The Marvel Cinematic Universe is always expanding and introducing new characters and it doesn’t show signs of stopping. Kevin Feige has stated that Marvel Studios still has big plans for existing MCU characters but also plan to introduce a lot of new characters. Captain Marvel and the untitled Avengers: Infinity War sequel are just around the corner, as well as Spider-Man: Far From Home. Daredevil season three is arriving this October, Runaways are set to drop in December, while Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. will have to wait until July 2019. We’ll definitely get to see a lot of new characters by the end of 2018 and, of course, even more in 2019. Plus, we’ll get tons of easter eggs that will confirm the existence of all kinds of characters form Marvel Comics in the MCU.
The Marvel Cinematic Universe has become notorious for the insane number of easter eggs, references, deep cuts, cameos and what not that they manage to cram into a movie. When it comes to TV shows, Marvel Studios is a lot more chill, but that doesn’t mean that we still don’t get anything. In fact, a lot of Marvel Comics characters have already made their MCU debut on TV, and many did so through the excellent use of easter eggs. If you’re not following these MCU shows, you’re missing out. Check out the list below to find out which characters are already in the MCU. Some of the entries might surprise even the most eagle-eyed fans.
Iron Fist’s Colleen Wing took part in underground cage fights under the name Daughter of the Dragon. In the episode “Eight Diagram Dragon Palm”, Colleen faced an opponent named Jim Pierce. If the name sounded familiar to you that’s because, in the comics, Jimmy Pierce is the real name of Hitman.
Jimmy was a special forces officer who became a vigilante and briefly impersonated the Punisher before assuming the identity of Hitman and teaming up with Frank Castle. His appearance in Iron Fist is probably just a cameo that won’t lead anywhere.
24. ALPHA PRIMITIVES
In the comics, the Inhuman geneticist called Avadar, believed that the Inhuman races should be freed of any physical work and thus created a race of sub-human servants who became known as Alpha Primitives. They were essentially all brawn and no brain.
In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode “Emancipation”, Hive ordered Dr. Holden Radcliffe to turn regular humans into Inhumans. Radcliffe’s “Alpha Test” resulted in the creation of the lovely creatures you see above — dubbed the Primitives. Obedient and powerful, the Primitives were only semi-sentient.
In season one, Matt Murdock went to Melvin Potter, a mentally impaired designer, to ask him for a custom-made suit. Melvin agreed to make the suit in exchange for Daredevil keeping someone named Betsy Beatty safe. In the comics Melvin Potter is known as Gladiator and he made his debut in Daredevil #18 (July, 1966). Betsy Beatty was his therapist and wife.
Initially, Gladiator was an enemy of Daredevil, but later on he became an ally. In Melvin’s workshop, we caught a glimpse of the blue prints for the buzz-saw arms and the symbol he uses in the comics.
Speaking of Melvin Potter, his workshop contains another fun little easter egg that alludes at the possible arrival of another Marvel character: Stilt-Man. Wilbur Day, aka Stilt-Man, made his first appearance in Daredevil #8 (June, 1965).
This Daredevil villain has yet to appear on the show, but we know he’s around because the lower part of his suit, the long legs, can be seen in Melvin Potter’s workshop. Who knows, perhaps Stilt-Man is coming to the small screen in season three.
The long-time Iron Man villain Blizzard had a short run on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Donnie Gill made his first appearance in season one episode “Seeds” as one of the students at S.H.I.E.L.D. Academy at which point he accidentally got his powers.
He came back in season two as a brainwashed HYDRA operative and he’s currently MIA. Maybe next time we see him he will be in costume. In the comics, Donald Gill is a villain who made his debut in Iron Man #223 (October, 1987). He once tried to be good, but it didn’t stick.
In season five finale of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Quake took down Glenn Talbot who had absorbed the Gravitonium, thus acquiring powers of gravity manipulation, absorption, etc. Though his intentions were pure at the beginning, stopping Thanos, he went off the deep end.
Talbot was never referred to as Graviton on the show, but that is essentially who he was. Even though, the comic book version of the character, Franklin Hall, also appeared on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and essentially became one with the Gravitonium. It was revealed in season five that Hall had been trapped inside the Gravitonium for years.
In the comics, Stone was Stick’s favorite pupil who played an important role in the fight against the Hand. He aided Matt Murdock in saving Elektra from the clutches of the Hand, even giving away a portion of his lifeforce.
Stone appeared briefly during the first season of Daredevil. He met with Stick after completing his mission to assassinate Black Sky. The Hand then waged a war against the Chaste and Stick later reported that he was the last surviving member, implying that Stone is gone.
