Marvel Phase 4 & 5: The Beyonder, Heroic Thanos & Greater Universal Threats

I have just started writing for moviepilot.com and I did post this on the website. But I also posting it here.

Major Spoilers concerning Marvel Phase 4 and 5!

Alright, I know you will read the spoilers. After all, who isn’t tempted to even though one hates to?

So, here goes.

Thanos does not die at the end of the Infinity War.

He becomes an ally instead.

Thanos, though once wiping out half the sentient life in the universe, is not an outright villain. He is more of an anti-hero. Why? Because even though he did destroy half the universe once, he saved the whole of four times after.

When his mad love for lady Death ended in not so ceremonial way, he decides to become a lone farmer and sought redemption for his acts. Because Nebula had restored all that was destroyed, nobody really died and everyone eventually ended up being safe.

Thanos_vs_Marvel_

Thanos then becomes the guardian of the reality gem and successfully thwarts both Magus and the Goddess and the inter-universal consuming entity to save the universe.

The Infinity War isn’t a single cosmic event; it is the second of the six cosmic events in the Marvel Universe. And technically the event that is to be shown in the 2018 and 2019 films is not the Infinity War, rather Infinity Gauntlet. It starts with Thanos’ Quest and ends with Thanos’ exile.

1469085-infinity_guantlet_05_03_1

So even though Thanos – The Mad Titan – was the villain of the first and second events, he was the saviour in the rest.

We will be introduced to cosmic entities like The Celestials, Galactus, Lord Chaos and Master Order, The Living Tribunal, Eternity, Infinity, manifestations of love and desire et cetera.

Saying all that let’s speculate story-lines for the Marvel Cinematic Universe post Infinity War.

Marvel Phase 4: The Secret War/Beyonder Saga

Secret_Wars_001

After a universe spanning 21 films until the Infinity War, many would think there will not be any content of epic proportions to adapt. But, as mentioned above, there is much more.

I truly believe that the rights for the Fantastic Four will return to Marvel sooner rather than later. The reboot will sink. People will boycott it and unassuming viewers will not be too excited because of how sucky its marketing is.

When the rights will return to Marvel, we will have the Skrull, Galactus, the Silver Surfer and Doctor Doom at our disposal.

712104-cover_large

Doctor Victor Von Doom was heavily involved in the Infinity War and he is a scientific, psychological and supernatural threat. He is one of the most revered and famousest (that’s a word…the Hobbits use it) villains of all time. What better honour for him than being the inspiration for Darth Vader?

But a true threat for the heroes will come in the form of the Beyonder. He was once an Inhuman (also a mutant) who was exposed to the Terrigen Mists and his Terrigenesis bestowed upon him godlike powers. The memory of his existence was erased from the minds of Blackbolt and everybody else.

671066-beyonder_1

He creates an alternate reality within himself. He then becomes infatuated and obsessed with the lives of Earthlings. He throws a trap for our heroes and transports them to another galaxy; he also intrigues and ensnares the villains and eventually pits heroes and villains against each other on a new planet called Battleworld with the promise of a great reward.

He is usurped by the overly ambitious Doctor Doom who in turn is thwarted by the Beyonder and soon after both are vanquished by the heroes. Once defeated therein, he returns to Earth to study mankind and experience love. After several convoluted plots he enters a Sanctum Sanctorum and creates an alternate universe for himself. But he is confronted and defeated there as well and turns into a cosmic cube.

This could be the plot for the fourth and fifth Avengers films. Characters like Doctor Strange and the Inhumans are directly involved in this conflict. And this will lead into Phase 5 which is the Infinity Crusade.

Marvel Phase 5: The Infinity Crusade

 download

When Adam Warlock takes the Infinity Gauntlet, he decides to nullify his emotions and his will to be good and bad so as to be a neutral judge akin to the Living Tribunal. But, in doing so he created two sentient entities called the Magus and the Goddess.

The Magus was the villain of the Infinity War and the Goddess of the Infinity Crusade.

