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Last week THN looked at the line-up for a prospective Justice League of America movie. With MARVEL’S AVENGERS ASSEMBLE taking $1 billion worldwide, the chances that DC Comics will follow suit with a JLA movie have increased significantly. Whilst it’s all hearsay at the moment, what is for certain – and was always inevitable – is that Marvel is moving forward with AVENGERS 2, with a potential release date of summer 2014.

So what does AVENGERS 2 have in store? Details are obviously sparse right now, but we do know there are further IRON MAN, CAPTAIN AMERICA and THOR movies scheduled for production beforehand – could this open doors for other characters from the Marvel universe? By the time the AVENGERS sequel rolls around, the team may be assembling brand new members. After all, the comic version of the superhero squad is forever changing, and with Marvel Studios perfecting the ‘crossover’, commonsense dictates more super-folk will join the party.

Here’s a quick rundown of the ten (alright, twelve) characters THN would most like to see added to the Avengers…

HERCULES

Demigod, adventurer, and all-round hairy hardnut.

Super Powers: Superhuman strength, stamina, and durability. What would you expect from the Olympian God of Strength and Labour?

Avengers History: Joining the team in 1967, Hercules has fought alongside the Avengers on-off ever since (even copping off with Black Widow for a brief period – saucy devil).

Assemble This: After Kenneth Brannagh’s THOR proved Shakespeare-in-the-park lingo and fantasy-based action can work on-screen, Hercules could be an interesting character to throw into the mix. The larger-than-life Hercules would be an ideal opponent-come-super buddy for either Thor or Hulk. Or both, preferably – the kind of three way smackdown that fanboys can only dream of. Though perhaps a left-field choice, following the success of THOR, Hercules could be a contender.

ANT-MAN & WASP

Insect-sized husband and wife, Dr Hank and Janet Pym.

Super Powers: The ability to reduce in size, fly, communicate with insects, and fire bio-electric blasts.

Avnegers History: Overlooked for the first AVENGERS movie, the Pyms are in fact founding members, and remained with various incarnations of the team over the years. Though Janet is now deceased, Hank is the head of Avengers Academy.

Assemble This: Well-deserving of a place in the team, the duo can offer skills the other Avengers can’t – squeezing into small spaces and proving difficult targets for cumbersome villains. And after the top-notch banter between Tony Stark and Bruce Banner in AVENGERS ASSEMBLE, eggheads are in this season. Good news for Dr Hank, who invented the serum which turns him and the missus into tiny heroes (and then later into the giant… erm, Giant-Man). With Edgar Wright still teasing a potential Ant-Man solo movie, the Pyms could be a likely addition to the AVENGERS sequel.

WOLVERINE

AKA Logan AKA Weapon X. The best there is at what he does, and Marvel’s most celebrated X-Man. Snikty Snitk!

Super Powers: A regenerative healing factor, heightened senses, and animal-like strength, speed, and agility. Oh, and three mother retractable claws on each hand.

Avengers History: Joining the New Avengers in 2005, Wolverine has remained with the team ever since, juggling World’s Mightiest Hero duties with X-Men and X-Force membership. Busy boy.

Assemble This: Not only a popular comics character, but the crux of the X-MEN movies, Wolverine would be a welcome addition to the Avengers team. With Hugh Jackman featuring as Logan in five movies to date, and another in the works, he has established star value. However, with 20th Century Fox currently in possession of the X-Men license, it’ll be a long while (and a major payoff from Marvel Studios) before this crossover becomes a reality.

LUKE CAGE

Harlem native turned Power Man and Hero for Hire…

Super Powers: One of many to have been tested with Super-Soldier Serums. Cage possesses super strength, endurance, and an almost unbreakable skin.

Avengers History: Enlisted in 2005, Cage has been a major player in the Avengers ever since, and played a prominent role in the superhero Civil War, in which Cap’ and Iron Man led opposing forces into battle. Cage currently heads up the New Avengers.

Assemble This: Growing up on the wrong side of the tracks, rough diamond Cage could provide an interesting character arc and contrast to the current Avengers line-up. The former Power Man dabbled in petty crime, and even put a price on his superhuman talents before becoming one of the comic universe’s most-admired men and an integral part of the Avengers. Cage could add some grit and hard-knocks truth to Marvel’s colourful movies.

Ms Marvel

The lovely Carol Danvers – former S.H.I.E.L.D. agent, NASA whistleblower, and editor of Woman magazine.

Super Power: Following exposure to Kree technology, Danvers became half alien, and gained super strength, speed, flight, and photonic blasts from her fingers. Standard really.

Avengers History: After pursing careers as both NASA operative and writer, Danvers became a celebrity superhero, eventually joining the Avengers in 1979. She remains a current member of the New Avengers.

