Even though the storylines in the Marvel Cinematic Universe revolve around universe-wide extra-terrestrial threats and unfathomable scientific discoveries like time travel and “nanites,” a surprising number of its characters are universally relatable.
They might have technology that we don’t have or come from planets that we’ve never heard of or have superpowers beyond our imagination, but they also have relationships that we can identify with and emotions we can relate to. There are a ton of MCU characters that are delightfully human – even some of the ones that aren’t human. So, here are The 10 Most Relatable Characters In The MCU, Ranked.
Poor Hawkeye. He’s often derided among the MCU fan base for being “just” a super spy and immensely skilled archer. He’s long been considered to be the most useless Avenger. But anyone who can blow up a Chitauri craft without looking is far from useless.
And the fact that he has no superpowers just makes him all the more relatable. He’s a guy torn between his job and his family. Sure, he’d love nothing more than to just retire and live out his days with his wife and kids. But when a villain like Ultron threatens the world, he sees it as his duty to join the fight to stop him. And when he sees a kid in danger, he would lay down his own life to protect them.
On the surface, it might not seem easy to relate to a king. But when we first met T’Challa, he wasn’t a seasoned king who’d been ruling the nation of Wakanda for years. He was a young, inexperienced monarch who wasn’t ready to take the throne from his father. His father was killed in an explosion and he was suddenly thrust into power.
Ever since then, we’ve seen him simply doing his best. T’Challa is not infallible, and we’ve seen him make mistakes in his role as king, but he’s a good guy who’s doing the best job he can.
8 Phil Coulson
It’s easy to relate to anyone who is starstruck in the company of superheroes. But Phil Coulson isn’t just starstruck when he meets Captain America – he tells him about his trading card collection, too. That same collection is used later on to motivate the Avengers to win when Coulson is killed and the cards are smeared with his blood (even if he wasn’t permanently dead and the cards weren’t actually on his person when he died).
Coulson is a bureaucrat with a smile. He’s a better go-between for the Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D. than Nick Fury is, because he talks to people on their level and understands that government regulations aren’t the most fun thing in the world, although enforcing them is his job.
Taika Waititi has said that he based his vocal performance as Korg on the bouncers he knew in New Zealand. Although Korg is a giant rock monster who was enslaved and forced to fight as a gladiator, he’s a completely harmless guy.
He will fight when he needs to – for example, if he’s revolting against his captors with his fellow enslaved gladiators or if the fate of Earth is hanging in the balance – but if he’s left to his own devices, he’ll just spend his time playing Fortnite online, getting bullied by teenage trolls, and wearing an enormous Hawaiian shirt.
The basic rule for writing great characters is that who they really are and how they want to be perceived are constantly at odds. Rocket exemplifies this more than anyone else in the MCU. He wants to be seen as a gruff, cynical lone wolf who doesn’t need anybody else, but deep down, he cares more than he’d like to admit about the other Guardians.
He finally reconciled these feelings following Yondu’s tragic sacrifice in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2. Now, he’s much more open about his emotions. His speech to Thor during the “Time Heist” in Avengers: Endgame shows just how much he’s emotionally matured during his character arc.
5 Black Widow
Natasha Romanoff doesn’t have any superpowers. She’s just a regular person who is incredibly strong-willed and fights for what she believes in. She had a tragic upbringing, being trained as an assassin from a young age, and she has lived her life in an attempt to overcome that.
In Avengers: Endgame, she gave her life so that Earth’s mightiest heroes could acquire the Soul Stone and, in turn, triumph over Thanos. For Natasha, the greater good was always worth more than even her own life, and she proved it. That’s someone we can all look up to (and relate to).
Everyone busts their siblings’ chops like Shuri does. Even though her brother is the king of her nation, to Shuri, T’Challa will always just be her brother. She takes every opportunity she can to make fun of him. Whether she’s pointing out how ridiculous his sandals look or cracking wise about their trip to California, Shuri never misses a chance to take her brother down a peg.
Anyone with siblings can surely relate to her and her relationship with T’Challa. And that’s before getting into how smart, funny, kind-hearted, and heroic she is. Aside from being relatable, she’s an all-around fantastic character.
Scott Lang is just an ex-con who wants to do right by his daughter. We can all relate to him when we see him starstruck by Captain America or mistaking Die Hard for a time travel movie, when he’s making a fool of himself, and we can relate even more when we see what a caring father he is. His roster of pals, headed by Luis, might not be the smartest guys in the world (like Lang himself), but they’re always there for him when he needs them.
Plus, let’s not forget that, even though everyone makes fun of Lang’s intelligence, he’s the one who came up with the plan to travel through time via the Quantum Realm and retrieve the Infinity Stones to reverse Thanos’ destruction – and the plan works.
Tony Stark is a billionaire with his own private lab in Malibu, but Peter Parker is just an orphaned kid who lives in a small apartment in Queens with his aunt. He has to hide his superhero antics from his aunt, his teachers, and his classmates because it’s not as easy being a superhero when you’re a teenager. He has to keep up appearances.
And he won’t let anything – even a direct order from Stark himself – stop him doing the right thing. Parker isn’t above doing something stupid, because he’s just a naive kid. He’s prone to making mistakes. But when he does make a mistake, he’ll do anything to fix it, especially if his friends are in danger as a result of it.
Despite being half-Celestial, Peter Quill is just a regular guy. He was raised by a single mother in Missouri, and growing up, he never knew who his real dad was. He doesn’t have any superpowers per se, but he’s made the fact that he’ll do anything for his friends into a superpower.
Rather than being a badass outlaw, he’s a loser who wants to be seen as a badass outlaw. Quill is there when people need him, and we can all not only relate to that but admire it as well. Often, Quill will let his emotions cloud his judgment, leading to screw-ups like when he indirectly caused Thanos’ finger-snap. Also, who doesn’t identify with Star-Lord’s love of music and popular culture?