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Old 12-11-2012, 05:04 PM   #201
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Yep but it would be nice to see him get some solid character development first and exit in style instead of being dumped unceremoniously ala Nightcrawler

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Old 12-11-2012, 05:14 PM   #202
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How many black readers do you honestly think make up the industry? Black people may unite to see Diary of a Mad Black Woman, but try getting them to unite for heroes. Especially one they don't know about. It isn't that the movie would turn out bad. It just won't have the appeal.
Dude, black people go to see superhero movies already. Only about 60% of U.S. tickets are purchased by whites.

Also, white people like black superheroes too, especially in team situations. X-Men exploded when they figured that out. So did Avengers, come to think of it. In fact, the only way DC could compete with Marvel's explosion was by putting together a diverse version of the Teen Titans. Like I said before, diversity isn't primarily for black people. I think you're drawing some really hard racial lines and you're not noticing there's plenty of black and white people on both sides.

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Old 12-11-2012, 06:35 PM   #203
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Whedon knows the Avengers. A lot better than some of *you* do. He knows damn well what role Falcon and other minority/female characters play in the team, and I have no doubt in my mind that not only is he *open* to increasing the diversity of the team in Avengers 2, he's counting on it.
You seem to be assuming that characters always play the same role in every story they're in and can easily be slipped into place providing you've read enough comics. Most of the characters in Marvel's stable could contribute something great or invaluable to a film given the right circumstances but if the particular Avengers story being told doesn't obviously lend itself to a particular character then I wouldn't want them used just for diversity's sake. I'm not talking about how powers sets are used or any of that background noise, just pointing out that some characters are more appropriately used to explore some themes than others. Nobody isn't open to including a more diverse group, that would be ridiculous, but I maintain it should not be an initial concern. A good story will connect with everybody regardless of ethnicity or gender.

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Old 12-11-2012, 06:53 PM   #204
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Default Re: Changing the roster for Avengers 2?

Hey, I have an idea.... let's make every topic on the board about race somehow!

I'm pretty sure changing the roster means different characters, not changing features of the existing characters.

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Old 12-11-2012, 07:00 PM   #205
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^But it does include changing existing characters at times: ie Nick Fury.

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You seem to be assuming that characters always play the same role in every story they're in and can easily be slipped into place providing you've read enough comics. Most of the characters in Marvel's stable could contribute something great or invaluable to a film given the right circumstances but if the particular Avengers story being told doesn't obviously lend itself to a particular character then I wouldn't want them used just for diversity's sake. I'm not talking about how powers sets are used or any of that background noise, just pointing out that some characters are more appropriately used to explore some themes than others. Nobody isn't open to including a more diverse group, that would be ridiculous, but I maintain it should not be an initial concern. A good story will connect with everybody regardless of ethnicity or gender.
Hmmm... a good story involves diversity, and it works. Stories where all the characters have the same: job/personality/clothes/etc are less appealing that stories with diversity in them, because a story is powered by its contrasts which come exclusively from its diversity. A good story without diversity is like a good painting with only one color. This naturally extends to ethnic diversity - unless your theme is about people being the same in a given way like in a period movie. Again, compare the mainstream popularity of X-Men and Avengers vs Fantastic Four and Justice League. Compare how many events revolve around the former vs the latter. Diversity is awesome, and should always be a concern for an audience that lives in diversity.

Is there any theme that a minority character is not appropriate to explore?

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Old 12-11-2012, 07:35 PM   #206
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Hmmm... a good story involves diversity, and it works. Stories where all the characters have the same: job/personality/clothes/etc are less appealing that stories with diversity in them, because a story is powered by its contrasts which come exclusively from its diversity.
Agreed. That's a given for all stories but you're referring to diversity in things far more complex and nuanced than skin colour or gender. If I want to tell an Iron Man story with redemption at its heart then I'm going to put Tony in the suit and not Rhodey. That has nothing to do with race and everything to do with the individual aspects of the character, Rhodey was never a naive arms dealer.

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A good story without diversity is like a good painting with only one color. This naturally extends to ethnic diversity - unless your theme is about people being the same in a given way like in a period movie. Again, compare the mainstream popularity of X-Men and Avengers vs Fantastic Four and Justice League. Compare how many events revolve around the former vs the latter. Diversity is awesome, and should always be a concern for an audience that lives in diversity.

