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6 MCU heroes who deserve a movie but don't have one yet
These characters deserve an MCU franchise.
Across thirteen years of Marvel Studios releases, there are now 27 individual films that make up the ongoing, interconnected Marvel Cinematic Universe. Pending the current pandemic’s ongoing influence on theatrical release dates, 2022 should see three more installments: Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Thor: Love and Thunder, and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.
With every release in theaters, and now the regular addition of Marvel Studio’s streaming series for Disney+, there’s a dramatic addition of heroes to the long list of characters who appear in the overarching mythology. Many have had the pleasure of top-lining multiple releases, including Iron-Man, Thor, and Spider-Man to name just a few. And because of that, there are plenty of other potential heroes of the MCU who could easily be plucked from the bench and given their own movies to carry alone.
Recently, SYFY WIRE cited a few characters who deserve their own Disney+ series, so now we turn our attention to the characters waiting in the wings, ready to have their MCU day in the sun.
1. Korg and Miek
Taika Waititi’s first dip into the MCU, Thor: Ragnarok, had the writer/director/actor adding an array of comedic supporting characters to Thor’s circle that are now beloved to the universe. There’s plenty of fodder for what we’ll call a “Grandmaster-verse” standalone prequel that serves up an action-comedy centering on Jeff Goldblum’s colorful dictatorship of Sakaar, and his Contest of Champions. That would allow for a whole roster of interesting characters, including what is sure to be the most “meet-cute” of “meet-cutes” for the buddy/warrior besties, Korg (Waititi) and Miek.
2. Howard Stark
One of the most welcome recurring performances in the first three Phases of the MCU is actor Dominic Cooper’s Howard Stark. First appearing in Captain America: The First Avenger, Cooper’s Stark returns to play him in Agent Carter and What If...?, but that leaves a lot of dapper/scoundrel Stark left to see before he ages into actor John Slattery’s portrayal of the character. The early days creating Stark Industries and S.H.I.E.L.D. is a period rife with perilous adventures and spy mission, with the added bonus of potential appearances by Peggy Carter (Hayley Atwell) and other classic characters from the comics who might add some unexpected flavor for the comic book aficionados.
3. Howard the Duck
Technically, the comic book version of Howard the Duck got his very own, very weird film back in 1986, produced by Lucasfilm no less. But for our purposes, we’re talking about the MCU iteration of the character who was introduced within The Collector’s compound in Guardians of the Galaxy, and has since made appearances in Guardians Vol. 2, Avengers: Endgame and What If...?
The anthropomorphic duck voiced by Seth Green definitely deserves a cinematic do-over within the MCU narrative, and again feels particularly well-suited to a standalone story that gives the character a self-contained adventure that perhaps touches lightly, or just near, the other heroes of the universe. But mostly, we say just let the duck have his day and not overcomplicate him.
4. Isaiah Bradley
Arguably the most compelling new character to come out of the Disney+ streaming series, The Falcon & The Winter Soldier, Carl Lumbly’s Isaiah Bradley added historical weight and an authentic reflection of the real, institutional racially-based medical abuse that occurred within the military and government agencies, like the Tuskegee studies. There’s a whole story to be told about Project: Rebirth, the alternate Super Soldier program that produced Bradley in World War II, folding in the context and the gravitas of the times. The story could also easily be juxtaposed in the now with Lumbly returning and the potential rise of his own grandson, Elijah Bradley.
Thor: Ragnarok mostly gave us the boozy, hot mess version of the Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson) before she cleaned up in the third act and helped save the citizens of Asgard alongside Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and Bruce Banner/Hulk (Mark Ruffalo). But in the telling of her story, we got a glimpse of the epic warrior she once was battling Hela (Cate Blanchett) alongside her fellow Valkyries. That brief snippet of action alone screams for a prequel that reveals Valkyrie’s past and the standalone amazingness of that elite collection of female warriors.
Sure, the ultimate end of that particular story is beyond tragic, but a well-done origin story can add plenty to the complexities of the existing New Asgard storyline, and provide another avenue of female-centric storytelling in the world. Plus, who doesn’t want to see Blanchett back in Hela mode?