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MCU: The biggest outstanding questions of the Marvel Studios' movies & TV shows

Is the MCU ever going to get around to answering these questions?

Cropped poster for Avengers film
Image credit: Marvel Studios

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The Marvel Cinematic Universe is one of the biggest film franchises in the history of cinema. As of this writing, the franchise has currently produced 33 films, 10 television shows, numerous short films, and more. With a body of work that big, it’s inevitable that some plots get left behind. For example, who was the big bad in Ant-Man and the Wasp? Are we ever going to deal with that Celestial in the ocean?

Some of these unanswered questions will be addressed in future MCU projects, but some of them may have been forgotten. Here at Popverse, we’re still holding out hope that we’ll get answers one day. From real estate queries to multiverse incursions, here are 10 of the MCU’s biggest unanswered questions.

MCU Question: Did the Marvel Studios version of Peter Parker have an Uncle Ben?

Tom Holland in Spider-Man Far From Home
Image credit: Marvel Studios

Enough time has passed, why hasn’t the MCU directly referenced Ben Parker? Uncle Ben is a big part of the Spider-Man mythos, but Peter Parker has never directly mentioned him. In the beginning it made sense. Marvel Studios and Sony were building a new version of Spider-Man, and probably didn’t want to deal with the origin again. Audiences had seen Uncle Ben die in 2002 (Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man) and 2012 (Marc Webb’s The Amazing Spider-Man). Perhaps the MCU was giving us a break.

But now Peter Parker has starred in a trilogy of films, and guest-starred in three other MCU films. The fact that he still hasn’t mentioned Uncle Ben feels weird. Sure, there have been brief allusions. In Captain America: Civil War Peter told Tony Stark, “When you can do the things that I can, but you don’t, and then the bad things happen, they happen because of you.” In Spider-Man: Far From Home, Peter uses a suitcase with the initials BFP.

However, Spider-Man: No Way Home is where things get weird. Both of the multiversal Spider-Men tell Peter about their Uncle Bens, and Peter never mentions his own. When we see May Parker’s grave at the end of the film, there is no neighboring tombstone for Ben. Wouldn’t she be buried next to her husband? It feels weird that Uncle Ben wasn’t mentioned once during the film, especially in regards to Aunt May’s death.

None of these things contradict the existence of Uncle Ben, but the way the MCU is dancing around the issue is weird. In fact, the only time Uncle Ben has been mentioned was in What If…? season 1 episode 5, but that’s an alternate universe. At least we know he exists in one branch of the MCU timeline, but we need more. Does Tom Holland’s Peter Parker have an Uncle Ben or not?

MCU Question: Are we just going to ignore the Celestial in the ocean?

Celestial in the ocean
Image credit: Marvel Studios

Remember that time a Celestial popped out of the Earth’s core? I’m not sure anyone in the MCU does. The Celestial giant Tiamut was planted inside of Earth millions of years ago. He began to emerge in the 2021 film The Eternals, growing from the planet’s crust. The Eternals were able to stop him before he fully emerged, which is a good thing, because it would have destroyed the entire planet. All that’s left is Tiamut’s body, which is sitting in the Indian Ocean.

As of this writing, Marvel Studios has released 7 films and 7 live-action shows since The Eternals. The only mention of Tiamut has been a brief background news article in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law. I understand that crazy things happen in the MCU on a regular basis, but is humanity just going to collectively ignore the Celestial in the ocean? Wouldn’t the Avengers be curious about its origins? Isn’t Namor upset that someone is messing with his domain? Wouldn’t government officials like Valentina Allegra de Fontaine want to investigate (or exploit) it?

Maybe everyone was so traumatized by Thanos and the Blip that they decided to just ignore the Celestial in the ocean. The fact that it hasn’t come up has been a running joke on social media. Others have pointed out that referencing Tiamut could seem clunky or out of place. Still, this was a planetwide event that would pique the curiosity of Marvel’s movers and shakers. At what point does a Celestial in the ocean become the metaphorical elephant in the room?

MCU Question: Why does Clea need Strange’s help?

Doctor Strange and Clea
Image credit: Marvel Studios

The credits scene for Doctor Strange in The Multiverse of Madness features the introduction of Clea, a sorceress who is Strange’s love interest in the comics. Clea approaches Strange on the streets of New York, telling him that he needs to come with her. “You caused an incursion and we’re gonna fix it,” Clea says. With that, the sorceress opens a hole in reality, which she and Strange enter.

