Avengers Disassembled

Avengers 5 theory: Marvel’s shows are setting up a villain worse than Thanos

The team could fight all enemies, foreign and domestic.

Marvel’s Disney+ originals are completely changing the game. WandaVision’s trippy sitcom utopia proved you don’t need a big alien enemy to create havoc. All you need is some powerful grief, a nosy neighbor, and maybe some chaos magic. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier seemed to take a more conventional approach, but the villainization of John Walker’s Captain America proves how a Big Bad could be someone everyone considers a hero.

Both these concepts combined lead to a clear path for Avengers 5 — and the future of the MCU as a whole.

Power Loves a Vacuum — The Falcon and the Winter Soldier establishes an uneasy post-Blip world, with the economy in shambles and camps of displaced people popping up left and right. In an attempt to return to normalcy, the Global Repatriation Council — or GRC — was formed, a governmental task force assigned to help those who were Blipped get back on their feet.

A huge government project like that means one thing: big government contracts. Corporations would take on those contracts and perform the GRC’s duties in exchange for a lot of money. It’s how Tony Stark made a lot of his cash with Stark Industries, and it’s the perfect breeding ground for a new Avengers supervillain — and we know just the guy.

Norman Osborn becomes an Iron Man counterpart.Marvel Comics

The Iron Patriot — In the comics, one man is known for becoming an Evil Tony Stark-like figure: Norman Osborn, primarily a Spider-Man antagonist as the Green Goblin, but at other points villainous in other ways — such as becoming the Iron Patriot and leader of the Dark Avengers.

Tapped into the MCU, Osborn and his company OsCorp could fill the vacuum left by Tony Stark’s death and gain sympathy (and power) by working to help the GRC on their mission. Establishing the infrastructure for a charitable presence around the world could easily be converted into complete domination.

Yes, Norman Osborn is usually the Green Goblin, the Spider-Man villain and brief Broadway sensation, but he also has a reputation as the leader of the Dark Avengers. The MCU really can’t top Thanos in terms of alien villains, so the most logical replacement is a villain from Earth who can face off against the Avengers with a group of equally talented Dark Avengers.

Norman Osborn and the Dark AvengersMarvel Comics

The Inverse Analysis — The introduction of the Dark Avengers would not only mean a truly worthy threat for another team of newly evolved Avengers, it also could mean a villain foreshadowed in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. If John Walker’s Captain America survives his rogue turn in the last two episodes of the series, he could very well find solace in a new team that seeks to destroy the team he was set in joining. Just as Norman Osborn becomes an evil Iron Man, John Walker becomes an evil Steve Rogers.

The formation of the Dark Avengers feels like the necessary conclusion to a series of Marvel properties that make us question the morals behind the superheroes themselves, from Wanda holding Westview hostage to John Walker stealing the super-soldier serum because he got beat up by a girl. In order to remind themselves what makes a superhero team good, they’ll have to fight everything that makes them bad.

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is now streaming on Disney+.