Only a week removed from their massive D23 showcase Marvel Studio’s brought their A-game to San Diego Comic-Con’s Hall H. On top of what we already knew about Avengers: Infinity War, Marvel showed off even more from what fans should expect from Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther. They also teased us with some big information from the upcoming Captain Marvel movie, including some concept art, and made a big casting announcement for Ant-Man and the Wasp. Now let’s take a closer look at everything that was announced and what they mean for the Marvel Cinematic Universe
JANET VAN DYNE IS IN ANT-MAN AND THE WASP
Marvel always has some big casting news when it comes to San Diego Comic-Con and this year was no different as Michelle Pfeiffer was cast as Janet Van Dyne. This is not just a big get for Marvel Studio’s but yet another defection from DC Comics as we have Catwoman make her way to the MCU as a hero. This is after we saw Batman turned into the villain that he lived long enough to become as Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming.
All DC vs Marvel jokes aside, this is a big get for Marvel Studios. While she might not be the household name she was in the 80s and 90s, Michelle Pfeiffer is a great actress with a special presence to her appearance on screen. Her recent portrayal as Ruth Madoff in “The Wizard Of Lies” HBO film was fantastic and earned her first Emmy Award nomination.
So for Pfeiffer to go from that to being the legendary Janet Van Dyne is a fantastic get for Marvel. This casting also gives hope that the character is actually not dead, something that was teased with how Paul Rudd’s Ant-Man was able to return from the Microverse after he did what Janet’s Wasp did when she disappeared. Seeing what that will mean for Ant-Man and the Wasp and the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward will be fun to see play out.
Making things even better for the Ant-Man and the Wasp movie is the announcement that Laurence Fishburne will be playing Dr. Bill Foster. Given that Marvel Studio’s Comic-Con panel opened with a tease of Giant Man it may mean that Fishburne will be an even bigger factor in the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s plans. It would definitely add even more star power to the fourth Avengers movie if Fishburne as Giant Man appears there as well.
CAPTAIN MARVEL FOLLOWING WONDER WOMAN’S FOOTSTEPS?
It’s not all that surprising that Marvel would look to see what Wonder Woman did successfully and do something similar in the way of another period piece superhero movie following Captain America: The First Avenger. What was surprising to hear is that this is what they will be doing with the upcoming Captain Marvel movie. Though it is not a period piece the way Wonder Woman was, as Captain Marvel will be set in the 90s, not too far removed from the present day events.
From a story standpoint, one of the things that makes this choice interesting is that this may mean that Captain Marvel does takes place around the time Michael Douglas and Michelle Pfeiffer’s Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne were active as Ant-Man and Wasp depending on the year it takes place. It could at least lead to a Hank cameo with how Nick Fury and SHIELD factor into the overall story.
More interesting to learn was the fact that the Skrulls are being finally being brought into the Marvel Cinematic Universe to be the main villains for Captain Marvel. Skrulls are one of those iffy characters that are technically part of the Fantastic Four IP that Fox had but it looks like that isn’t the case anymore. And the Skrulls involvement could mean that Captain Marvel could actually be the first clues into where Marvel Studio’s goes with their Phase 4 plans as Secret Invasion could be teased. How that would work for general audiences is tough to see given the nature of the event but Marvel has not steered us wrong yet.
The concept art for Brie Larson’s Captain Marvel was fantastic. It is great seeing that Carol Danvers will be in the costume we have seen her in the last few years as she has defined the Captain Marvel name.
THOR: RAGNAROK SHOWS UP BIG
Thor: Ragnarok being one of the big movies that got a lot of time was not surprising given that it is the next big Marvel Studio’s movie. From a tone standpoint it looks more and more like Ragnarok is following in the footsteps of the Guardians of the Galaxy. That also points to Thor being a bigger part of the cosmic side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Which for Thor that is a better way to go for the movies as the character is much more fun loving in the films than comics.
Having Hulk be a big part in what is basically Planet Hulk is also fantastic. The fact that we get an even better look at how Ragnarok is basically a buddy-cop movie between Thor and Hulk was great. The back and forth between the two in the trailer was fun as we got to see Thor interact with both Bruce Banner and Hulk. The final few seconds with Hulk is notable as well since the director and producer of Thor: Ragnarok mentioned that Hulk talking would change how the character is portrayed moving forward. If that is true once Thor and Hulk rejoin the rest of the Avengers for Infinity War make for some intriguing character interactions for the future.
One thing that I’ve found interesting from these trailers is that we have yet to see Odin in the movie. Back when Thor: Ragnarok was being filmed it was seen that we would get a homeless version of Odin after whatever Loki did to him in Thor: Dark World. Not seeing any clue as to what Odin is doing does make me wonder if they changed that part of the story or if they are keeping it under wraps as everyone is excited for Thor and Hulk being together in a buddy cop movie.
BLACK PANTHER GOING ALL OUT
We didn’t get a lot new from Black Panther as they still only showed Comic-Con exclusive footage to the audience that they have not released. Though we did get a great new poster for the movie that is a massive improvement from the photoshop looking poster Black Panther first got. Learning that the fans in attendance did go crazy for the footage not released is great to hear from a movie that has a lot riding on it. Seeing how Wakanda’s world is brought to life and what it may mean for Avengers: Infinity War should be a treat.
The cast all seem genuinely invested in making this movie great and getting each character over. Ryan Coogler continues to be a fantastic choice to lead the movie as the director and it seems he is going to be getting it right from what has been shown so far. Coogler talking about his history as Black Panther fan for sure wins him some even more nerd creed.
AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR DROPS THE MIC
I didn’t talk about this before but everything we are hearing from Avengers: Infinity War was great coming out of D23. That just seemed to get reaffirmed at Comic-Con this weekend. Everything we are hearing from what Avengers: Infinity War will be is great from Thor interacting with the Guardians of the Galaxy to Thanos wrecking shop on the Avengers gets the fan juices going. The excitement around Avengers: Infinity War feels the same as when we are all waiting for the first Avengers movie. It has all been building to this and it is a truly wonderful time to be a Marvel fan, at least from the movie side of things.