The Infinity Crusade Part 1

The Magus is a malevolent entity who wants to end all life for the sake of ending all life. He creates doppelgängers of the heroes and villains and goes after the Cosmic Cubes. Their working is similar to that of the Infinity Gauntlet. He collects the five cosmic cubes, incapacitates the cosmic entity Eternity and creates an inter-dimensional realm from where he creates evil duplicates of everybody else, including Thanos. (See? I told you Thanos isn’t a hard-core baddie)

Magus_Warlock

The Magus, Adam Warlock’s malevolent entity

Thanos discovers the plot set by the Magus and apprises Warlock of it. Galactus, who again isn’t an outright villain, investigates along with Earth’s heroes and attempts to revive Eternity because the entity is needed to petition the Living Tribunal, who had the use of the Infinity Gems in unison. If the Gauntlet was reactivated, the heroes could erase the Magus existence.

1105222-adam_magus

After several mini events on Earth and elsewhere, the story climaxes with Quasar, the Magus, Warlock, Thanos, Doctor Doom and Kang the Conqueror vying for the cosmic cubes.

Doom and Kang approach Magus after searching for the cosmic power’s source.

The Magus captures Adam Warlock and the inactive gauntlet. They battle each other and Warlock loses the fight. Magus is severely weakened and attempts to use the cosmic cubes but finds the containment units stolen. Doom betrays Kang and demands Magus to relinquish the gauntlet.

Warlock Chronicles #3   2

Coincidentally Eternity is revived and convinces The Living Tribunal to reactivate the gauntlet. A near omnipotent Magus defeats Doom and erases Quasar’s existence. Thanos enters the scene, battling his doppelgänger and distracting Magus. Adam Warlock grapples the Magus for the gauntlet and releases a composite being made of Eternity and his twin Infinity. This being incapacitates the Magus and Warlock traps him in the Soul Gem. But Warlock – spending most of his energy – falls into a coma.

Thanos reveals to the assembled heroes that Magus had never gained true omnipotence. Thanos had replaced the Reality Gem with a convincing fake and declares that he had always been the secret guardian of the Reality Gem. The heroes return to Earth as everything is turned back to normal.

The Infinity Crusade Part 2

The Infinity War story ends with the Goddess collecting the containment units and in the Infinity Crusade we find that she has created a new planet Paradise Omega with the help of the cosmic egg. She brainwashes many of the Earth’s heroes and recruits them for her army.

goddessic2

Her aim is to end all evil. Professor X (who could be replaced by Doctor Strange in this movie version), Thanos and Adam Warlock join forces and plan an assault on the Goddess’ defences. They are thwarted by Moondragon and Professor X goes into a state of coma.

Thanos and Warlock are approached by Mephisto, who gives them vital information regarding the Goddess in exchange of a containment unit. They agree.

Thanos assembles the heroes of Earth and frees the Silver Surfer from the control of the Goddess. The Silver Surfer destroys the planet’s defences. Thanos using his telepathic powers attacks the Goddess the very moment she decides to activate her plan. She was determined to rewrite all existence in order to nullify evil itself.

Infinity Crusade

But she was tricked into it by Warlock, who had created an illusion in order to make her reveal her true intentions to the heroes of Earth. Thanos, Warlock and Professor X (here Doctor Strange) attack the Goddess on the spiritual plane, where the cubes have no power, and trap her inside the Soul Gem.

The heroes return to Earth as the battle is undone by the Cosmic Egg. Thanos deems that the power of the Cosmic Egg mustn’t be used by anyone else. Thanos takes one of the cosmic cubes to Mephisto to deliver the promised payment. He then destroys the Paradise Omega and the Egg, making the artefact useless for Mephisto.

Hence, Thanos saves the universe time and again and receives full redemption for his previous acts of jealous love.

This could effectively end Phase 5 and also the Marvel Cinematic Universe itself. It will also be enough to make films until 2028 as Marvel has already planned.

Let me know your opinions. I could have added several other mini plotlines, but it would only make this already long post a saga. I guess I’ll write another piece on those itty bitty details.

~ Zalysar Cuvegis/The Mad Bard

Advertisements

Daniel Brühl to Play Mephisto in Captain America: Civil War, Doctor Strange & Avengers: Infinity War

I had been wondering how and when will we be introduced to the character of Mephisto in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. He is the original politician, the supreme briber, the whisperer of chaos. And he corrupts the will of all – from a harmless child of eight in an alley in Brazil to the Mad Titan Thanos.

He is the trader of souls and a desirer of the Infinity Gems…and he has – throughout history – plotted the downfall of nations.

