Hank McCoy (Before the Fur)

Wow. Iron Man, Thor, Captain America…all big hits with the kids. I didn’t expect it really!

I always felt like these comics and the Avengers would be the ones that Marvel had the most trouble putting together as films. People flock to Spider-man and the X-Men. They’re so human, relatable. I’m not quite sure how it happened, but somehow Cap and the Avengers got COOL. REALLY cool.

I’ve gone on before about what makes this book tick and come alive (and I think the whole pseudo-government S.H.I.E.L.D. stuff is what makes it work). I suppose the other element is this whole ‘master of all things’ piece.

Iron Man is the developer of the most sophisticated pieces of technology on the planet. Thor carries one of the most powerful magical weapons ever forged. Cap represents the pinnacle of human potential and his shield is forged out of precious metals. I think you could see a scheme of threes going on here? I could see them going that way for promos of the movie as well. Technology, magic, man. The future, the distant past, the present (er…sort of?).

Of course, I like that we’ve got a cast of who’s-who already lined up for the film. Bruce Banner, Hawkeye, the Black Widow, Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne. It really DOES feel like the Avengers are going to ‘assemble’ from the far corners of the Earth. Of course, there are a few others I would love to see make appearances. Either now or in a sequel of some kind (which might be tough to pull together. Marvel is going to be spending quite a bit to afford their cast list, I have no doubt.)

To me, the team that I think of as The Avengers is really the mix of old and new that came together in the 80’s. After a brief turnover from the original roster to Cap, Hawkeye, Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch, the 80’s saw a bunch of Avengers plot threads sort of pull together and fill out their ranks in a very complete way. Everybody was ‘in’ so to speak (well…except Hulk, who could never quite work out his personality issues with them, whether he had a brain or not). The big guns- Cap, Iron Man, and Thor- sure. But then everyone who had been an Avenger was on stand-by or active duty at this point. So here’s who I’d like to see and their relative chances of appearing:

Who I’d like to see:
The Scarlet Witch and the Vision - I know, I know, this is a hard trick to pull off. But I really think this story arc is one of those things that you think of as distinct to the Avengers. I know her powers are wacked out and the fact that she’s a mutant opens up a whole other crossover point that I don’t know if Marvel is going to want to handle or not. What's more is that her romance with Vision is kind of ret-conned as just plain old fashion craziness during Avengers Dissambled. But I think Wanda and her android lover are an interesting (if not totally bizarre) part of the Avengers story and- I think- two sort of core characters to the team.

I think Ultron is a good bet to make an appearance in an Avengers movie. Although, I am psyched to see that Loki is slated to play such a big role (God- I love Loki. He’s such a great villain) and I’m not discounting some Red Skull conspiracy to get his hands on a cosmic cube sort of tucked in here somewhere (just imagine Hugo Weaving showing up in the last scene of this movie- uncredited and unannounced. That would freak people out, right?). But Ultron and a massive army of ‘Ultrons’ probably makes for good on-screen cannon fodder for the Avengers to go up against.

There’s no reason the Vision- either Hank Pym or Ultron’s creation, whatever works best- can’t make an appearance. Wanda might be a ‘second movie’ kind of character. But still.

Beast - Man, I would LOVE this. Again I’m not sure if Marvel is willing to just throw mutants in there. They’re already taking on a LOT. But I’ve always loved that in his travels McCoy was an Avenger. I don’t write about the blue guy enough- I mean, this column is named after him after all. It’s an unlikely prospect. MOSTLY. I think X-Men: First Class has rekindled some hope that the X-Men franchise could get back on it’s feet on screen. And if the writers really just wanted to go nuts, Xavier’s school for the gifted and our blue boy could make an appearance. Again second movie kind of deal I’m thinking.

Black Panther - God, I’m obsessed with Black Panther now. Why? Because have you ever noticed that in every ‘alternate universe’ ever, where the Avengers were killed or some horrible virus wiped out 95% of the earth’s population or aliens invaded or WHATEVER that T’Challa is always the last one left? It’s like he’s always the guy left standing, the ultimate survivor. He’s so incredibly HARDCORE is the thing. All of his strikes in the comics take guys out in a single blow. Like it’s nothin’.

Anyway while I love Black Panther, I think T’Challa is worthy and likely to be starring in his own film series sooner or later. Marvel probably has this on the backburner but I think increasingly renewed interest in the character and the potential to add Storm to the cast-list makes the prospect of a Black Panther movie in our future likely. Maybe if Marvel wants to keep cranking out solo films and incorporating them into some Avengers trilogy but I think there might only be an outside chance at that.

Carol Danvers (Mrs. Marvel) and Captain Marvel - I would LIKE this. A LOT. People forget that Carol was just a woman who fell in love with Mar-Vell, a Kree warrior. Their romance is part of what turned Mar-Vell around and inspired him to fight for- not against- the human race. I really love the Ultimate version of this, where Carol is a U.S. solider that actually can’t STAND Mar-Vell at first. She doesn’t trust him, thinks it’s creepy that he’s an alien, etc.

Mar-Vell on the other hand is infatuated with her and sometimes seems almost child-like in his attempts to impress her and win her over. It has this very different flavor to it than the original story and I think it paints this accurate picture of Carol. She can be cold but only because that’s how she defends her self. Mar-Vell, of course, sees something great about her.

But you know this is an entire MOVIE in and of itself is the thing. With plot elements like the Hulk, Loki and the Cosmic Cube running around I don’t think a Kree invasion is likely to be included in the first film. I suppose a lot of who ends up on the roster is contingent on the film’s villains. If it’s Ultron we could end up with Vision. If it’s the Kree we could get Carol and Mar-Vell. Right now…I don’t know if there’s room for either in this first go around.

And I’m not saying that’s bad. I like that they’d give this time. I just like to theorize about how a three movie arc could go. Of course there are others I could list here: She-Hulk (fan favorite, if not totally weird), Mockingbird, Swordsman and Sersi, Crystal and Quicksilver. And of course we can’t leave out the New Avengers types: Luke Cage, Wolverine and Spidey. A lot of these are complicated and hard to tie in. The scope of the movies have to be limited to do this well.

Still, it’s enticing to think about the possibilities.