andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)
[personal profile] andraste
Several years ago, I started keeping a list of Marvel characters that might show up in the cinematic universe, purely for my own curiosity. What can I say, I enjoy lists and the making thereof. Post-Civil War seems like a good time to update it, and I thought I'd post it here so I can look back at it in a few more years and see how wrong I was about who they'd put on film. (Because let me tell you, I would not have guessed that Scott Lang would make it.) The previous version of the list has been quite reliable, though.

I used comicvine's list by appearance function to compile a list of the fifty most frequently appearing Marvel superheroes and villains that haven't made the transition to the MCU yet. This only takes volume of appearances into account, and while that's a reasonable guide to popularity over the long term, it's a metric that breaks down for characters invented more recently. I think it's safe to say that Ms. Marvel would be a more popular addition to the MCU than, say, Speedball. But Speedball has been around decades longer and thus had more time to build up the numbers.

This list does not include people Marvel Studios clearly do not have the film rights to - all X-Men and X-Men adjacent characters belong to Fox, and so do the poor Fantastic Four. (I am actually fine with Fox keeping the mutants. I like what they've done with them from the most part, and I don't think that they would benefit from being included in the MCU or that the MCU needs them. I do sincerely hope that they stop abusing the FF, Doctor Doom, Galactus and the Silver Surfer and hand them over to people who might have some idea of what to do with them. Surely this has to be cheaper and less humiliating than making movies that bomb just so they can keep the rights?)

There are a couple of Civil War spoilers below the cut, and also casting spoilers for a bunch of MCU stuff that isn't out and in some cases won't be for several years. I also mention a couple of rumoured characters for Thor: Ragnarok, but who knows if the rumours are accurate.

This list also skips characters that we know are going to show up, and I'm including the Inhuman royal family in that tally. (There must be characters in the Inhumans movie, and none of them have popped up in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) Doctor Strange, Iron Fist, Misty Knight, Colleen Wing, Captain Marvel, plus Cloak and Dagger are all coming soon. Wonder Man exists - or at least Simon Williams does. Shang-Chi is currently being cast for an appearance in Iron Fist.

I also haven't included any characters I judged to be part of Sony's Spider-Man license, including his civilian supporting cast and his rogue's gallery. They might show up in Sony's future films with Marvel approval, though.

People who have appeared in their civilian identities but don't have super powers (yet!) are also not counted. Notable examples include the Red Hulk, Hellcat and Doc Samson. Same with some characters who are confirmed to exist but haven't appeared on screen, like Man-Thing and Kid Colt.

1. Namor

Apparently his film rights are complicated and Universal might have the distribution rights as they do with solo Hulk films. That may partly explain why the Sub-Mariner is yet to appear in the MCU. He's also closely associated with a bunch of characters that Marvel definitely don't have the rights to. Plus, they probably don't want to make it seem like they're ripping off Aquaman, who seems to be a much better-known character among the general public. (I mean, obviously comic fans know that they're not much alike other than both being princes from Atlantis, but I guess you can't expect the film-goer in the street to understand that.) I wouldn't be surprised to see him show up some day, though. It seems like there could be a good film in 'Namor attacks the surface world because people keep dropping junk in his back yard' probably followed by 'cranky Namor helps heroes against a larger threat' in a sequel.

2. She-Hulk

The top of my personal 'MARVEL WILL YOU HURRY UP AND USE HER?!!!' list. I mean, they would need to put Bruce in a position where he has to give her a transfusion - at the moment, I'm not sure he wouldn't prefer to let even his beloved cousin die instead - but she's be such a great addition to the MCU! If nothing else, we need to see Jennifer Walters in the court room. I keep hoping this will happen in Daredevil, but I guess they don't want to cast an actress unless they know what they're going to do with her.

