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Director Peyton Reed Reveals Kang The Conqueror Will Get A Massive Power-Up In ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp Quantamania’ Compared To His Comic Iteration

Ant-Man and the Wasp Quantamania director Peyton Reed recently revealed just how powerful Jonathan Major’s race-swapped Kang the Conqueror is.

(L-R): Jonathan Majors as Kang The Conqueror in Marvel Studios’ ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL.

In an Advance for the film, Marvel Studios describes Kang the Conqueror as “quite possibly the biggest threat the MCU has ever encountered, with multiple versions of the villain—each more terrifying than the last.”

It goes on to reveal, “Time, it seems, is Kang’s secret weapon, and he intends to use his unique understanding of it to conquer worlds far beyond the Quantum Realm.”

Jonathan Majors as Kang The Conqueror in Marvel Studios’ ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2023 MARVEL.

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Director Peyton Reed then pumped up Kang saying, “While retaining the intimacy of the family story, we decided we wanted to go really big. And to do that, we needed a world-class villain in a
movie like this.”

“As a kid who grew up reading all the comics, I always loved Kang the Conqueror. He was one of the great antagonists in the comics,” he added.

Paul Rudd as Scott Lang/Ant-Man and Jonathan Majors as Kang the Conqueror in Marvel Studios’ ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA. Photo by Jay Maidment. © 2022 MARVEL.

Reed would go on to detail part of Kang’s powerset that will be showcased in the film, ““Kang is able to experience past, present and future at the same time.”

He then explained what that looks like, “What does that look like? He conserves his energy. There’s not a wasted gesture or word, and if Kang says something, he means it.”

Jonathan Majors as Kang the Conqueror in Marvel Studios’ ANT-MAN AND THE WASP: QUANTUMANIA. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2022 MARVEL.

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If indeed what Reed claims is true, this is a drastic change from the comic book origins of the character. Kang the Conqueror first appeared in Avengers #8 back in 1964.

In that debut issue written by Stan Lee, Kang details that he “was born in the year 3,000 where [he] mastered time travel.” He went on to journey to the far past and called himself Pharaoh Rama-Tut. He then eventually made it to the current timeline and encountered Dr. Doom.

Kang the Conqueror in Avengers #8 (1964), Marvel Comics

Next, he traveled to the year 4,000 where he discovered a world ravaged in war, but using extremely advanced weaponry. Kang set out to bring the warlords of the era under his wing, a task which he eventually accomplished.

But he was not satisfied with leading this dying world. Using the advanced technology he travels back to the current timeline and sets out to conquer it.

Kang the Conqueror in Avengers #8 (1964), Marvel Comics

Kang’s technological marvels included the ability to send Mjolnir into subspace until it no longer poses a threat to him. He also possesses an anti-gravity weapon that is able to immobilize nearly all of The Avengers at once. 

He also deploys an anti-matter screen that is “capable of instantly disintegrating any earthly matter it may touch!!” His ship also had what Iron Man called an “attractor ray” that allowed Kang to separate The Avengers and imprison them “in the grip of a continual paralysis beam.”

Thor was even forced to revert back to his mortal form of Dr. Don Blake after Kang’s attack.

Kang the Conqueror faces off against The Avengers in Avengers #8 (1964), Marvel Comics

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While Kang doesn’t typically have any kind of supernatural powers, in one storyline he did obtain the power of the Celestial, Executioner and claimed he had ascended to godhood and obtained omnipotence.

However, he failed to factor in that both Havok and Sunfire were also able to absorb some of the Celestial’s power and the two combined to defeat him.

Kang the Conqueror absorbs the energy of the Celestial Executioner in Uncanny Avengers #21 (2014), Marvel Comics

What do you make of Kang’s massive power up and this new ability to experience the past, present, and future at the same time?

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