What Spider-Man: Far From Home reveals about Phase 4 of the MCU

Marvel Studios’ epic Avengers: Endgame might have felt like the final chapter in a saga, but the latest chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (dubbed “Phase 3”) actually comes to a close with Spider-Man: Far From Home. The sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming hit theaters July 2, and as many fans predicted, it offered quite a few hints about what’s to come for the MCU.

Spider-Man: Far From Home featured Peter Parker (Tom Holland) embarking on a class trip to Europe while coming to terms with the post-Endgame environment — a world sorely missing some of its greatest heroes. Here’s what the film revealed — and in some cases, potentially hinted at — about the Marvel movie-verse.

(It should go without saying that there will be spoilers in the following article, but we’ll say it anyway.)

Officially gone

avengers endgame
Marvel Studios

There was some uncertainty regarding the fates of a few key characters in the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame, but Spider-Man: Far From Home wasted no time in clearing up some of that mystery.

Early in the film, a school video shown to students at Midtown School of Science and Technology reveals that Tony Stark, Vision, Captain America, and Black Widow are indeed among the heroes believed to be dead in the current MCU. While Tony Stark’s fate was never really in question, there was some uncertainty regarding the other three characters given Captain America’s time-traveling activities and the fact that Black Widow and Vision have a movie and television series, respectively, currently in the works.

Black Widow’s movie was already expected to be a prequel film, but the premise for the WandaVision series now seems that much more intriguing, given that one half of the starring duo is, well… deceased (or as deceased as a synthetic being with alien-enhanced artificial intelligence can be).

No multiverse … yet

spider man into the verse review

We weren’t alone in getting excited about the potential of a Marvel multiverse, which was hinted at in early previews of Far From Home, and could have led to a cornucopia of crossovers and alternate versions of Marvel heroes and villains (and possibly a Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse connection). Sadly, the notion of a multiverse ended up being a red herring in Far From Home, with Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal) tricking both the heroes of the MCU and Marvel movie fans with his alternate-Earth backstory.

While it looks like we’ll have to shelve the idea of an MCU multiverse for now, that doesn’t mean it’s entirely off the table. After all, the fact that it was brought up in Far From Home means that the studio is — at the very least — thinking about it.

A world without Avengers

Despite the presence of quite a few survivors of Thanos’ thwarted conquest, the post-Endgame world appears to have opted not to re-form the Avengers at this point. At various points throughout the film, Far From Home made it abundantly clear that the absence of Tony Stark, Captain America, and Black Widow is a void that no one’s attempted to fill — even months after the MCU’s heroes won their battle against Thanos.

Avengers Infinity War

Rumors that a new Avengers lineup would be teased in some form during Far From Home — most likely in its mid- or post-credits scenes in a nod to the team’s introduction at the end of Iron Man — proved unfounded in the end. That means that the MCU is currently without an official Avengers roster for the first time since 2012’s The Avengers.

This suggests that the first order of business in Marvel’s Phase 4 will likely involve putting together a new team of heroes.

The Skrull in the room

It didn’t introduce a new Avengers team, but the post-credits scene in Spider-Man: Far From Home did offer up a revelation about the MCU that seems small, but could be a big deal.

Captain Marvel review

During the brief scene, we discover that shape-changing Captain Marvel aliens Talos and his wife, Soren, were tasked with impersonating Nick Fury (Samuel Jackson) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) at some point in the past. That means it was the two Skrulls that were fooled by Mysterio, not the two S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. The scene also reveals that Nick Fury is currently somewhere in space aboard what appears to be a Skrull ship.

While the scene might seem fairly straightforward, it raises some big issues relating to the future — and recent past — of the MCU.

captain marvel skrull
Marvel Studios

There’s no indication given as to when the Skrulls replaced Fury and Hill, for example, meaning that they could have been on Earth for any number of years between the events of Captain Marvel and Far From Home. Why is that a big deal? Well, that means that any character in those films and everything set between them — including Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame, to name just a few — could have been a Skrull in disguise.

