The Avengers have a long and storied history in comics over the last half-century. The founding members of Iron Man, Thor, Henry Pym, Wasp and Hulk have all come and gone, but regardless of the team’s makeup, their larger-than-life heroism has remained a constant.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has capitalized on the team, building the entirety of Phase One around bringing the Avengers together. While the characters have enjoyed success in their solo adventures, the two Avengers movies have been the lynchpins of the universe, showing fans the full scope of what Marvel Studios is capable of.
As with the comics, the Avengers’ roster is going to have to change eventually. The long history of the team offers many great alternatives for the producers to pick from. Unfortunately, for every great hero on the Avengers’ roster, there’s another that even Captain America can’t help but shake his head at.
It should be noted that while many of these characters aren’t the best, there are some worthy Avengers that won’t grace the screen for reasons outside of the creators’ control. Without further ado, here are Screen Rant’s 15 Avengers That Will Never Join the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Matt Hawk was a lawyer in the Old West who decided to become a masked vigilante known as Two-Gun Kid. He trained under Ben Dancer, renowned gunfighter, and used a pair of pistols to deliver his brand of justice across the frontier. He fought outlaws and aliens alike before a time-traveling incident brought him to the present day, where he joined the Avengers briefly before leaving the team and wandering across America with teammate, Hawkeye.
The character was briefly involved in the Civil War storyline, where he served as a bounty hunter that specialized in bringing in rogue superheroes. However, despite his involvement, Two-Gun Kid has no chance of joining the Avengers on the big screen. Not only has there been no discussion of time travel in the MCU (though the time gem must be out there), but utilizing the concept to bring forward a western gunslinger would be a waste of potential.
Dr. Anthony Druid is a psychiatrist with minor telepathic and magical abilities. His specialty is hypnosis, allowing him limited illusory capabilities including invisibility and changing his appearance. He joined the Avengers after helping to defeat Baron Zemo and saving the Avengers Mansion from banishment into the Darkforce Dimension.
Things went well for a time, but Doctor Druid developed a bad habit of being manipulated by villains and betraying his teammates. He was disgraced, leaving behind the costumed crime fighting for a more traditional druid lifestyle.
As much as fans enjoyed Warren Ellis’ take on the character, Doctor Druid won’t be making an appearance in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Not only is his skill set covered by Doctor Strange, but it is later revealed that the only reason he was granted mystical powers was in case Stephen Strange did not ascend to Sorcerer Supreme. With Marvel set to release a Doctor Strange movie next year as a part of Phase Three, it’s a safe bet the character won’t be failing in his quest.
Delroy Garrett was an Olympic athlete who ruined his career by using steroids. Looking anywhere for new purpose, he joined the religious cult Triune Understanding where he was granted the stolen powers of the hero 3-D man. Delroy was now three times stronger than the average athlete, healed three times as fast, and was granted enhanced senses and speed.
Not realizing the powers were stolen, Delroy adopted the name Triathlon and began fighting crime. He went on to join the Avengers, though his first outings with the team were less than successful. He accused his teammates of intolerance, claiming he was only on the team to help the Avengers’ public image. While relations improved over time, Triathlon ultimately lost his powers in a cosmic conflict and left the team.
Triathlon will never make it to the silver screen. There’s the problem of introducing his powers, which don’t make sense in a universe without an established 3-D Man. They’re also inherently silly. The character is defined by the number three, even losing his powers to a cosmic being called the “triple evil.” His super speed was potentially interesting, until the introduction of Quicksilver in Age of Ultron. As it stands, Triathlon is condemned to remain in the pages of Marvel’s comics indefinitely.
Justice (Formerly Marvel Boy)
When Vance Astrovik was a teenager, he was visited by a time-travelling future version of himself. His future self had been cryogenically frozen in space for a thousand years and begged the younger Vance not to become an astronaut. This encounter serves as the catalyst for the development of Vance’s mutant telepathic abilities. He assumed the identity of Marvel Boy and after being rejected by Captain America and the Avengers, he went on to found a group of teenage heroes called the New Warriors.
Marvel Boy later changed his name to Justice and, along with his girlfriend Firestar, joined the Avengers after an attack on the group by Morgan Lafey. The two served as Avengers until the events during House of M depopulated most of the mutants on Earth. After the events of Civil War, Justice works with Iron Man doing youth outreach for young people with superpowers.
