By James DeRuvo (doddleNEWS)
On the eve of the release of the long awaited climax to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Disney’s top tentpole studio has decided to skip Hall H and bypass Comic-Con this year. But is this because they have nothing new to hype because Avengers Infinity War will have already been out, or is it that Marvel is leaving Hall H for good in favor of the Mouse House’s own D23 Fan Expo?
There have been some amazing Marvel moments in Hall H, chief of which, was Tom Hiddleston reprising his role at Loki to hijack the Marvel panel back in 2013. If you missed that moment of sheer brilliance, you can see it here:
Hiddleston’s Asguardian invasion of Hall H was certainly a highlight, and the hype continued to its culmination of announcing Captain Marvel’s Brie Larson was joining the MCU family for phase IV. But this year, Marvel not only has no plans to attend Comic-con, except for a few modest smaller panels, but they may not return since there are no plans to announce any new films until after Avengers 4 is released into theaters. “That’s one of the main reasons we’re not going to [Comic-Con’s] Hall H this year,” Marvel studios head Kevin Feige said in an interview last week. “Ant Man and the Wasp will have just been released, Infinity War will be out, Captain Marvel will have just finished filming, Spider-Man [Homecoming 2] will have just started filming, and we’re not gonna be making any other announcements. So we’re gonna wait until Comic-Con next year.”
And while it’s not unheard of for Marvel to skip a major Comic-Con presence (they’ve done it before), while Feige says that Marvel will return to SDCC in 2019, the big question is … WILL THEY? My guess is that Marvel’s parent company, Disney, wants to carve out a permanent home for the MCU at their own fan event, the D23 Expo, and use that event to showcase any upcoming news worthy of hyping. Disney did the same thing with Star Wars, with the exception of the launch of The Force Awakens in 2015, and it has its own panels for The Last Jedi at Star Wars Celebration. So that, coupled with D23, and there’s just no need get everyone together again to hype what’s already been hyped.
But also, if you think about it, this would be an ideal way to clothe what happens after Infinity War in secrecy, with huge cliff hangers that will have us speculating until Avengers 4 comes out in 2019. But we do know that what’s coming will be Captain Marvel, Guardians of the Galaxy 3, and Spider-Man (Homecoming) 2. Beyond that, we’re expecting sequels to Black Panther and Doctor Strange.
There’s also rumors flying fast and furious that as Phase 3 begins to close out, that Feige may actually be ready to leave Marvel Studios altogether and strike out on his own, to perhaps take on another challenge. Could Warner Brothers lure him to fix the DC Universe? I don’t think that’ll happen. More likely he’ll just want to do his own stuff and have his own challenges.
Lastly, there’s the undiscovered country that is the merger of Disney and Fox. This merger will bring tentpoles like the X-Men, Fantastic Four, and DeadPool back to the MCU, and that waiting a year while the merger gets approved and completed will provide new elements to the entire MCU, right when Phase IV heads back out into space.
I have to say, I’ve been expecting this for quite some time, and was surprised it didn’t happen last year. Disney wants to drive wants towards their own expos for financial reasons, and it’s eventually going to happen that Marvel will only have a token presence in San Diego. Meanwhile, we’ll just have to settle for the Jason Momoa show during the DC/Warner Brothers Aquaman panel. And hopefully, Jodie Whitaker’s Time Lordian first visit for Doctor Who? Here’s hoping.