Ant-Man 3 could be an extremely important movie for the MCU. So far, Ant-Man has been an underrated franchise of the MCU as far as the Box Office takes are concerned. But, it has been an extremely important story-wise. Without Ant-Man and the Wasp, Avengers: Endgame wouldn’t have been possible. And now, Ant-Man and the Wasp 3 might finally go beyond the $800 Million marks, if not a Billion Dollars. That’s because it will probably give us a direct link to Fantastic Four & the next major Marvel big bad, Doctor Doom.
Back at Comic-Con 2019, Kevin Feige gave us the confirmation that Marvel certainly has plans to use the Fantastic Four and the X-Men in the MCU. Ever since the talks of a Disney Fox merger began, it has long been theorized that the Quantum Realm might just be the most suitable way to introduce the Fantastic Four & even Doctor Doom. Ant-Man and the Wasp especially planted the seeds for it by placing an entire city inside the Quantum Realm. On top of that, there’s this dialogue of Janet Van Dyne that has kept us all thinking:
“There’s so much we didn’t know about this place Henry, worlds of the world’s entire civilizations. Far more than we ever theorized.
I’m not the same woman I was 30 years ago Henry. This place, it changes you. I mean, adaptation is part of it, but some of it is, Evolution.”
Janet told this to Hank Pym when she reunited with him in the Quantum Realm. So clearly, there’s a lot to explore within the Quantum Realm and that’s where Ant-Man and the Wasp 3 will come into play. It is a known fact that the Ant-Man franchise director, Peyton Reed has always wanted to direct a Fantastic Four movie. In fact, he even pitched a Fantastic Four movie set in the 60s, to Fox back when they owned these characters. Reed told Collider:
“I developed it [Fantastic Four script] for about a year and we went through some different permutations and some different writers. But yes, one of the big ideas was a set-in-the-’60s thing that at the time was structurally gonna be basically like A Hard Day’s Night, where we were not going to even deal with the origin story, it was just going to be like you’re in downtown Manhattan and they’re there. It was a pretty exciting idea.”
Keeping this, and the implications of the Quantum Realm in mind, Erik Voss from New Rockstars has presented an elaborate theory of how Ant-Man and the Wasp 3 could use the Quantum Realm to bring in the Fantastic Four & Doctor Doom. And, that’s how Peyton Reed’s dream story might be told in the MCU. Before we move forward, there are two more MCU incidents that we have to keep in mind. The first is the warning that Jane Van Dyne gave to Scott Lang right when he was about to go into the Quantum Realm to collect some Quantum energy particles for Ghost. Janet told him:
“Also, make sure you stay out of the tardigrade fields. They’re cute, but they’ll eat you. And don’t get sucked into a time vortex. We won’t be able to save you.”
What did Scott do? He got sucked into a time vortex and was brought to 2023 by a rat. He was only inside the Quantum Realm for about 5 hours, so he didn’t age. But Janet was in there for 30 years, so she aged accordingly (or a little slower than regular humans do on Earth). We have to keep this in mind as we take look into the upcoming theory because it could come in handy when we try to explain the aging of the Fantastic Four & Doctor Doom. But before that, the second story element that could become an interesting factor is what happened in 1970.
In Avengers: Endgame, when Steve & Tony went to Camp Liegh High at Garden State. Steve got the task to retrieve Pym Particles. So, he tricked Hank Pym with a phone call. Here’s how the conversation went between them:
“Cap – This is Capt. Stevens from shipping. We have a package for you.
Hank Pym – Bring it up.
Cap – Well, that’s the thing sir. We can’t. Sir, the box is glowing and to be honest, some of our mail guys aren’t feeling that great.
Hank – They didn’t open it, did they?
Cap – Uh yeah, they did. You better get down here.”
Right after this, Hank Pym hung up and ran to check the situation while Steve pulled a sweet little grab. But the thing we need to focus here is the look at Hank Pym’s face. He was scared to death and it was almost as if something like this had happened before. Now let’s move onto Erik Voss’ theory.
He suggests that before Hank Pym, 5 people in the 60s were experimenting with shrinking technology and Hank Pym was probably their intern, or perhaps knew about them since he was also working on a similar project. But one day the team of 5 – Victor Von Doom, Reed Richards, Sue Storm, Johnny Storm & Ben Grimm were sucked into the Quantum Realm and got stuck there. And Hank Pym was left with their research. With the help of their research and his intellect, he was able to come up with the Pym Particles when he joined S.H.I.E.L.D., and his story went on in the MCU.
But the “entire civilizations” that Janet was talking about was actually a reference to what these 5 individuals had done within the Quantum Realm. They were the ones who manifested a whole world in there. But Janet probably ended up meeting just Doctor Doom in there because the Fantastic Four were separated from Doom some time after the 60s. So, it was Doom who had been ruling over the civilization that exists in the Quantum Realm city. This will be in line with the comics where Doom once shrank out of existence, but later was revealed to be the ruler of the Subatomic world inside the Microverse. And in the MCU, he gained immense powers because of the Quantum Realm, just like Janet Van Dyne.
As for the Fantastic Four, they all also got their comic accurate powers because of the Quantum Realm. After starting off a civilization with Victor, they saw how Victor began to turn evil. So, they decided to get away from him. By this time, they were not just the Fantastic Four, but they became a family. Meaning, Reed and Sue had given birth to Franklin Richards, if not Valeria Richards as well. They dug deeper into the Quantum Realm, and ended up getting pulled into a time vortex. This is how they might straight away end up in the year 2023 through something that happens in Ant-Man and the Wasp 3.
With this theory, we get an already established Fantastic Four in the MCU, and the two children Franklin & Valeria will be ready for their own separate adventures in the Power Pack series on Disney+. And when we get the solo Fantastic Four movie, all this aforementioned backstory could be shown through flashbacks. The same goes for Doctor Doom and his project. Since the Fantastic Four were only in the Quantum Realm for a few years (probably for about a decade), they only aged around 10 years or so. As for Doom, he aged just like Janet Van Dyne did. So, an older actor like Christoph Waltz or Giancarlo Esposito could be hired for the role of Doom.
But according to this theory, even if Doom was in his 20s when he went into the Quantum Realm, he’d be in his 80s in the present day. So, that might feel too old. This problem could be solved by the Quantum Realm itself. Maybe, with the conditions of the Quantum Realm and the powers that Doom got from it, his body aged a tad bit slowly despite him spending around 60 years or so in there. Erik Voss even suggests that Janet Van Dyne is actually being mind controlled by Doctor Doom, but that’s where we will part ways from their theory.
Oh yes, and one last thing that Erik Voss stated theorized was that the Stark Tower/the Avengers tower was initially the Baxter building in the 60s, right before Howard Stark bought it. And now, we believe that Norman Osborn has bought it to turn it into the Oscorp. This is certainly a cool theory and could be perfected further, if Marvel uses it as a baseline. After all, they’re the experts here. But still, what do you think about it? Tell us your opinions and the changes that you might want to make into this theory.
Until then, here’s the updated Phase 4 movie schedule of MCU – Black Widow on November 6, 2020, The Eternals on February 12, 2021, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on May 7, 2021, Marvel’s Spider-Man 3 on November 5, 2021, Thor: Love and Thunder on February 11, 2022, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on March 25, 2022, Black Panther II on May 6, 2022, and Captain Marvel 2 on July 8, 2022. As far as the TV shows are concerned, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier & WandaVision are supposed to hit Disney+ later this year, Loki, What if…? & Hawkeye will arrive next year, and Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight & She-Hulk will possibly arrive in 2022.