Marvel’s Evil Batman, also known as Blackwing, made his debut in Daredevil #118 (February, 1975). Joseph Manfredi, professional criminal and crime lord, somehow picked up the skill of controlling bats. Donning on a bat-like costume Blackwing, unlike Batman, fights the good guys.
Ken Marino portrayed Joseph Manfredi on Agent Carter. Manfredi was a leader of the Maggia crime syndicate and a lover of Whitney Frost. Sadly, his comic book costume did not make it on the small screen.
Man-Thing recently had a cameo in Thor: Ragnarok, appearing alongside Beta Ray Bill and Ares as a decorative piece on the Grandmaster’s tower. However, Man-Thing has already made his MCU debut on TV.
In season one episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. titled “Nothing Personal”, Agent Maria Hill calls her friend Pepper Potts to complain about a Congress hearing she had to endure. One of the questions they asked her was ‘who or what is a Man-Thing’. Unfortunately, despite now-two Man-Thing easter eggs, we have yet to see the Swamp Walker in the flesh.
16. HEDY WOLFE
Hedy Wolfe is one of Marvel’s oldest female characters, making her debut in Miss America Magazine #2 (November, 1944) — though, these adventures were later revealed to be fictional. Hedy Wolfe also happens to be a frenemy of Patsy Walker, aka Trish Walker on Jessica Jones.
Hedy had a fun little cameo in the second season of Jessica Jones. When Trish and Malcolm end up on the cover of “Celeb Seeker”, one of the story titles featured on the side reads “Hedy Wolfe clashes with gal pal”. The ‘gal pal’ is a reference to the dialogue from the original comics.
15. LINDA CARTER
In Doctor Strange we got to see Rachel McAdams as Christine Palmer, aka Night Nurse. But, the original Night Nurse, Linda Carter, got a fun nod in the Defenders mini-series. In Misty Knight’s hospital room, there was a whiteboard with L. Carter listed as the on-call nurse.
In that same hospital scene where we catch a glimpse of a whiteboard with the name L. Carter, just below we find yet another interesting name from Marvel comics. Misty’s doctor is none other than a certain E. Wirtham.
In the comics, Dr. Elias Wirtham is a surgeon who uses his expertise to replace his heart with a beta-particle reactor, acquiring superpowers and becoming the vigilante known as Cardiac. He uses his powers to fight the greed of medical corporations and he’s mostly associated with Spider-Man.
13. ANGAR THE SCREAMER
David Angar, aka Angar the Screamer, made his comic book debut in Daredevil #100 (June, 1973), tasked with destroying the Man Without Fear. However, his MCU debut did not happen on Daredevil. Instead, David Angar popped up on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Angar appeared on the second season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. as a man who underwent an experimental treatment for throat cancer, which gave him the ability to induce immediate catatonia with his voice. Perhaps, Angar could return as a Daredevil or Iron Fist villain and connect S.H.I.E.L.D. with the Netflix universe.
12. WHITE TIGER
Angele del Toro made her first comic book appearance in Daredevil Vol 2 #40 (February, 2003). She’s a former FBI agent who took up the mantle of White Tiger from her uncle. Angela del Toro is usually associated with Daredevil, but in the MCU she had a cameo in Jessica Jones.
When Luke Cage came to ask Jessica to investigate a missing person case, Jessica recommended Angela del Toro adding that she’s a good private investigator with reasonable rates. Perhaps one day we’ll actually get to see Angela on one of the Netflix shows.
The fourth season of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. shook things up for god knows which time for Coulson’s team by introducing demons and an alternate dimension appropriately named Hell. Hailing from the realm of never-ending darkness is the Book of Sins or the Book of Spells, aka the Darkhold.
In the comics, the Darkhold is the ultimate dark grimoire created by the Elder God Chthon. Chthon possesses incredible mystical power and he’s one of the most ancient forces of evil in the Marvel Universe. While Chthon did not appear on the show, he’s most likely out there.
Iron Man 2 featured a semi-original version of the villain Whiplash. However, Ivan Vanko is not the only Whiplash in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The first man to take up the mantle of Whiplash, Marcus Scarlotti made an appearance on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Scarlotti, who also went by Blacklash, debuted in Tales of Suspense #97 as an Iron Man villain. In the MCU, Scarlotti was a HYDRA operative who used a Rope Dart Knife as a weapon, reminiscent of his whip from the comics.
