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Is the Cancerverse in ‘Guardians of the Galaxy 3’? Marvel’s Cancerverse Explained

A hero trapped by tentacles in the Cancerverse in Marvel's Thanos Imperative

The official Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 trailer dropped during the Super Bowl and promised another epic adventure from our favorite team of unlikely heroes. Set to premiere on May 5, the film will mark the conclusion of the Guardians of the Galaxy trilogy, and the trailer suggested the series is going out with a bang. Some of Marvel Comics’ most powerful characters, including Andy Warlock (Will Poulter) and the High Evolutionary (Chukwudi Iwuji), are set to make their Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) debut in the film.

Additionally, the trailer also finally confirmed what was going on with Gamora (Zoe Saldaña) after she died in Avengers: Infinity War. Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) explains how she’s still in the film in layman’s turns, by confirming that “she came back,” but “came back a total dick.” We also got some gut-wrenching scenes of baby Rocket (Bradley Cooper) being experimented on in flashbacks of his brutal origin. Plus, Star-Lord tries to shoot his shot with … Nebula (Karen Gillan)?!

However, the trailer may have also backed up speculations about Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 diving into the multiversal side of Marvel. Even though this hasn’t been confirmed, its placement in Marvel’s Multiversal Saga makes it a possibility. The trailer is pretty ambiguous, refraining from openly revealing the full plot of the film. It can’t be denied, though, that the sequences almost seem to depict the team traveling through different worlds. Of course, they could just be traveling the galaxy and many planets, but one interesting shot, in particular, raised questions about whether the team was visiting the Cancerverse.

What is Marvel’s Cancerverse?

The Revengers (demonic Avengers) in the Cancerverse
(Marvel Comics)

The Cancerverse exists on Earth-10011 and is easily one of Marvel’s most hellish alternate universes. The reason for the universe’s descent into darkness was the Many-Angled Ones. These are terrifying ancient extra-dimension entities that live in the space between realities. They are led by Shuma-Gorath, the god of chaos, which explains why the Many-Angled Ones reduce universes to chaos and destruction. Their origin isn’t really known, but many speculate they are ancient demons that have existed for eons. While they exist in the space between realities, they frequently try to make their way into different universes.

This is what happened to Earth-10011 when its leader, Mar-Vell, became diagnosed with terminal cancer. Fearful of death, he began to succumb to the Many-Angled Ones’ influence and corruption and performed a ritual to irradicate death from the entire universe. This drastic action allowed the Many-Angled Ones to enter into the universe and exert their full influence and manipulation. Corruption, unchecked by death, managed to spread quickly, turning every single being into a demonic creature who worshiped the Many-Angled Ones. This resulted in several Marvel characters receiving demonic counterparts. For example, instead of the Avengers, the Cancerverse has the Revengers and Ex-Men instead of X-Men.

The world continued to grow and distort into the nightmarish territory until a rift opened up one day, allowing the demons to cross into Earth-616. Many heroes from Earth-616 fought to save their world, as the Many-Angled-Ones and their servants tried to destroy death in the main timeline. The Guardians of the Galaxy were among the heroes who saved Earth-616. However, considering it’s a world where death doesn’t exist, the Cancerverse can never be destroyed, though Doctor Spectrum managed to absorb and trap it in his power prism.

Is the Cancerverse in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3?

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3 sees the team traveling in what looks like the Cancerverse

So far, it has not been officially confirmed that the Cancerverse will appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. However, fans have been speculating about its potential MCU introduction for years, especially with Marvel delving into darker territory with Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness and Marvel Zombies. Meanwhile, in one clip from the new Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 trailer, the team is seen suiting up in protective gear and exploring a planet with suspicious-looking tendrils and tentacles snaking over its surface, which is reminiscent of the nightmarish living-corpse world of the Cancerverse.

Also, given that the Guardians of the Galaxy have a comic book connection to the Cancerverse, it would make sense for it to make its MCU debut within the team’s trilogy. At the same time, though, it’s unclear if Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3‘s tone would fit well with the extremely dark nature of the planet. Plus, with the film also probing storylines about Rocket’s past and the High Evolutionary and Warlock, it might be overstuffed trying to also probe the Cancerverse. Hence, it is unclear if the Cancervere will appear in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, but we hope this dark and twisted world appears somewhere in the MCU soon.

(featured image: Marvel Comics)

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Rachel Ulatowski is a Freelance Writer, blogger, and aspiring author. As a Freelancer Writer she hopes to give readers the same comfort and enjoyment that she finds in all things nerdy and noteworthy, as a blogger she enjoys snarking on YouTubers and reality stars, and as a future novelist she hopes to raise awareness for child abuse through literature.