MCU: The main character in every movie from Phase One

Every movie from the first phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe has a prominent character, from Black Widow in Iron Man 2 to Loki in The Avengers.

Kevin Feige, the esteemed president of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, recently announced that Phase VI of the franchise is the culmination of “The Multiverse Saga.” With dozens of superheroes lining up to join the Avengers roster and the cosmic threat of Kang the Conqueror on the horizon, Phase 1 feels like a distant memory. Before the introduction of the multiverse and incursions, the first stage gathered six of Earth’s most powerful heroes to battle an alien army in New York.

Phase One established the MCU trend that each entry in the franchise has a character that stands out from the rest—and not always the one whose name is in the title. Each Phase One movie has a prominent character, from Black Widow in iron man 2 To Loki rolling in the mustache Avengers.

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6 Iron Man – Tony Stark

Robert Downey Jr in Iron Man 2008

Not only is Tony Stark the iconic character in his first appearance on the big screen; He is arguably the leading character in the entire MCU. From the moment he was introduced in the media with a military convoy in Afghanistan to the moment he sacrificed his life to save the universe with the Infinity Stones, Tony was a truly charismatic figure that audiences around the world cheered on. Robert Downey Jr.’s mother has made an all-professional comeback with the original Iron Man The movie, the movie that launched the entire MCU.

Lots of lovable characters revolve around the supporting cast of Iron Man, from Rudy to Agent Coulson, but Downey has the film on his shoulders. Downey’s semi-improvised dialogue brings a fresh, lively feel to a well-built, typical narrative. Tony is presented as a flawed character, and throughout the film, he gradually learns to be a better person.

5 Incredible Hulk – Bruce Banner

Edward Norton as Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk

The second entry in the MCU, Incredible Hulk, is another case of the title character successfully carrying her own movie. Edward Norton only played the Hulk in that one movie — he was promptly replaced by Mark Ruffalo for the rest of the MCU movies — but he made for the awesome Bruce Banner while it lasted. Incredible Hulk It’s generally considered one of the weakest installments in the MCU, but Norton brought plenty of pity to the titular role.

The Ruffalo banner has been used extensively for comic relief in the years since Incredible Hulk It hit theaters, but Norton’s mantra was honestly conflicted about his volatile temper and the monster within him. It’s not just a goofball. It is a 3D accurate figure.

4 Iron Man 2 – Natasha Romanov

Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in Iron Man 2

Black Widow won’t have her MCU single for more than a decade (for some reason), but she stole the show on her debut. After Nick Fury tease at first Iron Man movie credits iron man 2 He began to round out the list of Avengers he was collecting.

Scarlett Johansson proved to be a great scene partner for Downey, matching his comedic timing with one simple style. Nat was over-sexualized in her MCU debut—a problem that later films made efforts to fix—but her early fight scenes still prove the character as a badass not to be messed with.

3 Thor – Darcy Lewis

Thor is now one of the most widely loved superheroes in the blockbuster scene. For a decade in his personal world, he went through a phase of sadness and depression and came out the other side as a loving father who achieved inner peace. But it took some time to get there. At first he was given a faint characterization as a self-indulgent, pseudo-Shakespearean jerk.

Kenneth Prana original ox The film is an out-of-water story about a Norse god who is stripped of his power and banished to land. As Jane Foster’s idiot best friend Darcy Lewis, Kat Dennings ox Comic relief films before Taika Waititi debuted and turned the franchise into one long exercise in comic form.

2 Captain America: The First Avenger – Howard Stark

Dominic Cooper as Howard Stark in Captain America First Avenger

Tony’s father, Howard Stark, was introduced from beyond the grave in Iron Man Movies. In a video he filmed before his death, Tony is inspired to create an entirely new chemical element in one of the MCU’s first silly leaps into scientific reasoning. Howard appeared as a younger man as the inventor of Captain America’s shield (and a host of other cool weapons and gadgets) in the World War II film Origin of Cap.

in first avengerSteve Rogers first appeared as a standard good agent. It wasn’t particularly convincing until the Rousseau brothers ramped up the action scenes. In full Howard Hughes mode, eccentric and attractive young Howard Stark steals the show first avenger. Dominic Cooper’s stand on Howard is as effortlessly charming and unabashedly cocky as his son.

1 Avengers – Loki

The Avengers Caged Loki 2012

It’s rare for a villain to overshadow heroes – especially in the MCU, a franchise often accused of having a “villain problem” – but Loki managed to steal the spotlight from six of Earth’s most powerful heroes in the first Avengers Movie. He acts as an infantryman for Thanos, bringing his army to New York to launch a large-scale (unsuccessfully) invasion of Earth.

Avengers He doesn’t hold back with the character’s dark tendencies – he’s evil spirits and kills without remorse – but Tom Hiddleston remains irresistibly charming. “If all this is the same for you, I will drink this drink now.”

Next: Each MCU movie in Phase 1, ranked by rehabability

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