Disney’s Marvel has accomplished a lot over the years. Not many studios can claim that they’ve successfully created an entire ecosystem of films. All connected in a wider cinematic universe. We see a lot of new franchises attempting to do so though to less than satisfactory results (*cough* DC Extended Universe *cough*) but none can top the king. The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is a titan of the blockbuster genre in terms of financial and commercial success…and still that’s not enough.
The Mouse is not done because correct me if I’m wrong but did I just hear in the official trailer for Spider-Man: Far From Home that there are other Earths? As in, there are other alternate universes? Forget the MCU, we about to get the Marvel Cinematic Multiverse (MCM)! We’ve seen concepts like a multiverse in the medium of comic books but we’ve yet to see a proper cinematic one and that has me thoroughly intrigued. I haven’t been this excited since I’ve heard that we’re getting a live version adaptation of Watchmen!
So it got me thinking, since Mysterio is from another version of Earth, will get a chance to see that alternate world? In fact, what other alternate universes and timelines do Marvel have in store for us? In any case, here are some of the other Marvel universes we want to see make its way into the MCU!
1. Marvel Zombies (Earth-2149)
Let’s kick this list off with something downright silly and fun! On Earth-2149 of the Marvel Multiverse, a strange infection starts breaking out that quickly changes members of the superhero community into ravenous, hungry zombies. This infection drives superpowered folks to feast on non-metahumans as their source of food. It doesn’t take long for these zombies to wipe their world clean of all human life but the thing about these zombies is that they’re just as capable as their former selves. Meaning mutant zombies still know how to use their abilities and zombie versions of Iron Man and Ant-Man are still capable of using technological weaponry to their benefit. If you thought the zombies in Dawn of the Dead or World War Z were smart, you ain’t seen nothing yet!
Seriously, shit gets pretty insane in this universe. At some point, the Marvel zombies devour Silver Surfer and gain a part of the power cosmic. So picture this with me, undead heroes with cosmic powers to rival that of Captain Marvel. Hell, they even manage to take Galactus down! We’ve seen the MCU incorporate multiple genres into their films with Ant-Man and Guardians of the Galaxy being comedies, and Winter Soldier being a spy thriller. We’ve yet to see a full-fledged horror film in the franchise and I can think of no better universe to introduce mayhem and carnage into the MCU than Earth-2149. Tell me you wouldn’t want to see a zombie Hulk tear up the Avengers compound as zombie Spider-Man rips Peter Parker’s face clean off his head. It’s fun, frightening and a fantastic premise to go on.
2. Future Imperfect (Earth-9200)
In an earlier piece discussing future films hinted in Endgame, we pointed out the possibility of a Hulk movie in which Bruce Banner battles with his personas. One of those personas just might be the tyrannical Maestro. I mean we’re halfway there with Bruce Banner essentially being Smart Hulk at the end of Endgame. In case you’re unfamiliar with the character, Maestro is a persona that manifested after a nuclear war annihilates nearly all of Earth’s heroes and villains.
In its wake is a Hulk drunk with power from nuclear radiation. He rules a dystopian Earth with an iron fist, being the only provider of safe haven from an irradiated wasteland of death and chaos. He meets his equal however when encounters a younger version of himself brought back in time. The story is absolutely bonkers and I love it!
We already have most of the necessary ingredients to make an alternate Future Imperfect timeline in the MCU. We have an intelligent Hulk and a time machine. The film could have Banner travel back in time to fix the mistakes of his past. He inevitably causes a rift in the timeline through a mishap that results in the current MCU splitting off into another universe. One in which the world is destroyed by thermonuclear Armageddon and Hulk rises as Maestro.
The Banner of the main MCU meets his possible future self and both of them do battle for the sake of their worlds. The Hulk is more than just a giant green deus ex machina, he’s a layered and conflicted character. A bitter and timid man on one side, and a beast of unbridled rage on the other. What happens when we get the worst of both worlds? It’ll be a titanic battle for Banner to exorcise his demons once and for all, for the future itself could depend on it.
