The Marvel Cinematic Universe has seen a lot of turnover when it comes to villains - but every now and then there's one bad guy who manages to live to fight another day. One such case is Frank Grillo's Brock Rumlow, the Hydra agent embedded in S.H.I.E.L.D., who goes on to become international terrorist Crossbones, following Captain America's defeat of Hydra. Crossbones famously blew himself up during the Cap's Avengers team mission in Lagos, which should've been the end of his story. However, word is now floating around the Internet that Crossbones will be making his return to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and that those discussions are already taking place inside Marvel Studios.
"Marvel is looking to bring back Crossbones in some way and are in discussions about it now... I do not know where or how he’ll return. It could be something like seeing an alternate universe Crossbones in the Madness of the Multiverse that Doctor Strange will be dealing with next year, or it could be something bigger than that. Perhaps through the Multiverse we could see Crossbones return to the MCU permanently and be a villain for Sam Wilson’s Cap to deal with, or even a member of the Thunderbolts…"
The funny thing about this rumor is that Frank Grillo already got to make an unlikely return as Brock Rumlow in Avengers: Endgame. That scenario worked in the "Time Heist" second act of the movie, where a group of Avengers traveled back to the year 2012 and the Battle of New York, in order to steal both the Mind Stone (Loki's Scepter) and Space Stone (The Tesseract) from the aftermath of The Avengers' first battle with Loki and the Chitauri armada. Endgame revealed that Rumlow was actually in the building as a SHIELD/Hydra double agent, and was one of the people responsible for getting the Scepter out of Avengers Tower and into the hands of Hydra scientist Baron Von Strucker, who would then use it to create "The Twins" Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch.
As we know from the events of Avengers: Endgame, the MCU is now, technically, the "Marvel Cinematic Multiverse," with new timelines having been created as a result of the Time Heist mission. With that multiverse now wide open, and Marvel Phase IV projects like Loki, WandaVision, and Doctor Strange in the Mulitverse of Madness all potentially focusing on those different timelines and/or realities, it seems there is plenty of opportunity to resurrect Crossbones. With films like Shang-Chi and Black Widow also examining dark worlds of espionage and crime in the MCU's past, a Crossbones flashback works just as well.
Upcoming Marvel Studios projects include Black Widow on May 1st,, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier on August 20th, The Eternals on November 6th, WandaVision on December 20th, Loki in Spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, Spider-Man 3 on July 16, 2021, What If…? in Summer 2021, Hawkeye in Fall 2021, Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021, and Black Panther 2 on May 6, 2022. Marvel Studios Disney+ series without release dates include Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight, and She-Hulk.