With Marvel now fully invested in the Multiverse, the ability to bend realities to fit certain character arcs is completely in place. The rules of the world defined in the first few phases with the Avengers timeline are now out the window. And with that, they have the chance to introduce the characters who have been left out of things until now. Apparently, Doctor Strange 2 will do just such a thing, with We Got This Covered reporting that this movie could see the introduction of the X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Now, it is worth noting that as part of this rumor, the X-Men were not named specifically, but rather that in Doctor Strange 2, the good doctor would actually be learning about the existence of mutants. This does come on the heels of a rumor that some legacy X-Men characters could make an appearance as well. Apparently, a world in which mutant proliferation has happened is in an alternate timeline, not necessarily the one we saw in the original Marvel phases. If this was the case, then it would possibly be a way to tie in the pre-existing movies into this world without having to assume they happened outside of the context of the MCU.
This may be putting the mutant cart before the Marvel horse though. Just because Benedict Cumberbatch’s character is learning about mutants in Doctor Strange 2, doesn’t mean we are going to take a trip to the Charles Xavier School For Gifted Youngsters or anything like that. This could be a way to begin slowly bringing in the group along the edges, with appearances for some key team members if that is how Marvel wanted to handle things. And if he is simply learning about their existence then it could just be setting the stage for what is to come with the X-Men.
With Marvel now owning the rights to the X-Men following the Disney purchase of 20th Century Fox, there has been increased speculation about how they will fold this massive group of characters into the preexisting mix. It was a windfall for the Marvel Cinematic Universe which has conspicuously had to leave out a lot of different folks from the stories. Not anymore with Doctor Strange 2 possibly setting the stage. And there have even been some rumors that we could see Storm in Black Panther 2 which would add to the mutant list.
What we do know about Doctor Strange 2, titled In the Multiverse of Madness to give a glimpse of how bananas this thing could get, is that Strange is on a collision course on a number of different fronts. He will meet up with Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch, fresh off that character’s turn in WandaVision. Plus there is Multiverse hero America Chavez who will likely have a major role in how characters can move between timelines. They could all be fighting super-villain Shuma-Gorath, an intimidating presence that will likely need everyone together to take down.
In all, Doctor Strange 2 is lining up to be a major jumping-off point for the new characters coming into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Whether we get the actual X-Men on screen, or simply an allusion to the idea that they exist remains to be seen. Either way, it is an exciting time for the franchise with this film stage-setting a number of changes to come down the road.