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Breaking down the Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania trailer

No detail too small

(L-R): Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man and Kathryn Newton as Cassandra “Cassie” Lang in Ant0Man and the Wasp: Quantumania Image: Marvel Studios

A new trailer for Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania gives Marvel fans a big little look at the next installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which is only about a month away. It’s not an Ant-Man trailer like any we’ve seen before, being short on jokes and long on angst, but let’s dig into those details before Paul Rudd and Evangeline Lilly return for the third and presumably final Ant-Man movie in February. Grab your magnifying glass.

Scott wants to turn back time — but why?

Jonathan Majors as Kang the Conqueror in Ant-Man & the Wasp: Quantumania. Image: Marvel Studios

After spending five Blipped years away, a pivotal chunk of his teenage daughter’s life, it’s no surprise that Scott Lang is willing to trust someone as obviously evil as Kang to get more time. But considering he’s bringing his whole family to the Quantum Realm, it’s also possible that something happens in the movie that could cause Scott to be willing to turn back time no matter what the cost.

The Quantum Realm is a long way from home

An enormous, mechanized citadel of moving round platforms in the Quantum Realm in Ant-Man & the Wasp: Quantumania. Image: Marvel Studios

The Quantum Realm gets a little bigger in every Ant-Man movie, going from a kind of scary purgatory in the first, to an inhabitable land in the second, and finally a full-blown universe full of high-tech cities in the third. Of course, the only problem with this universe is that Kang the Conqueror appears to control it.

MODOK

MODOK, masked and with guns drawn in Ant-Man & the Wasp: Quantumania. Image: Marvel Studios

While D23 audiences saw him back in September, this is the first time the rest of us have gotten a look at MODOK, evil genius, grotesque laboratory experiment, and among the best beloved Marvel supervillains (for being so awful). In Quantumania, he appears to be played by Corey Stoll, who portrayed the villainous Yellowjacket in 2015’s Ant-Man, where he was ultimately dispatched by being forced to shrink uncontrollably — and presumably into the Quantum Realm.

MODOK first appeared in 1967’s Tales of Suspense #94, created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby. The Mental Organism Designed Only for Killing took over the mad scientist organization that created him. Despite his genuinely awful visual deal, he’s one of Marvel Comics’ foremost joke villains, as explored in Hulu’s recent MODOK animated series.

Kang goes full Kirby

Kang (Jonathan Majors) roars and fires beams of blue energy from his hands. The energy tinges his face the same color as his comics inspiration, and makes the vertical seams on his face glow, in Ant-Man & the Wasp: Quantumania. Image: Marvel Studios

Speaking of villains designed for comics, not movies, the trailer gives us a better look at how the MCU will make Jonathan Majors’ Kang into the next Avengers-level threat — while paying homage to the character’s original alien visage. Why does Kang have seams on his face? Don’t worry about it, it looks cool.

Does Scott die at the end?

A shattered Ant-Man helmet lies on the ground in Ant-Man & the Wasp: Quantumania. Image: Marvel Studios

This trailer goes heavy on the foreshadowing, almost aggressively teasing Scott’s death at the end of this movie. Now, it’s possible that this is an attempt at clever misdirection on the part of Marvel, teeing up Scott to die only to reverse it or pull a reverse in the end for a more shocking demise. On the other hand, it makes a lot of sense that this could be Scott’s last movie. Cassie’s an adult now, and a better fit age-wise for the up-and-coming MCU class, and with a trilogy concluded and an only barely tenuous place in the Avengers, Scott doesn’t exactly feel like a critical piece to Phase 5 and 6 of the MCU. Plus his death would set up some pretty huge stakes to help lead us into the next two Avengers movies where the team will have to face off with Kang.

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