After 2 Years, The Mystery About Wolverine In The MCU Is Finally Cleared Up

Marvel Studios has already teased the existence of Wolverine in the MCU, and one Deadpool & Wolverine might answer exactly how this could happen.

Hugh Jackman's Wolverine in Deadpool & Wolverine's trailer and Nikki doing the SNIKT motion in She-Hulk Attorney at Law

Wolverine has been teased to exist in the MCU long before Hugh Jackman’s return in Deadpool & Wolverine, but one major theory could answer exactly how. Hugh Jackman was confirmed to be reprising his Fox X-Men franchise role of James “Logan” Howlett, a.k.a. Wolverine, for the MCU back in September 2022, joining his friend and frequent collaborator, Ryan Reynolds. Jackman previously portrayed Wolverine for 17 years between 2000’s X-Men and 2017’s Logan, but will be given a comic-accurate makeover in Marvel Studios’ upcoming Deadpool & Wolverine, though this won’t be the first time Wolverine has been mentioned in the MCU.

Deadpool & Wolverine’s first official trailer provided a more detailed look at Hugh Jackman’s return in the MCU’s Phase 5. Set to embark on a multiversal journey through the Void at the End of Time with Ryan Reynolds’ Deadpool, Wolverine will be gifted a comic-accurate costume for his return, though this may not be the version of Wolverine that audiences have come to know and love over the years. Instead, Deadpool & Wolverine’s trailer implied that Wolverine may come from an alternate universe altogether, which informs one wild theory suggesting he might have been hiding in the MCU all along.

Marvel Studios Has Already Teased Wolverine’s Existence In The MCU

She-Hulk Attorney at Law's Wolverine tease

While 2024’s Deadpool & Wolverine will mark the first time that the clawed X-Men member has been seen in the live-action MCU, Marvel Studios has previously teased the existence of Wolverine in the franchise’s main continuity already. Most notably, 2022’s She-Hulk: Attorney at Law included several hints at Wolverine’s existence in the MCU, though the mutant wasn’t seen. While Jennifer Walters is looking for new employment, she reads a website with a subtle subheading that reads, “Man fights with metal claws in bar brawl,” harking back to Wolverine’s iconic bar fights throughout his Marvel Comics and Fox X-Men franchise history.

She-Hulk: Attorney at Law’s penultimate episode also featured a brilliant Wolverine tease. While Jen and Nikki are preparing for the Southern California Law Awards gala, Nikki jumps from behind a wall using make-up brushes to replicate Wolverine’s legendary “SNIKT” action of extending his claws. A Wolverine-style sneaker also appears in Pug’s collection in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law episode 5’s credits sequence. This seems to suggest that Wolverine’s existence in the MCU may already be common knowledge, though there has been no other sign of the beloved mutant making an appearance, but this could support a huge Deadpool & Wolverine theory.

Deadpool & Wolverine’s Trailer Has Confirmed Tragedy For Wolverine’s World

Wolverine surrounded by big stones in Deadpool & Wolverine's first trailer

When Hugh Jackman was confirmed to be joining Ryan Reynolds in Marvel Studios’ Deadpool & Wolverine, many suspected that he would be returning as the version of Wolverine from Fox’s X-Men franchise. This could easily be done by having Wolverine be plucked from the timeline prior to the events of Logan, so as to not mess with the emotional ending of the 2017 X-Men franchise installment. However, Deadpool & Wolverine’s trailer may have hinted at Hugh Jackman portraying a completely different variant of Wolverine, one from a world that the Time Variance Authority suggests he had a hand in destroying.

Certain scenes from Deadpool & Wolverine’s trailer seem to imply the deaths of the X-Men team, with Wolverine somehow being the cause. Some theories suggest this could be a timeline where he failed to kill Jean Grey’s Dark Phoenix in 2006, or a reality ravaged by an incursion. Whatever the case may be, one theory shared by Reddit user David1258 posits that this version of Wolverine could have been hiding in the MCU’s Earth-616 after causing devastation to his own world. This could explain She-Hulk: Attorney at Law’s teases towards Wolverine’s existence, but could have dangerous implications for the MCU.

Wolverine On The Sacred Timeline Could Cause Major Problems For The MCU

Wolverine hiding in a bar in Deadpool & Wolverine's first trailer

If this theory turns out to be true, it’s unclear exactly when this version of Wolverine would have made his way into the MCU. Presumably, this would have happened after the events of Marvel Studios’ Loki series, which blew open the Sacred Timeline and allowed for easier exploration of the multiverse. However, it’s possible this could have happened prior to Loki, and perhaps went unnoticed by the Time Variance Authority, or they could have surmised that Wolverine’s existence in the MCU wouldn’t have a major impact on the timeline. Nevertheless, Wolverine’s potential crossing of universes could pose a huge danger.

Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness introduced the concept of incursions in the MCU, and John Krasinski’s Mister Fantastic seemed to suggest these events were created simply by variants existing in realities they didn’t belong in. If Wolverine has been hiding out in the MCU’s Earth-616 for several years, it’s possible an incursion could have been brewing in the background all this time. This could be hugely important to the MCU’s upcoming Avengers 5 and Secret Wars, especially with other incursions having been teased in the Multiverse Saga, so Deadpool & Wolverine could actively set up this dramatic storyline.

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