So, I didn't realize that Obama was actually a President in the MCU, but was replaced by Matthew Ellis. So that would technically make Ellis the Donald Trump of the MCU, but Obama was voted out of presidency in, 2012? I guess that makes sense, considering the first time we see him is in Iron Man 3, but that means that technically Ellis will have to be replaced in 2020.
This is not the case. When all the evidence is considered, the conclusion has to be that elections in the MCU, at least in the last few years, happen every 2 years, not 4.
-Obama was president at some point in the MCU. His presidency was hinted in Iron Man 2 when Tony has a poster matching his campaign poster, in The Winter Soldier when an Obama biography is in Steve's apartment, and in Luke Cage when they refer to him - but it was never explicitly said he was president. Until Runaways, when Nico referred to the Obama administration.
-President Ellis was in office by December 2012, during the events of Iron Man 3. Killian also says, "After years dodging the President's ban," implying Ellis has been in office for "years" by December 2012. He also later says, "Ever hear of an elephant graveyard? Well, 2 years ago, the elephant in the room was this scow. This is the Roxxon Norco. And, of course, you'll remember that when she spilled a million gallons of crude off Pensacola, thanks to you, not one fat cat saw a day in court." This again implies that Ellis was likely president 2 years ago, or was at least coming into office by around 2 years ago. Finally, in The Winter Soldier, a quote is shown from "President Matthew Ellis" welcoming Steve back to the modern world, suggesting he was president when Steve woke in late 2011.
-In March 2015, in A Fractured House, Ward says, "Oh, Christian will milk that for all it's worth. And the trial should wrap up right before the midterms." This implies that midterms are coming up in the months following March 2015.
-In May 2016, in Captain America: Civil War, a newspaper is shown in Lagos with "2016 election discussions" about the upcoming presidential election.
-In May 2017, in AKA God Help the Hobo, Griffin says, "Go chase some alternative facts, yeah?" implying "alternative facts" and Trump's administration are underway. In December 2017, in Fifteen, a member of Gert's feminist club turns up wearing an "I'm with Her" T-shirt, saying, "This shirt no longer fills me with unspeakable sadness!" suggesting Hillary Clinton ran for president before then, and that someone won instead who was very upsetting to many people in the way Trump was (it's clearly intended as a Trump reference). Finally, in May 2017 in the Framework Coulson also makes alternative facts mentions, though it is not clear if it is intended as an in-universe reference or simply a joke to audiences, but in early 2018, in Option Two, Coulson says, "Pretty soon, the world's gonna realise there's this giant ship in its atmosphere, and I'm thinking, in the current political climate, won't be long before you're blown out of the sky." All of this very much implies Trump is president in the MCU by 2017.
The only way this all fits together is if you assume 2 years between elections, not 4. This clicks together as:
-November 2008-January 2009: Obama elected and assumes office.
-November 2010-January 2011: Ellis elected and assumes office.
-December 2010 - Norco incident 2 years prior to December 2012.
-Early 2011 - As the fallout occurs from the Norco incident, Ellis is left to deal with it in the early days of his presidency.
-Late 2011 - Steve Rogers wakes, and President Ellis officially welcomes his return.
-November 2012: Ellis is reelected.
-December 2012 - Ellis is still president during the events of Iron Man 3. He has been president for "years" (just shy of 2 years, elected just over 2 years ago) and dealt with the fallout of the Norco incident, which occurred 2 years ago.
-November 2014 - Ellis is reelected.
-March 2015 - Ward mentions that his trial would wrap up in time for the midterms. This would work well with midterms being in November 2015, considering the amount of time it takes to go to trial.
-Late 2015-early 2016 - Through Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Season 3, Ellis is shown to still be president.
-May 2016 - Newspaper in Lagos refers to the upcoming 2016 presidential election.
-November 2016-January 2017 - Trump is elected, beating Hillary Clinton.
-January 2017 - U.S. Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway uses the term "alternative facts".
-May 2017 - "Alternative facts" are referred to in both Marvel's Jessica Jones and Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D..
-December 2017 - Nico says her parents have not been on a date since the Obama administration. While the writers, almost certainly not considering President Ellis, meant that they haven't been on a date for 11 months or more, we have to assume that actually, they haven't been on a date for 7 years. A member of Gert's club wears a T-shirt from Hillary's campaign, and is sad because Trump won.
-Early 2018 - Coulson references the current political environment in a jab at Trump.
Yeah what he said
Okay. They got a weird system going there.
The real answer is, it's just inconsistency. Different writers not paying too much attention to continuity and timelines and the broader universe, creating inconsistencies between different pieces of content. But the 2-year system is simply my theory to try and reconcile everything. I think it is the best way to make it work, but it is admittedly a bit odd.
Is it possible that the poster in Iron Man 2 matches Ellis' campaign poster? In other words, within the MCU, that poster was used in Ellis' campaign, not Obama, and Obama never actually ran for president. The only thing that contradicts (unless I'm forgetting something) this is Nico's comment, but that show tends to completely ignore the rest of the MCU anyways so we could just call it a mistake. Am I missing something, or is this plausible?
