'Avengers: Endgame' Quantum Realm Theories May Be Focused on the Wrong Hero

Here's why Doctor Strange is the actual key to unlocking the Quantum Realm.

The Quantum Realm is all but confirmed to play a huge role in Avengers: Endgame, and that’s led everyone to assume Ant-Man is a key part of how the remaining Avengers will defeat Thanos. But what if another character is actually far more important when it comes to whatever quantum shenanigans occur in Endgame? What if it’s actually Doctor Strange who leads the way? After all, he’s already been to the Quantum Realm once before.

You might not remember it (I definitely didn’t until I sat down to rewatch Doctor Strange earlier this year and noticed one key detail), but when Strange first meets the Ancient One, she sends him on an astral journey through multiple dimensions, including the Dark Dimension that comes up later in that movie and, more importantly, the Quantum Realm.

This is just one Inverse String Theory, but it could be true. So consider yourself warned about potential Avengers: Endgame spoilers.

If you need a quick refresher, here’s what that moment looks like in Doctor Strange:

'Doctor Strange' (2016)


Here’s a second image, for good measure:

'Doctor Strange' (2016)


And here’s Ant-Man visiting the Quantum Realm a year earlier:

'Ant-Man' (2015)


Still not convinced? In the DVD commentary, director Scott Derrickson confirms that it’s the same place.

“This image here is obviously a nod to Ant-Man and the Quantum Realm,” he says, “acknowledging that as one of the mysterious realms of existence.”

(Side note: Marvel updated the Quantum Realm design in Ant-Man and the Wasp to look a lot more like the Dark Realm in Doctor Strange, but I’m pretty sure that’s just a coincidence.)

So what does this all mean? Well, to be honest, I’m not really sure. Consider this entire article one long red string connecting images of Ant-Man and Doctor Strange with the words “QUANTUM REALM CONNECTION?” scrawled underneath them.

That said, I do have a few theories. It’s possible that Doctor Strange could play a key role in getting Ant-Man out of the Quantum Realm. Sure, the fact that Strange turned to dust at the end of Infinity War throws a small wrench in that idea, but what if he used the Time Stone to travel forward in time and help out Scott Lang before turning to the present in Infinity War to die?

Another popular Avengers theory is that everyone Thanos dusted was actually teleported to the Quantum Realm. In that case, the fact that Strange has already been there before might mean he can help everyone else escape in Endgame.

Either way, the fact that Doctor Strange is familiar with the Quantum Realm feels super important, because It’s no coincidence that Ant-Man showed up at Avengers HQ with the Quantum Tunnel in that first Endgame trailer.

It all connects, and if there’s one thing I’m sure of, Doctor Strange is at the center of everything, Quantum Realm included.

In the final lead-up to Avengers: Endgame’s release, Inverse is unleashing a few fan theories of our own. Read all of them here and check back for weekly theories from some journalists who spend way too much time thinking about the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Avengers: Endgame hits theaters on April 26, 2019.

Got your own Avengers: Endgame theory? Send it to me at [jake@inverse.com](mailto:jake@inverse.com].