It’s unlikely that Marvel would negate the impact of Tony Stark’s death in Endgame that way, but what about Vision or Black Widow? The possibilities are endless, really, and by establishing that the alien doppelgängers have been on Earth for the last three decades, the franchise has added yet another tool to keep fans from believing anything — even death — is entirely certain in the MCU.

Marvel Studios’ Spider-Man: Far From Home is in theaters now.

The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Digital Trends.

Movies & TV

Director Taika Waititi is back for Thor 4, and that’s all we needed to know

Director Taika Waititi and actor Chris Hemsworth, the team that brought you Thor: Ragnarok, will reunite once again for Thor 4. That's good news for MCU fans. For Waititi's live-action Akira? Not so much.

Everything we know about Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order

After a ten-year hiatus, Marvel Ultimate Alliance is back with Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3: The Black Order on Switch. The co-op-focused action RPG tasks you and your buddies with stopping Thanos from securing the Infinity Stones.
Movies & TV

Comic-Con 2019 preview: The biggest movie and TV panels you won’t want to miss

Even with more competition than ever, Comic-Con International is still one of the biggest pop culture events of the year. For the latest news about your favorite shows and movies, these are the biggest panels to follow.
Movies & TV

From Hawkeye to Hit-Monkey, here’s every Marvel show and movie coming your way

The MCU's third phase might have ended, but Marvel's takeover of theaters and TV screens is just getting started. If you're hungry for more superhero action, here's every upcoming project to look forward to, from the MCU and otherwise.
Home Theater

The best Dolby Atmos movies for your home theater, from Us to Infinity War

If you've got your hands on some sweet Dolby Atmos gear, the next step is to find films that take advantage of it. These are our picks in several genres for the best Dolby Atmos movies currently available on Blu-ray and streaming services.
Movies & TV

It: Chapter Two trailer brings Pennywise back with plenty of nightmare fuel

Warner Bros. Pictures has released a new, terrifying trailer for It: Chapter Two, the upcoming sequel to the 2017 film It. Both films are based on the novel of the same name written by Stephen King.
Movies & TV

Hollywood has had a field day with the moon, but these are the films to watch

From a 1902 silent film to a biopic of astronaut Neil Armstrong, these films celebrate everything that led to mankind setting foot on the surface of the moon. Check them out in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission.
Movies & TV

Top Gun: Maverick: Everything we know about the movie so far

The 1986 action drama Top Gun helped make Tom Cruise a superstar, and now he's returning to the role of hotshot pilot Pete Maverick Mitchell in Top Gun: Maverick. Here's what we know about the movie so far.
Movies & TV

Edward Furlong, Terminator 2's John Connor, returns for Terminator: Dark Fate

The most recent Terminator films didn't do so well, but now James Cameron has returned to try and reinvigorate the franchise. Here's everything we know about the cast, crew, and story of the upcoming Terminator: Dark Fate movie.
Movies & TV

Tom Cruise surprises Comic-Con crowds with first Top Gun: Maverick trailer

Tom Cruise crashed Paramount's Terminator: Dark Fate panel to share the first trailer for Top Gun: Maverick, which explains what his character, ace pilot Pete Maverick Mitchell, has been up to for the past 30 years.
Home Theater

Stranger Things season 4: Here’s everything we know so far

After three wildly successful seasons of Stranger Things, everyone wants to know where Netflix will take the gang in season 4. Here's everything we know about the fourth season of Stranger Things so far.
Movies & TV

The 7 best TV episodes you can watch on YouTube for free

TV networks have made a habit of putting episodes from popular series on YouTube for free. From premium platforms like Showtime to experimental newcomers like Viceland, we compiled a few of the best episodes available on YouTube.
Movies & TV

Did I really watch that? Here's how to delete your Netflix viewing history

Everybody has some skeletons in their streaming closet, but you don't have to live with them if you don't want to. Learning how to delete your Netflix viewing history is easy, and we're here to help.
Home Theater

What’s new on Amazon Prime Video and what’s leaving in August 2019

Amazon Prime Video adds new titles each month that are available for free to all Prime members. Check out our list to find all of the content hitting Amazon Prime Video in July and August, from new original series to classic films.