Loki Writer Explains Why the MCU's Kang Was Merged With He Who Remains
Loki writer Michael Waldron explained why the Marvel Cinematic Universe's version of Kang the Conqueror is an amalgam of two characters from the comics.
The character fans meet in the Season 1 finale of Loki, though played by Kang the Conqueror actor Jonathan Majors, is actually a Kang variant named He Who Remains. That character has entirely different roots in the comics, which Waldron acknowledged while speaking with The Playlist. "The [Time Variance Authority] shifted to like, 'O.K., these guys are actually guarding against a multiverse,'" he explained. "And so that’s when He Who Remains is just kind of an old creepy guy in the comics, and I pushed and Marvel was very receptive to it, the idea, this should be a variant of Kang. Because I knew Kang was coming down the pipe as a villain in the MCU and it just felt too delicious to not have him intertwined in our time travel story somehow. And so then it was just been coming upon us to justify his role in this place, but Marvel was very supportive of all that."
Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, Nathaniel Richards (also known as Rama-Tut, Kang the Conqueror, Iron Lad, Victor Timely, Scarlet Centurion, Immortus and more) debuted in 1963's Fantastic Four #19 and would go on to become one of the Avengers' most prevalent villains in the comics. The character is a 31st-century scholar and a very distant relative of the Fantastic Four's Reed Richards, whose experiments with time send him down a rabbit hole that ends with him seeking to conquer Earth.
He Who Remains debuted 12 years after Kang in 1975's Thor #245. Created by Len Wein, John Buscema and Joe Sinnot, the character is the one responsible for forming the Time-Keepers after the failure that was the Time-Twisters. The closest interaction He Who Remains had with Kang in the comics was with the former being mentioned in Kang-centric titles like 1999's Avengers: Forever #9 and 2005's 4 #16.
Though He Who Remains was killed by Sylvie in the Season 1 finale of Loki, Majors will play Kang proper in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, which arrives in theaters July 28, 2023.
Source: The Playlist