Will ‘Armor Wars’ and ‘Ironheart’ Be Connected Stories?

Learning about all the new TV shows Marvel/Disney has in store for Disney+ felt like dining on a smorgasbord for Marvel fans. While the pandemic made the Marvel cupboard barren for 2020, the bounty the MCU is serving the next few years on Disney+ more than makes up for it. 

Of particular interest were the two shows that spin off the Tony Stark story: Ironheart and Armor Wars. Given the MCU’s vaunted interconnectivity, fans wonder how that will play out on the TV side. 

What is ‘Armor Wars?’

Kevin Feige
Kevin Feige | Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Disney

RELATED: ‘Armor Wars’: Fans Can’t Wait to Finally See War Machine Abandon His Sidekick Role

Ever since Tony Stark met his maker in Avengers: Endgame, fans have been trying to contrive a way for the character to come back somehow, whether it’s a cameo in a “past” story like Black Widow or the kind of magical resurrection Doctor Strange’s folks could pull off. As fans have noted, one of the easiest and most obvious ways to carry on his story was right there in the form of War Machine/James Rhodes.

According to Screen Rant, Armor Wars is based on a comic book series from 1987 and 1988 about people attempting to steal Stark technology. While the MCU has already dealt with a story like this, notably in Spider-Man: Far From Home, the TV show would put the issue front and center. The story in the comics involved Tony Stark, so there will have to be significant rewrites, although that’s par for the course with the MCU. 

So with Tony gone, it will be up to War Machine to guard the Stark tech, and there is crossover potential too, with Ant-Man figuring in the comics version. Fans have been itching for War Machine to get his own story, as many of them felt the character got short shrift after nearly dying in Captain America: Civil War. Armor Wars might  help bridge that shortfall. 

What is ‘Ironheart?’

War Machine isn’t the only character who has been touted as an Iron Man successor. There is also a character as yet unseen in the movies, Riri Williams, a young tech genius who devises her own Iron Man suit and becomes Ironheart. Again, in the comics, Tony Stark is still alive, and he actively encourages Williams’ scientific and superheroic pursuits, so some retooling will be in order. 

Screen Rant points out Ironheart is the first target of the Ten Rings, the terror organization that dogged Tony Stark and that will get a bigger spotlight in the movie Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, due in theaters next July, and that’s an example of the interconnectivity that Marvel is famous for. Marvel has already talked about how WandaVision will eventually feed into Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, for instance, 

However, a lot has changed since that announcement was made. For one thing, Multiverse of Madness will not come out until 2022, so one wonders how well WandaVision, which premieres  in January 2021, will connect to a movie coming out more than a year later.

As things stand, neither of the two Iron-Man related shows have any kind of release date at all, though speculation says they’ll appear in 2022 or later. 

How will the two shows connect? 

Wondering if these shows will be connected might be like wondering if water is wet. As one fan on Reddit put it, “Everything will be connected. It’s not called the Marvel Independent Standalone Universe.”

So a better question might not be if but how. Connectivity might rise to a whole level now that Disney has made it clear that Disney+ is the company’s primary outlet. 

To be sure, Marvel threw struggling movie theaters a lifeline by announcing that all the titles that had been targeted for movie theaters, like Black Widow and Eternals, would still be going to theaters first. But with the bounty of TV titles announced, connectivity will probably play out in new and more elaborate ways.

One fan guessed, “IMO Armor Wars will precede Ironheart. Or hell, maybe Riri appears in AW where she’s interrogated by Rhodey, but Rhodey decides to leave her alone because he doesn’t see her as a threat.”

But another fan cut to the heart of the matter by saying, “This will make me get a Disney+ subscription again. I’ve been waiting for a War Machine solo outing for ages.” That’s music to Disney’s mouse ears.