Though the New Warriors are the overall catalyst for the events in the Civil War storyline, Justice had long since left the team behind. Also, there’s been no instance of teenage superheroes in the MCU so far. It wouldn’t make sense to shoehorn them in for the events in the upcoming films. There’s no reason for Justice to exist in the films and his background as a mutant will make him far less attractive to the producers at Marvel Studios.
Dane Whitman comes from a simpler time. When he first joined the Avengers in the late 1960s, a knight on a flying horse was a perfectly acceptable member of the superhero team. He can trace his lineage all the way back to King Arthur’s reign, where his ancestor Sir Percy of Scandia was the first incarnation of the Black Knight. The moniker has been passed down through his family ever since, eventually making its way to Dane.
Dane’s uncle Nathan Garrett abuses the power, using it to commit crime and incurring the wrath of the Avengers. So when Dane adopts the persona, he is immediately attacked by members of the Avengers, before he proves himself a hero and is invited to join their ranks. He creates a flying horse called Aragorn and travels to England where he earns the Ebony Blade, which he uses to fight supernatural threats to the planet.
There are quite a few reasons that Black Knight won’t make the transition to film. The first and most obvious is his name. The MCU already has a Black Widow and a Black Panther. It’s doubtful that the producers will be going for the hat-trick with Black Knight. Secondly, a knight on a flying horse doesn’t have a place in a universe where the realm of Asgard can easily provide an analogue character. If there’s one warrior flying on a winged horse, it will be the Valkyrie, an Asgardian war-goddess who is infinitely more palatable in the grand scheme of the Marvel Universe.
Associated with the Avengers since the 1980s, Jocasta only became an Avenger relatively recently. She is a robot that was created by Ultron so that he might have a mate. Ultron based her brain patters on those of Janet Van Dyne (The Wasp), the wife of his creator, Hank Pym. He put the life force of Wasp into Jocasta’s body, but Ultron soon realized he would have to kill the original so that Jocasta could live. Though she loved Ultron unconditionally, Jocasta couldn’t allow this and warned the Avengers in time to stop him.
After saving the Avengers from Ultron a second time, Jocasta took up residence in the Avengers mansion and became a provisional member of the team. She aided the team in quite a few fights, but didn’t attain full membership until much later.
Ultron already created one android in the MCU: The Vision. The Vision subsequently destroyed Ultron, eliminating any trace of his original programming. Introducing Jocasta into the films would not only require significant backpedaling, but it would call for the producers to retread a storyline they’ve already tackled. While there was an Easter Egg in Avengers: Age of Ultron featuring her name, its doubtful there will be another android anytime soon.
Maria de Guadalupe Santiago was born in the fictional South American nation Costa Verde. Her village was steeped in the tradition of ancient gods and practices until the arrival of the Spaniards converted her people to Christianity. Maria’s father was one of the few to study the ancient beliefs, ultimately fathering a child with the goddess Peliali. After Maria was born, Peliali stopped appearing.
Maria grew up in an orphanage before being sponsored by Edwin Jarvis through the charity ChildCare. She learned about the Avengers and travelled to the U.S. to attend college. Due to her parentage, Maria manifested powers that allowed her to adopt physical traits from animals. She combined these traits into her human form, manifesting the powers by transforming into were-creatures. When she uses her powers, her skin adopts a silvery sheen that makes her easily identifiable.
Silverclaw ‘s powers could look great adapted to the big screen. Unfortunately, the character’s origins are impossible as the MCU currently stands. The character of Edwin Jarvis has been replaced by an A.I. in the films, making it impossible for him to adopt a ward. This could be skirted rather easily, but the more important reason is that the character essentially disappears after the Civil War event. Though she could add more diversity to the universe, she’ll likely be passed over by Marvel Studios
Izzy Kane grew up on a farm in Iowa before attending college in Colorado studying astronomy. When her mother dies and her grandfather falls ill, she feels obligated to return to the farm and help out as much as she can. There she finds the Exospex of a former Smasher, a pair of goggles which grant her access to a diverse set of powers and leads her to the Shi’ ar home world. There she joins the Shi’ar Imperial Guard.
Upon returning to Earth, her dying grandfather, who happens to be a WWII hero, gives her Captain America’s business card and tells her to become a hero. She is quickly recruited by the Avengers. Her goggles give her access to a wide variety of powers, including super speed, strength, durability, interstellar travel, energy blasts and more. The downside to the goggles is that only one power can be used at a time, limiting her effectiveness somewhat in combat.
