Since the release of “Iron Man” in 2008, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been going strong and it has been expanding ever since. Not only are there movies, but also TV shows. However, Marvel heroes have been around in comic books since 1941. So, it’s only natural that every Avenger (and honorary Avenger) in the MCU is to be compared to their comic-book equivalent. This also goes for the villains that appear in the MCU. The Avengers have faced a slew of villains over the course of 25 films and (at least) five TV programs. Every adversary our heroes have faced in the MCU has been compared to their comic-book counterparts as well. Let’s take a look at these comparisons.
Yelena Belova is played by Florence Pugh in “Black Widow”
Yelena Belova is Natasha Romanoff’s adoptive sister and a Red Room operative for General Dreykov. Following Romanoff’s defection from the Red Room, Belova and the other Black Widows were subjected to mind control programming into servitude by Dreykov. Belova teamed up with Romanoff to bring down the Red Room for good.
In the comics, Belova was sent to kill Romanoff but later became an ally of hers. Romanoff eventually killed her but she was later cloned. Florence Pugh gave life to Belova in the MCU’s “Black WIdow.” The character’s first comic appearance was in “Inhumans No. 5” in March 1999.
Melina Vostokoff is played by Rachel Weisz in “Black Widow”
Melina Vostokoff is the adoptive mother of Natasha Romanoff and Yelena Belova, as well as a veteran Red Room agent. Vostokoff assisted Dreykov in developing a brainwashing mechanism used on the Black Widows. Vostokoff rejoined Romanoff and Belova in their mission to free the Widows and put an end to the Red Room once and for all.
In the comics, Melina Vostokoff is an agent of the Russian Government who eventually left Russia to become a freelance assassin. In the MCU, she was played by Rachel Weisz. The character’s first appearance was in “Marvel Fanfare No. 11” in November 1983.
Agatha Harkness is played by Kathryn Hahn in “WandaVision”
During the Salem witch trials, Agatha Harkness, a witch from Salem, Massachusetts, was accused of performing dark magic by her own coven. Over three hundred years later, she recognized the presence of chaos magic emanating from Wanda Maximoff’s Westview Anomaly, and plotted to harness her power.
While mourning was the main challenge in “WandaVision,” Kathryn Hahn’s Agatha Harkness was a powerful opponent. She’s significantly older and more of Wanda’s ally in the comics. Kathryn Hahn was nominated for an Emmy. Her first comics appearance was in “Fantastic Four No. 94” in January 1970. In the MCU, she appears in “WandaVision.”
White Vision is played by Paul Bettany in “WandaVision”
White Vision had been created as a weapon by S.W.O.R.D to be used to destroy both Wanda Maximoff and the Vision she had created inside the Westview Anomaly. In order to make him more susceptible to Tyler Hayward’s programming, he was blocked from accessing the original Vision’s memories.
However, White Vision regains the original memories and reveals himself to be the true Vision. He flees to a place unknown. Paul Bettany played Vision/White Vision in the MCU. The character’s first comics appearance was in “The West Coast Avengers vol. 2 No. 45” in June 1989.
Monica Rambeau is played by Akira Akbar in “Captain Marvel”
Captain Monica Rambeau is the late Maria Rambeau’s daughter. Carol Danvers was her childhood friend, and she refused to believe stories that Danvers had died in a plane crash. When Danvers reappeared six years later with impressive talents, Rambeau helped her rescue Skrull refugees.
In the comics, Monica Rambeau is a lieutenant in the New Orleans Harbor Patrol who gained superpowers after being bombarded by extra dimensional energy and took on the title of Photon and eventually Spectrum. Akira Akbar plays Monica in the MCU. The character’s first appearance was in “The Amazing Spider-Man Annual No. 16” in October 1982.
US Agent is played by Wyatt Russell in “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier”
Jonathan F. “John” Walker is a former Captain of the United States Army’s 75th Rangers Regiment who was chosen as the second Captain America, when Steve Rogers quit. When Power Broker offers him enhanced strength, he takes it and becomes the US Agent.
His first comics appearance was in “Captain America No. 323” in November 1986 (as Super-Patriot) and in “Captain America No. 354” in June 1989 (as US Agent). In the MCU, he appears in “The Falcon and the Winter Soldier.” American actor Wyatt Russell plays this incredible role. He is the son of Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn.
Ravonna Renslayer is played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw in “Loki”
Ravonna Lexus Renslayer is a Time Variance Authority judge who oversaw the TVA on He Who Remains’ behalf. She was a Variant of Rebecca Tourminet who was abducted by the TVA and had her memories wiped, eventually becoming Hunter A-23. After eons of service at the TVA, she was promoted to preside over the TVA as a judge.
Ravonna Renslayer was played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw, as the TVA judge desperate for power in “Loki.” She is relentless and quite manipulative. The character’s first comic appearance was in “Avengers No. 23” in December 1965 and made an appearance in MCU’s “Loki.”
Sylvie Laufeydottir is played by Sophia DiMartino in “Loki”
Sylvie Laufeydottir is a version of Loki Laufeyson, who triggered a Nexus event as a toddler and managed to elude the TVA. Sylvie hid in many timelines while seeking vengeance on the Time-Keepers. However, she was intercepted on the verge of completing her scheme by another Loki Variant, who she later befriends.
