'There will be different iterations... they didn't say variants'
Spoilers follow for Loki season 1.
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania star Jonathan Majors has teased that “different iterations” of Kang will appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU).
Speaking to Brazilian outlet Somos Geeks (opens in new tab) (skip to the 3:00 mark), Majors, who portrays Kang the Conqueror throughout Marvel’s Multiverse Saga, suggested that we could see other versions of the iconic supervillain in forthcoming movies and TV shows.
That might not be a big spoiler. MCU fans who watched Loki season 1 on Disney Plus will know that Majors has already played one of Kang’s other MCU variants – aka He Who Remains, who appears to be based on Immortus, one of Kang’s comic-book variants.
In Loki episode 6, He Who Remains also confirmed that other Kang variants would cross over into the MCU if Loki and Sylvie killed him, as He Who Remains is the only one who has managed to stop other universes (and Kangs) invading the MCU’s so-called sacred timeline. Sylvie wound up murdering He Who Remains, thus helping to instigate the multiverse’s arrival.
What’s interesting about Majors’ comments, though, is that he (or, rather, Marvel) don’t use the word “variant” when they discuss the multiverse’s numerous versions of Kang. Instead, a completely different description is used for the Marvel Phase 5 villain, which will certainly pique the interest of comic book fans.
“When they [Marvel] said there would be different iterations – that’s actually the word they used, they didn’t say variants,” Majors revealed. “So when they said there is different iterations of this character, I thought ‘Okay, cool, I’d like to take that on and have a stab at it.'”
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania will be the next Marvel movie to land in theaters. The superhero film will kickstart Phase 5 of the MCU, and, after a somewhat mixed bag in MCU Phase 4, hopefully get Marvel’s cinematic juggernaut back on track.
Analysis: a vital multiversal distinction
He Who Remains is one of multiple Kang iterations. (Image credit: Marvel Studios/Disney Plus)
Spoilers follow for Doctor Strange 3 and Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Majors’ and Marvel’s “different iterations” distinction is an important one to address. After all, the term “variant” – in the context of the MCU, at least – has been used to describe and/or show various incarnations of popular Marvel characters.
Take Doctor Strange 2, for example. In that MCU film, we saw Benedict Cumberbatch play four versions of the Master of the Mystic Arts. We can class the other three as variants of the MCU’s Doctor Strange because, aside from the different choices they made in their own universes, they appear to be the same character – someone with the same strengths, weaknesses, and personality – as the MCU’s version.
The word “iteration” means something completely different for Kang. Its use implies that we’ll see other versions of Kang in Phase 5 and Phase 6, but that they won’t be the same character we saw in Loki season 1, or will see in Ant-Man 3.
In his chat with Somos Geeks, Majors revealed that each Kang iteration is from a “very particular world, and has to serve that world… they are a by-product of those worlds. They move and behave differently.” In our view, this quote, coupled with Majors’ earlier response, suggests we’ll see some hugely significant versions of Kang brought to life in the MCU.
In Marvel comics, Kang – a time-traveling genius – has multiple variants. These include ancient Egyptian Pharoah Rama-Tut, a turn-of-the-century mayor named Victor Timely, the Doctor Doom-inspired Scarlet Centurion, Qeng Enterprises CEO Mister Gryphon, and the Young Avenger known as Iron Lad. These Kang variants exist in Marvel’s comic book universe in different eras, are older or younger than Kang himself, and span the spectrum of good and evil.
And that’s what makes Majors and Marvel’s use of “different iterations” so significant. We might not just see the same version of Kang – someone who is the same age and has the same persona/ambitions as Ant-Man 3’s version – appear in the MCU between now and Avengers: Secret Wars, which is scheduled to arrive in theaters in 2026.
Instead, we could see Majors portray any or all of the above, which would make for plenty of crowd-pleasing moments on the big screen. We’ve already seen Marvel take a similar approach with Spider-Man: No Way Home, with Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Men, who are older and more experienced than Tom Holland’s webslinger, team up with Holland’s MCU Spider-Man to brilliant effect. Why wouldn’t Marvel do likewise here, and have Majors play different versions of Kang at various stages of their lives and multiverse-conqueroring plans? We’re crossing our fingers (including all of those of our own multiverse variants) that we’re right with this theory.
For more Marvel-based content, read up on how to watch the Marvel movies in order. Alternatively, find out everything worth knowing about Loki season 2, or see which MCU TV series made it onto our best Disney Plus shows list.
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As TechRadar’s entertainment reporter, Tom covers all of the latest movies, TV shows, and streaming service news that you need to know about. You’ll regularly find him writing about the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Star Wars, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and many other topics of interest.
An NCTJ-accredited journalist, Tom also writes reviews, analytical articles, opinion pieces, and interview-led features on the biggest franchises, actors, directors and other industry leaders. You may see his quotes pop up in the odd official Marvel Studios video, too, such as this Moon Knight TV spot (opens in new tab).
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