Are The Protectors A Phase 4 Team?
Marvel Studios is trying to keep as much of what happens after Avengers: Endgame a secret as they can, but there's still been plenty of unofficial reports about what they are planning. Shang-Chi and Ms. Marvel have not been teased in-universe up to this point, but they both appear to have bright and immediate futures that could culminate with the MCU assembling the Protectors.
Shang-Chi's future may be the biggest of all of them and his planned solo movie could be the key to setting up the rest of his team. Dave Callaham is currently writing the script for Shang-Chi, and even though plot details aren't known, Marvel wants a predominantly Asian cast. The movie has even continued to pick up steam now that Destin Daniel Cretton has been hired to direct the film. With a solo movie quickly coming together for Shang-Chi, the studio will likely want to see him become a larger part of the universe in the near future, in the same vein that they set up Spider-Man and Black Panther in-universe prior to their solo films.
There's also been plenty of discussion surrounding when Marvel Studios will introduce Kamala Khan into the MCU. She's one of Marvel Comics' best and most popular new characters, and Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has been teasing that they do have plans to properly tell Kamala's story at some point. Now that Captain Marvel is in theaters and performing incredibly well at the box office, a sequel is incredibly likely to happen. Although there are different directions they could go, it does sound like Kamala would be involved if Captain Marvel 2 takes place in the present day. With that regard, Captain Marvel's trilogy (should Marvel produce one) could follow in the footsteps of the Captain America trilogy, which also introduced notable side characters and potential successors (with Kamala Khan taking on the Ms. Marvel persona).
With Woo and Moon already loosely established in the MCU, Shang-Chi and Ms. Marvel on the way, light set up for Cho, and our theory that Remy Hii is Jake Oh, the Protectors could be fully formed by the end of MCU Phase 4. Many fans expect Robert Downey Jr.'s Iron Man, Chris Evans' Captain America, and Chris Hemsworth's Thor to leave the MCU after Phase 3, and even though there are much bigger characters already perfectly fit to fill their voids on the main Avengers roster, Marvel Studios may also want to add more smaller teams to tackle problems in the future. The Protectors are a promising and diverse team that could do just that, and they could even add someone like Wong (Benedict Wong) to the mix to add some magic to the group's power set.
The Protectors' future in the MCU is a giant question mark at this point in time, but this possible tease in Captain Marvel may indicate that Marvel Studios does have plans to bring them to the forefront. With Marvel's tendency to play the long game and many of these characters likely on their way to the big screen, The Protectors are suddenly a team to look out for in the ever growing future of the MCU.
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019