Assemble This: With Black Widow proving herself as more than just eye candy, the door has opened for another female superhero to join the Avengers. And let’s face it, there are far too few lady-heroes tearing it up on the big screen. And whilst Black Widow relies on smarts, Danvers can match the fellas for bonafide powers. Also, as her writer days made her something of a celeb, she could be perfect foil for Robert Downey Jr’s Tony Stark.

Namor The Sub-Mariner

The Prince of Atlantis and 70-year comic book veteran.

Super Power: Half-mutant half-Atlantean, Namor is super strong, fast, and can even fly. And as one might imagine, he’s a bloody good swimmer.

Avengers History: Whilst he has at times battled the Avengers during his long history, Namor joined their ranks in 1985 for a period. Also a good friend of Captain America’s, following the pair’s united allegiance against the Nazis in World War II.

Assemble This: With his temperamental relationship with the ‘surface world’, Namor could play the role of on-off ally, and even take on minor villain duties before committing to the team. Perhaps less known in the general public consciousness, Namor remains a readers’ cult favourite, and will be ripe for the big screen treatment now that Marvel’s A-list has been thoroughly plundered. There’s been talk before of a Namor movie (Duane ‘the Rock’ Johnson has been previously rumoured), and leading into AVENGERS 2, now could be the right time…

Spider-Man

Amazing, spectacular, he’s your friendly, neighborhood Spider-Man.

Super Powers: Does whatever a spider can. Apparently.

Avengers History: Joined in 1990 and continued for almost a decade before resigning. Unmasked and revealed his identity to the world during the superhero ‘Civil War’ that split the Avengers team in two. Currently a member of the New Avengers.

Assemble This: As arguably Marvel’s most popular character, who doesn’t want to see Spider-Man in some comic crossover action? With his arachnid abilities, Spider-Man could make a unique (not to mention stylish) contribution to the action. As a far younger superhero, famous for his witty zingers and reluctant heroics, he’d be an interesting character to add to the already-diverse Avengers team. However, much like Wolverine, Spidey belongs to another studio (Sony Pictures), so don’t expect him to swing into the Avengers sequels anytime soon.

The Vision

The artificial humanoid who wishes he was a real boy.

Super Powers: Though the Vision’s android body replicates human organs, blood, and tissue, it’s artificiality allows for a handy range of powers: flight, durability, the ability to control his own density, and shooting energy beams to name a few.

Avengers History: Created by Ultron with the sole purpose of destroying the Avengers, the Vision broke his programming and joined the team, turning on his demented creator. He remains a popular figure from Avengers history.

Assemble This: The Vision’s villainous roots and eventual turn to the ‘good side’ could prove for fascinating subplot material in the Avengers sequel. Most interesting perhaps is his internal conflict: an synthetic being who experiences human emotions. He’s also a bit of a ladies man, copping off with Scarlet Witch and Ms Marvel over the years. A bit of lady-on-android action, anyone? A likely candidate for AVENGERS 2.

Black Panther

Leader of the Panther Clan and King of Wakanda.

Super Powers: Aside from all the usual powers, Black Panther, or T’challa, has acute animal-like senses and reflexes. Also a bit of a brain box, scoring a Ph.D in physics from Oxford.

Avengers History: After infiltrating the Avengers to test their weaknesses, T’Challa soon became an ally, and has been an on-off team member since.

Assemble This: So far we’ve had gods, scientists, assassins, and super soldiers – the Black Panther’s tribal roots could bring a whole new dynamic to the group. His nation of Wakanda is also where the rare metal Vibranium originates (the metal used for Cap’s shiled), so perhaps the Avengers will find themselves there to plunder the nation’s resources, coming to blows then eventually joining forces with T’challa?

Scarlet Witch & Quicksilver

Magneto’s mutant offspring, twins Wanda and Pietro Maximoff.

Super Powers: Taking after their old man, the siblings boast some pretty impressive abilities: Wanda can warp and alter reality, whilst Pietro posses seriously-super speed.

Avengers History: After a period in Magneto’s Brotherhood of Mutants, the pair saw the light and joined the Avengers’ second major line-up, led by Captain America, and remained prominent members over the years. Pietro still acts as an instructor at Avengers Academy.

Assemble This: It’s difficult to know if Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver truly belong to the Avengers or X-Men universe, as they have played vital roles in both. Could they be the first step in uniting the two franchises? Whilst this may be the stuff of fanboy fantasy for now, the twins deserve a place in the Avengers franchise somewhere down the line. With their colourful past they could play villain and hero, and even introduce the mutant race into the Marvel Studios’ universe…

THE AVENGERS 2 is expected for release 2014

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