Is there any theme that a minority character is not appropriate to explore?
I don't think this extends nearly as naturally as you claim here, jumping from all white men with identical characteristics, jobs etc to a racially diverse group as if there is no medium. Ethnicity and gender can be very important in providing a story with diversity in opinion or perspective, but usually that will be in stories more specifically about cultural differences, inequality etc. More often though, I'd say that characters contribute more based on their characterisation and actions. Fury didn't contribute to the Avengers by being black but rather by proving a parallel to Loki and demonstrating the equivalent problems with uniting under one organisation. Here, white Fury would be equally applicable but, say Sharon Carter, wouldn't as she would not operate in the same way Fury would.

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Old 12-11-2012, 08:12 PM   #207
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Wait, if racially diverse is the extreme... what's the medium?

The only reason I think it extends naturally is because that's what I see time and time again. Look at the X-Men or Avengers. Or any big popular bit of entertainment set in the modern day. Lots of diversity, but the Matrix isn't *about* cultural differences, any more than a story where people from different jobs work together is about their differences, but *all* differences make the story deeper and better.

Now what you're saying is true for the opposite, stories that are about cultural differences and inequality are often nearly all white or all black (or all whatever ethnicity it's about), because that fits the story, which is about exclusion. Mad Men. Roots. Inclusion story -> Inclusion characters. Exclusion story -> Exclusion characters.

On your example, we're not talking about starring roles, we're talking about inclusion as heroes. Rhodey being included, as an equal superhero no less is an example of diversity enhancing a story. You have two guys, good friends, different as night and day - on top of that, one of them is black and one is white, making them even more different. See how subtle that is? Then they both end up being armored heroes fighting back to back in different colored suits with different weapons. Its a simple little touch that adds a thousand nuances to the story, which is not about race. Black Fury does this same thing to an even higher level with even more nuances.

Now, what is your basis for thinking differences in ethnicity and gender are less nuanced or complex than differences in jobs and clothing?

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Old 12-11-2012, 08:50 PM   #208
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Default Re: Changing the roster for Avengers 2?

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Dude, black people go to see superhero movies already. Only about 60% of U.S. tickets are purchased by whites.

Also, white people like black superheroes too, especially in team situations. X-Men exploded when they figured that out. So did Avengers, come to think of it. In fact, the only way DC could compete with Marvel's explosion was by putting together a diverse version of the Teen Titans. Like I said before, diversity isn't primarily for black people. I think you're drawing some really hard racial lines and you're not noticing there's plenty of black and white people on both sides.
I really don't care to see Luke Cage. Black Panther could be good, but he has no powers for us to be like "wow." Not much thought is put into creating black heroes. They're there more so for the diversity than actually having something to do.

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Old 12-11-2012, 09:39 PM   #209
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The big four are a must: Hulk, Cap, Iron Man, Thor. Black Widow adds a female presence. Hawkeye is unnecessary and could drop from the roster at any point.
Watch yo' mouth boy!

Hawkeye's been a big Avenger in the comics for most of its run, he deserves to be one in the movies too!

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Old 12-11-2012, 11:13 PM   #210
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Default Re: Changing the roster for Avengers 2?

Dr. Cosmic is on a roll tonight --- I'm 110% behind everything he's posted here today about diversity, especially in Avengers.

And I'm Venom, you keep digging that hole for yourself deeper and deeper. Best just to drop out of this altogether before you make it any worse. You're getting pretty damn close to burning crosses in this thread and you don't even realize it.

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Old 12-12-2012, 12:30 AM   #211
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Default Re: Changing the roster for Avengers 2?

Care to elaborate?

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Old 12-12-2012, 08:20 AM   #212
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Care to elaborate?
No.
And neither should you.

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Old 12-12-2012, 09:45 AM   #213
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No.
And neither should you.
Being a person of colour, I wanted to add my 2c in this, but then again I'll just take your advice, and end it here...

