With the multiverse saga in full swing, it seemed that the villainous Kang the Conqueror was set to be a mainstay in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. However, with the highly publicized issues surrounding actor Jonathan Majors, the character's role in the MCU going forward is unknown.
Majors played variants of the character in both Loki and Ant-Man and The Wasp: Quantumania, with both pieces of media setting the character up to be a major villain in the MCU going forward. With the actor no longer playing the role, the question remains what to do with Kang?
Many have argued whether Kang should be recast or simply removed from future plans and focus on another villain, such as Doctor Doom or the Beyonder. While removing the character seems like an easy solution, it would be of no benefit to the MCU's storyline.
The current slate of movies and series is building up towards two Avengers movies, with one of the films literally titled The Kang Dynasty. Removing the character from the fold would result in Marvel having to change their plans drastically and basically ignore the seeds that have already been planted.
While the MCU has ignored potential setup before, none of that would be as major as removing the big bad from the fold without explanation. Both Doom and the Beyonder would be terrific villains to face the Avengers, however, there is no build-up and Kang should not be wasted as a character due to outside issues.
The character is a major Avengers villain in the comics and the idea of him having many variants throughout the multiverse makes the decision to keep the character a lot easier. A potential recast would be simply viewed as this Kang being a different variant, which would work for the story.
Alternatively, Marvel could ignore a potential recast story completely and act as if nothing has changed. The MCU has recast actors before for major characters without in story explanations. This includes recasts such as Mark Ruffalo replacing Edward Norton as the Hulk, Don Cheadle replacing Terrance Howard as War Machine, and Harrison Ford replacing William Hurt as General Ross in the upcoming Captain America: New World Order.
While not recasting a character such as Chadwick Boseman's Black Panther made sense, especially with the ending of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, letting a major MCU villain such as Kang slip out of the MCU would be a mistake.
Kang is a major foe for the Avengers and is the logical next step in the multiverse saga. Villains such as Doctor Doom, the Beyonder, and Galactus would be excellent Avengers-level threats, however, they need development and build-up before getting their chance to shine. The multiverse saga has been gearing towards a showdown with Kang and the Avengers, which should be the end goal.
After the next two Avengers movies, the MCU should move on to the next big bad. However, until then, they need to finish what they had started with Kang the Conqueror.