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How Kang Might Return Before Avengers 5 Despite Ant-Man 3 Death

The following article contains spoilers for "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania."

Phase 5 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is here, and while the "Ant-Man" movies have typically served as palate cleansers following much grander films, Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) gets the chance to face a world-ending threat this time around. Thanks to Scott's daughter, Cassie (Kathryn Newton), messing around with the Quantum Realm, the two, as well as Hope (Evangeline Lilly), Hank (Michael Douglas), and Janet (Michelle Pfeiffer), get sucked into a minuscule dimension. As if that wasn't bad enough, they soon discover they're being hunted by none other than Kang the Conqueror (Jonathan Majors), who wants a way out of the dimension, so he can carry on his quest of destroying worlds and timelines. 

He proves to be the most formidable threat the Ant-Man crew has ever gone up against, with powers far beyond the likes of Yellowjacket (Corey Stoll) or Ghost (Hannah John-Kamen). And while it initially looks like Kang might emerge victorious and actually kill Scott, they manage to gain the upper hand at the very last second. Before Kang can go through a portal to return to Earth, Wasp comes out and zaps him a few times. Scott follows this up by pushing Kang into the multiversal engine, thereby killing him in the process. The next big bad of the MCU, who's apparently killed a variant of Thor before, is dispatched by Ant-Man and Wasp.

However, death is rarely the end in the MCU, as evidenced by how Yellowjacket survived the events of "Ant-Man" and returned in "Quantumania" as MODOK. Given how much of a threat Kang has been promoted leading up to the film's release, it's fair to ask if there's any way this version of Kang could return down the line.

Kang could still be out there in the multiverse

This variant of Kang certainly seems dead and gone, as evidenced by the first post-credits scene where three other versions of Kang talk about "the exiled one." They state that he's dead, so it would appear that whoever will be the major threat of "Avengers: The Kang Dynasty" will be one of these other Kangs (or possibly all of them). However, Kang the Conqueror is one of the more iconic villains out of Marvel Comics and was built up prior to the film's release as a significant threat. It seems weird Ant-Man would be able to kill him so quickly, but what if "The Conqueror" isn't actually dead? 

With Marvel, unless you see a dead body, there's always a possibility a character made it out alive. Scott Lang pushed Kang into the multiversal engine Kang needed for his ship. He could be dead, or seeing how the ship allowed Kang to traverse the multiverse, could it be possible he's in another reality, perhaps one so far removed from any timeline that not even the other Kangs know where he is, believing him to be dead? He wouldn't have his ship in this reality, so much like how he was in the Quantum Realm, he's stuck there, but that doesn't mean some individual couldn't find him and help him get back to the timeline where he was defeated by Ant-Man. And he would have a major reason for wanting to get revenge and take out this world and timeline specifically. 

We meet other versions of Kang in the post-credits scene, most notably with Pharaoh Rama-Tut and Immortus. But it will take time to build them up the same way we got with The Conqueror, and his return and personal vendetta against Ant-Man would make for a great set piece by the time "The Kang Dynasty" comes around.