So, it would be very natural for Marvel to add him as a villain in Captain America: Civil War come 2016. And the casting of German-Spanish actor Daniel Brühl in an unnamed villainous role for the film – with possible antagonistic main role in the Doctor Strange film four months later – got my mind deducting (see what I did there?) . And within seconds – as I bent my will to create – I traversed to this fully formed plane of thought:

If Marvel have cast Daniel Brühl as Mephisto, it is a brilliant choice. The myth of Faustus and Mephistopheles, the source for the Marvel villain’s conception is German folklore. Daniel Brühl has a prevailing German accent and he is exactly the type of actor who can nail cunning egotistical villainous roles: much more than being Loki and exactly being the devil himself. Daniel Bruhl - 3

Daniel Brühl has that face, and particularly that smile (and that glint in his eyes when he does so) that by default gives you a vibe of “that man has something up his sleeve.” And his voice also is great for a sinister role.

In Captain America: Civil War, he can assume the role of adding faggots to the flame when the superheroes are embroiled in a cold war over the Superhuman Registration Act. He can be that whispering devil who can keep the embers lit, the man behind the shadows revelling in the collapse of superhuman brotherhood.

Mephisto loves chaos and discord, apart from hoarding souls. Daniel Brühl would relish this role for sure.

And then we can see Mephisto directly lead into Doctor Strange.

As is speculated, there won’t be any origin story to Doctor Strange…most likely flashbacks to it. And I believe that will be so as in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Doctor Stephen Strange is name dropped as someone who is considered a threat by HYDRA. It can only mean that he is an already established superhero in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The only viable way for Kevin Feige and his knights – Scott Derrickson and co – to weave Doctor Strange with the rest of the films is by having Mephisto play a common threat.

It is very likely that Dormammu will not be the main villain in the first Doctor Strange film. And I for one do not want Baron Mordo to be the prime antagonist either. As much as I love everything about the Sorcerer Supreme’s world, I do not fancy Baron Mordo much.

So, a better choice would be to keep Mordo as a minion (as he always is) and keep Mephisto as the main threat. Mephisto can be shown as someone who has had the chance to get his hands on the Soul Gem. At the same time, Mephisto finds it a great opportunity – being given the seed of the vile thought by someone else (maybe Doctor Faustus the other Marvel villain)…to at first cause a great discord on Earth via the chaos of fluctuating desire…something which was a storyline in The Mystic Hands of Doctor Strange volume 1 (2010)…and then go for the Infinity Gem itself.

Screenshot (3012)

We can first see Doctor Strange tackle the issue of a collapsing economical and psychological system throughout the world, something which can be the byproduct of a Civil War which creates fear in people of Superheroes and Governments both and causes them to take matters in their own hands and fix the world itself. Of course no superhero or organisation knows how to stop this mysterious wave of rebellion and good will. But Doctor Strange knows that it is something that is being perpetuated by forces from the astral plane.

Johan_Fennhoff_(Earth-616)

He will then investigate and tackle Doctor Faustus, who can be shown as the Doktor of the comic issue, by admitting himself in a mental asylum. Therein we can see in flashbacks how Doctor Strange came to be the Sorcerer Supreme. Benedict Cumberbatch can throw in bits of his Imitation Game and Van Gogh for this sequence. We can see these flashbacks during a confrontation with Doctor Faustus. As Doctor Faustus tries to mess with his mind, we will see Stephen Strange’s past.

Screenshot (3007)

After this sequence comes to an end, we can then see Doctor Strange face Mephisto. In his dealings and duellings with Mephisto, he unravels Mephisto’s plan to get hold of the Soul Gem.

This would lead Doctor Strange through several perils in the astral plane that we can enjoy (that sounds sadistic on my part, and yours too as you smiled as well. I know…I am a Sorcerer).

The Soul Gem is in the possession of Adam Warlock, who is imprisoned in the Soul Realm, and we can finally have a way to introduce Adam Warlock into the fold as well.

awar1

I do not know how the other elements will be tackled…but I’m guessing one of Strange’s great foes: Nightmare…will be featured in the movie as well. So…yes…Mephisto doesn’t have to be the only baddie of the film.

Warlock-Chronicles_003_Vol1993_Marvel__ComiClash

And at the end of the film – or somewhere in  its midst – we can see an interaction between Thanos and Mephisto and a plotting that can possibly lead to the acquisition of the Soul Gem by the Mad Titan. Maybe the failure to acquire the Soul Gem leads Mephisto to pledge his allegiance to Thanos for his own sinister purposes, as he has always desired to get a hold of all the Infinity Stones.

infinity-gauntlet-mephisto-speaks

This way we will then have Mephisto established as the counsellor, first minister, whisperer of insanity to Thanos.

