Sky calmed our worries about the new Ant-Man film coming out Friday with her post on why she thinks the movie will be awesome. If you're like me, you've decided to trust her reasons and give this small hero a chance. But you might also be thinking, okay, he sounds cool but who is he? Who's Ant-Man? Why are there two Ant-Mans (Men?)? Who are these other characters? And why is Agent Carter, Howard Stark, Steve Rogers, Bucky Barnes, and Sam Wilson involved in the film?
While I may not be an expert on formicidea (that's a fancy way of labeling the insect family of ants), I can assure I will do my best to explain who's who in the Ant-Man world as well as give you my best guess on what we might expect from the film.
(the king of Mavel comics), Larry Lieber (Stan the Man's younger brother who helped with many comics), and Jack Kirby (one of the guys who created Captain America), Ant-Man has been portrayed by four different characters over the last fifty years. Two of these character will be in the new movie, but there's always room for more later.
Hank Pym: the Original Ant-Man (Michael Douglas)("Pym Particles", so clever), which he uses to create two formulas: one to make him small as, well, ants and the other to reverse the first. After extensive ant-research (because he accidentally trapped himself in an anthill during his experiment run. Dude, why were you experimenting outside??), he creates his suit to 1. protect himself from ant bites 2. let's him communicate with the ants. Thus: Ant-Man.
So, maybe not the brilliant origin story you were thinking? Yeah, science! But let's look at what Ant-Man can do:
-size-shifts between nearly microscopic to about 100ft. tall (both extremes).
-while in size-shift, he maintains strength of normal size. Thus, he's super strong as ant-sized which is why he can do all those cool stunts.
-Superhuman strength and agility. Again, cool stunts.
(basically Giant-Man but the alias he used while working with the Avengers), Yellowjacket (a schizophrenic version of Hank), and even the Wasp for a brief time (in tribute to his late wife, Janet). Oh, and he was the original creator of Ultron in the comics.
(and possibly been Ant-Man in the past) and wishes to pass it to someone else. Someone like...
Scott Lang: the Second Ant-Man (Paul Rudd)(Fun fact: Because of his electronics expertise, he was hired by none other than Stark International [aka Stark Industries] and installed the security system in the Avengers Mansion.)
When his daughter, Cassie, gets sick, he breaks into Dr. Pym's house and steals the suit and formula for Ant-Man. After an exciting ordeal of rescuing the one person who can heal his daughter from evil bad guy (more on him later), he does return the suit to Dr. Pym. However, good old Hank tells him to keep it as long as he uses it for good (aka upholding the law, helping the Avengers, saving lives, etc.).
Darren Cross: Yellowjacket (Corey Stoll)(so clever, really). However, he's diagnosed with a rare heart condition. The only solution is a nucleorganic pacemaker (no idea what that is, to be honest). But of course, this solution also gave him some weirdo mutated abilities with a terrible side effect of burning out his heart.
Thus, he turns crazy and kidnaps "donors" from the slums (hmmm, sure, donors, eh?) and also a doctor who is the only person who can save Cassie Lang (yep, Scott's daughter). Of course, Scott defeats him (with the doctor's help) and everything is just swell. Until Cross' son decides to take revenge, but I'm sure that's another story for another time.
(Dr. Pym's schizo-alias), so either the Yellowjacket suit will be made to help Cross' heart condition or he's just super jealous of Ant-Man so he becomes a bee-related super-powered individual (yeah, uh-huh). In addition, he might have connections to Dr. Pym's daughter...
Hope van Dyne (or Pym, depending): The Red Queen (Evangeline Lilly)(Woman?) instead of Scott.
Thus, she formed the "Revengers" and duplicated her mother's abilities, becoming the Red Queen. With her team of supervillains, she ambushed the Avengers. However, her brother stopped her before she destroyed both super teams and Cassie Lang. She has implanted wings to fly, bio-electric blasters extendable claws in her gloves, and hand-to-hand combat.
business partner) and Scott Lang (acquaintance). Whether she turns villainous remains to be unseen. It's possible instead of the Red Queen, she might just become the Wasp in honor of her mother (who is already deceased in the film). We'll have to wait and see how she feels about Scott's daughter...
Cassie Lang: Stature (Abby Ryder Fortson)(I'm not crying, that's just a father-daughter relationship in my eye). Thus, she becomes a number of different aliases, the most well-known being: Stature.
(Fun Fact: from being around so many heroes while growing up, she makes friends with their kids/wards and also has special relationships with these heroes. Aka she calls Tony Stark "Uncle Tony.")
Cassie has the ability--like her father and Dr. Pym--to increase and decrease her size (via expose to Pym Particles). Her abilities are affected by her emotions: she grows big when she's angry and small when she feel guilty. She's been known as Ant-Girl, Giant-Girl, Titan, and Stinger as well as Stature. She's been in the Young Avengers, she's joined The Fifty State Initiative, and she's been a part of the Mighty Avengers.
(Hayley Atwell) and Howard Stark (Dominic Cooper). My best guess for their roles in the film are flashbacks or origin history of Dr. Hank Pym first creating the Ant-Man suit. I imagine he created it either during WWII (hence why Steve Rogers and Bucky Barnes are uncredited but on the list) or sometime post WWII when SHIELD was being founded.
In addition, Sam Wilson is listed to be uncredited in the film. This makes me wonder if we'll see some glimpse of Steve and Sam present day with either Hank, Hope, or Scott (please be an invitation to join the Avengers. Please).
(even if it's ant-sized), and an unlikely hero. Plus possibly more Steve and Bucky moments, Agent Carter awesomeness, and Evangeline Lilly punching Paul Rudd in the face. I'm excited: are you? Remember, Marvel took a giant leap of faith with Guardians of the Galaxy last year and it did smashingly (just don't try to tell Drax that). Fingers crossed Ant-Man will be the same.
What most interests you in seeing Ant-Man?