- The original Avengers in the MCU were some of the strongest heroes, with each member displaying some of the franchise’s most impressive feats of power throughout the Infinity Saga.
- Clint Barton and Kate Bishop’s battle with the Tracksuit Mafia, Natasha Romanoff and Yelena Belova’s prison breakout, and Bruce Banner’s Hulk’s rampage in Johannesburg were incredibly powerful moments.
Iron Man’s sacrifice using the Infinity Gauntlet was one of the most significant moments in the MCU’s history, while Thor and Steve Rogers’ Captain America also achieved their full potential in
The original Avengers in the MCU showed off some incredible feats of power, proving that they were some of the strongest heroes that Marvel Studios has ever brought into live-action. After setting up each individual member of the titular team throughout the MCU’s Phase 1, the original Avengers finally formed in 2012’s eponymous The Avengers. Comprising Tony Stark’s Iron Man, Steve Rogers’ Captain America, Natasha Romanoff’s Black Widow, Thor, Bruce Banner’s Hulk, and Clint Barton’s Hawkeye, the MCU’s original Avengers team spearheaded the idea of team-ups and crossovers in Marvel Studios’ projects, though only half the original team’s members are still active in the current timeline of the MCU.
Each of the six original Avengers were active throughout the entirety of the MCU’s Infinity Saga, and had the chance to show off some incredible abilities over the first ten years of Marvel Studios’ franchise. While Iron Man and Black Widow sacrificed their lives in 2019’s Avengers: Endgame, and Steve Rogers passed the Captain America mantle on to Sam Wilson, the Hulk, Thor, and Hawkeye have all embarked on new adventures in the Multiverse Saga. Over the duration of their remarkable MCU journeys, each member has displayed some impressive feats of power, and have contributed to some of the MCU’s most spectacular, riveting, and emotional moments.
6 Hawkeye & Kate Bishop Battle The Tracksuit Mafia
Jeremy Renner first appeared as the MCU’s Clint Barton, a.k.a. Hawkeye, in 2011’s Thor, introduced as a prominent agent of SHIELD, and later became a founding member of the Avengers after being broken free from Loki’s mind-control in The Avengers. Despite being a major part of the team throughout the Infinity Saga, Hawkeye was often the most underestimated member of the Avengers, though often managed to show off his accurate aim and empathetic personality. In the wake of Avengers: Endgame, in which Barton witnessed the death of his best friend, Romanoff, he set out on a holiday adventure with Hailee Steinfeld’s MCU newcomer Kate Bishop.
2021’s Hawkeye explored the development of Clint Barton and Kate Bishop’s partnership in detail, culminating in an epic battle between the two archers and Wilson Fisk’s, a.k.a. Kingpin’s, Tracksuit Mafia in the series finale. This was the most cathartic moment in Hawkeye’s MCU journey, not least because it gave him a chance to show off his new, comic-accurate superhero suit, but also because it lead into a moment of remembrance for Black Widow when her surrogate sister, Yelena Belova, burst onto the scene. This also marked a powerful introduction into the MCU for Kate Bishop, who managed to incapacitate Kingpin single-handedly, teasing her becoming the franchise’s new Hawkeye.
5 Black Widow & Yelena Belova Break Red Guardian Out Of Prison
Black Widow (2021)
Much like Clint Barton and Kate Bishop teaming up in Hawkeye, Natasha Romanoff also found herself with a partner for her solo MCU debut in 2021’s Black Widow. Scarlett Johansson portrayed Natasha Romanoff, a.k.a. Black Widow, between 2010’s Iron Man 2 and Black Widow, with the latter releasing after the character’s demise in Endgame, and detailing the events between Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. Romanoff’s surrogate family was introduced in the MCU’s Phase 4, including Yelena Belova, a fellow Black Widow, Alexei Shostakov’s Red Guardian, a Russian super soldier, and Melina Vostokoff, allowing Black Widow to explore a new family storyline in Black Widow’s MCU timeline.
Natasha Romanoff showed off some impressive moments of power throughout her Infinity Saga journey, including her hallway fight scene in Iron Man 2, her battle with Bucky Barnes in Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and helping Wanda Maximoff defeat Proxima Midnight in Avengers: Infinity War. However, her and Yelena’s mission to break Red Guardian out of the high-security Seventh Circle Prison in Black Widow gave Romanoff the chance to show off all her superhero skills. A dangerous helicopter dangle, expert hand-to-hand fighting, and a race against time to escape before an avalanche buried the prison all proved just how capable, efficient, and skilled Romanoff really was.
Black Widow’s Seventh Circle Prison was named after the seventh circle of Hell in Dante’s Inferno, which is full of violent souls. Alexei Shostakov was incarcerated there by General Dreykov, who had become tired of Red Guardian’s rudeness and abrasive personality.
4 Hulk Battles Iron Man’s Hulkbuster In Johannesburg
Avengers: Age Of Ultron (2015)
2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron was perhaps the last time that the angry version of the Hulk has been seen in the MCU, as since then, Bruce Banner has become a victim of Marvel Studios’ “nerfing” – which occurs when a character’s power is reduced for a variety of reasons. Even though many miss the old version of the Hulk, Age of Ultron delivered perhaps the most uninhibited version of the character that the MCU has ever presented. Manipulated by the Scarlet Witch, the Hulk rampaged through the streets of Johannesburg, and only Tony Stark’s epic Hulkbuster armor was powerful enough to take down the Avenger after a breathtaking battle.
