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Where Does the MCU Go After Civil War?

Written by Dustin Molina

As we are less than a month away from the release of Captain America: Civil War, it is time to take some serious thought on what will come after the fight. And I’m not talking about the post-credits sequence.

No, I’m referring to the big impact that this film will have on the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and for the fans as well. And the reason for this is a simple one:

At least one superhero is probably going to die. Dun, Dun, DUUUUUUUN.

(Yes, I’m aware that Quicksilver died in Avengers: Age of Ultron, but he was only in that film for 20 minutes tops so he doesn’t really count.)

A major superhero is going to die.

But who? (obviously spoilers ahead)

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If you look at the trailer for the Civil War and solely that, you may put your money on James “Rhodey” Rhodes’  War Machine biting the dust. It’s a decent guess; the trailer explicitly shows War Machine being shot down by The Winter Soldier, and then his lifeless body being cradled by Iron Man. Don Cheadle remains vague about his character’s fate, simply saying that “it does look bad” for War Machine. However, I don’t buy it. Kevin Feige and the team behind the MCU have always done an excellent job revealing just enough in their trailers to excite us but not to spoil the film. My bet is that this will just be a near-death experience for War Machine which is the catalyst to Iron Man’s aggression towards Captain America.

Which leads me to my bet for the death in the film: Captain America.

If one is to read on past the comic series Civil War, you will definitely know that it is immediately followed by series The Death of Captain America. After Captain America is brought into custody by S.H.I.E.L.D. (following his surrender in Civil War), he is assassinated by Crossbones and a hypnotized Agent 13 (Sharon Carter), and it is all orchestrated by Red Skull. This isn’t a nightmare or Scarlet Witch’s mind control, Captain America is shot and killed. He is dead.

Or is he? Of course not.

Without revealing too much, in Captain America: Reborn, we find out that the gun Agent 13 shot Captain America with is a gun that transports his consciousness throughout time, space, and dimensions, flashing between them at random. Eventually, Captain America (after a whole lot of body-switching madness), returns to life.

With this epilogue to the Civil War story line in the comics, it makes perfect sense that the films would follow suit. The major players involved in the assassination are all there in the film: Crossbones and Agent 13 (Red Skull isn’t there at the moment, but part of me feels (dreams) he may make a grand return eventually). Also, at this point in the MCU, the story merits a huge moment that will stick with the viewers for a long time being that it will be more than year until any of the Avengers return to the big screen (in Spider-Man on July 7th, 2017).

But in between Civil War and Spider-Man, the MCU is heading to two other locales. First, later this year, we will meet Doctor Strange and then a year from now, we will return to the far reaches of the galaxy with Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2.

While each of these films will stand on their own as building blocks leading up to 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War, I feel that Captain America’s death can fit into at least one, if not both of these stories.

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Take Doctor Strange for example. While the film will be mostly be an origin story of Stephen Strange and his transformation into Doctor Strange, I feel that Captain America’s return could be teased in this film. Assuming that the MCU decides to follow the “Captain America: Reborn” story line and have Cap’s consciousness transfer across time and space, Doctor Strange would be the perfect person to stumble across the Cap (if only for a moment) while he is learning his powers. Similarly in Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol.2, it wouldn’t be outrageous for one of the galaxies that Captain America warps to be one that Peter Quill happens to be dancing in (okay, that does sound a little outrageous).

Killing off Captain America, and then teasing his resurrection across multiple films would be the perfect way to keep fans excited as we move away from the Avengers story line for a little while, until some of them return in Spider-Man.

Am I wrong? What do you think will happen in the MCU post-Civil War? Let me know if the comments if you want to argue about it. Sound off in the comments or send us your thoughts on Twitter!

About the author

Dustin Molina