Warning: This article contains spoilers regarding the film ‘Ant-man’.
In the traditional ‘post-credits’ scene of the film ‘Ant-man’, the audience catch a glimpse of what looks like a superhero uniform. It has wings, a helmet, and is of a bright yellow colour. Quickly, the camera cuts back to Hope Van Dyne’s face; she grins, almost manically, and declares ‘It’s about damn time’. Following the news of character Janet Van Dyne’s death, Marvel fans were distraught, assuming the beloved superhero known as Wasp would never appear in the MCU. But thankfully, they were wrong. Janet’s title was passed to her daughter- and as the MCU is not graced with the original secret identity of Ant-man (Hank Pym), it seems fitting that the audience should also have a second generation Wasp.
Due to this change in character, if you’ll pardon the pun, for once, even fans of the original comics are unaware of what Hope’s storyline will be. It is likely, however, that it will be some kind of synthesis between Wasp, and Hope’s original quests. Wasp, or Janet Van Dyne, was the daughter of a wealthy scientist who met Frank Pym through her scientist father. In the original stories, upon the death of her father, Janet convinced Hank to share the ‘Pym Particles’, which allowed him to change sized; the two became the crime fighting duo known as Ant-Man and The Wasp. In fact, the pair originally set up The Avengers; although that is not the path the films have chosen to take. One of the leaders of the superhero group, Janet helped take down Ultron, survive the civil war of heroes, and even carried Hank through his harrowing spell of personality disorders. Through it all, a romantic relationship developed between the pair- and although Ant-man and The Wasp may not lead The Avengers in the films, it seems highly likely that some form of romantic relationship will develop between Scott and Hope.
Hope Van Dyne, known in the comic universe as ‘Hope Pym’, has a much shorter story. Her, and her twin brother Henry, feel that the ‘New Avengers’ disgrace the death of their parents. Their mother and father, who died for their world, should not be seen as people who can be ‘succeeded’ by other hero-leaders in any way. So, Hope takes the name ‘Red Queen’, and attempts to destroy The Avengers- thankfully, unsuccessfully. Whilst it is unclear whether Evangeline Lily’s Hope will, for want of a better phrase ‘turn to the dark side’, it is interesting to note that as a possibility. As quite a stern character, it would be curious to see her become as chaotic as her comic-book counterpart.
A wide range of possibilities sits before Hope Van Dyne. With ‘Ant-man and Wasp’ promised for 2018, this is the second Marvel movie to be announced with a female lead, the highly anticipated ‘Captain Marvel’ set to be released that same year. As a new character, Van Dyne is unpredictable, strange, and downright mysterious to the original comic book fans, who are unused to having little knowledge of the silver-screen superheroes. Hopefully, she will be treated well by her writers; and maybe this time Marvel merchandise will include a female superhero.