Marvel’s original vision for the Multiverse Saga.

Instead of Kang, I think Doctor Doom was originally intended to be the big bad of the next couple phases of the MCU after Phase 3. Being how Marvel is doing a Secret Wars film that will almost certainly have elements of Jonathan Hickman’s Incursion Saga, I think it’s a safe bet to assume that Doom would have been the main villain of the film.

As for how the multiverse story was going to play out, I think it would have pulled heavily from the Jonathan Hickman comic, to the point where it would be a close adaptation. I suspect that the Beyonders would have been responsible for all of the incursions happening across the multiverse. Doctor Doom would have attempted to stop them from destroying the fabric of existence.

However, unlike him teaming up with Molecule Man in the 2015 comic, Doom would have used the Scarlet Witch in his plan to destroy the Beyonders. Much like in the Children’s Crusade storyline, Doom would have been after Wanda’s powers, and would manipulate her into siding with him, promising her something in return. Then when the time came for him to carry out his plan, Doom would have weaponized Wanda and turned her into a multiversal bomb to destroy the Beyonders and steal their powers for himself. Right as the multiverse dies, Doom would have used the Beyonders’ and Wanda’s powers to create Battleworld and rule over it as a god.

An interesting thing to note is that back in 2022, Multiverse of Madness writer Micheal Waldron revealed that Marvel briefly considered having the Scarlet Witch be the villain of an Avengers film before he decided it would be better for her to be the villain of Doctor Strange 2. This is interesting as both her and Doom share a connection in the Children’s Crusade comics. So I wonder if Marvel was planning to have her retreat into exile after being defeated by the Avengers, and be manipulated by Doctor Doom while in exile.

Unlike his role in the Multiverse Saga, Kang would have played a much smaller role as a Loki or Ultron-like threat: someone who would serve as a side threat and a catalyst for the introduction of the real big bad. However, once Jonathan Majors came aboard, Marvel was so impressed with his acting range that they decided to make him the big bad of the next few phases.

They also saw the potential for an interesting, personal story involving Kang wanting to be better than his other variants, and doing anything to transcend their imperfections, including becoming a god over the multiverse. At least for now, I think Marvel’s endgame for Kang is to make him the Prime Kang who defeats his variants and creates Battleworld. Based on how Endgame handled quantum time travel, I believe Marvel thought Kang was perfectly suited to be a multiversal time traveler, which probably made it easier for Marvel to make him the main villain of their Incursion Saga adaptation.

Seeing as how Kang was now the big bad, Marvel decided to bump up his role as a villain and give him the “multiversal savior” role that Doctor Doom originally had. As a result, Doom’s role was reduced in the saga. Marvel also replaced the Beyonders with the Council of Kangs as the source of the multiversal chaos.

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