3. Hercules

With Thor around, Marvel don't need him ... yet. It's entirely possible that Herc will show up down the road, especially if Hemsworth leaves after Infinity Wars. While he doesn't bring anything new to the table powers-wise and we've already seen the 'ancient god confused by modern human society' routine play out, I think they could get some fun out of him if their previous mythological figure had retired.

4. Spider-Woman

Jessica Drewe seems like an obvious recruit for S.H.I.E.L.D. - someone brainwashed into serving H.Y.D.R.A. who ends up joining the good guys. If they don't want people to confuse Spider-Woman with Spider-Man, there's no reason they even have to give her powers or a code name! It's worked for Bobbi Morse so far, after all. I'm disappointed that they've spent two seasons of A.o.S. destroying H.Y.D.R.A. down to the last weapons cache and we still haven't met her. Maybe Sony bought the film rights to everyone with 'spider' in their name, even though Jessica really has nothing to do with Peter Parker?

5. Rick Jones

Being pals with Hulk/Captain America/Captain Marvel seems like a redundant role in the MCU. If they were going to have more gamma-powered character, She-Hulk, Red Hulk and Amadeus Cho all seem like better options. However, they could always go the same route they're apparently going with Wonder Man and have him turn up on a concert poster, CD cover or in someone's mp3 collection.

6. Black Knight

I feel like if we're going for swords and flying horses, Valkyrie is a more likely option than Dane Whitman. At least she has the excuse of being from Asgard.

7. U.S. Agent

Redundant with Captain America around. With Steve currently AWOL, though, I can imagine the government giving a costume to someone like John Walker and trying to create a patrioic hero they have better control over. Don't know if the MCU has room for a story like that at the moment, though.

8. Moon Knight

I feel like Netflix could do something really interesting with Marc Spector. Maybe he could at least show up as a guest in one of their shows some day?

9. Tigra

I think Black Panther is probably enough feline-powered superhero for the Avengers right now. Down the track, who knows?

10. Valkyrie

There's a rumour going around that Tessa Thompson is playing her in Thor: Ragnarok! (Well, probably just one of her. There have been several Valkyries.)

11. Nova

Now that they Nova Corps have been introduced, I think it's only a matter of time until they recruit a human. However, I also think it's more likely to be Sam Alexander than Richard Rider, since Sam is the current Nova in the comics and the MCU desperately needs more Lantino superheroes.

12. Balder

If they're ever going to use Balder anywhere, then Ragnarok is the obvious place. The weird part is that we haven't seen him at all in the two previous Thor films. Maybe he was standing at the back?

13. Captain Britain

I can't see an obvious place for him in the MCU unless they expand their horizons well beyond the USA. Brian's ownership might also be tricky because he's related to several X-Men and likes to hang with mutants.

14. Bullseye

Seems almost guaranteed to show up somewhere, some time. Would make an excellent villain not only for Daredevil but for other street-level characters like Punisher or Luke Cage (or Moon Knight!)

15. Monica Rambeau

Number of female superheroes in the MCU: ten, not counting all the awesome secret agents that don't have superpowers. Number of black male superheroes in the MCU: six, again not counting any of the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents or Gabe Jones. Number of black female superheroes in the MCU: one, and she's painted green. I mean, it's nice that Gamora is played by Zoe Saldana. But she should not be the only super black woman in the whole galaxy. C'mon Marvel, it's 2016 and Nicole Beharie isn't doing anything! Just pick one of her nine hundred code names and bring Monica into the Avengers already!

16. Ghost Rider

Marvel have the rights back, hooray! Another character who might fit well into the Netflix corner of the universe, although New York is hardly his natural habitat.

17. Enchantress

Could be the character Cate Blanchett is playing? Although that's rumoured to be Hela. Anyway, another Asguardian who probably won't be used if they don't introduce her in Ragnarok.

18. Speedball

Does anyone really want to a New Warriors film with Speedball? Because the only reason I'd want him around is an adaptation of that one gloriously wrong Jessica Jones story, and sadly I don't think we're going to get one. (There aren't really enough washed-up second-string superheroes in the MCU for it to work.)

