Director Peyton Reed Explains Why Kang Is The Perfect Ant-Man Villain

In comparison to the other villains the MCU's heroes have faced, the rogues of Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) have been pretty lowkey in the grand scheme of things. Sure, you had a businessman seeking revenge against his mentor in the first film, as well as a sleazy criminal with connections to the black market in the second. However, those guys are small potatoes compared to vengeful Norse gods and literal living planets.

With the release date for "Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania" rapidly approaching, Scott Lang's days of fighting regular humans are over. That's because he'll be facing off against Kang the Conqueror (Jonathan Majors), a multi-versal entity framed as the MCU's newest big bad. At first glance, it might seem unfair to pit a guy with shrinking powers against another with technology from who knows how many dimensions. However, in a new interview with Nerdbunker, "Quantumania" director Peyton Reed explained how this fight isn't as one-sided as it might sound. As it turns out, it all comes back to his relationship with his daughter, Cassie (Kathryn Newton).

"It really occurred to us, obviously, 'Well, Cassie's going to be 18 in this movie, that's great,'" he explained. "The whole theme is time and how much time [Scott's] missed, and his main motivation is just, 'I want time with my daughter,' and now he's coming into contact with a villain in this movie, Kang the Conqueror, who has dominion over time, and what does that mean to them?"

What's it gonna be, Ant-Man?

This explanation for Kang's presence makes a lot of sense, especially since the film will seemingly frame him as a potentially nefarious ally. After all, in the official trailer, he does promise Scott all the time in the world in exchange for his help. It's unclear why he would offer this, but it's sure to create a major moral conflict. Who among us hasn't wished that we spent more time with our loved ones? It is a uniquely human experience and is one that fits perfectly within the "Ant-Man" franchise, especially when taking into consideration the fact that he was stuck in the Quantum Realm when the Snap happened.

"I think audiences really relate to Scott Lang because he doesn't have superpowers, he's not a super-scientist, he's not a billionaire," Reed told Nerdbunker. "He's a regular person who just happens to get caught up in these adventures."

"Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania" swoops into theaters on February 17, 2023.