From Phase 4 onward, Marvel will really give all of their upcoming villains the importance that they deserve. There won’t be one off villains from here on out. Because so many great heroes are coming into play, we will also see so many villains who will take them on. One of the major villains that will be introduced either in Phase 4 or Phase 5 is MODOK. We recently uncovered the set up for MODOK being the villain of Ant-Man and the Wasp 3, but that’s not the only place where MODOK will appear.
George Tarleton aka MODOK (Mental/Mobile/Mechanized Organism Designed Only for Killing) is the head of AIM in the comics, but mostly people are familiar with him as a massive floating head on a chair that hovers all around. AIM was the organization that was led by Aldrich Killian in the MCU, and it may be possible that George Tarleton took the company into a new direction after Killian and his operations were killed. The Black Widow trailer showed us that the movie will have something to do with AIM. So perhaps Marvel will be setting up MODOK right from Phase 4 itself.
We Got This Covered revealed that MODOK will be a villain for Ant-Man and the Wasp 3. Perhaps he may have been the one running Sonny Burch’s operations in Ant-Man and the Wasp. He was after Hank Pym’s tech. He is a tech based villain and it is understandable for him to gather more tech. Sonny Burch is rumored to be making a cameo in Black Widow, so that’s even more evidence for MODOK’s arrival.
But before Ant-Man and the Wasp 3, MODOK might appear in She-Hulk as MCUCosmic reports that the villain will make a Phase 4 appearance. He is the presumed successor of Aldrich Killian and the new leader of AIM, the company that has control of the extremis virus. Roger Wardell recently claimed that the Extremis Virus will have something to do with the outbreak of Red Hulk. She-Hulk & Smart Hulk might contain Red Hulk in that series. But MODOK’s involvement will set him up as the big of Ant-Man and the Wasp 3, and then the THUNDERBOLTS.
After Ant-Man and the Wasp 3, MODOK will team up with another villain that has been growing big behind the scenes, and that’s the Leader. Shang-Chi and the Legends of the Ten Rings is bringing in the real Mandarin, who could also join forces with MODOK and the Leader. The Mandarin could bring in the giant alien dragon – Fin Fang Foom. This will be the first ever villains team up in the MCU, and to make them even more lethal, Ultron could be added to their mix. To take down this group of bad guys, Marvel will deploy another group of “not so bad” guys. And that’s where the Thunderbolts will come into play.
So, it will basically be MODOK, the Leader, the Mandarin & Ultron against Red Hulk, Abomination, Baron Zemo, Ghost, Justin Hammer, Taskmaster & possibly even Norman Osborn. This is how the Thunderbolts will be set upon their path to become the Dark Avengers. You may ask that where will the real Avengers be during all of this? Well, to set up a Villains vs. Villains movie, Marvel will have to cast out the heroes. So, this fight will have to take place when Kang sends the new Avengers team on a battle throughout time. Without the Avengers, Earth will be defenseless and ready for the villains to take over. In the absence of the heroes, the Thunderbolts will save Earth.
Let’s see how this theory of ours pans out. Black Widow is going to kick off the future slate on May 1. Here’s how the rest of the Phase 4 slate looks like – The Falcon and The Winter Soldier in August 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, WandaVision in December 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, Loki in Spring 2021, Spider-Man 3 on July 16, 2021, Ms. Marvel in 2021, What If? In Summer 2021, Hawkeye in Fall 2021, and Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021. Following these are Moon Knight and She-Hulk. Black Panther 2 has been scheduled for May 6, 2022. And 7 other unannounced films have release dates for 2022 & 2023.