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Old 12-12-2012, 10:32 AM   #214
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Being a person of colour, I wanted to add my 2c in this, but then again I'll just take your advice, and end it here...
Well, we've already been told that we only go see Tyler Perry movies, that heroes of color (and women) are only shoehorned into movies and comics in an unnecessary attempt to make them more diverse (whatever that is), and that Black heroes in particular don't have interesting powers and won't draw an audience. What more is there to say?

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Old 12-12-2012, 11:08 AM   #215
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Default Re: Changing the roster for Avengers 2?

Based on what we've heard so far, here's what I'm hoping we get:

Iron Man
Captain America
Thor
Hulk
AntMan
Wasp
Dr. Strange

Others I'd like to see added:

Luke Cage
Vision

The big problem is you don't want to lose the balance of the characters that they had in the first film. I'm guessing Joss will want to bring back Black Widow, as he really established her character, and might have fun with two female characters in the cast.

To me Tony, Steve, Thor and Bruce all have to be there. They are the Kirk, Spock, Bones and Scotty of this series.

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Old 12-12-2012, 01:48 PM   #216
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To me Tony, Steve, Thor and Bruce all have to be there. They are the Kirk, Spock, Bones and Scotty of this series.
Agreed.
In the comics, the Avengers featured "The Big Three": Thor, Cap and Iron Man. Hulk was never officially a member and left the group after just 1.5 issues, although he always retained an honorary Avenger status.

In the MCU, it seems pretty clear that they've bumped that up to "The Big Four," so I still expect to see Hulk as part of the team for many episodes to come.

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Old 12-12-2012, 01:54 PM   #217
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Hulk is there when he wants to be, basically.

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Old 12-12-2012, 03:51 PM   #218
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Wait, if racially diverse is the extreme... what's the medium?
You're initial post decried a lack of diversity for being people with identical characteristics/jobs etc providing no conflict or variation. Something which nobody was suggesting and indeed isn't seen in the not particularly diverse Avengers film consisting of five white men and a white woman. Then you immediately stepped to ethnic diversity as being a solution without regarding the situation in which a non culturally diverse cast can provide suitable variation in terms of storytelling. Surely you can see how I consider that disingenuous when presenting my argument?

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The only reason I think it extends naturally is because that's what I see time and time again. Look at the X-Men or Avengers. Or any big popular bit of entertainment set in the modern day. Lots of diversity, but the Matrix isn't *about* cultural differences, any more than a story where people from different jobs work together is about their differences, but *all* differences make the story deeper and better.
I haven't seen the Matrix in a while so I can't comment too much on the specifics of it but does Morpheus being black play into the story or theme in any way? Would the film suffer had a white actor played him? See, if you're basic premise is that the Avengers' story is 'deeper and better' because Samuel L Jackson played Fury rather than a white man , I'm afraid I cannot see the argument. Can you explain why in another way perhaps?

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Now what you're saying is true for the opposite, stories that are about cultural differences and inequality are often nearly all white or all black (or all whatever ethnicity it's about), because that fits the story, which is about exclusion. Mad Men. Roots. Inclusion story -> Inclusion characters. Exclusion story -> Exclusion characters.
You've misinterpreted what I've written. I didn't say that stories about cultural differences or inequality are more ethnically diverse, but that race and gender contribute more heavily to the story. In Mad Men, Don Draper being a white man is a very important to the story and couldn't being changed without altering the story in a significant way. Walter White could well be changed to a black man though, without manipulating the story or themes of Breaking Bad at all.

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On your example, we're not talking about starring roles, we're talking about inclusion as heroes. Rhodey being included, as an equal superhero no less is an example of diversity enhancing a story. You have two guys, good friends, different as night and day - on top of that, one of them is black and one is white, making them even more different. See how subtle that is? Then they both end up being armored heroes fighting back to back in different colored suits with different weapons. Its a simple little touch that adds a thousand nuances to the story, which is not about race. Black Fury does this same thing to an even higher level with even more nuances.
You've manipulated my example to the point where it's not been addressed to the degree I would have intended. I'll rephrase. I'm writing an Avengers story, an important parallel subplot is based on redemption and I need to include an Iron Man. I could use Rhodey, but Tony fits better for the story being told. If I were told to use both then now I'd have to find a way to make Rhodey's role fit whatever structure I've planned whether he's the best fit or not. My argument is entirely based around having the option to choose the best character for the job based on whatever story is being told. Race/gender often won't come into that unless, as aforementioned the story is directly considering these topics. To swing back to my initial statement, I want Whedon to be able to choose the character that naturally fits into the puzzle, rather than be forced to build the puzzle around a mandated need for whatever is arbitrarily considered 'acceptable' diversity.

