There's plenty of mystery surrounding Ghost, the villain of Ant-Man and The Wasp, and we have a theory on why. Director Peyton Reed is bringing seldom used Marvel comic villain Ghost to the big screen, but even with the movie just week away, little has been revealed about the character. We know Hannah John-Kamen is playing Ghost and she's got powers connected to the Quantum Realm and Hank Pym's technology, but she may be even more connected to the story than previously thought.
While the first Ant-Man was loads of fun, the most common criticisms were keeping Evangeline Lilly's Wasp sidelined, how it mirrored other MCU origin stories, and its formulaic villain. Even though Yellowjacket was a serviceable villain, he didn't wind up adding much to the film. The estranged padawan archetype didn't give him much depth, so improving upon the villain was hopefully a main area of focus for the team on Ant-Man and The Wasp.
Whether or not they've done that remains to be seen, but all the secrecy definitely suggests Marvel has some form of ace up their sleeve. There's potential twists in store if our theory proves to be true, especially when it comes to how Ghost really factors into this story. Before we get it potential spoiler territory though, let's first review what we do and (maybe more importantly) do not know about the sequel's antagonist.
- This Page: What We Do (And Do Not) Know About Ghost
- Page 2: Our Theory on Ghost's True Identity
Ghost Is Ant-Man & the Wasp's Biggest Mystery (For Some Reason)
Throughout the development of Ant-Man and The Wasp, Ghost has remained the most mysterious piece to the puzzle. The marketing is pushing her as just a regular villain, yet she's also barely been a focus and has yet to actually speak. There's no villainous monologue or even a menacing line, just all mystery and glimpses of action.
This was even the case when Screen Rant visited the set of the movie last year, where all involved - even John-Kamen - were very hesitant to talk about her character too specifically. The motivations, her life before, a real name, and so on have all been kept under wraps. Marvel is no stranger to being secretive when it comes to projects and characters, but there's an odd layer of mystery being put around Ghost. Still, that doesn't mean we don't know anything about her.
What We Actually Know About Ghost
Marvel confirmed Hannah John-Kamen would be playing Ghost last year at SDCC and that she'd be one of the film's villains, along with Walton Goggins. In the time since, it has become clear that she is, in fact, the main antagonist of Ant-Man and The Wasp. Beyond that her powers will be very comic accurate, however, not much else has been revealed.
The most concrete information - and it's still rather slight - has been of Ghost's origins. We know that she stole some of Hank Pym's technology, and it is also plausible that her intangibility powers could have ties to the Quantum Realm; the implication from the trailers is that she was somehow unleashed from there.
There are really only a few reasons why Marvel would purposefully show and reveal this little about the main villain. One is that Ghost may be a red herring. We've previously theorized that Ghost may not actually be the main villain and that Janet van Dyne could be once she returns from the Quantum Realm. That would make sense considering we've yet to see any scenes with Michelle Pfeiffer in the marketing, but there's another twist that may come from Ghost that makes it clear why Marvel's hiding her a bit.
Page 2 of 2: Our Theory on Ghost's True Identity
Is Ghost Bill Foster's Daughter?
Recent evidence brings us to our theory that Ghost will be revealed to be the daughter of Bill Foster in Ant-Man and The Wasp. A full cast list for the sequel was recently revealed and it includes a heavy tease of flashbacks. However, it isn't just the flashback elements that caught our attention. The listing has Ghost's real name as Ava and also lists child actor Raelynn Bratten as Young Ava. If Ghost is just recently gaining her abilities in Ant-Man and The Wasp as believed, what purpose would there be for a child version of herself to appear in the movie, unless it helped tie together an arc with another character?
Building off that, Langston Fishburne is set to play a young version of Bill Foster, who is played in the present by Langston's real-life father Laurence Fishburne. The only other characters getting flashback treatment are Hank, Janet, and Hope, so there's certainly a familial trend there. In fact, the actress playing a young Hope appears to be roughly the same age as Bratten. Evangeline Lilly and John-Kamen are separated by 10 years in real life, but they can make that gap smaller for the purposes of the movie and make them potential former friends. Crucially, though, all of this makes young Ava the perfect age to be Bill's daughter and allow for the flashbacks to show their earlier years.
Additionally, there's also a moment from the marketing that may support this theory. At the 40 second mark of the first trailer for Ant-Man and The Wasp, Ghost is shown in what appears to be some sort of chamber that gives her these powers. There's just a glimpse of her abilities in action, until they cut to a scared Bill Foster. That scene suggests that Bill is working with Ava or helps give her powers.
Needless to say, if true this theory instantly gives Ghost a bigger connection to the story and makes her fit incredibly well within the Ant-Man franchise specifically.
How This Fits Into Ant-Man 2
Possibly the biggest theme of the Ant-Man franchise so far is the importance of family. Being there for his daughter is Scott Lang's motivation for staying out of trouble, and he's going to struggle with that balance again in the sequel. There's also the obvious father-daughter relationships between Scott and his daughter, as well as Hank Pym and Hope van Dyne. The Langs have a very good relationship, while Hank and Hope's has gotten better. Making Ghost the daughter of Bill Foster fits thematically and could show a different side to these relationships.
As for what this could do for the film's actual plot, it definitely changes how Bill could factor into the film. Instead of him being a helpful hand and continuing the size-measuring contest with Scott, he could be a major thorn in Team Ant-Man's side.
Foster's role as hero or villain could all depend on when his relationship to Ghost is revealed (if this theory is accurate). The way Marvel's held back information on both characters makes it seem like a major reveal or twist in Ant-Man and The Wasp, and Fishburne even teased that Bill may be more foe than friend when he's reunited with Hank after all these years. This could be the result of a small case of jealousy in the Foster family, or it could be a Vanko/Stark situation all over again where Bill wants his tech back after all these years. That could also explain why Ghost was seen stealing Hank's portable building.
However this shakes out, at the moment it is just a theory. We'll know soon enough whether or not this is accurate once Ant-Man and The Wasp hits theaters at the start of July.