*Warning: Major MCU spoilers ahead*
Time-travel related fan theories have been circulating about Avengers 4 ever since leaked set photos featuring the core cast in past locations from the Marvel Universe appeared online. In the photos, the Avengers team seems to be wearing wrist devices and are joined by Ant Man.
Based on set pictures, the current fan-theory is that Tony Stark will use time travel to try and stop Thanos in Avengers 4. These photos of Ant-man with the 2012 Avengers, wearing some sort of wrist device makes the theory reasonable. Hmmm… pic.twitter.com/RALJS4XpiJ
— The Cali Nerd (@TheCaliNerd) May 15, 2018
But why — and how — is Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) back with the Avengers? When last we saw him, he was stranded in the Quantum Realm, while his friends Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer), and Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) were turned into dust by Thanos. When he traveled to the Quantum Realm in the first Ant Man, Lang escaped using a Pym Particle, but director Peyton Reed has made it clear that will not be the case this time.
This is a new suit, so it really wouldn’t have the same growth that he had in the first movie … I would answer, ‘No, he does not have it.’ He can’t go to that well twice.
Just a friendly reminder that Scott Lang is stuck in the Quantum Realm and probably nobody of those who are alive know about it.
— liam (@scottparkcr) August 16, 2018
goodnight to scott lang alone in the quantum realm only, hope ur good in there boo
— beth (@IRXNTONY) August 17, 2018
So now, at the beginning of Avengers 4, Scott Lang is all alone in the Quantum Realm…which is exactly as Reed wanted it:
It seemed like we kind of knew what we wanted to do with or to Scott Lang. And then the other ones, it was just sort of like we talked about all these different versions and where we ended up just felt like, ‘OK, this feels right. We know where things could go from here.’
HOLY SHIT SCOTT LANG IS STUCK IN THE QUANTUM REALM WHY AM I ONLY JUST LEARNING ABOUT THIS HE SHOULDNT BE AFFECTED THOUGH RIGHT DEAR GOD IM STILL TRAUMATIZED BY INFINITY WAR
— Greyson Pit ️ (@Fluffer1029) August 16, 2018
I wonder how is my smol son Scott lang doing in the Quantum realm… Is he eating? sleeping well? doing some research? trying to conect his friends? missing Cassie so much that it hurts? That keep me awake at night pic.twitter.com/289vomBv8h
— ️Natu saw amatw ? ⚡️ (@_StevesBucky_) August 15, 2018
But how does any of this involve time travel? Well, just before she turns into dust, Lang’s partner in crime Janet van Dyne tells him to “watch out for time vortexes while in the other dimension.”
While it's obvious it's Tony who makes the tech to use the Quantum Realm's Time Vortexes, I really hope Avengers 4 will let Rocket make the weapon to incapacitate Thanos
He is the smarter in terms of weaponry and strategy
— Charles Jakobsen (@JCJakobsen) August 13, 2018
Reed made it clear that Ant Man could show up in any Avengers scene due to the story-bending power of time travel:
Based on the science that we’ve set up in the first movie and this one, I won’t rule out the possibility, because, again, we are dealing with a time vortex. That could happen.
“[Janet] mentions tardigrade fields, time vortexes as warnings to Scott about what not to get involved in. These things might prove valuable. They're not just randomly spouted off in the moment”
— M A R V E L s p a n k ⚫️⚪️ (@MARVELspank) August 11, 2018
* AMATW SPOILERS *
janet tells scott to be careful because there is time vortexes in the quantum realm. i think he gets sucked into them which causes the time jump, but the avengers we see (thor, scott, tony, steve) in the flashbacks with bracelets will probably travel with it
— jos (@petereyparker) July 25, 2018
On the lookout for “Marvel snipers,” Reed confirmed the Quantum Realm was “definitely a priority” for the future, also saying:
I have to be careful here, as you well know.
janet said something about time vortexes and scott going into the time vortex could bring him back(?) bc he is basically traveling through time and space and will that play into avengers 4 as well? bringing everyone back through the vortex? what is up
— a (@nawmani) July 15, 2018
Ant Man’s journey into the Quantum Realm could have a huge impact on everything happening in the MCU. And I mean everything.
Avengers 4/Ant-Man 3 idea: Ant-Man finds 4 people who've been trapped in one of the time-vortexes since the 60s. Being in the quantum realm(or as they call it, negative zone) gave them powers like Janet Van Dyne. Boom, fantastic 4 are now in the MCU. @MrPeytonReed @MarvelStudios
— Derek Richardson (@Derk_101) July 15, 2018