Hangman’s Teased Top Gun 3 Role Sets Up A New Sequel Challenge



  • Hangman’s transformation from rival to hero in Top Gun: Maverick makes him one of the film’s most interesting and developed characters.
  • Fans love Hangman for his charisma and compassion towards other pilots, and Glenn Powell’s excellent performance makes him memorable.
  • While Hangman having a bigger role in Top Gun 3 would be exciting, balancing his arc alongside Maverick and Rooster’s stories will be a challenge for the film.



If Top Gun 3 ends up happening, Glenn Powell’s Hangman could have a much larger role in the story — but this introduces a major problem for the film to overcome. The character is introduced in Top Gun: Maverick as the rival and adversary of Miles Teller’s Rooster, but he slowly learns the value of teamwork and saves the day in the movie’s final act. He’s one of the film’s most interesting and developed characters, as he goes through a serious transformation that can easily be tracked from start to finish.

Top Gun: Maverick fans love Hangman because of his charisma and compassion for the other pilots. Powell turns in an excellent performance that really makes the character memorable, even though the actor was initially hesitant to take on the role. It’s hard to imagine anybody else embodying this character in the way that Powell does, giving him the multidimensional personality that’s crucial for him to stay relevant in Top Gun 3 and any other potential sequels.

Top Gun: Maverick’s Ending Teased Hangman’s Bigger Role In Top Gun 3

Glen Powell smiling in Top Gun: Maverick.

Throughout Top Gun: Maverick, Hangman is set up as the main adversary to Maverick and Rooster — another young pilot who believes himself to be more talented than those around him. That’s even where the character gets his name from; he always leaves the others hanging. The decision to have Hangman save the day at the end of Top Gun 2 is a genius move, as it proves that even the most arrogant and self-absorbed character can change. But the surprise twist also hints at another possibility: that Hangman could be Maverick’s real successor, not Rooster.

Hangman’s dangerous escapade at the end of Top Gun: Maverick proves that he’s just as talented and gifted in the air as Rooster, making their rivalry even more intense and raising the stakes for Top Gun 3. Their emotional conflicts may have been resolved, but that professional competition is stronger than ever, and it’s hard to imagine Rooster’s journey continuing in a sequel without Hangman right behind him. The character has overcome his status as a villain, but Top Gun 3 could prove Hangman to be the surprise hero of the story.

RELATED: 7 Characters Top Gun 3 Really Needs To Bring Back (& Why)

Top Gun 3 Must Balance Maverick, Rooster, & Hangman’s Stories To Work

Hangman shirtless at the beach celebrating in Top Gun 2 Maverick

The only problem with making Hangman one of the franchise’s heroes is that Top Gun 3 might struggle to balance all its character arcs. Maverick has always been at the heart of this series, so his journey must be prioritized over the rest. However, the reason the previous movie works so well is that Rooster makes a perfect secondary protagonist. He’s given plenty of time to develop and change throughout the story. If Hangman’s importance is also emphasized in the next film, this could distract from the other two characters’ narratives. Top Gun 3 really needs to get this right if it wants to do justice to all three heroes.


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