was talking with Variety on Avengers: Endgame’s red carpet, she said that WandaVision will have a 1950s aesthetic. Leaving it in the middle if the series is actually set in the 1950s, but we doubt that. This would be in line with the excellent 2016 comic Vision, in which Vision has created a family of Visions for himself. The comic went for an American Nuclear Family, quite a 1950s notion, with Vision as the working husband and father, his wife Virginia as the homemaker and mother, and two teenage children in daughter Viv and son Vin. It is quite possible that they will merge the story of Vision and the many comics about Vision and Scarlet Witch’s relationship for the Disney+ original series. Viv and Vin could be replaced with their magically created children Thomas and William Maximoff, who later were reincarnated into Young Avengers Thomas Shepard/Speed and William Kaplan/Wiccan.
When the Avengers travel back to the events of 2012’s The Avengers Loki manages to get away with the Tesseract/Space Stone. With that plot thread left dangling and with a Loki series coming to Disney+, we can only assume that this thread will be picked up there. It is said the Disney+ original series will have Loki at events through history. Maybe the Space Stone plays a role.
Not officially announced yet, but it all sounds like it is definitely coming, is a Hawkeye series for Disney+. It is highly suspicious that Lila Barton is highlighted throughout Avengers: Endgame and is even called Hawkeye by Clint Barton at the beginning of the movie. In the comics, Young Avenger Kate Bishop takes up the Hawkeye mantel after Clint’s demise during 2004’s Avengers Disassembled. When Clint eventually returns they both use the name and have a dysfunctional teacher/student relationship, with it often being vague who exactly is the teacher and who the student. Maybe Lila Barton will fit the role of Kate Bishop in all but name.
Everyone probably has noticed the moment during Avengers: Endgame’s final battle when Peter Parker/Spider-Man was bolting with the Avengers-made Infinity Gauntlet and got cover from almost all MCU heroines. It is quite possible we witnessed the first assembling of A-Force. The possibility of a movie starring a team of female Avengers is also hinted at a number of times by those actors now.
A-Force is a team of female Avengers first introduced in a limited series of the same name during 2015’s Secret Wars comic event. After the event was over it became an ongoing comic series in 2016, starring Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel, Jen Walters/She-Hulk, the Runaways’ Nico Minoru, Inhuman Queen Medusa, and Allison Blaire/Dazzler. We will probably not see this lineup in a movie, but Pepper Pots/Rescue, Valkyrie, General Okoye, Princess Shuri, Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel, Hope Van Dyne/The Wasp, and Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch sounds like a good team roster too. And who knows, maybe we will finally see She-Hulk introduced?
Also not officially announced yet, but definitely in the works, is a Black Widow solo movie. Cate Shortland (SMILF) is already attached as director, Ned Benson (The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby) is said to be its screenwriter, and David Harbour (Stranger Things) and Rachel Weisz (The Favourite) are attached in undisclosed roles. With Scarlett Johansson of course returning as Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow and, a first for a MCU actor, producer. Will the movie be a prequel focusing on Black Widow’s formative time at the Red Room, which has been covered in part in Avengers: Age of Ultron and TV series Agent Carter, or is it a sequel featuring her return from death? It is possible after all, as Gamora is still running around and Black Widow has come back in the comics a number of times too. Most recently after the comic event Secret Empire.
It is also interesting Avengers: Endgame revealed to Black Widow that her father’s name is Ivan. This is probably Ivan Petrovich, who in the comics found Natasha as an infant and brought her to the Red Room. Maybe this will be Harbour’s role.
Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3/Thor 4
The fate of the third Guardians of the Galaxy movie had been in limbo for some time, but with director and writer James Gunn back on board it is now definitely coming. The last we saw of the Guardians in Avengers: Endgame hints at what will come next for these characters and Thor, who has joined them. Gamora has sneaked off from the finale of Endgame and with Peter Quill/Star-Lord scanning for her, we can assume their next point on the agenda will be finding her.
What is also still coming for the Guardians is Adam Warlock, who is presumed to be in the pod we saw at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Warlock is both an ally and foe to our Marvel heroes in many Infinity related stories, such as the Infinity Gauntlet, Infinity War, Infinity Crusade, and the Thanos: Infinity graphic novels.
What is interesting is that Thor will be joining the Guardians of the Galaxy, making their next movie also a sort of Thor 4, while we wait on if that movie will happen or not. Interestingly Thor calls the group the Asgardians of the Galaxy, which happens to be a recent comic starring a group of Asgardians misfits led by Thor’s sister Angela (who may very well have been merged into the MCU’s Hela) and Valkyrie, and is tightly related to the recent Infinity Wars comic event.
Throughout Avengers: Endgame we are introduced to many younger characters, which could very well become the Young Avengers team. Lila Barton, we already mentioned could become the MCU version of Kate Bishop/Hawkeye. Scott Lang/Ant-Man’s daughter Cassie Lang has been aged up so she could become Stature or Stinger. And then there was the surprise reappearance of Iron Man 3’s Harley Keener, who very well could fit the role of Iron Lad to avoid the whole complicated time travel thing of it being a young Kang the Conqueror. And who knows? Maybe the earlier mentioned kids of Vision and Scarlet Witch could join them, and maybe even Kid Loki!
Easily the longest shot is a potential Namor the Sub-Mariner movie. Black Widow mentions a seaquake, which is quickly shot down as a natural occurrence by others in the room. And while it may indeed be nothing, it might also be the first hint at the ruler of Atlantis, Namor the Sub-Mariner. Well, first hint. There was also the infamous background map at the end of Iron Man 2 when Tony Stark and Nick Fury are talking. That same map that highlighted Wakanda, years before Black Panther was introduced, also highlighted a spot in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.
There is an issue, however. Universal still has a hold on Namor. It could, however, be that this is the same situation as with the Hulk and he can be used in other movies. A Fantastic Four movie is a prime candidate for this, as Namor has a long history with the FF. Namor is also a mutant. Introducing him could be a way for Marvel Studios to start bringing in mutants without having to directly make an X-Men movie or naming mutants. They could do a similar thing with Storm in a Black Panther movie.
These were the Disney+ series and movies we could find hints towards in Avengers: Endgame. Have you spotted any others? Are we dead wrong? Leave a comment!