Scott Lang and Hope Van Dyne return and reteam as the MCU's littlest superheroes for Ant-Man and the Wasp. Together, they deliver a rousing crowd-pleaser of a sequel, packed zany action, zippy chase scenes, and a zesty love story. Yet neither of them earn a spot in the always anticipated post-credit scene. And the co-star who did didn't deserve it.
Spoilers ahead for Ant-Man and the Wasp and Avengers: Infinity War.
After the harrowing mid-credit scene makes its ruthless connection to Avengers: Infinity War, moviegoers craved a moment of levity to keep up the buzz of this playful adventure. What we got was a giant ant playing drums. What we deserved was Luis in a moment of goofy glory.
Look, I get it. This final visit to Scott's home was a callback to the house arrest-dodging shenanigans that showed us the giant ant in a bathtub, watching TV, and playing drums. It was funny the first time. But by this point that joke is played out. Besides, that moment could have been used for so much more!
As he was in 2015's Ant-Man, Luis is once again an unapologetic scene-stealer, scoring laughs with his motormouth tales, guileless irreverence, and contagious enthusiasm. If you want to lessen the blow of the Van Dyne/Pym family being blown away, we need something more than the repeated big ant gag. We need Luis. It doesn't have to be another super-complicated flashback filled with colorful characters and sassy commentary. (Though I wouldn't begrudge that!) It could have even stayed a collision of simple domesticity colliding with Ant-Man accoutrement set in Scott's house. But it should have shown Luis in the Ant-Man suit.
I'm not saying make Luis a new Ant-Man. But by this point, he's been thrown full-bodied into Ant-Man and the Wasp's battle for their secret lab. He's raced cars, faced truth serum, and chased down menacing minions. Near the film's action-packed climax, he tells Hope he'd be game for a super suit of his own. It doesn't even have to have all the powers. Or any of the powers. He just wants a superhero costume to feel like a full-fledged part of the team. It might have been a throwaway joke, or even a playful improvisation from the hilarious Michael Peña. But Luis strutting about in Scott's super-suit was an image so enchanting that I could see it clearly in my head. And we should have seen it onscreen!
Imagine it. You're still reeling from the disintegration of Hank Pym, Hope and Janet Van Dyne. Scott's trapped in the Quantum Realm. You're hurting. Then after the credits, the darkness of the screen rises to light on the exterior of Scott's charming San Francisco home. The camera travels inside, our hearts race as we wonder who will still be here! But instead of a door opening to reveal a giant drum-playing ant (rim shot), it unveils Luis in an Ant-Man suit. Remember we have three operational suits now between Scott's original, the new one with the malfunctioning regulator, and Hank's old-school version. Luis would be wearing the second.
The camera would look up at him, offering us a low-angle shot that reflects the power he feels in his snatched super gear. A wide grin would play across his lips, like the kind a kid gets when they've snatched a secret cookie before dinner. He'd say something confident but not quite cool, like "Let's get small!" And then he would. Except not ant-sized small. In a callback to the hilarious grade school sequence, the janky Ant-Man suit would make Luis the size of a kindergartner. And as he realizes its busted and he's stuck at this height, we get a close-up of his surely hilarious alarm. Cut to black.
Instead of being left with the haunting notion that we don't know if Luis, his ex-con friends, and Scott's family are part of the half of the population blinked out of existence by the Infinity Gauntlet, we'd get some assurance that at least the MCU's funniest sidekick is okay. We'd get a callback to a way funnier sequence in this sequel. AND we'd get the joy of imagining what misadventures mini-Luis could get up to ahead of Avengers 4. But no. We got none of this. Just an ant playing drums. Again.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are the author's, and do not necessarily reflect those of SYFY WIRE, SYFY, or NBC Universal.