All the Questions We Have After Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania

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Phase Five is in full effect with the release of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania. Paul Rudd’s third time around as former criminal turned Avenger Scott Lang sees him, his daughter Cassie (Kathryn Newton), and the whole Pym/Van Dyne family (Hope, Hank, and Janet, played by Evangeline Lilly, Michael Douglas, and Michelle Pfeiffer) sucked into the Quantum Realm, where they have to deal with a time-traveling supervillain named Kang the Conquerer (Jonathan Majors). After watching it, here are some questions we had—and our attempts to answer them.

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Screenshot: Marvel Studios

At the beginning of the film, Cassie criticizes Scott for being complacent. She teases him that after defeating Thanos he hasn’t really done much. Well, he then goes into the Quantum Realm, defeats Kang, comes out, and… is back into the same routine. If anything, he’s less sure of himself because of the whole Kang thing. Did he learn anything? Did he grow as a person? We honestly don’t know. Maybe he learned to respect his daughter a bit more? But it’s weird that Scott saves the world and starts up a new era of the MCU, but sacrifices nothing and doesn’t use the experience as a springboard into any kind of meaningful change.

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One of the weirder moments of Quantumania is in Scott’s voiceover at the end where he questions if killing Kang was the right thing. He remembers that Kang said if he wasn’t let out, something very bad would happen. So, Scott thinks, maybe he should’ve let him live. What Scott fails to consider in this train of thought is what would have happened if he did let Kang out: also something very bad! Probably Kang destroys everyone and everything in this timeline as well as several others. So Scott was in a lose-lose situation and, at least by killing this one Kang, he bought himself—and the MCU—some time.

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Throughout the film, Kang alludes to a being or group that sent him to the Quantum Realm, a place detached from space and time, where he would be trapped forever. It’s never specifically stated during the film who did this, but the first end-credit scene answers this question. It was three of the most powerful Kangs: Rama-Tut, Centurion, and Immortus. More on them in a second.

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This question is sort of alluded to in the film but never directly addressed. Basically, this Kang—the Conquerer—looked at the end of time and saw something he didn’t like. “A lot of me,” he puts it. And so, to stop that from happening, he began to destroy various timelines until he was stopped by the other Kangs, who didn’t like that he was messing with their plans. But how many did he kill? How long was he doing it? We don’t know.

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Once Rama-Tut, Centurion, and Immortus realize an Avenger killed Kang the Conquerer, they summon all the other Kangs from all other timelines to speed up their plans. Plans that, we guess, we’ll see unfold throughout the rest of Phase 5 and 6, culminating in Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars. One rumor is that they want to prune all the timelines until no superheroes are left but we won’t know if that’s true for some time.

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The second end credit scene shows Loki and Mobius watching a show by a man named Victor Timely, who is clearly another Kang variant. We don’t know when this happens in the timeline of the MCU but we do know that it’s a scene from the second season of Loki, so we’ll get more context in the coming months.

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The whole of Quantumania, and maybe even the MCU’s Multiverse Saga, could have been avoided if Janet Van Dyne had just told her family the truth: she left an evil warlord named Kang in the Quantum Realm, and letting him out might mean the end of the Multiverse. Surely, Cassie and Hank wouldn’t have been messing around with the Quantum Realm if she said that.

It’s never specifically stated but our best guess is that Janet simply felt guilty about choosing her family over all of the people she left subjugated to Kang in the Quantum Realm. If she actually acknowledged it, that would’ve meant having to deal with it, and she just wanted to ignore it.

At the end of Ant-Man and the Wasp, before they’re dusted, Scott goes into the Quantum Realm to get materials so that Ghost can survive. Hank, Janet, and Hope are observing. Janet even gives him some tips! Everything seems fine until, you know, Thanos. But if Janet was so scared of the Quantum Realm and Kang, why let Scott go down there at all?

The answer here depends on how literal you want to get. The real answer, most certainly, is that the Marvel Studios team hadn’t conceived Quantumania yet so there was no reason for it to be an issue. Taking that reality off the table, maybe Scott wasn’t going down deep enough to alert Kang, or Janet felt it was a short enough trip that no one would notice. There’s no way to say for sure, but that’s our idea.

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Janet Van Dyne says that the Quantum Realm is worlds upon worlds upon worlds. This is the reason it looks so different at the level they’re in during Quantumania than previous trips. They’ve never been this deep. But, does it go deeper? Are there even more beings and worlds below this? Does it go on forever? We don’t know but Janet’s words certainly suggest it.