3. Age of Ultron (Earth-61112)
Not be confused, with 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, this is a whole entire timeline in which the hyper-intelligent A.I. Ultron manages to actually devastate the planet and plunge the world into a dystopian hellscape. Our heroes are on the run. There are Ultron Sentinels hunting down the final remnants of mankind. It’s Judgment Day for the MCU. The Avengers are a broken team, reeling back from their failure to stop Ultron from tearing their world apart. Again much like the Future Imperfect storyline, this universe isn’t too far fetch. At the end of Age of Ultron, we saw Vision seemingly destroy Ultron in the Sokovian woods but here’s the thing, you can’t physically kill a computer virus. Who’s to say Ultron isn’t still out there. Waiting, biding his time till he finds an opportune moment to strike, like let’s say when a certain time machine is unguarded.
He could travel back in time before the events of Age of Ultron and inform his previous self of the pitfalls and flaws in his plan. Better yet, he could integrate himself with his older counterpart and begin his plan for world domination in secret. It’s Stark’s greatest sin coming back to haunt the Avengers from beyond the grave. A deathly spectre of past, present and future. Imagine seeing a John Connor-esque Captain America leading the charge against Ultron as the main MCU Avengers lend a helping hand to defeat the metal menace. I shudder to think what would happen if Ultron got his hands on Vibranium…he would be unstoppable.
4. Age of Apocalypse (Earth-295)
With Disney’s recent acquisition 20th Century Fox, it’s only a matter of time till we see the MCU’s version of the X-Men coming to the big screen. Not anytime soon though, seeing that the old guard has yet to wrap up its saga with Dark Phoenix on the way and New Mutants to be the series’ final instalment. The best word to sum up the franchise’s legacy so far would be mixed, ranging from brilliant all the way to terrible. One particular film that has left fans (including me) disappointed would be X-Men: Apocalypse. Don’t let the blue paint and goofy outfit fool you, Apocalypse is an absolute beast in the comics, the film simply did not do the character justice. Considered to be the Father of Mutantkind, Apocalypse is an immensely powerful being. His combined biological abilities pair with Celestial technology enables him to access any mutant ability he wishes.
In an alternate world, Professor X is accidentally murdered by his time-travelling son, Legion, leaving Magneto to carry on Charles’ dream of mutants and humanity coexisting. This single event is the catalyst that quickened Apocalypse’s ascension as he consolidates power and calls upon the mutants of the world to rise up. These are the end times, these are the days in the Age of Apocalypse. This event is massive calling for both mutants and non-mutants alike to take up arms against the tyrant. Everyone from Black Panther to Spider-Man to disparate members of the Avengers to even the freaking Avengers! Disney has an opportunity to give us another Thanos level threat in the form of Apocalypse.
5. House of M (Earth-58163)
Magneto has spent his whole life fighting for his vision of mutant kind, often against humans and his idealist rival/friend Charles Xavier. Earth-58163 dares to ask a question: What would that world look like if it had come to pass? On Earth-58163, Magneto reveals to the world that there is an anti-mutant agenda pushed by Richard M. Nixon. In response to this abuse of power, mutant kind is granted its own nation of Genosha, led by the revolutionary Magneto. Sounds alright so far. Experimentation of mutants are allowed and their sanctity of life is to be preserved by the law. That’s great. And then mutants slowly but surely take over all facets of society and beginning enacting laws that discriminate against non-mutants or “Sapiens”. Yeah…not so great. A whole new world is borne out of Scarlet Witch’s mental breakdown which severely altered reality.
We already have a Scarlet Witch in the MCU that at times can be seen struggling to keep control of her powers and abilities. Imagine if she meets someone like Magneto, her father, and he indoctrinates her on the idea of mutant superiority. She could destroy an Infinity Stone, perhaps she could create a whole other universe under Magneto’s vision. One in which she doesn’t have to hide anymore.
One in which her brother never died. One in which her family leads a new world order. The MCU is no stranger to exploring themes of oppression and idealism with films like Black Panther. To see earth of the House of M timeline would give them a canvas to further explore these ideas and push them further than the previous franchise ever could.