Originally portrayed by Edward Norton in 2008’s The Incredible Hulk, Mark Ruffalo assumed the role for The Avengers, and continues to play Bruce Banner in the MCU’s Multiverse Saga. Banner has seen more character development and alterations than most others in the MCU, taking him from raging Hulk to smashing Avenger, and from gladiatorial champion to Smart Hulk from Avengers: Endgame onward. There is speculation that a potential World War Hulk project in the MCU will bring back the original, unadulterated Hulk, but this has yet to be confirmed. It’s just a shame that most of his impressive displays of power have been confined to the MCU’s early adventures.
3 Thor Realizes The True Nature Of His Lightning Powers
Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
Much like the Hulk, Chris Hemsworth’s Thor has also seen huge developments since his debut in 2011’s self-titled Thor. The Asgardian God of Thunder took quite some time to tap into the full range of his lightning-based abilities, yet when this finally did occur in 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok (the better of Taika Waititi’s two MCU projects), the resulting battle was certainly a sight to behold. Thor was able to strike his long-lost sister Hela, the Goddess of Death, with the biggest lightning bolt the MCU had seen up to that point, and used his newfound control over his lightning to easily dispatch of Hela’s undead army.
Thor’s lightning ability used to be channeled through his mystical hammer, Mjolnir, but Thor: Ragnarok saw him control it within his own body, and this power was shown off even further in some memorable moments in Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame. 2022’s Thor: Love and Thunder, however, didn’t do an effective job of showing the full potential of Thor’s abilities, which perhaps contributed to the film’s poor reception and disappointing performance. Nevertheless, there is speculation that Marvel Studios is developing Thor 5 for the MCU, which could put Thor back on top, and create the opportunity for his new adoptive daughter, Love, to also show off some of her power.
Thor 5 hasn’t yet been confirmed by Marvel Studios, but the film could see Brett Goldstein’s Hercules return to battle the God of Thunder. Ragnarok and Love and Thunder director Taika Waititi has confirmed that he wouldn’t return to helm the project, suggesting Thor 5 may feature a tonal change for Thor.
2 Captain America Finally Wields Mjolnir During The Battle Of Earth
Avengers: Endgame (2019)
Since his debut in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger, Chris Evans’ Steve Rogers became a cornerstone in the MCU’s Infinity Saga, appearing in at least one project every year before his retirement in Avengers: Endgame. As the MCU’s original super soldier, Rogers’ Captain America had plenty of opportunities to display his incomprehensible power, such as during his battle with Iron Man in Civil War, his ability to hold back a moving helicopter (and show off his muscles), and him briefly stopping the Mad Titan Thanos in his tracks during the Battle of Wakanda in Infinity War. However, Avengers: Endgame marked the pinnacle of Captain America’s MCU timeline.
Following a tease of Steve Rogers’ worthiness to wield Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir, back in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Endgame finally saw the star-spangled man-with-a-plan use the enchanted weapon. Captain America wielding Mjolnir in Endgame was a powerful moment in the dramatic MCU installment, and he used the hammer to its full potential during a brief spar with Thanos, even harnessing Thor’s lightning to shock the Mad Titan, though he would still ultimately be incapacitated by the villain. Nevertheless, Mjolnir is notoriously picky when it comes to who is worthy to wield it, so this was a great honor for Steve Rogers, and created one of the MCU’s most awesome moments.
1 Iron Man Uses The Infinity Gauntlet To Defeat Thanos & Save The Universe
Avengers: Endgame (2019)
While all six of the MCU’s original Avengers have displayed some incredible feats of power in the name of saving the world, only three have actually sacrificed their lives to protect others. Steve Rogers thankfully survived his dive into the ice, but was presumed dead for almost 70 years, while Natasha Romanoff paid the ultimate price so the Avengers could acquire the Soul Stone during the Time Heist. However, Tony Stark’s death in Avengers: Endgame saw him come full circle in the MCU. While he began as an egotistical and sarcastic narcissist, Endgame saw him sacrifice his life to save his family, friends, and the countless residents of the universe.
Iron Man stealing the Infinity Stones was arguably the most powerful moment in the MCU’s history. Not a show of strength, but proof of Stark’s tactical mind and quick-thinking, proving that he was one of the MCU’s most valuable assets. Robert Downey Jr.’s delivering of the repeated line, “I am Iron Man,” from the MCU’s first project, 2008’s Iron Man, brought heightened emotion, and the fact that he died to save his wife, Pepper Potts, and daughter, Morgan Stark, underlined his strength. Stark was a founding member of the Avengers, and perhaps the team’s biggest benefactor, so it’s fitting that he laid down his life to achieve the team’s goal.
Even though Tony Stark’s Iron Man died during Avengers: Endgame, the MCU’s Multiverse Saga has debuted several candidates to continue his legacy, including Rhodey’s War Machine, Riri Williams’ Ironheart, and potentially even Morgan Stark, who may return in the MCU’s future.