Why Deadpool & Wolverine’s unpredictable villain sets a new standard for Marvel

Contains spoilers for “Deadpool & Wolverine”

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA: “Deadpool & Wolverine” introduces a unique villain to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film explores a multiverse adventure featuring Emma Corrin as Cassandra Nova, promising a distinctive threat.

Corrin, known for their award-winning role as Princess Diana in “The Crown,” brings strong dramatic flair to the MCU. Plot details have been kept under wraps, but trailers hint at multiverse challenges involving Deadpool, Wolverine and the TVA.

Characters like Juggernaut, Sabretooth and Toad may also return, highlighting the need for a prominent antagonist like Cassandra Nova.

MCU’s Cassandra Nova promises a villain unlike any before

Emma Corrin accepts the role of Cassandra Nova in
Emma Corrin in a “Deadpool & Wolverine” photo shoot (@marvelstudios)

Cassandra Nova aims to bring a new type of villain to the MCU, following a lineage that includes various antagonists such as Iron Monger, The Vulture and Thanos.

In an interview with Variety, Emma Corrin, who portrays Cassandra Nova, compared the character to Hans Landa from “Inglourious Basterds”, played by Christoph Waltz. Corrin described Cassandra as disarming, polite, and subtly sinister – a departure from a traditional villain.

Ryan Reynolds and director Shawn envisioned Cassandra as someone who charms and deceives, turning deadly when least expected. Living up to Hans Landa’s legacy is a challenge, given Waltz’s acclaimed performance that defined cinematic villainy and launched his career.

While the portrayal of Corrin in “Deadpool & Wolverine” remains to be seen, the premise promises for a new look at the villain in the MCU.

Cassandra Nova from “Deadpool & Wolverine” might be the MCU’s most unconventional villain yet

Emma Corrin and Hugh Jackman in a photo shoot of
Emma Corrin and Hugh Jackman in a photo shoot of “Deadpool & Wolverine” (YouTube/@marvelentertainment)

In the MCU, villains often find avenues of redemption. Characters like Loki and Bucky transition to heroes, while Vulture chooses to protect Spider-Man’s identity. However, Cassandra Nova is set apart by her lack of inherent humanity.

Drawing comparisons to sociopathic figures like Hans Landa, she manipulates with charm without the typical redeeming qualities seen in MCU antagonists.

Unlike MCU villains who typically maintain a consistent alignment, Cassandra Nova’s character oscillates unpredictably between friend and foe.

Unlike Mysterio and Iron Monger, who pretended to be allies before revealing their true monstrous nature, or pragmatic villains like Thanos and Ultron driven by their perceived need for destruction, Nova promises a more complex and manipulative approach to achieving her goals.

Why Cassandra Nova Could Revolutionize MCU Villains in ‘Deadpool & Wolverine’

Emma Corrin in a photo shoot by
Emma Corrin in a “Deadpool & Wolverine” photo shoot (@marvelstudios)

The MCU benefits from fresh and compelling villains like Cassandra, who bring a complex comic book story to the screen. Born of evil, Cassandra was absorbed by her twin brother Charles Xavier in the womb, yet she managed to transcend and create her own body, setting her apart from other villains.

It’s important that the MCU moves away from the typical megalomaniacal archetype. While “Ant and the Wasp: Quantum Mania” introduced Kang the Conqueror as a potentially universe-shaking villain, the character still felt reminiscent of past threats like Loki and Thanos, despite strong performances and impactful moments.

The desire for control can become repetitive, highlighting the need for terrifying and unpredictable villains like Cassandra Nova to keep the MCU feeling innovative.

In order to thrive, the MCU needs to address its ongoing problem with villains. While earlier antagonists were often disposable and similar, recent efforts show a change. With the introduction of characters like Kingpin and teased details about Cassandra Nova, Marvel seems poised to explore new directions.

Cassandra Nova’s portrayal as a truly evil and devious threat to the multiverse promises to elevate “Deadpool & Wolverine” upon its release on Friday, July 26.

“Deadpool & Wolverine” trailer.

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