Marvel and Sony struck a deal regarding Spider-Man, but we’re still unsure about the destiny of Spidey’s supporting cast and villains. With Venom just around the corner we’re all curious to see if it connects in any way to the MCU and Tom Holland’s Spider-Man.
While we’re on the subject of Symbiotes, did you know that one already appeared in the MCU? In the comics, the Jessica Jones villain Karl Malus had a short run as Superior Carnage. Perhaps his red glasses are a nod to his time as Carnage, or we’re just reading too much into it.
8. THE RINGMASTER
It doesn’t take a medical degree to figure out that Jessica Jones could benefit from seeing a psychiatrist. Her best friend/adoptive sister Trish Walker figured as much and recommended Dr, Tiboldt. In an effort to remember what IGH did to her, Jessica agreed to undergo hypnotherapy from Dr. Tiboldt.
Interestingly enough, in the comics, Maynard Tiboldt is the leader of a traveling circus, a professional criminal, and a hypnotist who goes by Ringmaster. He has a pretty ridiculous costume that we will probably never see on-screen.
7. KID COLT
Kid Colt had an interesting cameo in Agent Carter. The comic book “Kid Colt Outlaw” was seen in the season two episode “Better Angels”. Howard Stark was using it as a reference guide for his upcoming film about the adventures of the Old West American cowboy.
Stark explained to Peggy that Kid Colt was an actual person and that the comics are merely historical texts. In the comics, Kid Colt was one of Marvel’s Western comic book characters. He wielded two Colt .45 pistols and rode a horse named Steel.
6. THE WHIZZER
If you’re a fan of extremely weird superhero origin stories you’re gonna love this one. Robert Ford, who made his first appearance in USA Comics #1 (August, 1941), became a speedster known as the Whizzer after his father Emil injected him with mongoose blood.
The Whizzer had an awesome cameo on the second season of Jessica Jones. Robert Coleman, as he was called on the show, was yet another product of IGH experimentation who had super speed only in fear. But here’s the cool part. Robert had a pet mongoose named Emil.
Manifold made his comic book debut in Secret Warriors #4 (July, 2009) when he was recruited by Daisy Johnson, aka Quake for a team known as Secret Warriors. Eden Fesi is an Australian mutant with the ability of spatial teleportation.
S.H.I.E.L.D. found documents stating that a certain Eden Fesi was being held by the Australian Threat Unit and Coulson ordered his agents to rescue Fesi. In the MCU, Fesi is an Inhuman, instead of a mutant, but his powers remain the same.
4. MADAME MASQUE
The first villain to have superpowers on Agent Carter, Agnes Cully, aka Whitney Frost, is known under yet another alias in the comics — Madame Masque. Giuletta Nefaria debuted in Tales of Suspense #97 (January, 1968) as Big M, the leader of the international crime syndicate, the Maggia.
On the show, Cully was an actress and a scientist who became infected with the Zero Matter, gaining the ability to absorb other people. The writers paid homage to the character’s comic book history with clever movie titles that starred Frost, such as “Tales of Suspense” and “The Nefarious Daughter”.
3. JOHNNY BLAZE
In season four of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. we were introduced to Robbie Reyes, aka Ghost Rider. Portrayed by Gabriel Luna, Ghost Rider played an important role in the season’s first half. But, Robbie Reyes is not the only Ghost Rider who appeared on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
The original Ghost Rider, Johnny Blaze, made a brief appearance when he rescued Robbie and his brother Gabe after they were shot by the Fifth Street Locos. It was then that Johnny passed his powers to Robbie.
If you’re anything like us and love it when Marvel squeezes obscure comic book characters into their live-action shows and movies, you’re gonna appreciate this easter egg. In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. episode “A Hen in the Wolf House”, Jemma Simmons, who had infiltrated HYDRA, examined carmine milk that belonged to a cow named Bessie.
In the comics, Bessie was a regular cow who was killed by Dracula and resurrected as a vampire cow named Hellcow. Of course, we didn’t actually get to see Hellcow, but at least there’s proof she exists in the MCU.
1. FORBUSH MAN
Speaking of the obscure side of the Marvel Comics universe, there’s a very deep cut to a comedic character named Forbush Man in every single Marvel/Netflix show. Irving Forbush, who’s famous for breaking the fourth wall in the comics, is portrayed by none other than Stan Lee in the MCU and usually appears on posters as NYPD Captain Forbush.
Needless to say, the Forbush Man we know from the comics probably won’t be making an appearance in the MCU, but it’s cool that a version of him does exist.
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