We look at the comics and speculate wildly on Phase Three of Marvel’s movie masterplan
What’s this Civil War about?
If Phase One was all about getting the band together, it looks like the end of Phase Two will see our heroes suffer a violent case of musical differences. The fall out from Ultron’s disassemblage will probably land mostly on the conscience of Tony Stark: it’s his “security measure” that sets about trying to murder humanity. We reckon this civic guilt brings Iron Man nose- to- nose with freedom fan Steve Rogers in Captain America: Civil War, an epic Earth- splitting battle that could leave Cap out of commission.
Where’s the big green smasher while all this i s going on?
Also expect Bruce Banner to be shuffled off the main stage. Given the necessity of Hulkbuster armour in Age Of Ultron, we think that the Avengers’ smashing weapon gets himself labelled a liability by the government forces waging a Civil War. Could The Hulk find himself exiled into outer space courtesy of his best bud Tony Stark?
How many I nfinity Stones are left again?
There’s a good chance that Phase Three will not only set up a new generation of Avengers, but also put the finishing touches on the Infinity Gauntlet. We’re four stones down, with two to go: the time and the soul gems. The latter could turn up during Doctor Strange – which may also introduce the idea of parallel universes to Marvel’s cinematic audiences.
Guardians Of The Galaxy 2 would seem like the logical place to introduce the time stone – some of the cosmos crew’s best- known stories have involved a spot of flux capacitor action – and also lets fan- favourite ( and perennial Thanos botherer) Adam Warlock out of his cocoon, as teased in the first movie.
Thor: Ragnarok? I sn’t that a nightclub…
We suspect Phase Three’s dramatic tipping point will take place on Asgard. Thor: Ragnarok could see the God Of Thunder battle the colossal fire giant Surtur at the Nine Realms’ “end of days” – a Norse apocalypse spurred on by Loki’s attempt to wiggle out of his debt to Thanos, who could be fishing a certain golden glove out of the ashes of Asgard.
The comic version of this story had Thor go to blond god heaven, which would see him out for the first sortie of Infinity War, the two- part Avengers team- up. This sets us up for an Empire Strikes Back- bummer of a cliffhanger for Part I as Thanos and his superpowered bling prove too much for Avengers Mark II – including Doctor Strange and other newcomers Black Panther and Ant- Man – leaving the gang requiring some serious back up…
How does Captain Marvel fit i n?
The interesting thing about the Avengers: Infinity War split is the movies that are sandwiched by it: Captain Marvel and Inhumans. While we’d imagine the latter will have one eye on becoming a key part of the Marvel Phase Four ( and the other eye on X- Men), we reckon Major Carol Danvers’ mega- powers are now likely to stem from the Infinity Gauntlet, adding a much needed superstring to the Avengers’ bow.
Will we ever see the original Avengers together again?
We’d be surprised if the whole gang wasn’t back for Infinity War Part II: a last hurrah of the big stars’ multi- movie contracts. Thor, Cap and Hulk will return from the grave, the jail cell or outer space ( maybe with a little help from certain galaxy- based Guardians), while Tony Stark – effectively a baddie in Civil War – will find his redemption. Hawkeye will also be in there too. Probably.
When does i t begin?
Phase Three officially kicks off with Captain America: Civil War on 29 April 2016, and concludes with Avengers: Infinity War Part 2, due out on 3 May 2019.
Steve Rogers will batter Tony Stark in 2016, mark our words. Kapow!
Thanos seems pleased, but we think he should adopt a more modest pose.