Here is our complete rating of all released films and TV shows of the fourth phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. “Avengers: Finale” effectively ended the Infinity saga and Phase 3 in 2019, as “Spider-Man: Far from Home” served as the epilogue of this story, and also predetermined what would happen next. The deaths of Iron Man and Black Widow, as well as the aging of Captain America, forced Marvel Studios to focus on new directions for Phase 4.
The fourth phase of the MCU has not been the smoothest for Marvel Studios. The expansion of Disney+ original MCU shows significantly increased their release on an annual basis and brought problems as the film studio learned what it took to create programs for the small screen. The Phase 4 films have also been a bit more controversial than Marvel’s track record in recent years, leading to more talk of superhero movie fatigue. Of course, the MCU also faced various challenges due to COVID-19, as the pandemic forced them to postpone most of Phase 4 several times and figure out how to make the next MCU movies and shows with various restrictions.
However, there are many highlights and exciting events in the MCU Phase 4 movies and TV shows. New characters such as Elena Belova (Florence Pugh), Shang-Chi (Simu Liu) and Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld) are just some of the fan—favorite additions. Meanwhile, famous heroes such as The Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) and Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) have received more prominent roles. As Marvel Studios confirms that “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” completes phase four in 2022, the beginning of the Multiverse saga will include 15 projects — seven films and eight shows — in total. Here’s every MCU Phase 4 movie and TV show ranked from worst to best.
13. What if…? Season 1
Marvel Studios first ventured into the world of animation in Phase 4 with “What If…?” The series was advertised as a multiverse anthology series that would give longtime MCU fans a chance to see alternative ways of developing the universe. This included episodes of Peggy Carter becoming a Super Soldier, T’Challa becoming a Star Lord, and Marvel Zombies. All this culminated in the final crossover with Ultron working on Infinity Stones. Despite a few fun scenarios and a role in creating some great multiverse concepts, what if…? In general, the first season was quite ambiguous. Some of the challenges include less-than-convincing voice acting and unimpressive stories. The show was still a success, as evidenced by the already announced seasons 2 and 3, but the inconsistency of “What If” makes it secondary among other MCU Phase 4 films and shows.
12. Thor: Love and Thunder
The success of “Thor: Ragnarok” in the comedic vision of director Taika Waititi made “Thor: Love and Thunder” one of the most anticipated films of 2022. However, the film largely failed to live up to its predecessor, as this time Waititi’s humor is more unfortunate than successful, and the story is even more tortuous. Chris Hemsworth’s return as Thor Odinson has been enjoyable for a long time, as the MCU veteran is still the great god of thunder, and Waititi attracts attention. “Thor: Love and Thunder” shows the long-awaited return of Jane Foster and her transformation into the Mighty Thor, but the film does not give her enough screen time to fully reveal her story. Similarly, Gorr, the butcher god, plays a surprisingly small role as the main villain. Christian Bale’s game is quite funny, which makes it even more disappointing that he doesn’t figure anymore and has little opportunity for any real god slaughter.
11. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
Six years after the release of Benedict Cumberbatch’s first solo film, Doctor Strange: The Multiverse of Madness caused a big stir. The departure of director Scott Derrickson opened up the opportunity for Sam Raimi to return to the superhero genre and give the Doctor Strange sequel an atmosphere of horror. He coped in this regard thanks to the fact that the Scarlet Witch was a villain, as she is the focus of a lot of creepy scenes that stand out as a fun break from the usual MCU tone. Elizabeth Olsen also played one of the MCU’s best villainous roles in Doctor Strange 2. However, in the film, she is quite disorderly after “Vandavision”, as her grief and desire to find her children are villainous without any further preparation for these decisions. There’s a lot to have fun with here, as America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez) is a great new addition to Phase 4. But there’s no big arc for Doctor Strange in the movie, and pretty much fails to capitalize on the potential of the multiverse other than the Illuminati. team. Instead of “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” being a movie that influences everything that comes next, it’s more like a setup for “Avengers: Secret Wars.”