Back in July at San Diego Comic-Con, Marvel unveiled not one but two Avengers movies set to close out its Multiverse Saga. Those movies, titled The Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars, seem to be setting up a clear arc for the next few years of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe. But what if one of those movies is actually a giant misdirect?
An intriguing (if somewhat farfetched) new theory suggests Avengers: The Kang Dynasty is actually a placeholder for the long-awaited arrival of the X-Men in the MCU. Intruiged? Let’s dive in.
The theory — Courtesy of TikToker Nikhil Clayton (who posts a mix of explainers, theories, and sketches, almost always about Marvel), this fan theory is beautiful in its simplicity: What if Avengers: The Kang Dynasty is actually just the MCU’s first X-Men movie in disguise?
Nikhil opens the video by admitting that this is a “crackpot theory,” but there might be something to it. See for yourself:
As Nikhil points out, by the time we get to Avengers: The Kang Dynasty in May 2025, MCU fans will have seen a lot of Kang. The time-traveling warlord already appeared in Loki Season 1. Next up, he’s set to be the main villain of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and will probably play a major role in Loki Season 2 (scheduled for mid-2023). By the time we actually get to The Kang Dynasty, will Marvel fans even care about Kang anymore?
For comparison, imagine if after Thanos showed up in The Avengers post-credits scene he was also the primary villain in Iron Man 3 and played a major role in Guardians of the Galaxy. By the time we got to the main event, fans would have been rightfully tired of the Mad Titan. Instead, Marvel teased him for years, so by the time Thanos did take center stage, audiences were amped up.
The counterargument — Of course, it’s possible we might be overestimating the amount of Kang in some of these movies. It’s possible he could play a relatively minor role in Ant-Man 3 — rumor has it M.O.D.O.K. is also in the mix. The same goes for Loki Season 2, which appears to be veering off into Dark Dimension territory anyway.
It’s also worth noting that the fun thing about Kang is that there are so many versions of him. Thanks to the multiverse, we could see three different Kang variants in these three upcoming projects, which would certainly solve the issue at the heart of this theory.
And finally, we should point out that the X-Men don’t play a particularly crucial role in either of the main Secret Wars comic book events expected to inspire the upcoming movie (currently scheduled to debut a year after “The Kang Dynasty”). So while it would be nice to introduce Wolverine and Storm to the MCU, it’s not like you need them for Secret Wars. (You definitely need the Fantastic Four, however.)
That said, I personally won’t be mad if this theory turns out to be true, but for now, the worst thing anyone in or outside the MCU can do is to bet against Kang the Conqueror.