Phase Four of the MCU is diving into a new era of heroes. Introducing new characters, concepts, and exploring the implications of the Infinity Saga. The MCU was built on the backs of the Avengers, but with so many gone a new generation of heroes are stepping up to take their place and this theme of legacy looks to be a major part of the MCU’s Phase Four.
From heroes yet to be introduced, like Ms. Marvel and Ironheart, to the more established heroes like Sam Wilson and Monica Rambeau. The Avengers, who were introduced in Phase One, have had a massive impact on the world of the MCU which was explored in the first three phases. However, now may be an even more important part of Phase Four and beyond.
THE MCU’S KATE BISHOP AND PETER PARKER SAVED BY THE AVENGERS AND FOLLOWING IN THEIR FOOTSTEPS
Peter Parker and Kate Bishop are two heroes that will likely be a major part of the MCU going forward and have been directly impacted by two of the original Avengers. Each of these hero’s lives were forever altered by the actions of villain, as well as the Avengers that saved their lives. Kate Bishop lost her father in the Chitauri attack in New York, but by witnessing Hawkeye save her life and fight off a number of aliens with only his bow, arrows, and wits, she found a new trajectory for her life.
Tom Holland himself confirmed a fan theory that proves itself to be one of the best retcons in the MCU. In Iron Man 2, a child wearing an Iron Man helmet stands up to one of Justin Hammer’s military attack drones and Iron Man himself backs the kid up before thanking him.
It has been established that this kid was none other than Peter Parker himself before the famous spider bite. In the MCU Iron Man and Tony Stark are a huge part of the DNA of Spider-Man and it can be tied back to this very moment. Iron Man saved his life and this is likely part of why he believes that with the extraordinary powers he has, doing nothing is not an option.
Peter Parker struggled with the legacy that Tony Stark and Iron Man left behind during Spider-Man: Far From Home, believing himself to be unworthy. And in Hawkeye Kate Bishop is only beginning to learn the true cost and sacrifices of being a hero, especially one without superpowers. The Avengers left some massive shoes to fill and the MCU’s exploration of the next generation of heroes goes beyond characters stepping up simply because they can. Heroes are now stepping up because they are inspired by their own heroes within the MCU.
And although Spider-Man is now one of the more established heroes within the MCU, he is still learning to carry the weight of legacy on his shoulders where others are only beginning to understand how heavy that can be. Without Iron Man there is no Peter Parker and without Tony Stark Spider-Man doesn’t become the same hero that he is today. Similarly, Kate Bishop wouldn’t be alive without Hawkeye and Clint Barton’s mentorship is integral to Kate moving from Avengers fan with bow skills to actual hero in the making.
Legacy is integral to Phase Four of the MCU with a number of new characters being directly tied to the legacies of heroes from the Infinity Saga. Spider-Man is unique in the duality of his youth and his experience. This evolution of wanting to step into the shoes of an Avenger in Spider-Man: Homecoming and wanting a more normal life in Spider-Man: Far From Home prove that Peter understands the true weight of a hero. But at this point he has established himself as an integral part of Earth’s protection, especially in the absence of so many other heroes. How this evolution continues in Spider-Man: No Way Home and potentially beyond will be truly compelling.
The heroes that have stepped up in the absence of the original Avengers, like Bucky Barnes, Sam Wilson, Maria Rambeau, understand the true ramifications of being a hero. Sam Wilson struggled throughout The Falcon And The Winter Soldier as he needed to grapple with the legacy of the mantle that was laid on his head.
How the new generation of heroes, beginning with Kate Bishop, cope with the reality of being a hero versus the ideal behind it should be an interesting theme for the MCU to explore. The MCU was built on individuals who stepped up out of a sense of duty, need for redemption, or simply because they could. The next generation of heroes taking inspiration from the Avengers and learning what it truly takes to be a hero should be an interesting theme for the MCU to dive into with a number of upcoming projects.
Spider-Man is in the next phase of his own journey it seems moving out of the shadow of his own hero and mentor to instead stand on his own. And as more of these heroes, like Sam Wilson, move into the next step of their journey it will be fascinating to see how this evolution impacts not only the world of the MCU, but the continued legacy of the very heroes that created this new generation. Kate Bishop and Peter Parker are perfect examples of how the original Avengers truly impacted the world of the MCU and how that legacy will continue beyond the heroes who laid the ground work for this world.
What do you think about the continued theme of the Avengers legacy in the new heroes? How do you think legacy will continue to impact the MCU after the Infinity Saga? Which new heroes are you excited to see? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or on our social media and check back with The Illuminerdi for more MCU, Hawkeye, and Spider-Man.