Not everything in the MCU is good news. Release dates for several major movies have been pushed back, meaning we now won’t see Avengers: Secret Wars and the Phase 6 finale until 2026. But where there are delays, there are also great opportunities.
Let’s take a step back and explore why these release date changes may actually be something good for the MCUand why they might help the Multiverse Saga pack a punch.
Marvel’s Phase 6 delays
There have been a lot of changes to the MCU release dates lately, with the Blade movie being the first of many dominoes to fall. Marvel’s upcoming reboot is experiencing some trouble behind the scenes. Star Mahershala Ali is said to be unhappy with his script, and director Bassam Tariq recently dropped out of the film. Blade has been delayed until 2024, which has caused a chain reaction of delays Which means Fantastic Four won’t start Phase 6 until February 2025 and Avengers: Secret Wars won’t bring the multiverse saga to a close until May 2026.
But what’s most interesting about these Phase 6 delays is what hasn’t been affected. Although Fantastic Four and Avengers: Secret Wars have been delayed, Avengers: Kang Dynasty is still scheduled for release in May 2025. That means now there will be a full year of separation between The Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars.
This may simply be a sign that things are progressing more quickly on the fifth Avengers movie than on these other projects. The Kang Dynasty already has its director and screenwriter and hasn’t had the same setbacks as Fantastic Four or Blade. But there could be something more to the decision to double the gap between the next two Avengers movies.
The Great Gap of Phase 6
Given that we’re still at the end of Phase 4, it’s no wonder we know very little about the plots of The Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars. We’ve only met one version of Kang in Loki, and there’s still no clue about the Fantastic Four or other key Secret Wars players. (Despite the Reed Richards variant in the Multiverse of Madness.)
But based on the source material from the comics, we can make some deductions on directing the next two Avengers movies. The Kang Dynasty will likely pit the newest incarnation of Earth’s Mightiest Heroes against Kang, as the self-proclaimed Conqueror attempts to bend the entire multiverse to his will. As with Avengers: Infinity War, it’s probably safe to assume that the Avengers won’t save the day at the end of the movie, setting up the rise of Battleworld and God Emperor Doom in Secret Wars.
One of the things that makes the 2015 Secret Wars comic so great is the fact that its premise allows for a huge number of spin-offs and sub-stories. When you have a setting like this – a hodgepodge planet made up of fragments from dozens of dead universes – the possibilities are endless. Marvel Comics definitely took advantage of this, pausing most of its ongoing line of comics in the summer of 2015 to focus on new stories set in the chaotic realm of Battleworld.
There was a comic called Thors, about the members of the army of thunder gods who enforce Doom’s will. There were multiple books revisiting classic X-Men crossovers, like Age of Apocalypse and Days of Future Past. There was also The Amazing Spider-Man: Renew Your Vows, a comic set in a reality where Peter Parker and Mary Jane Watson are still married and have a superpowered daughter.
The problem with spacing just six months between The Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars is that the MCU has far fewer opportunities to explore the potential of Battleworld. But with a full year between the two, Marvel has plenty more chances to play in the sandbox before moving on to the climax of Phase 6 and the Multiverse Saga. It is very possible that this is the reason why the release date of The Kang Dynasty has not changed.
The Mystery Movies of Phase 6
Of course even having a year between these two Avengers sequels does not guarantee that Marvel will delve into Battleworld. Marvel released two movies between Infinity War and Endgame, and both were set before the Snap. The MCU movies never got around to exploring the state of the world during those five missing years, instead leaving shows like Scarlet Witch and Vision and Falcon and the Winter Soldier to fill in some of the gaps later on.
But the difference between then and now is that Marvel Releases Much More MCU Content Every Year. There have been reports of several untitled Marvel movies scheduled for 2025 and 2026, though it’s unclear to what extent those dates have been affected by the other MCU delays. There’s also the possibility of unannounced Disney+ series premiering during that time.
We can only hope that at least one or two of these mystery projects are direct ties to Secret Wars. Thor 5 could be an ensemble movie pairing Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman’s characters with any number of other multiversal Thors. Marvel Studios could take advantage of Wolverine’s return in Deadpool 3 to reunite the entire cast of Fox’s X-Men for one last farewell with Battleworld as the backdrop. Or how about a series set on the Shield, the barrier that protects the rest of Battleworld from the ravenous hordes of zombies and androids? That could be Marvel’s answer to Game of Thrones.
Although Marvel doesn’t actually introduce Battleworld until the Secret Wars movie, there are ways to expand and enrich this story in the year leading up to its release. At the very least, Marvel should take advantage of that period to flesh out the Fantastic Four characters. Secret Wars is as much a story about the power of hope in the face of overwhelming darkness as it is an examination of the rivalry between Reed Richards and Victor von Doom. Doom is presented as the all-powerful savior of reality, but is unable to overcome his hatred of Reed and his own insecurities. It’s a story that builds on the Fantastic Four’s decades of history in the Marvel Universe.
Secret Wars is as much a story about the power of hope in the face of overwhelming darkness as it is an examination of the rivalry between Reed Richards and Victor von Doom.
The MCU, unfortunately, don’t have that long story to fall back on. Aside from a possible cameo in a movie like Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, it’s not likely we’ll meet the Fantastic Four before their movie is released in 2025, at which point the Multiverse Saga will be fast approaching its completion. great climax. It’s arguably too early to attempt a Secret Wars movie. But for better or worse, that’s Marvel’s plan. The least they can do is make the most of the one-year gap between The Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars.
Do you think the longer wait for Avengers: Secret Wars is a good thing? Which Secret Wars spin-offs are you dying to see?