Fuelling the Mad Titan’s vain yet innocent desire to see the universe die to please his lover Lady Death and when – as it happens in the infinity saga – Thanos has all the gems in his hold, and has blasted his foes to nothingness, get the Infinity Gauntlet for himself and feast upon not only the gazillion souls Thanos forced to wander, but also the physical realm.

patrick-scherberger-what-if-newer-fantastic-four-no-1-group-thanos-death-and-mephisto

This sounds perfect to me a plot….connecting the human, the astral and the cosmic realms seamlessly through one entity who is almost always blamed for the cause of all things destructive and evil: the Devil Mephistopheles himself.

Disclaimer: If – by any chance this article does get a lot of viewership – I would request people posting the theory on other websites to cite the source of this theory…that is My Geekdom Come.

~ Zalysar Cuvegis/Rafi

Three Reasons Why Benedict Cumberbatch Is An Awesome Doctor Strange

When Deadline reported (and a sleuth of sites viralled the news) Benedict Cumberbatch is in talks to play Doctor Strange in the upcoming Phase 3 Marvel Film of the same name, there were – unshockingly – mixed reactions from fandom all over the big, bad world of Geekdom.

As a scourer of the Internet, I had seen the rumblings of this uproar against Benedict Cumberbatch since almost over a year. From Screenrant to IGN (and every comic book news site), whenever the name of the Sherlock actor was suggested for the role, most people said no.

Reasons?

“He is overhyped!”, “Cumberbatch, Cumberbatch everywhere!”, “Why does everyone want to cast him for every role?” “The film is already ruined if he is chosen!”, “He is a good actor but imo he doesn’t look the part!”.

Well, let us now analyse the reasons why he is FIT for the role of Doctor Stephen Vincent Strange.

Firstly, if you read the original Strange Tales from Steve Ditko, Jack Kirby and Jim Steranko, you will find that they are written in a poetic and archaic style by Steranko. Director Scott Derrickson (who, by the way, has the look of Doctor Strange) is adapting these Strange Tales for the big screen.

And who would be best to deliver Shakespearen dialogues and monologues with a pinch of eccentricity and a whole of lot of class? A highly skilled British actor with a deep register for a voice. Who do we have best in this category? Benedict Cumberbatch of course.

Secondly, to dispel the fear (like Strange does) of those commenting on Benedict’s facial appearance:

Benedict has sported a Goatee before and does look the part with the required styling. There have been several iterations of the Sorcerer Supreme’s appearance since his conception. And in most iterations, Doctor Strange’s face was angular like Benedict.

Thirdly, Benedict has the resonating Baritone and the charisma to command the attention of both his foes on-screen and viewers off-screen.

When it comes to Doctor Strange, a really important aspect (often neglected even in animated series) is the manner of speech.

The Sorcerer Supreme is all about incantations, and incantations need to hold weight and require powerful delivery. There is none better to yawp those incantations with the perfect balance of mysticism and suave than Benedict Cumberbatch.

Compare Benedict Cumberbatch, who voiced Smaug in The Hobbit, is set to voice Sher Khan in The Jungle Book and was Khan in Star Trek to say Johnny Depp. Cumberbatch will win any day over anyone if there was to be a contest of saying,

I am Doctor Strange! Sorcerer Supreme!

or

Ah…like most…dabblers…you understand too quickly. None may claim the Mantle Esoteric — though it can be given. As I do…now…without pause…or lament. But…you’ll find a Sorceress Supreme is not an empress. You fill this…vacancy…to discover humility…in short — TO SERVE!” 

or

Now let the rising tide of power / From birth of stars to final doom / Reveal the place, the form, the hour / Where light’s salvation forth may bloom / Where seen and unseen twine and blend — And darkness end!” 

Benedict Cumberbatch will not only be fit for the role, but he will take the name of the Sorcerer Supreme to legendary levels in modern day cinema with his truly captivating performances.

I, for one, cannot wait to see my favourite Superhero portrayed by Mister Cumberbatch.

May the Vishanti watch over thee!

~ Zalysar Cuvegis