Weird Marvel characters who would surprise us all

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is filled with unforgettable heroes. And, like the comics they're based on, these movies are constantly adding more and more characters. Some are fan favorites like Spider-Man, but there are plenty more obscure Marvel characters that would have just as big an impact on the MCU if given the chance. From beings powered by stars, to beings powered by squirrels, here are some of the most obscure Marvel characters that need to join up with Earth's Mightiest Heroes in the MCU.

Squirrel Girl

Squirrel Girl is a bit like Spider-Man in that her name pretty much describes what you get from the character. She is a young character who has the powers of a squirrel. What does that mean, exactly? A super-flexible tail, super-strong teeth, claws for fighting and climbing, and the ability to literally speak the language of squirrels. She also has very Spider-Man-esque enhanced agility and the absolutely adorable habit of carrying around Marvel universe trading cards that help give her vital info on good guys and bad guys alike.

Why would this weird character be a valuable addition to the MCU? One reason is that she brings a very welcome bit of lighthearted humor to a movie series that can sometimes skew too serious. For instance, part of why fans responded so positively to Guardians of the Galaxy and Spider-Man's Civil War cameo is that these instances showed warmth and humor. Squirrel Girl is a character that doesn't at all hide the silly source material. She also has the potential for amazing interactions with other characters. In the comics, she trades barbs on Twitter with Tony Stark and takes selfies with the planet-eating Galactus after she redirects him from Earth to a planet full of nuts, upon which they both pig out. It's also tough to resist just how "genre-aware" the character is, as when she adopts the classic 1960s Spider-Man theme into her own unique song. Deadpool can break the fourth wall, why not Squirrel Girl?

Ms. Marvel

When it comes to the MCU, the name Ms. Marvel may immediately elicit confusion. Isn't she already getting a movie? Actually, the character slated to get her big screen debut is Carol Danvers. This is a human character who has special powers unlocked via alien manipulation and has gone by many names, including Binary, Ms. Marvel, and, most recently, Captain Marvel. Who, then, is the most recent Ms. Marvel? She's a teenager who figures out that she has unique Inhuman genes when Terrigen Mists unlock her powers. She had previously idolized Carol Danvers and decides to take up the old Ms. Marvel moniker while using her newfound powers to defend her home of Jersey City.

Why would she be a great choice for the MCU? To start with, the young Ms. Marvel is a very diverse hero. As both a teenager and a prominent Muslim, she brings a diversity of age, sex, ethnicity, and belief to a cinematic crew that, to be honest, skews old, white, and male. She also channels many of the elements that fans loved about classic Spider-Man storylines. The challenge of balancing life as a teenager and time as a superhero is right in her wheelhouse. Finally, she would be a prominent entry to the world of the Inhumans, which has had an on again, off again relationship with the MCU after being introduced in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., announced as a movie, and then "demoted" to a TV show/IMAX special hybrid.

Kate Bishop

Kate Bishop's superhero name is simply Hawkeye, and as the name implies, she has a fondness for both bows and Clint Barton the Avenger. While her comic incarnation has had various adventures with groups such as the Young Avengers, she really came to life in Matt Fraction's Hawkeye series, which paired her alongside Clint Barton in a variety of capers. Clint functions as kind of a mentor for her, but she witnesses his failures as a hero and human quite often, and helps to keep him on the straight and narrow.

So why does the MCU need another Hawkeye? She synthesizes some of the best elements of a variety of popular MCU characters. For instance, she has the impeccable aim of Hawkeye, the spunky attitude of Spider-Man, and the detective skills of Jessica Jones, as demonstrated when she helps take down Madame Masque and later opens up her own private investigation business. She also works well as a character who straddles multiple worlds, as she helps out heroes like the Avengers while maintaining a healthy degree of distrust in major organizations like S.H.I.E.L.D. In short, she is a young, badass, independent female hero, and the MCU could definitely use more of those.

