Before they were the driving force of the most successful film franchise of all time, the Avengers had enjoyed a long and enthralling life within the pages of the Marvel comics. The first incarnation of the superhero team made their debut in Avengers #1 back in 1963, and it consisted of five founding members: Iron Man, Thor, Hulk, Ant-Man and the Wasp.
Of course, over the next five decades, the Avengers line-up has expanded, changed, and been relaunched multiple times. They’ve continued to be a staple of the comic book world - and then the Marvel Cinematic Universe earned them a newfound recognition with 2012's The Avengers.
Now, just a brisk six years later, the idea of a superhero team-up movie no longer seems like an insurmountable task, and Marvel has continued to up the ante with this year's Avengers: Infinity War — a coalescence of the last ten years and 18 films, which finds Earth's Mightiest Heroes teaming up with the Guardians thwart the Mad Titan Thanos.
Though the MCU has already promised to massively shake things up following the next Avengers installment, with Infinity War recently grossing over $2 billion and counting, we're sure the Avengers will be around to stay on the big screen for quite some time — at least in one form or another.
However, any story that has lasted this long is bound to see its fair share of plot holes, imperfections, and absurdities at one point or another. So here are 20 Things That Make No Sense About The Avengers.
20 They don't help each other out in their solo movies
When Peter Parker came up against the Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming, it makes sense that he wouldn’t need anyone other than Iron Man to get his back. But what about when Thor faced off against Malekith in The Dark World, or when Tony Stark was investigating a string of terrorist attacks in Iron Man 3?
Both of these incidents threatened the safety of the human race on a global scale, yet they didn’t seem to make a blip on any of the other Avengers’ radars.
Thankfully, this is something that the MCU has continued to drift further away from. Producer Kevin Feige has promised more unusual team-ups in the future of the MCU, as it only makes sense that these superheroes wouldn’t go it alone with the fate of the world hanging in the balance.
19 They never mention Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. or The Defenders
Unlike the DC Entertainment -- which keeps its big and small screen continuity totally separate -- the MCU has broken ground yet again by giving movie fans a number of shows that fit within the same universe.
However, while shows like The Defenders and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. often reference the movies, the movies have never given a nod to the shows.
As the world continues to grow and the threats become more catastrophic, it’s becoming harder to believe that many of these characters inhabit the same country — let alone the same city.
This is even more apparent considering that Stark had tabs on Peter Parker before the events of Civil War, so other superhumans like Luke Cage and Jessica Jones would have surely popped up on his radar as well.
18 The government blames the Avengers for saving New York and Washington
In the comics, the citizens of America largely want the Superhuman Registration Act to pass because the Avengers have stopped villains on too many occasions, only to let them go so they can wreak havoc at some point in the future. In the MCU, the Sokovia Accords largely come about because the government wants to blame all the destruction on the Avengers.
By doing this, they fail to acknowledge that without the Avengers, the world would have faced far more destruction thanks to Loki and and HYDRA.
While the Avengers bear their fair share of responsibility for both Sokovia and Lagos, these cities wouldn't have even been in existence without them.
The government should also know that by totally controlling the Avengers, they no longer have plausible deniability every time the Avengers use unorthodox methods to save the world.
17 Individual character development is completely abandoned in the Avengers movies
Even though the Avengers movies do a pretty good job of making sure every character gets their fair share of screen time, their developments from the previous films are often forgotten. Or even worse, completely undone.
At the end of Iron Man 3, Tony Stark initiates the Clean Slate Protocol, which finds him destroying all of his suits and vowing to spend more time with Pepper. At the beginning of Age of Ultron, he’s back alongside the Avengers like nothing had ever happened.
More recently, Thor's character development in Ragnarok — where he loses his eye, takes up his father's mantle, and learns to be powerful without his hammer — is quickly undone in Infinity War when Rocket gives him a prosthetic and he forges Stormbreaker.
16 Every about Avengers #200 — the worst Avengers comic ever
With over 50 years of Avengers comics to chose from, there are bound to be a number of duds amidst the countless stacks. None can hold a candle to the abomination that is Avengers #200.
The plot involves Ms. Marvel going through a three-day pregnancy despite telling the other Avengers that she didn’t do anything that would have gotten her pregnant. She then proceeds to give birth to Marcus, who begins to age at an alarming rate only to tell his “mother” that he had to hypnotize and impregnate her with himself so he could escape Limbo.
As if this wasn't already enough assault and creepiness for one comic, Wonder Man and Hank Pym engage in a sexist conversation where they actually refer to women as "what's" instead of "who's."
15 The Strongest Avengers are Benched
The movies have written out some of the strongest Avengers when it’s convenient for the plot.
The best example of this is in Civil War, where both Thor and the Hulk are M.I.A. for the entirety of the film.
Either one of these characters joining the airport fight would have easily turned the tide in favor of whatever faction of the Avengers they had chosen to join.
