You would have to be living under a rock not to know what the Marvel Cinematic Universe is. The entire movie franchise results from decades of planning and executing an intricate web of movies that have taken the world by storm.
The franchise now has 30 films under its belt and 10 more in development. Let’s also not forget the 20+ T.V. shows developed by the studio as well.
Each piece of work is connected in one way or another, and though some may argue that they have slowly been losing their charm, you cannot deny the genius of this masterful cinematic universe.
In 2019, the MCU was at its peak with the release of Avengers: Endgame, a sort of closing chapter of a major storyline in the universe. It was glorious beyond anything we could have imagined, and as a comic nerd myself, it is easy to say it was a gift from the heavens.
Since the introduction of Tony Stark’s iconic Iron Man, numerous characters have made their mark on the franchise, and we decided to see who are some of the most popular heroes among them. It came as no surprise that the original Avengers dominated at the top.
None of this would have happened without them. So, We’re going to get to know them a little better.
Let us get to it. MCU fans assemble!
#6 Captain America
Played by: Chris Evans
Monthly Searches: 1.7 Million
Captain America is the leader of the Avengers and the first Avenger as well. The star-spangled suit and shield can be recognized anywhere. This Super-soldier is the tactical brain behind the Avengers and a born leader.
What makes this character so iconic is the fact that he was not born with his powers. Staring his journey as a scrawny boy from Boston, Steve Rogers never backed down from a fight, no matter how bigger the enemy was. Once he received the Super-soldier serum, his kindness and strong moral compass never wavered.
Chris Evans played Captain America, and quite honestly, there is probably no one who will ever be able to create the character that well. Chris Evans perfectly embodies the righteous character, complete with the blue eyes and the muscular body superheroes usually have. The best part of this performance was that it did not feel like one. It simply seemed like Evans was the Captain.
Captain America is a beacon of goodness and an almost perfect role model. A good reason why people like him so much is that he is someone to look up to.
#5 The Hulk
Played by: Mark Ruffalo
Monthly Searches: 2 Million
The raging superhero has been an on-again-off-again part of the original Avengers. If you’re familiar with the hero, then you know why. He isn’t exactly teammate material.
While his alter-ego, Bruce Banner, is a brilliant scientist who wants to go for the world, the other guy isn’t so nonchalant. After being exposed to gamma radiation, Banner now has the gift/curse of turning into the green monster called the Hulk. The downside?
He doesn’t have much control over his uglier side. Based on the Jekyll and Hide idea, the Hulk works well into the dynamics of the Avengers mainly because even the super team cannot control this monster but needs him to fight planet-threatening bad dudes.
Different actors have played the character over the years, including Ed Norton and the original Hulk, Lou Ferrigno, but no one seems to do it like Mark Ruffalo.
Mark as Banner perfectly plays the calm and oddly charming scientist and slips into his Hulk persona with a level of fury we have not seen before. The slight quirkiness that Ruffalo brings to the hero pulls us in and makes us feel empathy for him.
The reason the Hulk is loved by so many is for his humanity. While that does sound ironic, it does hold some weight. It is relatable as it hopes to show us that a man can have more than one side, that everyone can get angry, and that it may be hard to control, but it doesn’t make you a bad person; you can still do good, even with all your flaws.
Played by: Jeremy Renner
Monthly Searches: 2.6 Million
There has been a bit of trolling of this assassin/hero over the years, citing his lack of powers, even going as far as calling him the most useless of the Avengers. This is far from the truth. Let us take stock of what Hawkeye can do.
Hawkeye is a master assassin with years of experience, an incredibly skilled hand-to-hand combatant, and the best marksman on the planet. Oh, and let’s not forget that under the control of Loki, he almost took out the Avengers all alone. It just goes to show what this archer could do if he wanted to.
Jeremy Renner plays a convincing Hawkeye, a loyal agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. It almost feels impossible to imagine someone else picking up the bow and arrow. The two-time Oscar Nominee is a brilliant actor.
While the astonishing feats of archery the hero performs seem slightly far-fetched, Jeremy Renner does a fantastic job of making us believe he can knock ships out of the sky with his arrows.
Yes, Hawkeye is one of the few people on the team without powers, but he certainly is one of the more liked. The fact that he lacks powers is the very reason he is favored. A mere human hanging with Gods and taking them down with arrows? Awesome.
#3 Iron Man
Played by: Robert Downey Jr.
Monthly Searches: 2.8 Million
We would not have any of this if an eccentric billionaire did not decide to use his genius to create a suit of armor from scrap to help him escape a cave in the middle of nowhere.
