Ragnarok, World War Hulk and Civil War?! Count me in!

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The news hit the internet like a… No. Scratch that. It’s a rumour, not news. And I can’t be objective about it.

The rumours of the upcoming Phase 3 (and a couple for Phase 4) Marvel films has activated every fanboy-fuelled part of my DNA. The list that’s been mentioned for films after Avengers 2: Age Of Ultron is as follows: Ant-Man, Captain America – The Fallen Son, Doctor Strange, Thor – Ragnarok, Guardians of the Galaxy – War of Kings, Black Panther, Avengers – Civil War, World War Hulk, and The Inhumans.

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What the..?! If that’s true, it’s freaking awesome!

Okay, so the Ant-Man film has been on the drawing board for a while, and is scheduled for next year. I’ll confess that my initial enthusiasm has been muted by the news that this film seems to be focusing on Scott Lang, as opposed to the original Henry Pym. Pym features, but he’ll be an old man like Michael Douglas, and will be played by Michael Douglas. I’m a big fan of Pym, and while I could see the fascinatingly complicated character being played by someone who went off the rails brilliantly in Falling Down, I’m worried I won’t get it. Still, there’s always the next one.

Captain America 3 makes sense. The second one was probably the best of the Marvel movies so far, and really shook things up in a big way. There were still some plot lines to be resolved too, with Winter Soldier now on a quest to discover who he really is. The sequel was already planned way ahead of time, and it has a great deal of potential.

Doctor Strange isn’t too much of a surprise. Some of us went bonkers when we picked up on the   Doctor Strange’s Eye of Agamotto there in Odin’s treasure room in the first Thor film. Then in Winter Soldier, Agent Sitwell mentioned him by name. There’s been talk of Marvel’s Sorcerer Supreme being brought to the big screen, and in the same way as Guardians of the Galaxy is going to introduce viewers to Marvel’s more cosmic adventures, this is the reveal of Marvel’s mystical side.

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Whoa. Thor – Ragnarok? Really? It makes sense that there’s another Thor film coming out. They’re huge at the box office, great to watch and the last film had one of the best (and probably most obvious) twists at the end that has to be resolved. If you know your Norse mythology you may have some idea what this one’s about, and if you know the comics you’ll have some idea too. Maybe we’ll even get to see Sleipnir, Odin’s eight-legged horse again. Speaking of which, where did it disappear to after Odin and the gang returned from Jotunheim? Bah!

Guardians of the Galaxy: War of Kings isn’t a shocker either, even if the box office on the first film hasn’t even come into play. With Lego Groots and all of the other commercial doodads on display everywhere, what started out as the unlikeliest of film projects from Marvel could be a potential juggernaut. There was a hint to Adam Warlock in the post-credits teaser at the end of Thor 2, and depending on what the first film has to offer it looks like we may be getting more than we bargained for. Plus there’s that little matter of Thanos…

I’ve been waiting for a Black Panther movie for… okay, not all that long really. I knew he was out there, I read comic books featuring him, but he never really intersted me as a character even when he hooked up with Storm. He was always too quiet, too sullen and far too sneaky for my liking. I didn’t mind him in the second Ultimate Avengers animated film, or the Avengers – Earth’s Mightiest Heroes cartoons, but while he was slightly more fun he still didn’t draw me in. There was that still-unexplained background teaser in Iron Man 2 showing superhero activity in Africa, but…

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Wait a minute. There’s that bit in Avengers 2 coming up that was filmed in Johannesburg. They said it was going to just be Jo’burg in the film, and I’d get to see the old hometown here get ripped a new one. Although some people said it was going to be Wakanda. Hmm. That got me thinking that maybe an early appearance of Black Panther is on the cards. We already know more heroes are scheduled for Avengers 2, so why not? The more the merrier, and it all adds up to that bigger picture.

I dig the Avengers, and a third film was inevitable even before the second is out! They wanted a trilogy early on, and they’re getting one. But the Civil War storyline? Really?

I have to go on record as really enjoying that storyline in the comics. The Avengers (and other heroes) being divided the Registration Act was a massive – and inevitable – storyline. The opinions of the public has long been a staple of the Marvel universe, and I’ve said in previous articles how that’s been a subtle plot point in all the films so far. Not everyone loves the heroes, and some accountability has to come into play. Will the alien Skrulls play any part in this? Will Thanos? Who knows? But if Ultron is the Avengers’ fault in the second film like it should be, some people will want them to pay for their mistakes.

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World War Hulk is huge. Would the Planet Hulk storyline be included if they adapted it into a movie? My Magic 8-Ball says signs look positive. I’ve been waiting to see the Hulk let rip in his own film again for a while, and this could be big. It would make sense to end an Avengers Civil War film with them needing to get rid of the Hulk. He may be the strongest there is, but he’s also a loose cannon. If the public demanded accountability, the only way to contain the Hulk would be the solution from the comics: Blast him into space.

Imagine a post-credits teaser in Avengers 3 showing this, along with him crash-landing on an alien world. He looks around, a person’s shadow falls over him… and he grins. Fade to black, continue the credits. That’s a great teaser for World War Hulk. The Hulk on an alien world may sound far-fetched at first, but since the GotG movies are establishing Marvel’s cosmic storylines the viewers may be more accepting of it. Definitely one to look out for.

Last there’s The Inhumans. Is the world really ready for Black Bolt and a giant teleporting dog, or even Crystal and Medusa? It just may be, if Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch prove popular in Avengers 2, because they’re bound to appear. If Guardians of the Galaxy is anything to go by and they can turn a raccoon and a tree into superstars, Marvel can do almost anything right about now.

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But these are rumours.

If they’re true then they’ve made my day. They’ve probably made the day of countless fans the world over. If it’s a hoax then it’s a cruel one, and I hope that whoever’s behind it gets serious water-damage to their comic book collection. I want these films, and I’m not alone.

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