We’ve all seen “The Avengers” by now. Some of us have seen it twice. “Iron Man 3” comes out next year, followed by “Thor 2” and, inevitably, another “Captain America” movie and an “Avengers” sequel.
So what else do we want to see from Marvel Comics-based movies?
Carried to extremes, the fan wish list could include a Marvel Team-Up movie featuring Aunt Petunia and Aunt May. (Surely Marvel has published that comic book?)
So here are some reasonable requests:
Iron Man and the Hulk: Apparently, until just before “The Avengers” opened and moviegoers saw how much fun the Green Goliath could be in the right (Joss Whedon’s) hands, Marvel didn’t plan on making another “Hulk” movie. After two misfires (although I liked the Edward Norton movie just fine), the studio couldn’t get the Hulk right.
Well, Whedon realized that the Hulk is best when used judiciously. Mark Ruffalo was great as Bruce Banner and his mo-cap performance as the Hulk was terrific. But Hulk was a supporting character in “The Avengers.” So why not make him a supporting character in someone else’s movie? And although “Iron Man 3” is probably pretty well defined by now, surely there’s room for a couple of scenes of Banner and a couple of Hulk-outs? After all, didn’t “The Avengers” show Banner and Tony Stark leaving together, presumably so Stark could show the sympatico scientist his R&D facility?
Ant-Man and the Wasp: Leading up to “The Avengers,” there was a lot of speculation about who would play Hank Pym and Janet Van Dyne, the loving, bickering adventurers who, as Ant-Man and the Wasp, were founding members of the Avengers in the comics. Heck, socialite Van Dyne even gave the team its name.
So the characters didn’t appear in “The Avengers.” An Ant-Man movie might be in the works, but the characters don’t appear headed for the big screen anytime soon. Which is too bad. Wasp could be a very fun female role that’s very different from Black Widow. And Pym is a natural, especially considering his multitude of sizes and identities: Giant Man, Goliath, Yellow Jacket. This must happen!
The Vision: If you have Henry Pym, why not the Vision? Pym’s murderous robot creation, Ultron, created the Vision as a means of killing the Avengers. Turns out the Vision preferred to side with the good guys, however. Over the years, Vision, in his distinctive red-and-green-and-yellow outfit, became one of the key members of the group and fell in love with, and married, the Scarlet Witch. The Vision is like Spock and Data from “Star Trek” — only cooler, if that’s possible.
Dr. Strange: There’s been rumblings of a movie featuring Marvel’s sorcerer supreme for a while now. Since magic — or at least otherworldly science that can pass for magic — has been established in the on-screen Marvel universe, there’s no reason this mystical adventurer wouldn’t fit.
Superhero cameos, AKA rooftop encounters with Spidey: Marvel’s animated version of its super team, “The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes,” has introduced an expanded Marvel universe that live-action movie fans can only dream of: On the Disney XD series, the Avengers regularly run into other New York-based heroes like the Fantastic Four. One episode from the first season showed the Avengers rumbling on the NYC streets with some bad guys when, out of the blue, the Human Torch and the Thing show up to help.
It’s the casual world-building that I loved about Marvel when I was a kid, the idea that all these Marvel characters shared the same universe. With the Fantastic Four and Spider-Man owed by other studios, it’ll be tough to pull off crossovers.
But we can dream, can’t we?