Marvel recently revealed a slew of new projects during Disney’s investor day presentation. Among them was an Armor Wars series that will air on Disney+. The show will be headed up by Don Cheadle’s James Rhodes, aka War Machine. While no other characters have been confirmed for the show just yet, the nature of the source material may hint at the return of another major Marvel Cinematic Universe villain who has been sitting on the sidelines for a decade; Justin Hammer.
Sam Rockwell portrayed Justin Hammer in 2010’s Iron Man 2. He was one of the primary antagonists, alongside Mickey Rourke’s Ivan Vanko. Hammer was the head of Hammer Industries, a rival weapons manufacturer who was in fierce competition with Tony Stark. Hammer ultimately partnered with Vanko, which ended poorly. Hammer was busted and, last we saw, was being arrested. He has yet to be seen, or even mentioned, in an MCU movie since. Though he did appear briefly in the one-shot, All Hail the King, as an inmate. But that seems poised to change with the announcement of this particular project. That is, assuming the source material is adapted somewhat faithfully.
For those unfamiliar, Armor Wars was originally published by Marvel Comics between 1987 and 1988. Taking place in the main Iron Man title at the time, the story was written by Bob Layton and David Micheline, with art from Mark D. Bright and Barry Windsor-Smith. In it, Tony Stark discovers that someone has been stealing his Iron Man tech and selling it to supervillains and he must put an end to it. As it just so happens, Justin Hammer is the man behind those sales.
With that in mind, the door seems wide open for Justin Hammer’s return. Iron Man 2 is not widely considered to be one of the better entries in the MCU but Sam Rockwell’s character is often cited as a major bright spot. There is also enough of a time jump between his arrest and the events of Avengers: Endgame, roughly 13 years, that could make it easy to believe that he has become a free man once again. Not only that but Rockwell said during a Reddit AMA that he would be “happy” to return to the role, should he be asked. So getting him to sign on the dotted line likely wouldn’t be an issue.
For the moment, it remains unclear how far along in the development process the show is. No director and/or writer has been revealed. There is also no word on a release date. It was one of several new Disney+ projects revealed during the presentation, with Marvel also working on a Secret Invasion series, as well as an Ironheart adaptation. They join the growing list of live-action shows that already includes WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, Loki, Hawkeye, She-Hulk, Ms. Marvel and Moon Knight. We’ll be sure to keep you posted as further details are made available. The Armor Wars news was previously shared by Marvel.com.