I’m Worried About The MCU’s New Avengers & It’s All The Infinity Saga’s Fault

Split image of Rhodey looking serious in uniform and Sam Wilson smirking in Falcon and the Winter Soldier

The Infinity Saga is responsible for putting the MCU‘s new Avengers in a very worrying position. The MCU’s Infinity Saga comprised its first three phases, ending with Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home before Black Widow would launch the movies of the Multiverse Saga in MCU Phase 4. Black Widow would then kick off a string of movies that grossed around the same as the earliest movies of the MCU, though still falling short of the $500 million and $450 million grossed by Iron Man and Thor, respectively.

This was a worrying sign of things to come. As Shang-Chi and Eternals welcomed all-new characters to the MCU in the wake of a solid conclusion, audiences that were so heavily invested in the main players of the Infinity Saga failed to demonstrate the same level of enthusiasm for fresher faces and characters less accustomed to the Infinity Saga’s limelight, despite them debuting alongside the likes of Steve Rogers and Tony Stark. This worrying trend doesn’t seem to have changed course as Avengers 5′s release date slowly approaches.

Avengers 5’s Hero Lineup Must Rely On The Infinity Saga’s Underappreciated Heroes

Sam Wilson in his new blue Captain America suit in Captain America Brave New World image

Of the possible future Avengers who debuted in the Infinity Saga, only Thor, Spider-Man, and Ant-Man appeared in more than one movie where they were the focus. Perhaps the most egregiously sidelined character of the Infinity Saga, meanwhile, is Bruce Banner – whose solo appearance in the earliest days of the MCU has never been followed up. While he and most other future Avengers candidates were all part of the ensemble in at least one of the Infinity Saga’s Avengers movies, they mostly played second fiddle to more mainstream heroes like the now-absent Steve Rogers and Tony Stark.

The height of the Infinity Saga was the perfect time to do precisely the opposite. It’s no secret that the future of the MCU was not meticulously planned out from the very start. Still, striking a better balance between shining a light on Tony Stark, Steve Rogers and other auxiliary characters would have helped to engender greater fervor for possible future appearances from characters like Sam Wilson, who may be the one to finally form the new iteration of the team. Currently, Wilson’s first attempt to do so may occur too late in the tail-end of MCU Phase 5.

The theory that Sam might be the one to form the new Avengers gained traction when exclusive footage of Captain America: Brave New World saw President Thunderbolt Ross instructing him to do so.

The Infinity Saga’s Ending Should Have Set Up Its Legacy Heroes Better

MCU heroes charge forward together in the Battle of Earth in Avengers: Endgame

The cohesion between the first Avengers was a lot stronger halfway through the Infinity Saga than it is for the new Avengers halfway through the Multiverse Saga. This is thanks largely to the lackluster way in which Avengers: Endgame left things for the newer heroes, who went their separate ways to deal with the fallout of the Infinity Saga rather than immediately embark on their own unified questAnt-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania was the first to dip its toe in a unifying factor, but it’s too little too late compared with how the Infinity Saga brought its heroes together.

Sadly, time is running short for the MCU to pick up steam. This could make the moment in which the Avengers finally reassemble feel shoehorned or rushed as it falls to the latter half of MCU Phase 5 and the entirety of MCU Phase 6 to start tying narratives together ahead of Avengers 5. With so many unsung heroes at its center, meanwhile, it is hard to see how audiences can muster up the same level of excitement as they did for Avengers: Infinity War.

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