After the Hall H presentation from Marvel Studios during San Diego Comic-Con, fans are still buzzing about movies and shows revealed for a post-Infinity Saga MCU. These franchises are expected to push the MCU into new territories as characters deal with concepts such as the multiverse, supernatural, cosmic, and absence of The Avengers. However, as Kevin Feige revealed during his closing statements, there’s a lot still yet to be expanded upon for Phase 5. These include The Fantastic Four, Blade, Captain Marvel 2, Black Panther 2, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, and X-Men/MUTANTS. Potentially we’ll receive a Spider-Man 3 as well but that announcement is dependent upon Sony’s approval. The announced franchises hold a pattern, one that helps outline the direction of the MCU towards teams and characters such as The Ultimates and Galactus for Phase 5.
Who Are The Ultimates?
In the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame, many surviving heroes are going in new directions. Many of these directions appear influenced by the All-New, All-Different Marvel rebranding that happened in 2015. These changes included Sam Wilson and Jane Foster becoming Captain America and Thor respectively. Outside of an Avengers team, which is commonplace for Marvel Comics, a new team called The Ultimates was formed with Captain Marvel in the lead. Joining her was Black Panther, Blue Marvel, Ms. America, and Spectrum. Their mission was to solve potential cosmic and universal threats before they threatened Earth. The first threat they tackled was Galactus and his infamous hunger, as they found a way to evolve Galactus turning him into the “Lifebringer.” However, as comics usually return to the status quo he eventually returned to the “Devourer of Worlds.”
This is different than the Ultimates that appeared within Earth-1610 aka the Ultimate Universe, which is a constant source of inspiration for the MCU. Within the Ultimate Universe, the Ultimates was a S.H.I.E.L.D. sponsored superhero team organized by Nick Fury to combat superhuman threats to the United States. Essentially they’re the Ultimate Universe version of the Avengers. Similar to the MCU Avengers, the Ultimates had their first real threat when the Chitauri invaded Earth.
Main Heroes & Franchises Post-Endgame
When we entered Avengers: Infinity War, our heroes were left vulnerable due to Captain America and Iron Man’s fractured relationship. This split their roster into two teams which made things more difficult when organizing against Thanos’ forces. While they were able to set differences aside and add new members such as Captain Marvel, Rocket, and Nebula by the events of Avengers: Endgame, the team was no longer officially active as of Spider-Man: Far From Home. This creates a new void in the protection of Earth from threats internal or extraterrestrial which are too much for one hero to handle.
Considering the group of heroes leading franchises in Phase 4 and/or Phase 5, it’s obvious that the cosmic MCU will be explored. This compliments the leadership role Captain Marvel is likely to take going forward. Kevin Feige also stated in interviews that there aren’t any plans for an Avengers 5. In this case, The Ultimates would be a concept that could organically replace and/or build off of The Avengers. This would allow the MCU to clearly explore a new trajectory for the MCU as The Avengers had as close to a perfect beginning, middle, and end a movie franchise could receive.
Cosmic Phase 4 & 5 Movies
Many years ago, with the initial announcement of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, James Gunn was also said to be the architect of the MCU’s expansion into cosmic properties. This was before the official acquisition of 21st Century FOX by Disney, yet people were excited as the MCU had stayed on Earth as the primary location for stories. With several characters previously at FOX returned to Marvel, the cosmic gates were fully unlocked as the Shi’ar Empire, Super-Skrull, Phoenix Force, Galactus, Silver Surfer, and more were now available for use. This creates an interesting dynamic within the MCU as Earth and its heroes are more vulnerable to other galactic empires thanks to their involvement in battling Thanos.
Other rumored characters rumored to join the MCU in future movies include Nova, Gladiator, and Tyrant. Nova would make sense as the Nova Corps was introduced in 2014’s Guardians of the Galaxy although the Nova Empire was presumably destroyed by Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War. I say destroyed because neither the Nova Corps or any Nova Empire affiliated groups retaliated against Thanos after his attack on Xandar. Gladiator is the Majestor of the Shi’ar Empire while Tyrant is a cosmic being created by Galactus which eventually went rogue. It’ll be interesting to see which direction the MCU goes as they’re in a state of creative freedom without the build-up of Thanos and the Infinity Stones.
Do you want to see The Ultimates and Galactus in the Marvel Cinematic Universe? Let us know your thoughts and who you think the villain of the next MCU Phase will be in the comments!