Phase 6 of the MCU: Breaking a 16-Year Iron Man Movie Tradition

Tony Stark Suits Up in Iron Man 3 and War Machine Flies in Captain America Civil War

In a surprising turn of events, the long-standing record held by Iron Man and War Machine since their debut in 2008 might see a shift with the introduction of a Phase 6 movie. The upcoming solo venture of War Machine, titled Armor Wars, may bring forth a significant moment that has been absent from the MCU since the inception of Iron Man. Originally planned as a Disney+ series, Armor Wars will follow James Rhodes, portrayed by Don Cheadle, as he confronts multiple adversaries armed with armored suits.

Following the demise of Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark in Avengers: Endgame, James Rhodes steps into the spotlight, tasked with protecting Iron Man’s legacy in a world without its iconic hero. This narrative shift allows for exploration into the aftermath of Stark’s passing, potentially unveiling a new chapter in the MCU where Rhodes grapples with the consequences of his friend’s absence. Additionally, the absence of Steve Rogers and Natasha Romanoff further emphasizes Rhodes’ role as a guardian of the legacy left behind by the original Avengers.

A notable aspect of Armor Wars is the opportunity it presents for James Rhodes to showcase his alter ego, War Machine, in a manner previously unseen in the MCU. Despite appearing in numerous films and series, Rhodes has never been depicted donning his War Machine armor on-screen. This movie offers a chance to rectify that, as Rhodes navigates through various challenges while clad in his formidable suit. The absence of Tony Stark’s technological advancements further adds intrigue to Rhodes’ journey, as he must adapt to a new reality where every armor suit carries greater significance.

Robert Downey Jr. Tony Stark Iron Man Mark 3 Suit Up

The decision to keep Rhodey in the shadows while Iron Man dominated the spotlight in previous films can be attributed to several factors. Primarily, the narrative focus on Tony Stark’s evolution as Iron Man often relegated Rhodes to a supporting role, limiting his opportunities to shine independently. Additionally, the fast-paced nature of MCU installments left little room for individual character development, resulting in fewer opportunities for Rhodes to showcase his capabilities as War Machine.

However, with Armor Wars, the narrative arc of James Rhodes takes center stage, promising a deeper exploration of his character and his journey as War Machine. The movie’s premise, coupled with the revelation of Rhodes’ impersonation by a Skrull in Secret Invasion, sets the stage for a compelling narrative that delves into Rhodes’ identity and his commitment to upholding Iron Man’s legacy.

Don Cheadle Flies as an Armored James Rhoades aka War Machine in Avengers Endgame and Marvel Comics

In conclusion, Armor Wars presents a unique opportunity to break the long-standing tradition of Iron Man’s dominance in the MCU, offering James Rhodes a chance to shine as War Machine in his own right. As Phase 6 unfolds, fans can look forward to witnessing the evolution of Rhodes’ character and his pivotal role in shaping the future of the MCU.

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