What he said
Well, the leading theory from people not aware of Ward's midterms line was always that Ellis was president in the MCU when Obama was in the real world. Then, as the Obama references built up in the MCU, the theory adapted to say that because the references never explicitly said Obama was president, it had to be assumed that Obama simply ran for president, but wasn't elected. The campaign poster could simply be because of Obama's campaign - he didn't necessarily win. The book on Steve's shelf could be just a biography of his journey. The Obama references in Luke Cage are simply about the man who was nearly president.
I pretty much bought into this, but what always bothered me was the Ward line and the fact that the Obama references were really indicating he was president. Steve's book, Barack Obama: The Story by David Maraniss i.imgur.com/lck6uhU.png is a biography of Obama including becoming president. The book could have different content in the MCU, but still. And Luke Cage always felt like its references were written with Obama having been president in the writers' mind - they hadn't thought about the Ellis problem in the MCU, I'm sure, and were just referring to Obama the way anyone would. It's pure chance that due to the way conversations played out, they happened to not actually explicitly say he was president, but I'm sure they would have if there had been a few more references. I put aside the Obama stuff, still, and tried to work out how the elections could work to fit the evidence we have, and came up with the 2-year theory. This, then, happened to also allow Obama to have been president for 2 years before Ellis took over, and I became comfortable with the 2-year theory, fitting both Ward's line and allowing Obama to have been president, which was highly implied in a few places.
Then Nico confirmed Obama was once president in the MCU, and I thought, "OK, well, that fits." It was a mistake, sure, and doesn't fit with how you would expect the elections to work, but it does happen to fit with the mistakes already present in the MCU regarding presidents.
I wouldn't write it off as just a mistake. While something like "8 years later" can be written off, I don't feel that direct dialogue from a show which is 100% canon to the MCU - even if it doesn't tie itself in much - can be written off. It's there, it's canon, and it's not completely irreconcilable, so I wouldn't say it can be ignored.
I’ve been eating for a question like this.
Going off of political terms and policies, I see this: President Obama was elected to one term. He was in office from 2008-2012. Which places the events of Iron Man 3 in the Christmas of 2013. Going to Aldrich Killian’s remarks of, “...dodging the presidents bans...” could mean that he fought around the band that Obama placed, and dodged President Ellis’s harder bans. So, Ellis was re-elected in 2016 (the year in which President Trump was elected) and will be out in the 2020 election. If Iron Man 2 happened in 2009-2010 then the poster would of been from Obama’s campaign in 2007. From the many references to Secretary Clinton, I think that she ran against Ellis in 2012 for the Democrats and lost.
As for the whole “New World Order” from the Framework relating to Trump’s administration, I would disagree. I’m not going to go into that, but I think that Trump was the better of the two candidates.
Iron Man 3 definitively takes place in December 2012.
See here marvelcinematicuniverse.wikia.com/wiki/User_blog:BEJT/Why_The_Avengers_Has_to_Be_in_2012,_Civil_War_(and_Thus_Homecoming)_Has_to_Be_in_2016,_and_"8_Years_Later"_Cannot_Work#cite_note-IM3_January_2013-1 for the explanation of why.
And since that was written, Marvel have absolutely confirmed this.
And if you still have any doubts, Marvel specifically added that confirmation thecomicboard.com/forum/showthread.php?13339-Marvel-Cinematic-Universe-Timeline&p=571091&viewfull=1#post571091 .
Also, Iron Man 2 is 2010.
I agree Killian's line about the president's ban doesn't 100% have to mean Ellis has been president for years, but with the other evidence I listed - dealing with the Norco incident 2 years ago, seemingly already being president when Steve came out of the ice, the mere fact that he was president by December 2012, etc. - it certainly seems to be the case.
As for the current president, the strong implication is Trump. I can't see Gert's club member being filled with "unspeakable sadness" at Ellis winning over Hillary. She might have been a Hillary supporter, but she wouldn't be so gutted at Ellis winning. Regardless of your personal political opinion, simply talking about this feminist character - she would be very upset about Trump winning over Hillary, and Ellis is clearly not as bad a person in that type of person's opinion (again not talking about subjective opinion here) as Trump.
"Alternative facts" is referenced in Jessica Jones, and Coulson expresses distaste in 2018 about the current political climate. He gets along with Ellis.
I wasn't saying the Framework was an allegory for Trump. I mean, there is an element of that implied by the writers at times, I was simply addressing the "alternative facts" line Framework Coulson has and whether it counted as evidence. I was saying that it's not necessarily proof of a Trump presidency, because a) it could just be that Trump is president in the Framework but not the real world, as a jab from the AoS writers at Trump as being president in this bad reality, and b) it could just be intended as a nod to the audience, and not an actual in-universe quote Coulson is making. However, with the clearly quoted "alternative facts" line in Jessica Jones, "alternative facts" is now definitely a thing in the MCU.
@BEJT Thanks! That clears things up! Your knowledge on this stuff seriously amazes me sometimes...
What do you think?