Proof That Doctor Doom Will Be the MCU’s Next Thanos in Phase 6

Now that Avengers: Endgame has come and gone — and San Diego Comic-Con has Marvel enthusiasts adequately hyped for the MCU’s phase four — fans have taken to prophecizing who the franchise’s next Thanos will be, and all signs point to Doctor Doom.

Marvel Studios
Marvel Studios | Photo by Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Avengers: Infinity War

Taking into account statements by Kevin Feige, as well as information concerning certain villains in the Marvel scape, evidence suggests that Doctor Doom will take on the villainous mantle. However, he likely won’t enter grand threat territory until somewhere in phase six, with a major introduction in Phase 5. 

Let’s start with what we know about a previously deemed abandoned project: The Doctor Doom solo movie. Before the Disney/Fox Merger, screenwriter Noah Hawley (Fargo, Legion, Lucy in the Sky) was penning a script for a Doctor Doom centric tale. Following the merger, the project was largely considered out of the picture. However, according to The Digital Wise, Hawley met with Kevin Feige, who virtually confirmed that a Doctor Doom solo movie is back on the agenda. 

MCU patterns: How Doctor Doom’s introduction is destined to go down

Given that San Diego Comic-Con just released the plans (as far as we know) for the entirety of Phase 4, you should not expect Doctor Doom’s solo movie until Phase 5. Theoretically, a late Phase 4 introduction (via an earth-shattering post-credits’ scene) with a solo movie in Phase 5 would prep Doom to succeed Thanos as the major threat come Phase 6. 

Marvel is known for following patterns, and the aforementioned transition would be in line with the studio’s tendencies. However, logistics is not the only factor supporting this theory. Given what we know about major Marvel villains, Doctor Doom fits well within the template for Marvel’s “chosen ones.”

Doctor Doom’s shtick: why he will be the next Thanos in the MCU

What do we know about Thanos? Unlike other smaller villains in the MCU — who tend to present a typical evil-doer persona — Thanos did not believe he was a villain. Thanos felt he was taking action to better mankind. He saw himself as the righteous one, pinned against foolish earthlings who thought with their hearts, rather than their minds. 

When it comes to the MCU, there’s a difference between being a villain and being the villain. Doctor Doom has all the markings to be the villain, which is why he will not surface in Phase 4 merely as a threat to the Fantastic Four. A one and done is not enough for Doom, which is why he will be preserved for a significant mash-up. 

Similar to Thanos, Doctor Doom will believe he is the hero of the story, as Super Frame explains. In an attempt to achieve some twisted goal they view as beneficial, masterminds become villainous through execution; their approach is heinous. So, how does this relate to Doctor Doom? 

Deep down, Doom merely wants to rescue his mother from hell. In an attempt to save his mother, he must pursue power, and he’s willing to go to any lengths to get her back. Thus, he becomes a villain — a moral-sacrificing man, consistently surrendering pieces of his humanity, on a mission he deems righteous. Sound familiar? And by the way, Doom also possesses a vision for the world he deems superior. 

Kevin Feige and the others behind the MCU are too intelligent to merely throw Doctor Doom into a single movie (as just another baddie), for he boasts the perfect backstory tying him to the most memorable of the MCU’s villains. Now, all Kevin Feige needs to do is secure Keanu Reeves for the part!