This was good sequel bait, and a great way to introduce Charlize Theron as Clea, but what does it all mean? Was the incursion caused by Strange’s trip through the multiverse, or his use of the Darkhold? Marvel Studios is currently in the midst of what they’re calling the Multiverse Saga, so it’s probably the former. Will we have to wait for a Doctor Strange sequel to learn the answer, or will this be addressed in the 2026 Avengers film? Or maybe this will be one of those credit stingers that will be ignored the next time we see the characters. Either way, we have some unanswered questions about what this “incursion” is.

MCU Question: Where is White Vision?

Image credit: Marvel Studios

At one point there were two Visions in the MCU. The original synthezoid was killed by Thanos. His body became the property of S.W.O.R.D., one of the MCU’s many government agencies. The organization rebuilt him and created their own synthezoid operative.

Meanwhile, Wanda Maximoff used her powers to create a magical construct of Vision. This all came to a head in the WandaVision series finale, where the two Visions fought. The two quickly realized that they were both facing their own existential crises and decided to talk it out. Wanda’s Vision (heh) realized that White Vision was missing an essential piece of himself because he didn’t have any of his memories. Vision then let White Vision absorb his memories, which may or may not have restored him to his former self.

White Vision flew off, needing some space to take in these events. Hours later, the other Vision ceased to exist after Wanda ended her spell. But what about White Vision?

White Vision’s absence was awkward in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, as the plot revolved around Wanda searching the multiverse for variants of her children. Wouldn’t she want White Vision to complete her family? Does she even know he’s out there? And wouldn’t White Vision seek Wanda out, since he now has his memories back? Do the Avengers know that their friend is still alive?

There have been unconfirmed reports of a television series called Vision Quest, and Paul Bettany recently indicated that Vision would be returning to the MCU. However, until these plans materialize, White Vision’s whereabouts remains one of the MCU’s biggest unanswered questions.

MCU Question: What is going to happen with the piece of the Venom symbiote that remained in Earth-616?

The Venom symbiote from the Spider-Man: No Way Home ending.
Image credit: Marvel Studios/Sony

Venom: Let There Be Carnage ended with a credits scene that found Eddie Brock transported to Earth-616 (aka the MCU). This storyline picked up in the credits scene for Spider-Man: No Way Home, where we found Eddie chatting with a bartender. The mixologist was educating Eddie about the differences between their universes.

Seconds later, Eddie was pulled back to his home reality (thanks to Peter and Doctor Strange’s spell), but something was left behind. Unbeknownst to Eddie, a piece of the Venom symbiote is still in Earth-616. How did Strange’s spell miss that?

Will this symbiote bond with Tom Holland’s Peter Parker? Maybe the MCU will get their own version of Spider-Man’s alien costume saga. Or maybe Marvel Studios will subvert our expectations and have the symbiote bond with someone else. Imagine a Venomized Nick Fury. Either way, that symbiote is still out there, ready to create trouble for the MCU…

MCU Question: How long has Rhodey been a Skrull?

Raava the Skrull
Image credit: Marvel Studios

One of the MCU’s oldest heroes was secretly a shapeshifting Skrull. This revelation came during the Disney+ mini-series Secret Invasion. James “Rhodey” Rhodes, the hero known as War Machine, had been swapped out with the Skrull soldier Raava. The series ends with Raava killed, and the real Rhodey being rescued.

However, we don’t know how long Raava had been masquerading as the beloved hero. Could she have been the Rhodey we saw fighting alongside the Avengers in films like Avengers: Endgame? This reveal puts every appearance of War Machine in a new context. In another article, I theorized that the 5-year timeskip between Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame was probably when the switch happened. James Rhodes is set to appear in the upcoming film Armor Wars, which should clear up some of these questions.

MCU Question: Who bought Avengers Tower?

Avengers Tower
Image credit: Marvel Studios

Yes, this list contains a real estate question. In fairness, Avengers Tower is one of the most iconic landmarks in the MCU. In Spider-Man: Homecoming we learned that Tony Stark had sold the skyscraper, but we never found out who the buyer was. A portion of the tower was briefly seen in Spider-Man: Far From Home, showing that the building was under construction.

Could the new owner be Wilson Fisk? Perhaps the Fantastic Four bought it, rebranding it as the Baxter Building. Or maybe it was a random real estate developer. However, the secrecy around the buyer’s identity suggests that it’s SOMEONE. According to Marvel Studios producer Brad Winderbaum, the question will be answered in a future project. However, there is no telling which production that will be, or when it will be released. Zillow doesn’t have the answers, so I suppose we’ll continue waiting.

