In the five years which followed Thanos snapping his fingers in Avengers: Infinity War, several characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe went through some serious changes. Thor fell into a deep depression. Hulk became much smarter and combined with Bruce Banner. Tony Stark became a father. Among the characters who almost saw a major change but didn't quite have it executed for Avengers: Endgame was Don Cheadle's James Rhodes, also known as War Machine. As the story goes from writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, one of the early ideas was to have the man once known as Iron Patriot become the Vice President of the United States.
"We took it out because it didn't have any story weight, but I believe that during one draft, in the five year jump, Rhodie became vice president," Markus told ComicBook.com on Thursday. "Vice President Rhodey." It's one of many ideas which were considered for the two massive, conclusive Avengers movies. Another saw Richard Rider's Nova taking the place of Hulk as the herald with a warning for the heroes of Earth.
Whether or not this is an indication of Marvel Studios finally bringing Cheadle's War Machine to the forefront is unclear. The writers insist that none of their decisions with Avengers: Infinity War or Avengers: Endgame were part of a plan for the future but instead to simply serve their own story. "It's not like [Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige] said, 'You know what, we had a meeting and we're going to have these three streaming services, so let's make sure...'" Markus said. 'No, if anything, I don't know what all the streaming shows are, but it feels like they might come off of Endgame in some ways, but at no point did anybody say, 'That's what we should do, so therefore, sprinkle that in.'"
Still, a massive camp of Marvel fans are ready to see Rhodey get his time to shine in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In the wake of Tony Stark, there is plenty of room for a man in an iron suit to step up and become one of the MCU's centerpieces. If not, the idea of Rhodey as Vice President makes for a good episode of the upcoming What If... series on Disney+. Otherwise, Cheadle's War Machine might find himself involved with Shang-Chi, a film set to feature the Iron Man villain known as the Mandarian, one which the MCU's James Rhodes is a bit familiar with and called for him to save the President from in Iron Man 3.
Avengers: Endgame is available now on blu-ray and digital downloads.