Now we have a decade of movies that break boundaries, travel galaxies and take our imagination to places it has never gone. All because of one man, Tony Stark. Say what you will about the man, but he is the only reason the Avengers exist. Sorry, Nick Fury!
Iron Man played an integral part in bringing the Avengers together, and please keep in mind that he was one of the first people to be considered for the team. Other than his capabilities as a hero, the technology used by the avengers and the funding they have mostly come from the Stark Foundation.
Even the initial headquarters was the old Stark Tower. It can be argued that it was Tony’s adventures that opened up the earth and let forces know that the human race was progressing fast, but hey, we would not have these movies if he did nothing. So, stop complaining.
Played by none other than the outstanding Robert Downey Jr., Iron Man has become the most iconic of the Avengers, and Downy has made it so that no one would be able to question his work.
When Stan Lee created the character, he wanted to make a hero that everyone would be forced to love. While haunted by his past and ego, Tony Stark still tries to redeem himself and do his best to help the world.
The story of Robert Downey Jr.’s life is not different, and this makes him loved by the people. A promising actor who lost his way, decided to work on himself, and then went on to become one of the greatest actors of our lifetime. Downey was truly born to play this role.
It was a sob fest in theaters when Tony Stark had to be killed off. However, it was poetic. What started with him ended with him.
#2 Thor Odinson
Played by: Chris Hemsworth
Monthly Searches: 3.5 Million
This is one of the few surviving members of the Big Three. The God of Thunder is one of the strongest members of the Avengers and the only one among them who is not of earthly origin.
Based on Norse Mythology, Stan Lee wrote this character as close to the Nordic God as possible. Thor was born and raised on Asgard and only knew of the earth as one of the realms he and their ancestors protected.
In MCU’s Avengers, he met Iron Man and Captain America and found out that there were beings who could walk among the Gods and, if needed, even go toe-to-toe with them. Thor is seen as one of the big hitters of the Avengers, and he, quite literally, carries a hammer around. The power to call down lightning is handy in battle.
Played by the annoying good-looking Chris Hemsworth, a certain charm and lovability are brought to the character, contrasting to his mythological counterpart.
Chris Hemsworth bulked up big time for the role, and with how he looks, I would not blame you if you mistake him for a God. He brings a very commanding presence to the table, and yet, he is one of the most gentle.
In a classic, “I’m not human, but I understand what that means better than humans,” Hemsworth has hammered his way into our hearts and is there to stay. Plus, he just looks cool.
#1 Black Widow
Played by: Scarlett Johansson
Monthly Searches: 3.8 Million
The in-house master assassin for the Avengers, Black Widow, is the most popular hero on this roster. Yes, Natasha Romanoff has overtaken each Avenger in the MCU in popularity.
It should come as no surprise because no one is more graceful and deadly than Natasha Romanoff. Natasha is said to have been given a variation of the Super-Soldier serum, which would explain her seamless combat skills and mobility. It’s either that or the extensive training as a Russian assassin.
Whatever it is, we’ve seen her perform feats that would make villains run and hide from her. Starting as a cold Assassin, we get to see Natasha’s transformation into the greatest hero of them all, wanting to save everyone she can. The dynamics between the person she was and became are inspiring, to say the least.
We first glimpse Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in Iron Man 2, and it is love at first sight. She was taking down bad guys left and right while someone watching somewhere was writing down their wedding vows. She certainly lived up to her name and embodied the mysterious spy in all her comic book glory.
Like Hawkeye, Black Widow did not have any obvious powers, but the fact that she could take on superpowered individuals and beat them to a pulp drew more people to her. Young girls were taken up with the fact that this normal human woman could beat down more powerful foes than herself.
It doesn’t matter which angle you look at it. Black Widow is among the most carefully written characters in the MCU. Johansson’s stint as Widow has seen her slowly go from a silent killer to a leader who could command the greatest heroes in the universe. Her eventual sacrifice was a testimony to that. From someone who was taught to survive no matter what to a hero who gave her life to save half the universe.
The original Avengers will always be the best of them all. It started with these heroes starting off as nothing more than test subjects, captives, naive Gods, and cold-blooded assassins.
Now, they are figures to look up to, to draw inspiration from, tales of perseverance and hope. This MCU will continue to expand and travel the multiverse, but these six will forever be remembered. A group of remarkable people who became something more.
So, Who is your favorite Avenger? Please let us know, and do visit Averagebeing.com for more comic content, articles, and news!