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Now, what is your basis for thinking differences in ethnicity and gender are less nuanced or complex than differences in jobs and clothing?
In a nutshell, they are genetically pre-determined characteristics that are shared identically between millions of people and aren't subject to change. It's entirely cosmetic. In real life, perhaps a person is defined more tangibly by their race/gender but in the context of fictional characters designed to turn together as gears in a larger machine, it's not as frequently relevant because the purpose they serve is twinned to whatever characteristic has suited them to the story. I refer back to Fury in the Avengers because I can make him white, hispanic, gay, a woman, whatever and not alter the character's role in the story. I couldn't change his personality or characterisation without re-writing the script, hence those things are more important.

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Old 12-12-2012, 05:52 PM   #219
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In the MCU, it seems pretty clear that they've bumped that up to "The Big Four," so I still expect to see Hulk as part of the team for many episodes to come.
They're making it so in the comics now, too

The RuffaHulk "accepted his curse, tries to aim it" persona is actually a pretty great fit for the Avengers, imo.

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Old 12-12-2012, 05:55 PM   #220
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You're initial post decried a lack of diversity for being people with identical characteristics/jobs etc providing no conflict or variation. Something which nobody was suggesting and indeed isn't seen in the not particularly diverse Avengers film consisting of five white men and a white woman. Then you immediately stepped to ethnic diversity as being a solution without regarding the situation in which a non culturally diverse cast can provide suitable variation in terms of storytelling. Surely you can see how I consider that disingenuous when presenting my argument?
I can't understand your POV on my statement. I was repetitively explicit that all diversity serves the same purpose, as opposed to proposing ethnic diversity is a solution that other diversity is not.

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I haven't seen the Matrix in a while so I can't comment too much on the specifics of it but does Morpheus being black play into the story or theme in any way? Would the film suffer had a white actor played him? See, if you're basic premise is that the Avengers' story is 'deeper and better' because Samuel L Jackson played Fury rather than a white man , I'm afraid I cannot see the argument. Can you explain why in another way perhaps?
Morpheus and Fury, interestingly enough, are the same archetype, the mysterious man in black, an authority who knows more than he's telling, who does bad things for good reasons, and tells the hero(es) what to do but will not allow himself to be questioned. These masters of mystery are often literally dressed in black as well. In a simple chromatic way, a darker skinned person lends to that mystique.

Going further, the perceived differences between blacks and whites can make a black character seem even more inscrutible. Then going further, with the association of black people with criminality, from news and sketch comedies and the like, which drives home the man in black archetype even further, as they are doing bad things. Here, race enhances the story. And then going further, the differences between he and Captain America, and he and Stark are even more dramatic because of their skin color difference, further adding to the contrast, as much as their wardrobe differences.

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You've misinterpreted what I've written. I didn't say that stories about cultural differences or inequality are more ethnically diverse, but that race and gender contribute more heavily to the story. In Mad Men, Don Draper being a white man is a very important to the story and couldn't being changed without altering the story in a significant way. Walter White could well be changed to a black man though, without manipulating the story or themes of Breaking Bad at all.
You said it usually happens in stories about inequality, but *every* story is about inequality of some sort, and different types of inequality can help tell the story about the type of inequality that is being talked about.

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You've manipulated my example to the point where it's not been addressed to the degree I would have intended. I'll rephrase. I'm writing an Avengers story, an important parallel subplot is based on redemption and I need to include an Iron Man. I could use Rhodey, but Tony fits better for the story being told. If I were told to use both then now I'd have to find a way to make Rhodey's role fit whatever structure I've planned whether he's the best fit or not. My argument is entirely based around having the option to choose the best character for the job based on whatever story is being told. Race/gender often won't come into that unless, as aforementioned the story is directly considering these topics. To swing back to my initial statement, I want Whedon to be able to choose the character that naturally fits into the puzzle, rather than be forced to build the puzzle around a mandated need for whatever is arbitrarily considered 'acceptable' diversity.
I'm not sure how to decode this one, so the best I can say is: If you're writing an Avengers story picking one character at a time, you're not writing an Avengers story, you're writing a bunch of solo movies and hoping they happen to come together into something awesome.