There are a few aspects of Smasher that make her problematic for adaptation. The biggest issue is that, though Izzy Kane has always been shown as an Avenger, her powers are derived from Shi’ar technology. Unfortunately, her time serving as a Shi’ar guard and using their technology likely prevents her from joining the MCU because Fox owns the rights to the Shi’ar and their empire. On top of that, the amount of backstory needed to make the Exospex make any sort of sense in the films would take far too much screen time.
Robert Reynolds is a middle-aged, overweight man who happens to be the most powerful superhero on Earth. The problem is, he’s the only person to remember the Sentry, his superhero persona who was erased from everyone’s memories. The Sentry had a dark side, a split persona known as The Void, who threatened the planet. Only by being forgotten could the hero triumph against evil.
After making the same sacrifice twice, Robert eventually remembers his true identity and, with the help of telepath Emma Frost, overcomes a virus that has fractured his mind and returns to the planet as a hero. Sentry is “as strong as a million exploding suns” and there have been hints that the character is a sentient life-force. Unfortunately, despite his unstoppable power, he’s unable to fully reconcile his three personas and becomes increasingly unstable.
Wow. If there’s one character that could break the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s the Sentry. The character was dreamed up in the seventies, but never appeared in comics until the year 2000. The first miniseries and subsequent one-shots established the character’s fictional history throughout Marvel Comics continuity, inserting adventures he shared with Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four, and even the Hulk. He’s the hero that time forgot (twice) and his inclusion in the films would cause the continuity Marvel Studios has established over seven years to quickly unravel.
John Walker was a soldier in the U.S. Army for a time before being honorably discharged. It’s around this time that his friend tells him about a man known as the Power Broker a mysterious figure who can give people superhuman abilities. Walker visits the broker and is granted the same basic abilities as Captain America.
Walker goes on to replace Steve Rogers as Captain America for a time, before ultimately becoming the U.S. Agent. He serves on the West coast Avengers and works for the U.S. Government by aiding the task force known as the Commission on Superhuman Activities. The two positions pull him in opposite directions, making him a less effective member to both groups. He loses his status as an Avenger and ends up in Canada as the leader of a superhero group called Omega Flight.
U.S. Agent is almost a complete duplicate of Captain America, down to the vibranium shield and fighting style. While there will have to be a replacement for Steve Rogers at some point in the MCU, the producers at Marvel Studios have already set up a far likelier candidate in Bucky Barnes. There’s no reason for this character to exist in the films and the similar powers and costume would likely lead to confusion between U.S. Agent and Captain America.
Thanks to the Disney film and a timeless interest in classic mythology, most people are familiar with Hercules, but the demigod who completed the twelve labors has been appearing in the Marvel Universe since the 1960s. Initially brought forward through time to be a henchman, Hercules eventually finds his own path and becomes a hero. Often teaming up with Thor, the two battled against other members of the mythological Greek/Roman pantheon.
Hercules has all of the powers that would be expected from the existing mythology. He’s super strong, fast , and durable enough to resist a blow from Thor. The character is highly skilled in boxing, archery, and Pankration, which is essentially Greek MMA fighting. He wields a mace made of adamantium, said to rival Thor’s hammer Mjolnir.
With such a heavy focus on Asgard and Norse mythology already existing within the MCU, it’s doubtful that we’ll see the introduction of a second pantheon to the universe. Hercules doesn’t offer anything unique to the films in terms of powers or backstory. With the character so well-known outside of the Marvel continuity, it would be difficult to get past the audiences preconceived notions of the character.
Despite their similar superhero names, Jessica Drew has no relation to Peter Parker. Jessica gains her powers while still in the womb, being struck by a laser containing the DNA traits of several types of spiders. Jessica gains superhuman strength, agility, and limited powers of flight. She also has the ability to shoot bio-energy from her hands and can use pheromones to attract any man.
Spider-Woman’s road to becoming an Avenger was a hard one, originally being brainwashed by terrorist group Hydra into doing their bidding. She eventually escapes their control, but they reassert their hold over her when her powers begin to fluctuate. Serving as a double agent, Jessica works for S.H.I.E.L.D. and joins the Avengers team while feeding information to Hydra. It takes an alien invasion, but eventually her life rights itself and she officially joins the Avengers as a hero.
