The Avengers Might’ve Already Beaten Kang (Just Not In This Universe)

Albeit in a different universe, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania’s Kang the Conqueror may have already lost to the Avengers. In Marvel Comics, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes are Kang’s most hated foes. When it comes to his long-lasting dream of conquering modern-day Earth, the Avengers have been by far the biggest thorn in his side.

Played by Jonathan Majors, Kang the Conqueror is on track to be one of the biggest villains of the Multiverse Saga, if not its overarching antagonist. Following his battle with Ant-Man and the Wasp in the upcoming Phase 5 movie, the 31st-century time-traveler will be back for at least one more outing in the MCU. Kang will have an entire team of superheroes to fight when he makes his second big-screen appearance in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty. Presumably, whatever happens between Kang, Ant-Man, and the others in the Quantum Realm will set up his inevitable confrontation with the Avengers in the team’s fifth movie. However, it’s possible that prior to the film, Kang was already taken down by the group.


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Why The Avengers Could Be Crucial To Kang’s MCU Backstory

Kang The Conqueror attacks the Avengers in Marvel Comics.

It’s assumed that when Kang arrives in The Kang Dynasty, he’ll have his first-ever encounter with the Avengers. While that may certainly be true, there’s at least a chance Marvel will head in an unexpected direction. Rather than have Kang and the Avengers become enemies in the movie, it could be established that the Avengers are a key part of his MCU origin. In the comic books, Kang’s plans are fueled by more than just his lust for power. Kang is also defined by his unbridled hatred of the Avengers. Repeated defeats have made Kang desperate for revenge.

Hate is a huge motivating factor for Kang in Marvel Comics, and the MCU could struggle to bring out this aspect of the character when telling its interpretation of his story. That’s largely because hate takes time to develop. Several thwarted attempts at taking over the Earth solidified Kang’s hatred of the Avengers in the comics, but unless Kang actually is the villain of the fifth and sixth Avengers films, Marvel can’t easily replicate that approach in Phase 6. For that reason, Kang may not share the comic character’s hatred of the Avengers when they meet in The Kang Dynasty.

If that turns out to be the case, Kang would be missing a core piece of his comic story. In a 1960s comic, the depth of his animosity toward the team was on display when he had a chance to bring the woman he loved back to life but squandered it in the interest of killing the Avengers. Kang’s decision to choose hate over love spoke volumes about who he is as a person. If Marvel is to stay true to the essence of the character, it may be best for the MCU to integrate the Avengers into his backstory. The best way to do that would be to make use of the MCU’s multiverse concept.

The MCU’s Kang May Be From Another Universe

Kang on Loki

Theoretically, Kang could be from the future of the Earth-616 reality, but whether or not that’s actually the case remains to be seen. It’s known from Loki’s ending that Kang is a multiversal threat. He Who Remains has an untold number of variants out there waiting for their chance to conquer the multiverse. In other words, the Kang featured in Quantumania could be from any reality or timeline in the MCU’s multiverse. And there’s no telling which worlds this character has visited in their travels. There are countless characters and key Marvel Comics locations Kang could already be familiar with by the time Quantumania kicks off.

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In fact, it’s perfectly feasible that Phase 5’s Kang the Conqueror has already met the Avengers – just not the team from the first four Avengers movies. Kang fighting them at some point in the past would make sense, given that the Avengers are the planet’s first line of defense when a new threat emerges. If Kang launched an invasion of a different reality before the events of the movie, it wouldn’t be surprising at all if that Earth’s Avengers team made a stand against him. Typically, this is what happens when Kang makes a move on Earth in the comics. As challenging as these battles are for the Avengers, they usually result in defeat for Kang.

Earth-616’s Avengers aren’t the only iteration of the team that exists in the multiverse. Marvel’s What If…?, for instance, introduced viewers to an alternate origin of the group when Iron Man, Thor, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and Thor all died, which positioned Captain Marvel and Captain America to serve as the framework of the first Avengers roster. What happened in the episode was just an example of the endless combinations of heroes that could make up an Avengers team in the multiverse. If Kang did cross paths with the Avengers, they could be variants of iconic MCU Avengers, while some members could be counterparts of characters who haven’t even joined the Earth-616 team yet, such as Hercules and She-Hulk.

A Loss To The Avengers Would Explain Kang’s Phase 5 Story

Jonathan Majors as Kang in Ant-Man and the Wasp Quantumania

Kang losing to the Avengers on another Earth would help make sense of why the villain is in the Quantum Realm in Phase 5. As the trailer for Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania indicates, Kang will be one of many people living within the Quantum Realm. It’s unlikely that Kang is there by choice. One of the biggest questions going into the movie relates to what brought Kang to this world in the first place. Losing to the Avengers could very well be the answer to this mystery. It could be that the Avengers trapped him there intentionally. Or, Kang’s situation may be an unintended consequence of their fight.

If the Avengers really are responsible for Kang’s plight in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, an escape from the Quantum Realm would give him an opportunity. Perhaps after killing the Avengers who put him there, Kang may seek out the Earth-616 versions of the characters, as he’d naturally see them as the greatest obstacle to his goal. As things stand, the team isn’t active in the MCU, but heroes like Hawkeye, Thor, Sam Wilson’s Captain America, and Smart Hulk could all be recognized as Avengers by Kang when he comes to present-day Earth. That could make any and all of them targets of Jonathan Majors’ MCU villain in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty.

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