Man-Thing

Man-Thing has the dubious distinction of already having appeared in his own live-action movie, via a 2005 horror film regarded as one of the worst Marvel films ever. So, let's just forget about that and look ahead. Man-Thing is a spiritual cousin to DC's Swamp Thing, being a swamp monster that lives in Florida's Everglades. He was once a scientist named Ted Sallis who was transformed through a combination of mysticism and mad science, and now no one knows what to make of him. That is very literal, as characters do not know how to communicate with him or even if he possesses a human-like intelligence.

So why would a mute, Florida, not-quite-Swamp Thing make a good addition to the MCU? One reason is that he makes for a great accidental hero. Audiences have already shown how much they enjoy antiheroes like The Punisher, and Man-Thing takes this a step further by being someone who finds himself in the center of weird events and makes heroic actions, though no one can figure out why. He is also a great character to bring a bit of mystery to the MCU. In a film series filled with super-scientists trying to figure everything out, it's good to have someone they cannot quantify, categorize, or understand. Finally, Man-Thing brings with him the chance to do actual horror movies within the MCU, which is an exciting prospect in and of itself.

Darkhawk

Darkhawk's origin is a bit like if you put Iron Man and Doctor Strange's origin stories in a blender. The character himself is actually Christopher Powell, a teenager from Queens whose life takes a walk on the wild side when he finds a magical amulet. The amulet lets him take control of a powerful android body and, like anyone who really loves Robocop, he decided to use the robotic body to fight crime. As time went on he discovered the android body was on a ship in a dimension called Null Space when he wasn't using it, and he later experienced the requisite stories of mind and body swaps with the android.

What makes this character an interesting addition to the MCU? The fact that he straddles so many worlds would make it easy to have logical cameos, for one thing. For instance, Doctor Strange would likely show great interest in the mystical amulet that powers him, just as Tony Stark would show great interest in the android body. Heck, even the Guardians of the Galaxy would likely be interested in discovering what Null Space is and how ships there work. Basically, Darkhawk is a built-in opportunity to have countless Marvel team-ups — the kind that comic fans have enjoyed for decades.

Swordsman

Swordsman is another character whose name pretty much gives you the gist of who he is. The character is an ace swordfighter who has been on both sides of the law at different times. Over time his sword was enhanced with various "trick" abilities to help him win fights. If the latter sounds a bit familiar, there's a reason for that: Swordsman is very similar to Hawkeye in that he is a regular human who uses his own skill, along with enhanced weaponry, to win fights. In fact, the comics Swordsman even helped train Hawkeye.

Why does the MCU need another character very similar to Hawkeye? One reason is that The Avengers could use more "street-level" heroes, and both the threat of Thanos and the threat of expiring actor contracts means that Hawkeye and Captain America will not be in these movies forever. He also represents an opportunity to explore some of the Hawkeye-esque stories the movies glossed over, such as being a villain that is eventually redeemed and fights on the side of angels. That alone would be a very compelling arc in a series of movies that is often guilty of using one-note villains that are easily killed at the end of the movie. Plus, he represents an opportunity to bring more swashbuckling to the MCU, and who doesn't want that?

Cosmo the Spacedog

This next character that needs to be a major part of the MCU is someone that is already part of the MCU in an amusing (but very brief) cameo. Cosmo the Spacedog is a Soviet-era spaceflight test dog that eventually winds up in Knowhere, the area where the Guardians of the Galaxy get attacked by Ronin's forces in their first movie. Somewhere along the way, the dog develops a range of mental powers, such as telepathy, telekinesis, and mind control, along with above-human-average intelligence and an enhanced lifespan. He was briefly seen with The Collector in the first Guardians movie, so why does he need a greater presence in the MCU? The first and most basic reason is because he's hilariously adorable. In an age where people can't stop sharing cute animal photos, the MCU could definitely use "adorable space dog" in its cast. He also helps drive home the idea of the space side of the MCU as being really strange, something that fans responded to quite positively when it came to Guardians of the Galaxy. His telepathic abilities could also be leveraged for great humor, something that is already happening in the second Guardians of the Galaxy movie with the character of Mantis reading Star-Lord's sexual attraction to Gamora. He also has a hilarious dynamic with Rocket in the comics (the two don't get along so well), which could be a lot of fun to explore.

