Marvel’s Multiverse Explained: Movies and Timeline To Watch Out For

Doctor Strange variant in Multiverse of Madness
Credit: Marvel Studios

Doctor Strange variant in Multiverse of Madness
Credit: Marvel Studios

When you’ve got far too great of a franchise filled with far too many characters to interact with one another, only one thing comes to mind amongst fans — the potential a crossover beholds. In Marvel’s case, this is the Multiverse.

The idea behind the existence of intercrossing universes was introduced in Marvel Comics before it eventually came alive on the big screens for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

While Marvel movies and series so far have tried to explain and condense the meaning behind the Multiverse, you might be looking for a watch guide to understand how the Multiverse even came to be in the MCU.

Well, here’s a list of Marvel movies and series that pretty much sum up what the franchise's Multiverse entails in the MCU.

READ MORE: MCU’s vs. DCU’s Multiverse: 5 Biggest Differences in Both Franchises

SPOILER WARNING: This article contains MAJOR SPOILERS for the Marvel franchise, so READ AT YOUR OWN RISK!

Doctor Strange (2016)

After the acclaimed surgeon, Stephen Strange, faced a terrible car accident, he ventured to Kamar-Taj, seeking to heal his physical strength back in his hands.

Little did he know, this little trip would lead him to become the fated Sorcerer Supreme.

Prior to Doctor Strange’s full potential as a sorcerer, though, the Ancient One was the first to unveil the secrets in the universe, the existence of the Multiverse:

“The language of the mystic arts is as old as civilization. The sorcerers of antiquity called the use of this language, ‘spells.’ But if that word offends your modern sensibilities, you can call it a ‘program.’ The source code that shapes reality. We harness energy drawn from other dimensions of the Multiverse to cast spells, to conjure shields and weapons to make magic.”

It was in this film that we were introduced to the idea that the Multiverse is not just about alternate universes, but it also includes realms and dimensions, such as when Strange could project his astral body and when they had to fight in the mirror dimension.

WandaVision (2021)

The first-ever Disney Plus series for Marvel was the perfect beginning to fully uncover the Multiverse in the MCU.

Wanda unknowingly imprisons the people of Westview for the sake of her coping after losing Vision in Avengers: Infinity War.

Considering that one of Wanda’s canon superpowers is being able to manipulate her reality, even through mere illusions, turning her Westview life in the guise of a sitcom was the perfect setup to build her next goal.

When she found out that her twin boys weren’t real, the post-credit scene of WandaVision’s finale showed her using the Darkhold book, which corrupted her into this obsession of finding the alternate reality where her twin boys lived as real people.

Loki Season 1 (2021)

The Loki we have grown up watching on screen may have died in Avengers: Infinity War, but the other version of him, the Loki version who was still the villain behind the Battle of New York, lived to lead his own starring series.

Loki gets detained by the Time Variance Authority for not fulfilling the ‘canon event’ of his story. In this case, he was never supposed to escape the Avengers or be in possession of the Tesseract.

Since this version didn’t conform to his path, Loki was taken into the TVA, only to find out that one of those messing with the ‘Sacred Timeline’ is none other than a variant of himself, Lady Loki, otherwise known as Sylvie.

In addition to that, we get our first introduction to the next big bad of the MCU after Thanos’ demise: He Who Remains, whose death in the Loki finale led Kang the Conqueror to the spotlight in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.

What If…? Season 1 (2021)

Marvel took the Multiverse thing further by making up an animated series called, Marvel’s What If…? in which we get a glimpse of the other alternate universes that exist within the MCU timeline.

For example, Captain Carter is the main Captain America, instead of the other way around.

Although some of the narratives ended up getting debunked in Loki Season 1, the series still serves a great purpose in building the Multiverse Saga altogether.

ALSO READ: All Avengers Movies Ranked From Worst to Best

Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)

Who could forget Peter Parker’s greatest mishap? While the first Doctor Strange film introduced the Multiverse to the MCU, Spider-Man: No Way Home expanded the consequences behind tampering spells while going against nature's law.

When Spider-Man’s real identity gets exposed, this tarnishes his reputation as a murderer, leading him to no solid opportunity into the college he and his friends want to go to.

In an attempt to fix things, he sought out Doctor Strange for help (thanks to teaming up with him back in Avengers: Infinity War), only for the spell to get tampered with in the middle of the Sorcerer Supreme’s casting.

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This opened up portals that brought Sony’s Spider-Man (Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield) and their iconic villains into the MCU, thus bringing all Spider-Men together in one big franchise and timeline.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (2022)

The Multiverse became larger and all the more evident in the Doctor Strange sequel, Multiverse of Madness. Wanda turns into the Scarlet Witch, who was seeking America Chavez, the first Multiverse traveler in the franchise.

Under Doctor Strange’s protection, though, the Scarlet Witch had to use force in claiming America’s powers for herself, so that she could finally reunite with her twin boys in a different reality.

The Doctor Strange sequel had Strange, America, and the Scarlet Witch jumping through different portals, where we even got the chance to meet Patrick Stewart's Professor X and John Krasinski's Reed Richards, a little tease into what the extent of the Multiverse could do for the MCU.

Not to mention, Captain Carter and Maria Rambeau as Captain Marvel, instead of Carol Danvers, all the more depicting the different versions of realities that exist beyond their original reality.

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023)

As the movie opener for Marvel Phase Five, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania deserves a place on this list, especially since the film is one of the biggest steps into the Multiverse Saga.

Not to mention, we get our official introduction of Kang the Conqueror as the ‘new’ Thanos, only for Kang’s death to unveil that his many, many variants all share one purpose and that is to conquer the universe for their own gains.

Loki Season 2 (2023)

Loki returns with Mobius and Sylvie in Loki Season 2, where they face the next Kang variant, Victor Timely, otherwise known as Kang Prime.

Victor Timely has mastered traveling between alternate realities, making him all the more fearsome of a villain to come up against.

Loki’s Season 2 depicts a grimmer future on how the MCU could possibly defeat an already overpowered Kang variant such as Kang Prime. But we’ll be finding out more about this once the series releases on Disney Plus in about a month’s time.

For more Marvel content like this, check out some of our MCU-related news stories right here on EpicStream!

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