When it was announced the Spider-Man would be joining the MCU and appearing in some of the existing Marvel Cinematic movies, and that some of the MCU heavy weights would appear in Spidey’s movies, I started to think that perhaps we might see some of the other Marvel characters returning to the MCU also. Then when I saw Spider-Man: Homecoming and it was revealed that Tony was moving out of Stark Tower, my previous theory seemed a little more likely…
Lets start by acknowledging that one group of characters from Marvel’s stable of heroes have had a troubled cinematic past. The Fantastic Four struggled under Tim Story and positively failed under Josh Trank, so bringing them into the MCU might be A. Possible, and B. Advantageous to all involved, including 20th Century Fox.
In Spider-Man:Homecoming we learn that Tony Stark has sold Stark Tower, former head quarters of The Avengers and is moving all his stuff up state to the newly remodelled Avengers Mansion. So who bought the Tower? I have a theory.
What If Reed Richards purchased the Tower from Stark as in about the enter the MCU with his family and friends? Could Stark Tower about to be renamed The Baxter Building? I had this idea. While ago and came up with a potential story outline for what could be an interesting Iron Man 4 movie that would introduce the Fantastic Four.
Reed Richards is a long time friend/rival and contemporary of Tony Stark and together with his wife Sue and fiends Johnny Storm and Ben Grimm, Reed decides to kick his research into high gear. Reed’s research is centred on the portal that opened above New York during the events of the first Avengers movie. For years Reed has been studying the phenomenon from afar, all the while asking Tony for access to the site in order to get a better vantage point, AKA directly beneath the location of the portal. Tony would never allow Reed to get close (you know how he can be with rivals right? Hammer!) and instead feeds Reed just enough data to keep him quiet.
Enter Victor Von Doom
That’s when Reed gets an investor on board, in the form of Victor Von Doom. Doom could be a contemporary of both Tony and Reed. A scientist looking for answers, and possibly looking for power. With Doom’s huge wealth in his corner, Reed manages to buy Stark Tower from Tony, who has since lost interest in the portal over NYC.
Now, in order to get a closer look at the portal, Reed and Doom, with the help of Sue and test pilots Johnny and Ben, build a space lab, a platform that will launch into space and sit between The Baxter Building/NYC and the portal. Here they can carry put a full range of tests on the location of the now closed portal.
This is where Tony reenters the picture. I imagine Tony pulling strings at the government to gain access to the project so he can keep a close eye on things and make sure no further mistakes are made.
I like the idea of Tony using the white Mark XXXIX Starboost armour during the mission, armour that will give him much greater levels of protection. In this armour Tony will join Johnny and Ben who are conducting a space walk to calibrate sensors whilst Reed and Sue are trying to slow down Doom, who is pushing a little too hard to get results. This is where things go south.
During the test Tony becomes aware of some unusual activity around the location of the portal. Doom notices too and uses his sensors to stimulate the portal which pulses and blasts he platform and everyone on it with a belt of energy. This way we can preserve the traditions FF origin story by having the team exposed to huge amounts of radiation, gamma, vita and whatever else has been in the MCU up until this point.
Tony, protected in his Starboost armour quickly reacts to the accident and rescues the team members out in space, Johnny and Ben, both of whom are rendered unconscious by the blast. Then he returns to the platform and saves Reed and Sue, his frustration at Doom means he saves him last, exposing Doom to near fatal levels of radiation (this way we preserve Tony’s penchant for creating his own worst enemies!).
Back on Earth, at the Baxter Building, Tony places Doom inside one of his suits in order to save his life. The suit is a dark coloured Iron man suit made from Vibranium. It has a greenish tint to it. See where I'm going here?
Meanwhile, Reed and Sue work to stabilise Johnny and Ben who have both been profoundly effected by the blast of radiation.
Ben, who was closet to the event horizon was hit with huge amounts of vita radiation and as a result has increased strength like Cap, but his genes have been altered and coral like growths of hardened skin form rock like plates all over his body. Gross.
Johnny, much like Reed and Sue, has been altered in such a way that he can create spacial anomalies around himself. Johnny can create a force field around himself which can be ignited with him safely inside. Flame on!
Sue can also create spacial anomalies, which she uses to bend light around her rendering her invisible.
Reed discovers that he can create wormholes through which he can reach, effectively collapsing space. From the vantage point of those watching Reed appears to stretch but in reality he is manipulating space to bring objects closer to him. Neat trick!
Whilst the team are getting used to their new abilities with Tony advising from the sidelines, Doom wakes up. Effectively trapped inside the Vibranium armour, Doom begins to panic. The suit AI tries to calm Doom, but panic sets in and Doom forces the faceplate open. When Doom comes into contact with the atmosphere inside the Baxter Building there is a reaction that causes an explosion, fusing Doom and the Vibranium suit!
The team’s first confrontation is with Doom as he panics and tries to escape he building.
Now, I haven't really gotten a lot further than that with this idea. I think having Tony be the cause of yet another bad guy in the MCU is nice and neat and plays into that character. Doom could become obsessed with getting back to the portal and perhaps opening it again, perhaps out of spite, perhaps in search of answers, but whatever they do would make for an interesting entry into both the Iron Man series and the larger MCU.
I think it would be an important step for the MCU to bring in characters like the Fantastic Four for the next phase at Marvel. Maybe we could even get the Secret Wars story at some point in the future. I love the idea of the Fantastic Four and Doom opening that portal over NYC might expose us to a new threat. A threat from Beyond…
Thank you for reading