We may have 14 MCU Phase 4 titles to look forward to, eight of which are TV series coming to Disney+, but we have no clear indication of where Marvel’s heading now that the Infinity Saga has wrapped up. The upcoming movies will continue the arcs of some of the recently introduced characters, and they’ll also add new Marvel heroes to the pool of eligible Avengers. We’re set to discover new villains as well, including threats that will require massive team-ups like the ones we’ve seen in Infinity War and Endgame. But the overarching storyline Marvel is developing is still unclear.
The studio has drawn inspiration from major comics for previous movies, although it didn’t follow them exactly, adapting the characters and stories to work for the MCU. A series of recent leaks said the Avengers might not be the only team of superheroes going forward, revealing that the next major team will be teased as soon as Black Widow hits theaters in a few months. Now, we have a pair of reports that further supports that line of thinking.
A purported Black Widow credits scene leak said that the film will tease the formation of the Thunderbolts, a team of superheroes — or is it supervillains? — that was previously rumored to hit the MCU. We then heard that The Falcon and the Winter Soldier TV series will bring the first official mention of the Thunderbolts later this year.
This week, two separate sources claimed that Red Hulk will debut in the MCU soon. Comics fans know who Red Hulk is, of course, and how he’s connected to the Thunderbolts. General Thaddeus Ross, whom we last saw at Tony Stark’s funeral in Endgame, will supposedly appear in Black Widow and he’ll form the Thunderbolts at some point between those events and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.
He’s then supposed to become Red Hulk. Prominent Marvel leaker Daniel Richtman said (via MCU Cosmic) that Red Hulk will appear in a future MCU movie, without revealing which one it’ll be. Geeks WorldWide claims that Red Hulk will actually debut in the She-Hulk TV series that’s supposed to start shooting in the next six months and hit Disney+ at some point next year. She-Hulk, by the way, is seemingly confirmed to be joining a future version of the Avengers team at some point after her introduction.
Red Hulk can easily be the villain of the series or a future MCU movie, and he can be an Avengers and Thunderbolt member, depending on what comics Marvel will be using for Red Hulk’s arrival in the MCU.
The fact that Ross was present at Stark’s funeral is a clear indication that the character has a future in the MCU even though we haven’t really been paying that much attention to his cameos in recent years. William Hurt will probably keep playing Ross in the MCU going forward.