Starbrand

Like many comic characters, "Starbrand" is a name that has been used by many people who wield a particular power. In this case, the power itself is known as the Starbrand, which grants the character seemingly limitless power that is fueled by the character's imagination. This would seem to present a difficulty in implementing them into the MCU at first blush — what do you do with a character that can do anything? The Starbrand comic got around this problem by making the primary character a teenage boy named Kenneth Connell. He is essentially given the powers of a god, but is constantly frightened by questions of what he should do with his power. So why bring him into the MCU? He represents an opportunity to explore more metaphysical questions about power, man, and god — questions Tony Stark often skirts, such as when he tried to play god by creating Ultron. Starbrand would also represent someone that it would take almost all of the heroes to take down, so in time, he could be a foe to replace Thanos after the Avengers help take him out as the big bad of the MCU. Finally, his character is an opportunity to explore the psychology of someone given too much power. Just as Tony Stark was overwhelmed by a world of gods and alien monsters, it would be fascinating to see how a teenager copes with being given unlimited power and his struggle to achieve the correspondingly unlimited responsibility.

Spider-Gwen

The Marvel Universe of the comics is no stranger to multiple realities. The character of Spider-Gwen comes from one of these alt-universes and her story is more or less embedded in her name. In her universe, Gwen Stacey was actually bitten by the radioactive spider while Peter Parker dies tragically, forcing Gwen into the role of the heroic teenager who saves a city plagued by monsters and corrupt cops alike. Part of the fun of reading her comic adventures is seeing all the parallels and major diversions of her own reality. For instance, while J. Jonah Jameson still tries to get the public to turn against her, this world involves Gwen dodging her cop father's investigation while navigating between obstacles like maniac cop Frank "The Punisher" Castle and Matt Murdock (who, in this universe, is a crooked lawyer and enforcer for the Kingpin).

So, what would make this alternate universe darling fit well into the MCU, in which she'd have to integrate with our favorite characters and settings instead of her own? One reason is that Gwen Stacey is a likeable character. She also serves as an interesting mirror for Spider-Man to gaze into — a perpetual reminder of "there but for the grace of God." Like Ms. Marvel and Kate Bishop, she would also be another young, female hero in the MCU. Finally, Spider-Gwen's very different experiences with her versions of our characters would make her interactions with them constantly entertaining. How would she handle meeting Peter Parker, whom she thought was dead? What would she make of a Matt Murdock who tirelessly crusades for the poor and downtrodden? Or a Frank Castle that is hunted by the cops instead of hunting as a cop? Spider-Gwen represents a chance to bring all of the fun of the old "What if?" Marvel comics to the MCU — with a great character, to boot.

Ares

Ares is another character who is exactly what he sounds like. The name evokes the god of war because that is exactly who he is. Like some of the other characters on this list, he has been both a hero and a villain at different times. In his earlier appearances in the comics, he was a Thor foe who was very interested in creating war and discord on Earth. Later, he was written as more of an antihero recruited by the Avengers and happy to help because they always participate in the greatest battles.

Why should the MCU have another god in its midst? In the fullness of time, Ares might eventually replace Thor if the MCU (or contract negotiations) remove our favorite Asgardian from the equation. He also helps to broaden audience understanding of what it means to be a god in the MCU. Ares is also a character that could serve as either hero or villain, as it's easy to imagine Loki or someone else convincing him that it would be a greater battle to take on the Avengers than to fight alongside. And, like Starbrand, it is fascinating to imagine the greatest heroes on Earth having to take on an actual god (Loki not withstanding). If nothing else, the battle would be an amazing spectacle to watch.

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