MCU Question: Who was the Benefactor from Ant-Man and the Wasp?

Ant-Man and the Wasp still
Image credit: Marvel Studios

It’s been almost 6 years since the release of Ant-Man and the Wasp, and we still don’t know who the main villain was. Yes, Scott and Hope went up against Ghost, but she turned out to be a reluctant villain. The real person pulling the strings was a mysterious individual known only as ‘the Benefactor.’ This mysterious mastermind apparently hired Sonny Burch to steal Hank Pym’s equipment.

Ant-Man and the Wasp ended with Ghost redeemed, and Burch arrested. But what about the Benefactor? Was this just a throwaway line, or was this mysterious dealer meant to be someone? Perhaps it was Wilson Fisk, or one of Marvel’s many other famous mobsters. Some have also theorized that the Benefactor was actually the Power Broker from The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Speaking of the Power Broker….

MCU Question: What is Sharon Carter’s secret plan, and who is she working with?

Sharon Carter as the Power Broker
Image credit: Marvel Studios

Sharon Carter has been a busy woman. A crime boss known as the Power Broker was causing mayhem in the Disney+ mini-series The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. During the finale, it’s revealed that Sharon Carter was the Power Broker. Well, it’s revealed to the audience. Sam Wilson, Bucky Barnes, and the United States government have no idea.

Carter had turned to a life of crime after the events of Captain America: Civil War. Her decision to help Steve Rogers made her an enemy of the government, so Carter became a crime boss. The Avengers all got pardons, but Carter was forgotten, which made her resentful. After helping Sam and Bucky, Carter was finally given her pardon. The government even offered to reinstate her as a CIA agent.

That was probably a bad idea.

After leaving the Capitol Building, Carter calls an unknown person, informing them that her new position will allow her to sell America’s secrets. In other words, the Power Broker just got more powerful.

What’s Carter’s endgame? Is she looking to make some money, take down the entire government, or something bigger? And who was the contact she called? It’s possible that it was meant to be an unimportant middleman, but maybe there is more to it. Could Sharon be working with a foreign adversary, or someone within the government like Valentina Allegra de Fontaine? Who is Sharon Carter working with, and what is her endgame?

The other question is, what would Peggy Carter say if she could see what her great-niece has been doing?

MCU Question: What’s the deal with Wilson Fisk’s legal status, and where is Vanessa?

Wilson Fisk aka Kingpin in Hawkeye (2021)
Image credit: Marvel Studios

Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad to see Marvel’s Netflix characters migrate to the MCU, but I have some questions. If Vincent D’Onofrio is playing the same Wilson Fisk that he played in Daredevil, then we need to resolve some discrepancies.

Daredevil ended with Wilson Fisk arrested and disgraced. His crimes had been exposed, and his criminal empire toppled. In the comics, Fisk has come back from worse. He can use his influence (and some shady lawyers) to get out of jail, but the situation is more complicated than that. His wife Vanessa had been implicated in a murder, so Fisk made a deal with Daredevil. If Kingpin remained in jail, Daredevil would ensure that Vanessa could keep her freedom. Then Kingpin returned in Hawkeye as a free man. In fact, Echo ends with Fisk contemplating a mayoral run.

So, why is Fisk out of jail now? Did he break his promise to Daredevil? Did he decide that Vanessa’s freedom wasn’t that important? Where is Vanessa anyway? In the Disney+ mini-series Echo, Fisk makes a comment about losing someone he loved. It’s possible Vanessa died, releasing Fisk from his promise to Daredevil.

This could easily be explained by saying that Daredevil took place in another branch of the MCU timeline, so we’re dealing with a variant of Kingpin. At one point, that’s what Marvel Studios was considering, but now they’ve reversed course. For better or worse, the Marvel Netflix Kingpin and the MCU Kingpin are the same guy. It’s likely that these questions will be addressed in the upcoming Disney+ series Daredevil: Born Again. Until then, we can only speculate.

What do you think Popverse readers? What are your theories on these questions? Will we ever get answers? Sound off in the comments section.

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About the Author
Joshua Lapin-Bertone avatar

Joshua Lapin-Bertone

Contributing writer

Joshua is a pop culture writer specializing in comic book media. His work has appeared on the official DC Comics website, the DC Universe subscription service, HBO Max promotional videos, the Batman Universe fansite, and more. In between traveling around the country to cover various comic conventions, Joshua resides in Florida where he binges superhero television and reads obscure comics from yesteryear.