Jessica Drew didn’t really get a fair shake. She was created solely so that Marvel could own the copyright to the name Spider-Woman in case their competition tried to capitalize on Spider-Man’s popularity. Despite the work that’s been done to differentiate her from Peter Parker, she is ultimately still in his shadow as far as the general public is concerned. Though she may deserve a spot on the Avengers roster, Spider-Woman won’t be on the silver screen for the simple fact she would cause confusion in terms of Spider-Man’s inclusion in the MCU.
Simon Williams wasn’t always a hero. Caught embezzling money from his failing company, Williams is imprisoned and blames Tony Stark for his dilemma. Accepting a deal from evil Baron Zemo, Williams is transformed into an ion-powered superhuman and infiltrates the Avengers on the villain’s behalf. However, he has a change of heart and, before the end of his debut issue, gives his life to save the Avengers.
It’s soon revealed that Simon isn’t dead, just in suspended animation. He remains that way for years until he is awoken in an attempt to destroy the Avengers. Instead, he joins the team and eventually founds a second branch of heroes known as the West Coast Avengers. His powers of super strength and speed rival any member of the Avengers and he benefits from being virtually invulnerable thanks to his ionic powers.
Wonder Man suffers from a similar problem as Spider-Woman, in that his name will be the biggest factor against a film adaptation. Marvel won’t risk putting Wonder Man into their films for the same reason they stopped publishing him in comics: the threat of legal action by DC Comics. While the comic character is used freely today, there’s no doubt that parent company Warner Bros. would do everything in their power to stop production of Wonder Man with their Wonder Woman film set to premiere in 2017.
Jennifer Walters is a cousin of Dr. Bruce Banner. When a crime boss who had worked with her father shoots Jennifer, a blood transfusion is the only way to save her life. Her cousin happens to have the same blood type, but the gamma radiation in his blood mixed with Jennifer’s own anger turned her into the She-Hulk. This transformation saved her life when the crime boss sends mobsters to the hospital to finish her off.
Her powers are very similar to the Hulk, though she’s not as strong as her cousin. She also had the ability to control her transformations, though she preferred to be She-Hulk over her human form. She stays in that form, retaining her intelligence and personality. Jennifer is also a high-profile lawyer who advises and represents superheroes in the court system.
This is one I hope to be wrong about, as Jennifer Walters is one of Marvel’s best. Unfortunately, as the MCU stands, there’s no chance that Dr. Banner would agree to a blood transfusion. Additionally, if the rumors of the Red Hulk appearing in the next Captain America film are accurate, having three gamma-powered characters would begin to feel a little too coincidental in the limited universe.
The Great Lakes Avengers
This team was formed by Craig Hollis, also known as Mr. Immortal, when he realized that being immortal wasn’t the most useful superpower when it came to stopping crimes. After he is shot in the head by a group of escaping thieves, he takes out an advertisement in the local newspaper asking for recruits for his superhero team. He is joined by such standouts as Dinah Soar, Big Bertha, Flatman and Doorman. They’re never officially sanctioned by the Avengers, using the name illegally until they are eventually served with a Cease & Desist order.
This is a team with a weird set of powers. Mr. Immortal is truly an immortal being. If he is killed, he will be resurrected quickly. However, nonfatal injuries heal at a normal rate, allowing him to be incapacitated rather easily. Dinah Soar is a winged creature (possibly a dinosaur?) from the Savage Land with the powers of flight and some sonic abilities. Big Bertha can increase her strength and durability by becoming incredibly obese. Flatman is a paper-thin person with superhuman durability and the ability to stretch his body parts. Doorman is a teleporter with the ability to use his body as a door into any adjacent room.
With powers as useful as these, it’s hard to imagine that the movie version of the Avengers can do without them. You never know when you’ll have to go into an adjacent room or slip through an impossibly small crack. Unfortunately, with almost all of these characters having mutant origins and the rights to the Savage Land most likely sitting with Fox, these characters will never grace the screen with their glory.
Bonus: X-Men & Fantastic Four
Unfortunately, due to the dissemination of movie rights for Marvel characters, many famous members of the Avengers will never be joining the MCU. Any mutants that are primarily associated with the X-Men and all characters related Fantastic Four are currently with Fox.
While the Spider-Man Marvel/Sony situation might give fans a glimmer of hope, the reality is that Fox is currently experiencing unparalleled success with the X-Men franchise and hope to earn similar numbers with the upcoming Fantastic Four reboot. Fox isn’t ready to deal and until then, Marvel’s First Family and band of merry mutants are locked out of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.