Marvel’s ties to the occult and magic run deep in the comics. Naturally, characters like Doctor Strange and Scarlet Witch are at the forefront of that. But there are many more. Some characters like Ghost Rider and Blade are well known. Other mystical characters like Shaman and Doctor Voodoo are not well known outside of comic book circles. With the Midnight Sons potentially coming to the MCU, that might be changing.
Like many superhero teams, the Midnight Sons have gone through a couple of different lineup changes in different eras. What hasn’t changed is the fact that this crew takes on some pretty deadly occult threats, often Lilith and her Lilin. And as an increasing number of pieces fall into place, there is an ever-increasing potential that fans may get to see a version of the Midnight Sons in the MCU. It might even be sooner than they think.
The Midnight Sons Arrive
It was way back in 1992 when the first version of the Midnight Sons made its debut in Marvel Comics. This was the time when the Danny Ketch version of Ghost Rider was a prominent character and riding around with his predecessor, Johnny Blaze. Morbius and Blade were also experiencing a bit of a resurgence in the comics. This era of occult and mystical comics definitely benefited a few characters.
The 90’s version of the team was based around the aforementioned combination of Blaze and Ketch. Other members included Werewolf by Night, Hellstrom, Morbius, Jennifer Kale, and, not surprisingly, Doctor Strange. Blade was also around but he was part of a different occult team called the Nightstalkers alongside Frank Drake and Hannibal King.
More than a team, Midnight Sons became an overall imprint for a family of Marvel titles. That included titles related to members of the imprint’s namesake team as well as other groups and characters such as the Nightstalkers. While the concept did have some level of limited success, it had essentially fallen apart by 1995. At that point, many of the remaining characters were incorporated into the new Marvel Edge imprint.
Return of the Sons
The Midnight Sons would actually become part of the Marvel Zombies story in 2009. Morbius was brought in by A.R.M.O.R. to prevent the zombie virus that was plaguing other realities from making its way to Earth-616. Morbius conscripted Midnight Sons’ veterans Werewolf by Night, Hellstrom, Morbius, and Jennifer Kale alongside rookie Man-Thing to fight the good fight. The team wouldn’t return again for almost a decade.
During the “Damnation” storyline in 2018, a new iteration of the Midnight Sons emerged. In the 1990s, the team was formed to fight Lilith and her evil offspring known as the Lilin. This time, they were brought together to take down Mephisto who had essentially taken control of Las Vegas. That being said, there is an argument to be made that he already had a pretty strong foothold in Sin City.
Doctor Strange was already in the fight so Wong and the ghost of Strange’s dead dog Bats formed a new Midnight Sons to help him. The whole situation with Bats requires a lot of explanation. This roster was made up of Doctor Voodoo, Ghost Rider, Blade, Moon Knight in his Mr. Knight form, Ghost Rider, Man-Thing, Elsa Bloodstone, and Iron Fist. This was a formidable team, to say the least, and was definitely able to assist Strange.
Are the Sons MCU Bound?
Given the number of Disney+ series and movies on the way, no one would be shocked to see the Midnight Sons join the MCU. Given the increasing amount of mysticism in the MCU, it only makes sense to start putting an occult team together. Doctor Strange, Wong, and Scarlet Witch are already around. And Agatha Harkness could probably be convinced to join the team.
But it’s also worth noting that Blade is on his way with a rebooted MCU franchise starring Marhershala Ali. The Moon Knight Disney+ series will drop in 2022 and looks like it’s going to get weird. And the Doctor Strange sequel is also out in 2022. This offers a variety of opportunities to introduce characters like Doctor Voodoo and Man-Thing. Elsa Bloodstone feels like a bit of a longshot but Ghost Rider and a hopefully recast Iron Fist may finally make proper MCU debuts.
There are also reports that Marvel are looking to add some of their street level heroes to the mystic team. Frank Castle aka The Punisher has long been a fan favorite and could slot nicely in as part of the Midnight Sons.
There might be a stronger indication that the Midnight Sons are on their way. A new Marvel video game called Midnight Suns is expected to be released in Q3 or Q4 of 2022. It features MCU mainstays like Iron Man, Captain America, Doctor Strange, and Captain Marvel fighting alongside Nico Minoru, Magik, Ghost Rider, Blade, and Wolverine. And, once again, they’re taking on Lilith. Who knows? This could be a precursor to an MCU iteration of the team.