EXCLUSIVE: How GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 2 Could Help Usher Galactus Into The MCU
Do Fox and Marvel Have Something Fantastic Up Their Sleeves?
On yesterday’s episode of the El Fanboy Podcast, I broke the story that a doorway will be getting opened when Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2 comes out on May 5th. It’s a doorway that’s potentially very, very significant. It’s one that could lead us down a path that ultimately brings characters like Silver Surfer, The Fantastic Four, and Galactus into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Just in case you’ve been living under a rock for the last couple of decades, Marvel doesn’t own the movie rights for characters in the Fantastic Four and X-Men canons. No, those belong to 20th Century Fox. That means that the aforementioned characters, as vital as they may be to tell certain stories, are totally unavailable to Marvel Studios when they’re deciding what to do next. Kind of like the way things used to be with Spider-Man, before Marvel and Sony got together and made a deal that worked out for both sides.
In order to explain how Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2 potentially reveals that Marvel and Fox have been doing some dealing of their own, I’ll have to delve into SPOILERISH territory for James Gunn’s film. It won’t be an outright spoiler, but it’ll vaguely reveal something about the movie. So proceed at your own risk.
Okay. So Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2 features a brief appearance by The Watchers (or, Watchers). According to any and all reliable Marvel Comics databases, these characters are attached-at-the-hip to the Fantastic Four canon, and have very specific ties to Galactus.
The Watchers made their debut back in 1963, when one of them- Uatu- appeared in Fantastic Four #13. Then The Watchers, as a species, made their presence felt a year later in Strange Tales #53. Here’s a brief description of who/what The Watchers are, according to Marvel’s official site:
“The Watchers are a vastly powerful, ancient extraterrestrial race who untold eons ago undertook the task of passively observing the phenomena of the universe.”
In the nearly five decades since their debut, The Watchers have most closely been linked to story lines that involve the Fantastic Four and Galactus. Uatu, in particular, has had a lot of dealings with the cosmic super villain.
The fact that The Watchers appear in Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2 got us very curious, so we reached out to a well-connected source with very close ties to the Fox/Marvel end of things. They spoke to us on a condition of anonymity, and here’s what they said regarding what’s going on behind the scenes between the two studios:
“There’s been a massive thawing of the relationship between the companies (Marvel and Fox) and lots of little things are sliding now.”
Of course, there have been little things that have been agreed-upon in the past. Quicksilver, a member of the X-Universe, famously appeared in Avengers: Age of Ultron, played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson. The same character was played by Evan Peters in X-Men: Days of Future Past and X-Men: Apocalypse. But according to the source, the relationship between Fox and Marvel has gotten so cozy that there could be much more on the way.
“Informal deals have been done to let little things like this through and the companies are getting on now better than at any time in the past.“
For years, fans have wondered where the MCU was going to go next. Thanos was first teased in 2012’s The Avengers, and he’ll definitely be the central evil that gets dealt with in the next two Avengers films. But once he’s been handled, who’s left in the Marvel canon that would be huge enough to force all of our heroes to unite again? For many, the answer to that question is Galactus.
The fact that The Watchers are now about to become part of the MCU canon, coupled with how chummy things apparently are between Marvel and Fox, means something like that is closer than ever to happening.
When you consider the fact that Fox has taken three stabs at the Fantastic Four, with the most recent one being a bomb for the ages, one has to wonder if they’re considering giving that entire property to Marvel. Or maybe they’ll use the Sony/Marvel deal as a template, allowing both studios to collaborate on an MCU relaunch of the FF property? Who knows? What we do know is that Fox can’t really touch Fantastic Four right now. It’d be highly illogical to make a sequel to the 2015 dud, since that entire cast is associated with a film that pretty much nobody liked. Yet it’s way too soon to consider another Fox-led reboot.
If you think about it, the FF property is in a similar position to where the Spidey property was when Sony and Marvel made their deal. Having The Watchers enter the MCU in Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2 could very well be Step One in a plan that ultimately brings Galactus, Silver Surfer, and- yes- the Fantastic Four into the fold.
For now, we’ll have to wait and see how this all pans out.
What a time to be alive!