Every superhero film these days promises big action and even bigger stakes, and at times, it can be just incredibly overwhelming. It's a problem that the MCU has become all too accustomed to, with several films and TV shows failing to live up to their own rather grandiose ambitions. Infinity War is coming in three months, promising to be a swan song for a decade's worth of films and the actors associated with those films. Since the second film won't release until the following year, most of the storylines in the first Infinity War will have no other choice to end on incredibly tense cliffhangers to keep fans hyped. When the marketing for that second film is underway, it's going to build a lot of that on the idea of the end of an era, and whatever you feel about each individual film in the series, it can't denied that this culmination is a big deal for superhero movies.
The idea of Ant-Man and the Wasp coming in to give us a breather before the big guns come rolling in 2019 is a more than welcome respite before every hero in the MCU takes the fight to Thanos for a last-ditch heroic effort to save everything. By design, these movies are self aware enough to realize that they work best as comfort food entries in between the heavy material of other films.
Not every MCU film needs to have big ramifications or promise the world to be good, they can be smaller in stakes while being crucial for the characters. That's how Thor: Ragnarok managed to get away with blowing up an iconic planet while also giving a much needed evolution to the titular God of Thunder. With only two films under its belt, the Ant-Man franchise has quickly proven to serve as a much needed breather from all the cataclysmic goings on in other corners of the MCU.
Are we really expecting anything monumental to happen in this new movie beyond the return of Janet van Dyne? No, and that's perfectly fine. If Marvel wants to use the tiny power couple to use as its first true romcom that also happens to feature bugs, the studio can go right on ahead and do that. Romcoms are designed by their very nature to be easily consumed comfort food, and after Thanos has all the Infinity Stones on that big, ugly hand of his, some small comforts may be what we need at that moment.
Opening July 6, director Peyton Reed’s Ant-Man and the Wasp stars Paul Rudd as Scott Lang, Evangeline Lilly as Hope van Dyne, Michael Douglas as Hank Pym, Michelle Pfeiffer as Janet van Dyne, Judy Greer as Maggie, Bobby Canavale as Paxton, Michael Peña as Luis, T.I. as Dave, David Dastmalchian as Kurt, Walton Goggins as Sonny Burch, Hannah John-Kamen as Ghost, and Laurence Fishburne as Bill Foster.