WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Ant-Man #4 by Zeb Wells, Dylan Burnett, Mike Spicer and Cory Petit, available now.
It’s generally accepted that the Scott Lang iteration of Ant-Man isn’t cut from the same cloth as his precursor, Hank Pym. While Lang might be well-meaning, legitimately funny and usually rises to the task at hand, he’s not exactly one of Marvel’s A-list heroes.
While Lang has certainly had his moments with the Avengers, he’s not of the caliber of Captain America or Iron Man. And his daughter and new partner, Stinger, doesn’t want that reputation to run in the family. Throughout recent months in Ant-Man, Cassie Lang has noted she doesn’t feel like her dad is taking either of them seriously as a superhero.
Cassie says that Ant-Man sees her more as a daughter than an equal, and she’s wondered about what she has to do in order to become the hero she knows she can be. And in Ant-Man #4, she proves that she’s already got a better handle on the superhero business than her father.
At the outset of Ant-Man #4, Scott Lang is feeling pretty low. He’s out of work, living in an anthill in Florida, and dealing with the villainous Macrothrax, who has stolen all of his Pym Particles. Stinger steps up, providing the initiative and positivity to rally her Dad and refocus him on getting the Pym Particles back and taking down Macrothrax. Even though she’s his junior, Cassie has unequivocally taken the lead in their partnership.
When the pair chase Macrothrax to the Savage Land, Stinger continues to step up, calling out plays and making sure her dad is focused. Cassie continues to act as a steadying force as the pair prepare to take on Macrothrax and his insect forces.
While Lang runs his mouth, Stinger takes action thanks to the modifications that Tony Stark and Black Panther made to their helmets in Ant-Man #3. With the new power to broadcast frequencies to compel larger insects to do things, she handily dissipates the swarm, complete with a very adult expletive Ant-Man isn’t impressed with.
In response, Ant-Man’s mouth gets him into more trouble. Their foes attack, and Macrothrax rips Stinger’s helmet off, hurling her over a cliff in the process. Instinctively, Ant-Man jumps over to save her, forgetting that he can’t fly.
Thanks to her biosynthetic wings, Stinger can fly, and she saves her dad by flying him out of danger, but not before they see Macrothrax enlarge two insect gods with his stash of stolen Pym Particles. The villain dismisses the two superheroes and heads off on one of two incredibly massive insects on his way to destroy humanity.
While Ant-Man and Stinger don’t appear to be in a position to thwart Macrothrax’s plans, the miniseries is quickly bringing Cassie Lang into her own, even more than she was with the Young Avengers. She’s actively outpacing Ant-Man in every way and proving herself as a formidable hero in her own right. She’s young and strong, both in power and mental and emotional fortitude, which this team sorely needs.
Despite all that, this story makes a strong case for both of these heroes still needing each other. Although he can be inconsistent, Ant-Man has already proven himself as a hero, and it’s important for him to see what Stinger is capable of. And together, these two heroes might be able to figure out how to tackle just about anything.
In Ant-Man, Cassie Lang just proved why she's already twice the hero that her dad is, even if she's still one of the youngest Avengers.