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In a nutshell, they are genetically pre-determined characteristics that are shared identically between millions of people and aren't subject to change. It's entirely cosmetic. In real life, perhaps a person is defined more tangibly by their race/gender but in the context of fictional characters designed to turn together as gears in a larger machine, it's not as frequently relevant because the purpose they serve is twinned to whatever characteristic has suited them to the story. I refer back to Fury in the Avengers because I can make him white, hispanic, gay, a woman, whatever and not alter the character's role in the story. I couldn't change his personality or characterisation without re-writing the script, hence those things are more important.
Ah, but race and gender are more than that because they come with so many perceptions and expectations - so much emotional and social baggage and commentary. By playing with these stereotypes you can say more than you're saying and actually connect with people's real lives.

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I really don't care to see Luke Cage. Black Panther could be good, but he has no powers for us to be like "wow." Not much thought is put into creating black heroes. They're there more so for the diversity than actually having something to do.
Um... BP has no powers in the same way that Tony Stark has no powers. Sometimes in the exact same way. Of the comics I've read, a lot of thought has been put into BP, and his role on the team. What comics have you read where he felt like a token?

I think LC has plenty to do regardless of his race, from having a kid with Bendis' fave to leading the New Avengers. Not my fave character either, but it's not like in the 70s when he was just a blaxploitation character. Nowadays he's doing more than most heroes.

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Old 12-12-2012, 06:16 PM   #221
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Um... BP has no powers in the same way that Tony Stark has no powers. Sometimes in the exact same way. Of the comics I've read, a lot of thought has been put into BP, and his role on the team. What comics have you read where he felt like a token?

I think LC has plenty to do regardless of his race, from having a kid with Bendis' fave to leading the New Avengers. Not my fave character either, but it's not like in the 70s when he was just a blaxploitation character. Nowadays he's doing more than most heroes.
I've never cared for Black Panther and can't really see the point of the character being in an Avengers film, as I can't think of any story he could be a part of that I'd care to see. I just don't feel he'd work alongside the others on the big screen without having to take Captain America out of the story. Why would you need Captain America on your team when you have someone who's more athletic, but also comes with genius?

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Old 12-12-2012, 09:35 PM   #222
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You obviously don't understand Cap's character then. He's THE leader, no one could even imagine to rally the troops like Cap can. Cap also has a spirit unlike any other, there's a reason why he was the last one standing against Thanos.

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Old 12-12-2012, 10:05 PM   #223
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You obviously don't understand Cap's character then. He's THE leader, no one could even imagine to rally the troops like Cap can. Cap also has a spirit unlike any other, there's a reason why he was the last one standing against Thanos.
Cap also carries a big honkin' Frisbee.

And yeah, in addition to Cap being (most often, by a large margin) the de facto leader of the Avengers, his skill set and fighting style are very different from BP's. Cap is a rugged two-fisted pulp hero whose basic strategy usually boils down to: bash in the front door and come in throwing punches. T'challa, conversely, is a Batman-type who relies more on stealth and strategy.

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Old 12-12-2012, 10:15 PM   #224
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You obviously don't understand Cap's character then. He's THE leader, no one could even imagine to rally the troops like Cap can. Cap also has a spirit unlike any other, there's a reason why he was the last one standing against Thanos.
You obviously didn't read my post.

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Old 12-13-2012, 02:00 AM   #225
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Posts: 5,733
Default Re: Changing the roster for Avengers 2?

Quote:
Originally Posted by ThePhantasm View Post
. Black Widow adds a female presence. Hawkeye is unnecessary and could drop from the roster at any point.







1. Black Widow is amazing. "Female presence" my butt. She was the one that ultimately defeated Loki.
2.Hawkeye shot the arrow to defeat him. And he is amazing. Because he is Hawkeye.

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