Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania may not have been well-received by critics but its strong performance during its opening weekend at the box office likely means it won’t be the last entry in the Ant-Man franchise. The support for Peyton Reed to return for a fourth film seems to be there as well as he and Executive Producer Stephen Broussard have noted that they have already begun thinking about the next film and having discussions with Marvel Studios One Above All, Kevin Feige.
With a fourth film in the franchise unlikely to debut before Avengers: Secret Wars, it’s unlikely Scott’s fixation with Kang the Conqueror will still be unresolved, so what would the focus of the new project be? As always, we have some ideas inspired by the comics!
Ant-Man, The Wasp and Stinger: Irredeemable
2015’s Ant-Man set the stage for the plot of a sequel and given it’s yet to be revisited, the fourth film might be the perfect time for a handful of reasons. During the chaos at the Pym Tech HQ near the end of Ant-Man, Martin Donovan’s scumbag Hydra double agent Mitchell Carson stole a vial of Pym Particles and escaped while being chewed up by ants. Carson had been after Hank Pym’s great creation since the late 1980s when the two worked together at S.H.I.E.LD. and he holds quite a grudge against the good Doctor Pym. Bringing back Donovan and allowing him to have his revenge on Pym would make for a great opening act and grant Michael Douglas‘ wish to let Hank die!
In the comics, Carson has some strong connections to Eric O’Grady, the third Ant-Man. Irredeemable could see Carson team up with O’Grady, another Pym Particle-Powered character, Erik Josten, and mutant loser Whirlwind to take his revenge on Hank and the Ant-Family. The three villains would nicely provide each of the film’s heroes with their own baddie. Scott and Josten, aka Atlas, could kaiju fight around San Francisco; O’Grady’s shady, stalker, perv vibes would put him at odds with Cassie; and Whirlwind, one of Janet van Dyne’s most persistent foes in the comics, could take on Hope. What would that leave for Janet? Revenge on Mitchell Carson who could even come complete with his mangled face as a result of the ant attack at the end of Ant-Man.
All parties involved have expressed interest in going “smaller” in Ant-Man 4 after taking on Kang and this might be the best bet to make that happen.
Ant-Man and The Wasp: Avengers Academy
It would have been awesome to see the Young Avengers come together in an Ant-Man film but since Ant-Man 4 isn’t likely to hit theaters until after Avengers: Secret Wars, those characters will probably assemble on screen before then. That doesn’t mean, however, that Scott Lang and Hope van Dyne can’t mentor a new generation of heroes!
While the Young Avengers were a group of powered people identified through Project Failsafe to be the next generation of heroes, Avengers Academy assembled a powered group of youngsters in hopes of keeping them from breaking bad. The Academy was led by Hank Pym, Tigra, Hawkeye, Jocasta, Quicksilver, Justice and Speedball with Pym and Tigra really at the forefront. It wouldn’t take a lot of imagination to revamp the roster of instructors and let Scott and Hope take the lead. The group could take on some of Ant-Man and The Wasp’s more proletariat rogues like Whirlwind or Kangaroo or Crossfire or take on something a little more awesome…like the Awesome Android and the Mad Thinker.
Ant-Man, The Wasp and The West Coast Avengers
Yes, the people involved in the Ant-Man franchise have expressed their desire for the fourth film to be a smaller film…but that doesn’t mean it can’t have a killer cast. The West Coast Avengers certainly seem to be headed to the MCU so why not let the fourth Ant-Man film be the place where the team assembles.
Give Scott Hank’s place on the team and assemble Hawkeye, Mockingbird (now that we know she’s in the MCU), Moon Knight, Wonder Man and introduce Tigra and let this be the dumb fun movie of the year. Let Hawkeye use Pym Particles and become Goliath. Put them up against the Grim Reaper (maybe he’ll be introduced in Wonder Man) or the Zodiac…in all their crazy glory. There are so many wild stories waiting to be told in the pages of the West Coast Avengers comics that one must be just right for Ant-Man 4!
Ant-Man and The Wasp: Vengeance
This pitch exists for one reason: to introduce Jack of Hearts to the MCU. The film would take on elements of the comics and combine them with Jack of Hearts origins to create an adventure worthy of the Ant-Family and one that would provide Scott with one of his great comic book not-quite-besties.
Hank Pym knows a lot of smart people, so introducing audiences to another one, Philip Hart, who has sovled the world’s energy crisis with his Zero Fuel wouldn’t be a stretch. When Hart’s invention is perfected and he’s ready to give it away, the criminal organization known as The Corporation steps in killing Philip and exposing his son, Jonathan, to the dangerous fuel and mutating him into the powerful–and dangerous–Jack of Hearts. Hank’s relationship with Philip could be enough to get him killed in the explosion, leaving Scott, Hope, Janet and Cassie on a quest for vengeance parallel with Jack’s. The Corporation is full of all types of terrible goons they could take on and the plot could, as comic book readers know, set the path to the end of Scott Lang’s time in the MCU as well.