Until very recently, things were finally looking up for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Of course, audiences around the world were combat franchise fatigueforcing Marvel Studios to rethink your exit strategy for the next few years – but the MCU also had a perfect villain in Jonathan Majors’ Kang, a villain who would serve as an antagonist well into Phases 5 and 6. But after Majors himself was arrested for domestic violence in March, Marvel faces a whole different kind of scrutiny.

This is a controversy Marvel has never faced before. While the studio has worked with offenders in the past — and thankfully glossed over accusations involving actors like William Hurt and Josh Brolin — Majors’ case is too recent to ignore. Abuse allegations aren’t a murky topic from his past; they’re happening now, right at the start of what could have been a multi-year partnership with Marvel.

If there was a time for Marvel to take a stand against domestic violence, it would be now. But some fans are worried about a course correction: with Majors’ Kang and all its variants set to become the next big villain in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, many fear that Marvel has built too much around the actor to back down now. According to sources close to Marvel, however, Majors hasn’t always been the new face of the MCU – and it might not be too difficult for Marvel to make a change.

Will Majors return as Kang after Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania?

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vanity lounge Joanna Robinson, scribe and Marvel insider, addressed the Kang controversy on The ring’s The big picture podcast. Although Majors are now the focus of the MCU, it wasn’t until after Quantumania that Kevin Feige and co. decided to strengthen its role in the larger narrative.

“Someone who works for Marvel told me that it was not the plan to make Kang the center of everything until they saw the dailies of Quantumania and after his performance in Loki, which was so loud they were like, ‘This is it. This is our way forward,” Robinson explained. “I would say they’ve never hung a franchise so much on an actor, as they’ve tried to tie it on Jonathan Majors.”

In the past, the MCU obviously focused more on heroes than villains – with the exception of Josh Brolin’s Thanos, who was arguably the greatest presence in Marvel’s Phase 3. Pinning the next MCU saga on a likeable, ubiquitous villain would have taken their past strategy with Thanos to another level, but Majors’ downfall has put the studio “in a bind.”

Quantumania make Kang an inevitable force, but it’s never too late to cut ties.

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Although Robinson has heard “conflicting stories” about Marvel’s plans, it proves that things may not be as bad as some thought. Before Majors wowed Marvel execs with his performances in Loki And Quantumania, it doesn’t seem like they had a solid plan for the multiverse saga. Allow Kang to guide a now rudderless MCU in a Multiversal War seems like the most logical path – but if Marvel’s braintrust could redirect the franchise’s future after one performance, there’s nothing stopping them from pivoting to a different conflict that doesn’t involve Kang.

The slate for phase 6 is still relatively thin: The Fantastic Four And Kang Dynasty are the only films scheduled for 2025, followed by Avengers: Secret Wars in 2026. Although Kang is slated to appear next in Loki Season 2 in October, there could be a number of projects in between avengers movies that could create a different antagonist the way Marvel would have built Kang. The connection between Kang Dynasty And Secret Wars has always been murky anyway – at least for fans who know comic stories like the back of their hand. Whatever Marvel’s plans for the future are, at least we know they’re not written in stone.


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