Vision is another hero who was largely relegated to the sidelines throughout the majority of his time in the MCU. This may have been to compensate for the character actually being too powerful upon his introduction, and the only way to keep the struggle interesting was to give his character an internal conflict that made him unwilling to take sides.
14 Steve and Natasha were surprised to see Bruce in Infinity War
When you have a movie as ambitious as Avengers: Infinity War, it’s understandable that certain character arcs are going to be put on the back burner for the sake of the story.
This awkward reunion between Cap, Black Widow, and Bruce had many audience members scratching their heads.
The moment comes after Bruce finds Tony Stark’s phone amidst the destruction in New York and decides to place a call to Steve Rogers. Then, when Bruce finally arrives at the Avengers Compound, both Steve and Natasha seem dumbfounded by his return.
It's understandable that Natasha would still be in shock considering that they had fired up a relationship prior to the Hulk's departure, but even this goes nowhere in the movie beyond an awkward hello.
13 The team was mostly made up of criminals
While most Marvel fans were happy to be getting a live-action Avengers movie at all, we’re sure there was still a fair share of comic book loyalists who were annoyed that the original Avengers line-up on the screen was different from the one in the comic books.
A least it wasn’t the second incarnation of the team from, which was made up of four members — three of which were reformed criminals.
This shake-up came after everyone except Captain America resigned, and Hawkeye, Scarlet Witch, and Quicksilver were added to the roster.
These characters had all been former villains and criminals and they had done little to redeem themselves prior to their induction to the Avengers, which made no sense for a team whose sole purpose was to dispatch characters just like them.
12 They create most of their own problems
Aside from Infinity War, the Avengers had an undefeated record when it comes to saving the planet. Exactly how many of those instances were their faults to begin with? How many times did they make things exponentially worse before coming through at the last second?
Ultron is the perfect example of this.
Stark and Banner inadvertently create the artificial intelligence that’s beset on eradicating the human race only to turn around and attempt to do the same thing again in order to make Vision.
In Infinity War, the Avengers' lack of foresight was on full display yet again. They continue to bring the Infinity Stones straight to Thanos, despite knowing that the stones are the only thing he requires to destroy the universe.
11 Their powers levels depend on the story
Of course, it wouldn’t be very interesting if we could just refer to a chart that catalogs each character’s exact powers and limitations. After all, part of the fun for comic book fans is debating which Avenger is the strongest.
When you compare the characters’ capabilities across multiple films there are some glaring contradictions.
Just look at the characters of Thor and Iron Man as two primary examples.
In the original Thor movie, the God of Thunder’s powers seem nearly unstoppable as we watch him summon up a vortex and throw around a number of Frost Giants. Then, in Avengers, he can barely hold his own against Iron Man.
Here, we also see Iron Man's suit take a number of hits from Mjolnir. Then, in Iron Man 3, one of his suits is decimated by a semi.
10 The Pet Avengers
Though the Avengers comics are certainly no stranger to absurdity, few issues were as confounding as the Pet Avengers limited series.
This team of super animals first made their debut in 2009 with Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers, which ran for four issues and was followed up by another short-lived series the following year.
The teleporting giant bulldog Lockjaw may have a fond place in many comic book readers hearts, as he has been a part of the comics since the 1960s, but the Pet Avengers comprised a number of other ridiculous characters, including a cat named Hairball and a frog named Throg.
If you haven't already guessed, Throg was imbued with the powers of Thor, and he even had his own hammer, Forgjolnir, just to give you an idea of how absurd these issues really were.
9 Their founder, Nick Fury, has been M.I.A.
Remember when Nick Fury’s guidance was the only thing that brought the Avengers together in the first place? Or the only thing holding them together when tempers began to flare?
Well, what exactly has the former Director of S.H.I.E.L.D. been up to since Age of Ultron, anyway?
Despite playing a vital role throughout the first phase of the MCU, Nick Fury has been conveniently M.I.A. when the Avengers have needed him most.
Without his input, they've split into two factions and were largely scattered to the wind when Thanos and his Black Order finally arrived on Earth.
Of course, we got a brief glimpse of Fury after the end of Infinity War, so we know that he's still a part of the action. Why hasn't he been in contact with the Avengers at all?
8 Why didn’t they combine all of their technology sooner?
Before Shuri came on the scene, Tony Stark was easily the most tech-savvy of the earthbound heroes. While he did use his expertise to build the New Avengers Facility along with a couple of suits for Spider-Man, at a certain point you have to wonder why more of the Avengers aren’t wearing Iron Man suits.
Of course, Captain America and the Hulk are pretty indestructible as is, but Black Widow and Hawkeye are just as vulnerable as Stark. Wouldn’t they want as much protection as possible while going into battle?
Now that Stark has his nano tech suit, there's no reason that his fellow Avengers shouldn't all have some additional protection.