19. Mephisto

I think that the MCU will stick with Dormammu if they want a demonic villain, and avoid the actual Devil. I could be wrong, though.

20. Moonstone

Some day, when they make a Thunderbolts movie, I expect Moonstone to be in it. Original roster or bust!

21. Sentry

Hell no. The MCU doesn't need this kind of deconstruction. Maybe in thirty years or so, although I've personally never thought the character was all that interesting.

22. Firestar

She's a mutant, but one more closely associated with Spider-Man, the New Warriors the Avengers than with the X-Men, so maybe they could pull a Scarlet Witch with her. If Marvel cared enough, which they probably don't.

23. Moondragon

She should show up in one of the Guardians of the Galaxy sequels! Drax needs to find his daughter. I imagine she would need a somewhat altered origin story, but 'Ronon didn't kill Drax's daughter but actually put her in his orphanage full of deadly assassins with Gamora and Nebula' would work fine. She should bring her girlfriend Phyla-Vell with her.

24. Ares

Likely to arrive alongside Hercules, if ever. Would certainly provide an interesting contrast with Loki.

25. Nighthawk

You know, come to think of it, I'm not really enthusiastic about the New Warriors in general. I guess it might help if I'd read some of their comics rather than just a handful of crossover appearances.

26. Quasar

I don't think Quasar would bring anything obviously new to the MCU, especially with character like Carol Danvers and maybe Nova on the horizon. They could always have a S.H.I.E.L.D. agent called Wendell Vaughan show up, though.

27. Kang

Seems like an obvious villain for the Avengers to fight in Phase Four or Five after they're presumably done with Thanos. When you've conquered a Titan, time travel seems like the next logical step.

28. Abe Jenkins

Another founding member of the Thunderbolts. Likes to collect code names almost as much as Monica does.

29. Ka-Zar

Apparently Marvel does own the rights to the Savage Land, but 'tropical enclave full of dinosaurs hidden at the North Pole' might be a little out there for the MCU. I'm not sure they need Ersatz Tarzan, either, even if he does have a cool sabre-tooth tiger.

30. Justice

We've covered my lack of enthusiasm for the New Warriors sufficiently, right? Anyway, like Firestar, he's a mutant, and I can't see Marvel fighting Fox over it.

31. Namorita

Well, not unless they introduce Namor first. And then clone him. And then decide to do something with the New Warriors.

32. Adam Warlock

Almost bound to show up in Infinity Wars, if only to provide exposition. (Assuming we can't expect the Collector to explain the whole plot to us again.)

33. Songbird

Another Thunderbolt. Bring on the Thunderbolts movie for 2021!

34. M.O.D.O.K.

The comicverse design is probably too silly for the MCU (outside of GotG) but they could certainly make a floating cybernetic head horrifying and creepy if they wanted to bring AIM back in some form.

35. Wrecker

The Wrecking Crew seem like an obvious source of minor villains, but then, I guess Thor hasn't had much time for fighting goons in between trying to get his hammer back and averting whatever Apocalypse has popped up this week. I'd be surprised if they didn't eventually turn up somewhere.

36. Clea

Doesn't seem to be in Doctor Strange, which makes sense since she doesn't fit into his origin story very well. Here's hoping the film a) doesn't suck and b) gets a sequel which c) contains the lovely Clea.

37. Starfox

Will Thanos' non-evil sibling show up somewhere in Infinity Wars? Who knows, but he might be a good way to provide some exposition about his brother's origins if Adam Warlock gets tired of telling us about the plot. Marvel might have trouble using Eros' code name due to the video game, but Eros is a pretty good superhero name anyway.

38. Dracula

As a public domain character he's shown up in the Marvel Universe 353 times, but I can't seem him making the transition to the screen version. Unless they need somebody particularly deadly for a certain vampire hunter to go after, I guess.

39. Zabu

He's a kitty! See above comments about Ka-Zar and the Savage Land.

