The Deadpool 3 trailer, as you’d expect from the self-aware character, is chock full of metatextual winks and Easter eggs. You’ve got the Time Variance Authority (TVA) from Loki showing off footage from various MCU movies. You’ve got Aaron Stanford back as Pyro from the X-Men movies. You’ve of course got hints of Hugh Jackman back as Wolverine — the movie, after all, is actually titled Deadpool & Wolverine. But did you catch the appearance of the Fantastic Four villain Doctor Doom? And the reference to Avengers: Secret Wars?
To be clear, this is not a physical appearance in the flesh by a new actor playing Doctor Doom. Nor is it Julian McMahon, or Toby Kebbel from the previous Fox Fantastic Four movies. Instead, this iconic villain shows up in a scene toward the end of the trailer, on the cover of a comic book. Here, see if you can spot it:
In case you can’t tell, it’s all the way on the left of the screen, lying in the cracked wasteland ground. But we can say with confidence that not only is that Doctor Doom on the cover, it’s the cover to Secret Wars #5 from 2015. Here, take a closer look:
So, without getting too in the weeds here, the 2015 Secret Wars by Jonathan Hickman and artist Esad Ribić is expected to heavily influence the upcoming Avengers: Secret Wars, whenever that movie happens. In it, the entire multiverse is destroyed, only for a patchwork planet called Battleworld ruled by Doctor Doom to survive. In issue #5, we finally find out what happened, and why Doom is now God Emperor Doom.
It has a lot to do with the other characters pictured on the front cover here: The Beyonder, and Owen Reese, aka the Molecule Man. But again, don’t want to get in the weeds, so let’s talk about why this might be important.
Is Doctor Doom In Deadpool & Wolverine? How Deadpool 3 May Connect To Secret Wars:
This is a lot of speculation since we haven’t seen the movie. However, it’s pretty clear that Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) is traveling through various facets of the multiverse in this movie, given he’s interacting with the TVA, meeting Wolverine, and — okay mild spoilers here — there’s at least one scene in the trailer that takes place in front of a collapsed 20th Century Fox logo. Deadpool also calls himself “Marvel Jesus” and seems ready to bring all the various timelines together in some fashion.
That’s sort of exactly what Doom does in Secret Wars, so this could be a reference to that. It could also just be another piece of fourth-wall-breaking detritus. It could also be something put in the trailer to drive nerds crazy.
But again, speculating… Doom is going to come into Marvel at some point. We also know Marvel is moving quickly on the MCU version of the Fantastic Four. So why wouldn’t they use this moment for Deadpool to soft reboot the Marvel Universe? Perhaps even bringing back all versions of the cinematic Fantastic Four (both Fox versions), and introducing the new Fantastic Four as well as their greatest enemy?
Whatever happens, and however Doctor Doom and Secret Wars plays into the movie — or not — we’ll know in a few short months’ time.
Deadpool & Wolverine hits theaters on July 26, 2024.