If only Stark had gotten a chance to take a trip to Wakanda to work with Shuri, the Avengers could have become a nearly unstoppable force.
7 Tony hacked S.H.I.E.L.D.’s computers, but found nothing about HYDRA
In the original Avengers, Tony Stark has a good reason for hacking S.H.I.E.L.D.’s computers. “An intelligence agency that fears intelligence?” he tells Captain America. “Historically, not awesome.”
While this does a great job of slowly creating a difference of perspective between Rogers and Stark, there’s one fatal flaw to this plot point.
The S.H.I.E.L.D. computers contain no reference to the agency being controlled by HYDRA — at least not any that we’re made aware of.
This is because the plans for HYDRA had yet to be fully fleshed out in the MCU, and it’s another one of those inconsistencies that you just have to look past upon rewatching the movies.
If there was one person who could have gained access to this information through hacking, it would have been Stark.
6 Why haven’t they been actively recruiting new members?
The original Avengers line up in the movies may have contained one more character than the original line up in the comics. Are six people really enough to save the world?
Of course, the Avengers have slowly grown over time, but most of their additions have all occurred by happenstance; Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver started off as enemies, Vision was mostly an accident.
We’ve seen Tony Stark bring Peter Parker into the fold when he was up against Captain America, but surely it would have been more important to add him to the team in the event of a world-ending threat.
Why haven't we seen any of the Avengers trying to track down and recruit other superheroes? If Deadpool can do it with a LinkedIn ad, surely it wouldn't have been very hard with S.H.I.E.L.D. at their disposal.
5 They’re all funny
One of the biggest criticisms launched at the MCU by DC fans is that the films are too jokey, and thus, they never feel the true weight of the world teetering on the brink of destruction. They may actually have a point.
Don’t get us wrong, some of the best parts of any Marvel movie are the pithy one-liners that help break up the action.
It doesn’t make sense that every character would be a part-time stand-up comedian.
After all, every good comedy team needs a straight man, which is something that was perfectly demonstrated by the addition of Cable into the Deadpool franchise.
Why not reserve the jokes for the characters who were funniest in the comics, like Tony Stark and Peter Parker, rather than have every character showcase a similar brand of humor?
4 Why wasn’t Civil War an Avengers movie?
Civil War was one of the biggest events in Marvel comics history, and many were ecstatic over the idea of watching these events unfold on the big screen.
This eventually lead to the most ambitious movie in the MCU to date with Captain America: Civil War, which boasted a bigger main cast then both Avengers and Age of Ultron - not to mention that it set the stage for many of the films since. Why wasn’t Civil War an Avengers film in the first place?
It might seem like a small gripe, but don’t forget that there are still casual viewers who might feel inclined to only follow their favorite franchises along with the team-up movies.
Civil War undeserved Captain America by focusing too much on Iron Man and others, but it was a great Avengers movie.
3 The Maria Stark Foundation suing heroes who use the name “Avengers”
Because NYC and LA often get the most representation when it comes to the Avengers, many were excited when the off-beat Great Lakes Avengers made their comic book debut back in the late ‘80s.
The group was stationed in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with teammates ranging everywhere from Mr. Immortal and Big Bertha to Deadpool and Squirrel Girl.
Despite being trained by Hawkeye and helping the original Avengers save the world on a number of occasions, the Great Lakes Avengers were eventually sued by the Maria Stark Foundation over their name.
Since then, they have rebranded themselves as the Great Lakes X-Men, Great Lakes Champions, Great Lakes Initiative, only to return to their original name and once again have it inexplicably ripped away for them for legal reasons.
So much for trying to representing other parts of the country.
2 The Wasp's legacy with the Avengers has been erased in the MCU
Instead of Black Widow being the only founding female member of the Avengers as she is in the movies, Janet van Dyne/ the Wasp had this role in the comics — where she played a much more significant role in establishing the super group.
Janet one of the most prominent members of the team throughout their first few decades on the page.
She’s even the one who coined the term “Avengers” in the first place.
Therefore, many have been upset that the character has played such a minimal role in the MCU to date.
Of course, Michele Pfeiffer is set to play the character in the upcoming Ant-Man and the Wasp, and we can only hope the movie gives the iconic character some form of redemption for leaving her out of the earlier films.
1 They have no protocol in place to save the world
At the end of the first Avengers movie, each of the six heroes seem to go their separate ways with no plans in place to reunite should the world need them. Instead, Nick Fury has confidence that they will simply know when to reassemble again.
How many times has this backfired since?
With all this advanced technology at their disposal, there’s no reason that each Avengers couldn’t have a direct line to one another.
Even after the events of Civil War, each faction seems scattered to the wind, with no good way of getting in touch with one another.
We understand that many of these characters have a desire to be left alone, but when you may be the only thing capable of preventing the destruction of the human race, shouldn't you at least have a rendezvous point?
What do you think makes no sense about the Avengers? Sound off in the comments!