Marvel Comics has always been rich in both characters and concepts, some of which have appeared in the wildly successful ‘Marvel Cinematic Universe’ and have become among the most recognized fictional characters on the planet. As far as including characters from the comics, the MCU has only scratched the surface. We’ve seen Loki and his alien army battle the Avengers in New York City, we’ve witnessed Mickey Rourke ‘whip’ Tony Stark into shape, and we’ve glimpsed Thanos’ ugly mug during the credits of The Avengers. Within the next two years, we’ll watch Thor fight Malekith the Accursed, we’ll be treated to a Winter Soldier appearance, and we’ll go intergalactic with the Guardians of the Galaxy. After all that, though, there are still dozens of characters that could be integrated into the shared movie universe.
Below is a list of five characters that would work well with what Marvel has planned. Some of the characters listed are already rumored to have their own films, while others are simply suggestions.
A long-time Marvel character and the subject of an animated film, Dr. Strange is among the more well known characters in Marvel lore. He first appeared in Strange Tales #110, an issue now coveted by countless collectors. Over the years, Dr. Strange has gained a small but dedicated fan base, with some fans swearing by him and others casually admitting he has fun stories.
Recently,there have been whispers that a Dr. Strange movie is in the works. There is little truth to the rumor at this time, but it’s definitely cool to think that a powerful sorcerer could eventually share the screen with powerhouses like Thor and the Hulk.
Marvel’s Phase Two will delve into the cosmic elements of the Marvel Universe, making a Dr. Strange appearance more likely. This departure from worldly, grounded stories to fantastical, other-worldly adventures might be Marvel’s chance to introduce one of its more interesting characters.
One of Marvel’s earliest and most obsure villains, Baron Zemo first appeared in the early Avengers comics of the 1960s. His reign of terror was ridiculously short-lived, having been introduced in Avengers #6 and meeting his end in Avengers #15. Despite being robbed of a chance to make an impact on the Marvel Universe in the comics, Zemo and his team of supervillains can totally shake things up in the MCU.
With Thanos scheduled to wreak havoc in Phase Three, The Avengers need some equally troublesome villains to keep them busy until the Mad Titan arrives on Earth, and the Masters of Evil would be absolutely perfect for the job.
The world famous web slinger first graced comic pages in 1962’s Amazing Fantasy #15, just months before he got his own title. Since then, the snarky, sarcastic web-slinger has become one of the most recognized faces in pop culture, thanks in part to Sam Raimi’s wildly successful film trilogy released in the mid-2000s.
If by some chance Marvel and Disney acquire movie rights to Spider-man from Sony, it would be incredible to see Joss Whedon throw the character in with the likes of Thor, Iron Man, and the rest of the crew and see what happens. And with Whedon’s knack for writing witty banter and clever exchanges between characters, chances are that mixing Spider-man in with the Avengers would be hilarious.
In the comics, Spider-man has worked with the Avengers on numerous occasions, a team-up I’d love to see echoed in the films. It’s a long shot, but I’m still keeping my fingers crossed.
Thaddeus E. Ross made his first appearance in Incredible Hulk #1(also released in 1962), and continued to pursue the Hulk until he too became a creature of destruction. Re-introduced in 2008 as the Red Hulk, General Ross continues to kick ass, just in the form of a huge, red, totally ripped monster who proves to be a valuable ally to other Marvel heroes(namely The Avengers) on more than one occasion.
It seems obvious, then, that Kevin Feige and his fellow Marvel architects should include Red Hulk in their shared cinematic universe. General Ross already appeared in the horrendous Eric Bana Hulk film, as well as in 2008’s slightly better The Incredible Hulk, but we haven’t seen him do much besides send military troops after him, which we know does absolutely no good. Bringing his transformation to the big screen would shed a new light on the character and provide audiences with a better understanding of one of Marvel’s most fascinating characters. Not only would he be a formidable new adversary for the Hulk, but he might eventually even replace the big green guy as the team’s resident powerhouse. Anyone who knows the comics is at least remotely aware that the Hulk’s relationship with the Avengers has been a shaky one, mostly due to his unpredictability and the dangers he presents for the team. Red Hulk likely won’t be any better in this respect, but he is a potential replacement should the filmmakers decide to introduce B-List heroes to a wider audience.
The intergalactic superhero Nova, formerly known as Richard Rider, is underused and under appreciated by both comic creators and consumers. There’s so much to know and love about this character that it comes as somewhat of a surprise that the head honchos over at Marvel haven’t even mentioned him as part of their plans going forward.
Nova’s been floating around space(and the pages of Marvel Comics) since 1976, and yet so many people have never even heard of this (not so)subtle Green Lantern knock-off. At this point, an appearance on the big screen is the only way for him to transcend obscurity and receive the attention he deserves. And with the Marvel Cinematic Universe straying away from grounded stories centered on Earth and heading for space, the time to introduce him is now, or at least soon.
Will Marvel introduce Nova? Who knows. But I’m hoping that someone at one of their big, top secret meetings grows a pair and speaks up for this fascinating but obscure character.
Now we ask: What do you think? Do you agree or disagree with these picks? What are YOUR picks? Sound off in the comments below!