40. Alex Power

If I were Disney, I would take advantage of the extensive experience the studio has with kids films and the love kids have for the Avengers by making a live action superhero film that's actually aimed at them. They already have the perfect concept in Power Pack.

41. Hellstorm

I feel like the MCU isn't quite ready for the literal Son of Satan to rock up. Maybe Daimon should wait in line until we have Doctor Strange and Ghost Rider sorted out.

42. Atlas

Yet another founding member of the Thunderbolts, the last one in this list. (They'd just need Fixer/Techno - who didn't stick around anyway - and Jolt to complete the original line-up.)

43. Morbius

The Living Vampire originally showed up in Spider-Man, but I don't know if that means Sony owns the rights, or if they'd even want them. He'd fit right in with Doctor Strange, Ghost Rider and company, though. Or Blade, if they decide to use him now that they have the film rights back. (Assuming Blade did not kill him before finding out that he's a good, alive vampire and not an evil dead one.)

44. Hyperion

Ersatz Superman. While he has showed up in the mainstream MCU, the better-known version is probably the one from JMS's Supreme Power. Either way, I don't think he's going to be relevant. Maybe they should have him show up briefly in the background and destroy a bunch of buildings for no reason?

45. Sersi

I guess Thanos means that his extended family is up for inclusion, but I don't know that they need to get into the history of the Eternals on Earth when the Inhumans are already around. I would say they are somewhat more likely to include Starfox.

46. Machine Man

While the MCU already has one robot hero, Aaron Stack has a very different origin story and is more of a living Swiss Army knife than Vision. I can easily imagine them using him at some point in the future. (If so, I hope take their cues from Nextwave. Aaron ... is going to organize your sock draw!)

47. Taskmaster

Another villain (or sometime anti-hero) I'm surprised hasn't already shown up somewhere. HYDRA must have had somebody training their goons, after all, and he's another foe who'd fit in well aginst people like Daredevil and Luke Cage.

48. Hela

I expect her to be the next name to disappear off this list if Cate Blanchett is indeed playing her in Ragnarok.

49. The High Evolutionary

I ... can't see it. I mean, maybe they could have a geneticist who spends his time evolving and devolving things for funsies show up somewhere, but he's not a character that fits easily into any of the existing corners of the MCU in his traditional form.

50. Thunderball

Another member of the Wrecking Crew.

For the record, stuff I would like to see that does not appear anywhere on this list: the Runaways, eventually. It would make a brilliant TV series, and now that Freeform have greenlit Cloak and Dagger it seems a step closer. Kamala Khan, but not until Captain Marvel has been established for a while. White Tiger, since we know that Angela Del Toro is out there somewhere. And a Blade reboot of some kind!

(no subject)

Date: 2016-05-08 07:57 pm (UTC)
greenygal: (Default)
From: [personal profile] greenygal
25. Nighthawk

*laughs* Your lack of enthusiasm about the New Warriors is so comprehensive that you've put in the Defenders character instead; Darkhawk is the New Warrior. It's possible they might find a spot for him in the spacewar/Nova side of things, where he has some history, but it doesn't seem very likely. (The MCU is also not likely to use Nighthawk, except as a joke, given his origin as a Batman analogue. Plus they've already got a fucked-up rich boy.)

I don't think any individual New Warriors (except Nova, but I agree with you about Sam Alexander) are likely to make the cut, because they're more interesting as a team of teenage superheroes. Which is a totally valid movie concept, and one that the MCU will probably want to explore sooner or later--the world situation in both RL and the MCU is ripe for "the adults have fucked everything up and we're going to fix it"--but the Young Avengers are also right there waiting for that slot. (They'd need some adjusting, but so would the NW.) The Runaways also have some of that theme going, of course, but the Runaways' high concept precludes the whole "we're here and we're superheroes" thing, at least until several acts in.


andraste: The reason half the internet imagines me as Patrick Stewart. (Default)

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