While this article is at heart pure and simple speculation, a couple of plot points from The Avengers do crop up, most notably one major plot point and one big reveal. If you don’t want anything spoiling then hold back on this until you’ve seen the film. So yes, spoilers for The Avengers!
Thanos – The appearance of the Cosmic Universe’s favourite titan opens up the Marvel Cinematic Universe considerably. While Thor may have already done that to some extent, by focussing upon a figure like Thanos the direction taken will be considerably different.
The creatively most satisfying narrative structure would be for one to see Thanos working behind the scenes of each of the upcoming individual films, and for him to be the big bad in an eventual Avengers sequel. Saying that, there’s just as much of a chance that the character will simply be used as the villain in Thor 2. We hope not: the ambition and scale suggested by his very appearance alone is little short of a game-changer for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Agent Coulson – Coulson is dead. While from a poetic standpoint the characters demise was almost necessary to close the book on the first chapter of the MCU, wouldnt it be nice to see newest best pals Tony Stark and Bruce Banner work together to solve this little problem (Hey, this is the comic-book world we’re talking about). Completely hypothesising here, but The Vision hasn’t yet made an appearance (pun intended), and he kinda needs a “brainwave” for a personality…
Banner – Speaking of which, what is to be of Bruce B? The final moments of the film threw something of a curveball, in that he and Stark had bonded and drove off in to the sunset together. Does this mean that Iron Man 3 will feature the pair? Here’s hoping. Sadly though, we’d imagine that having a Hulk on your payroll automatically adds another $10million to your budget, so we suspect any such appearance will be limited. It ought to also go without saying that we would love to see Harry Dean Stanton appear in any and all future Hulk movies.
Thor – It was quickly established how Thor could, if necessary, get back to Earth, in spite of the destruction of the Bifröst at the end of his standalone movie. His relationship with Earth was also clarified (as protector). So where does he go next? Thor 2 is due to start filming in the next few months, and as we’ve hypothesised above Thanos might be the villain (we hope not though). The return of Loki to Asgard is interesting too: we’re fairly sure that its been confirmed that Loki isn’t the main villain in the next Thor film, but as anyone knows his presence alone is enough to expect chaos. We wouldn’t bet against a story which revolves around a post-Avengers Chitauri seeking revenge against Loki (this was promised in The Avengers after all…), bringing a battle between Gods and Aliens to the fore.
Captain America – We suspect that the emphasis on that one particular bank-teller saved by Rogers during the films closing battle was more than a throw-away moment. The same girl appeared in the media montage at the end of the film too, so we’re just going to throw this out there: the woman in question is Sharon Carter, niece of Steve’s World War 2-era love interest Peggy, and future object of his affections herself. Rogers’ relationship with women is a long (temporally at least) and complicated tale, and we’d love to see it form the backbone of Captain America’s exploration of the modern world in the next standalone Cap film.
S.H.I.E.L.D – A Mission:Impossible-esque spin off featuring the likes of Nick Fury, Maria Hill, Hawkeye and Black Widow could be fantastic. A little un-Super perhaps for the MCU, but it could be a refreshing alternative. We got a hint of the wider S.H.I.E.LD world in Black Widow’s introductory vignette in The Avengers, in which the character was seen taking down Georgi Luchkov, who’s appearance was all the more remarkable thanks to him being played by Polish filmmaker Jerzy Skolimowski!
Events – – While the presence of the Skrull (in their Chitauri Ultimate iteration due to rights issues) suggests major events like the Kree Skrull War or Secret Invasion are a likely possibility for the future. One might presume that Civil War, given its stature within the mainstream would also be a likely future event. There would have to be pretty significant changes in character for that particular story to fall in to place (The roles of Captain America and Iron Man seem pretty much reversed from how they were prior to in the comic-book version of the event for a start). Civil War is arguably the biggest and best known event in the contemporary comic-book universe, and we fully expect it to happen at some point (especially given the emphasis on the effects of the Avengers on the people and the world around them in the closing moments of this film). Besides, if the woods scene in The Avengers is but a hint of things to come in a superhero on superhero showdown then we think it’ll be something worth getting excited for. with that in mind though, the scale of the world needs to be much bigger (in terms of the number of superheroes involved).
As we said in our review of The Avengers, one of our favourite aspects of the film was that it didnt feel like an ending, which is what many had suspected. The manner in which the world has expanded, without force and naturally, is perhaps its greatest strength. We look forward to seeing what comes next.
Our review of The Avengers can be found HERE. Also, check out this weeks Film Clash for an audible review of the movie, and catch up with our recent look at the rest of the films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe HERE.