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I can buy that there are infinite worlds upon worlds at a subatomic level. Fine. What I can’t quite get my head around is where does everyone come from? Did beings evolve in the Quantum Realm like on Earth? How did that start? Why are some beings humanoid and others aren’t? Do beings procreate… naturally? So many questions and no answers on this one. Disney+ series maybe?

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Quantumania introduces a bunch of new characters to the MCU, most prominently from the heroic side, the Freedom Fighters Jentorra (Katy M. O’Brian), Quaz (William Jackson Harper), and Veb (David Dastmalchian). Lord Krylar (Bill Murray) may also have survived. Is it possible for any of these characters to return? Will they come up to the surface? Will the action go quantum once again? We aren’t sure but it certainly feels like a place that will play a larger role moving forward.

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One of Quantummania’s more fun moments is when we learn that Hank’s already self-sufficient ants lived 1,000 years in a day while traveling through the Quantum Realm and have now become technologically advanced. They play a big role in the defeat of Kang, so you have to wonder if they’ll back. We don’t know, but the biggest (or smallest) question might be, if they did come back to Earth, would they once again be ant-sized?

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The three Kangs at the end of the film make it seem like it’s a huge deal that a human being defeated Kang. But, if a human—even an Avenger like Scott Lang—can defeat a Kang basically on his own, why should all of the Avengers be scared of him? This is another one of those unanswerable questions, but it almost certainly lies in the fact that it was very difficult to kill just one, and not only are there more than one, there are an infinite number of them, all of whom seem to be on the same wavelength.

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One of the biggest disappointments in Quantumania is that we don’t see some of the supporting characters from the Ant-Man universe. People like Luis, played by Michael Peña; Scott’s ex, Maggie, played by Judy Greer; and her husband, Jim, played by Bobby Cannavale. So where are they? Probably at home.

Don’t forget, this movie takes place over a very short amount of time. It starts, there’s a montage, and they get sucked into the Quantum Realm. If the movie went on for a few more days, maybe they would have appeared. Other Ant-Man regulars like Jimmy Woo (Randall Park) and Dale from Baskin-Robbins (Gregg Turkington), do appear, but we have to think the bigger characters probably would’ve felt severely underutilized. Though this does have us wondering…

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Several characters in Quantumania mention that there’s no telling how much time has gone by while they are in the Quantum Realm. We know that in Endgame, five hours to Scott was five years in reality. It certainly seems like the movie takes place over longer than five hours and yet, it’s as if no time at all has passed during the film. Is that because they were so deep in the Realm? We don’t know, but it’s a little odd to keep things so vague.

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Now that we’ve spent so much more time in the Quantum Realm, don’t you want to know more about it? Like, where did it come from, how was it created, and how do things work down there? The movie never dives much beyond it just existing but it would be cool to know more.

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So Kang was destroying all these timelines and was banished to the Quantum Realm. There, he somehow subjugated most of the beings and started an Empire. But… how? It’s never quite clear what exactly Kang’s powers are. We know he can see all through time, and that suit of his certainly gives him some powers with lasers and stuff. But does he have any powers that make him a dictator-like threat beyond the fact he has all of these variants? Going by the movie, that doesn’t quite make sense.

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This has nothing to do with the movie but if we’re talking about the main villain of the Infinity Saga vs. the main villain of the Multiverse Saga, who do you got? While Thanos certainly has more physical ability and, from what we can see, natural leadership skills, he does not have access or control over his other variants. Nor can he see or predict what’s going to happen, at least not without some Infinity Stones. That leads us to believe Kang would be victorious, even though we don’t know what his powers are.

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Kang mentions that he’s killed multiple Avengers, and specifically mentions one with a hammer. So, is Thor the only one he’s killed? If not, how many others? We don’t know but we imagine we might find out.

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Cassie Lang asks Kang “How does it end?” and he says with “A lot of me.” We don’t know what that means exactly but, if you refer back to the fifth question, it certainly has to do with the Kang’s winning and taking over everything.

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When Hope came back to save Scott, I thought for sure they were going to be stuck in the Quantum Realm. It made sense. They even seemed okay with it because they were together (and they wouldn’t be alone, with all the new creatures and beings). So I was surprised when Cassie opened the portal again and they went home. It somehow undercut a big emotional swing. But maybe that’s just me.

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Kang’s army is made up of thousands of faceless soldiers in almost Mysterio-like outfits. But, who are they? Are they clones? Robots? Beings from the Quantum Realm? We do not know.

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That Darren Cross, a.k.a. Yellowjacket, was turned into MODOK by Kang is one of Quantumania’s best surprises (or worst, depending on your point of view). And the character even has a redemption arc, helping Scott to defeat Kang, which is an even bigger one. It seems as if he dies at the end but we sincerely hope that’s not the case.


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