English actress Sophia DiMartino plays her, and she shares qualities with both Lady Loki and Enchantress from the books. Her first comics appearance was in “Thor vol. 3 No. 5” in January 2008 (Lady Loki) and in “Dark Reign: Young Avengers No. 1” in July 2009 (Sylvie/Enchantress).
President Loki is played by Tom Hiddleston in “Loki”
President Loki Laufeyson is a Loki version who commanded a Void army of Loki variants. In order to depose Kid Loki as King of the Void, President Loki planned a coup with Boastful Loki, meaning to betray him, but was eventually betrayed by his own people. Alligator Loki chomped off President Loki’s right hand in the fight.
Tom Hiddleston plays a version of Loki from “Vote Loki,” who is referred to as President Loki in the episode. The character’s first appearance in the comics was in”Vote Loki No. 1″ in June 2016. In the MCU, it appears in “Loki.”
He Who Remains is played by Jonathan Majors in “Loki”
Nathaniel Richards was the first Variant to come into contact with other Variants and parallel realities. When some of these Variants attempted to invade other realities, such as Kang the Conqueror, a Multiversal War erupted, which Richards ended by weaponizing Alioth. He formed and ruled the TVA under the pseudonym He Who Remains in order to maintain the Sacred Timeline and prevent the rise of his equivalents.
He’s played by American actor Jonathan Majors. His first appearance in the comics was in “Thor No. 245” in March 1976 (He Who Remains) and in “The Avengers No. 8” in September 1964 (Kang).
Wenwu is played by Tony Leung in “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”
Xu Wenwu was a legendary and almost mythical character who rose to prominence after discovering a pair of fabled rings and founding the Ten Rings army. Wenwu became a strong warlord who conquered nations over millennia, thanks to the rings’ magic, which granted him immortality. In the modern-day, Wenwu continued seeking power, finding the ancient city of Ta Lo.
In “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings,” legendary Chinese actor Tony Leung portrayed Wenwu, aka the Mandarin and the leader of the Ten Rings. The character’s first comics appearance was in “Tales of Suspense No. 50” in February 1964.
Shang-Chi is played by Simu Liu in “Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”
Xu Shang-Chi is the son of Xu Wenwu, creator of the Ten Rings. Shang-Chi had been subjected to a rigorous training regimen since boyhood, becoming a great martial artist. However, he decided to quit the Ten Rings and leave his family behind.
He fled to America to start a new life away from his father’s control. In the comics, Shang-Chi became known for being the most powerful kung fu master in the world and a member of the Avengers. His first comic appearance was in “Special Marvel Edition No. 15” in December 1973. In the MCU, Simu Liu played Shang-Chi.
Arishem is voiced by David Kaye in the “Eternals”
The Prime Celestial, Arishem the Judge, is credited with generating the first Sun and providing light to the universe. Arishem created the Deviants millions of years ago to assist in Celestial births, but when his creations turned rogue, the Judge used the World Forge to create the Eternals to oppose the Deviants who were interfering with his work.
Arishem was the main antagonist in the movie 2021 MCU “Eternals.” He swore he would return at the end of the movie. David Kaye provided the character’s voice. The character’s first comics appearance was in “The Eternals No. 2” in August 1976.
Kro is voiced by Bill Skarsgard in the “Eternals”
Kro was the leader of the Deviants. He arrived on Earth long ago, but spent millennia frozen in ice as the rest of his species was wiped off by the Eternals. Kro and a legion of Deviants were freed due to glacier melting caused by the imminent Emergence of Tiamut the Communicator.
However, when Kro became aware of how both Eternals and Deviants were being exploited, it fueled his desire to eliminate all Eternals. Kro was another main antagonist in “Eternals” and was voiced by Bill Skarsgard. His first comics appearance was in “The Eternals No. 1” in July 1976.
Kingo is played by Kumail Nanjiani in the “Eternals”
Kingo is a cosmically-enhanced member of the Eternals’ genetically-engineered community. He was sent to Earth in 5000 BC by the Celestials to advance the planet’s socioeconomic development. Kingo was one of the group’s warriors who proved to be a valuable tool in their fight against the Deviants.
He was played by Kumail Nanjiani, however in the comics Kingo Sunen was a samurai who came from Japan. He was an action movie actor who portrayed a samurai, but in the MCU he was a popular Bollywood movie star. Kingo’s first comic appearance was in “The Eternals No. 11” in May 1977.
Ajak is played by Salma Hayek in the “Eternals”
Ajak was sent to Earth for the same purposes as Kingo by the Celestials. With the birth of Tiamut the Communicator, Ajak tried to pave the way for Earth’s Emergence. During the Battle of Earth, however, she was inspired by the Avengers’ bravery and defied her creators’ ideas, feeling that humanity was worth protecting.
Ajak is the tenth MCU character to be portrayed as a different gender than their comic counterpart. In the comic, Ajak is male. Mexican actress Salma Hayek plays the role in the movie. The first comic appearance was in “The Eternals No. 2” in August 1976.
Thena is played by Angelina Jolie in the “Eternals”
Thena is another Eternals. She was first sent to Centuri-Six by the Celestials to further the planet’s societal development, setting the path for the planet’s Emergence. Thena’s memories were erased, and she was transported to Earth in 5000 BC alongside nine other Eternals for the same purpose, with the mission to first eliminate the Deviants.
She became the guardian of Athens in Ancient Greece and was absorbed into the mythology as Athena. In the comics, her name was Azura and she had a long relationship with Kro. Her first comic appearance was in “The Eternals No. 5” in November 1976.
Ikaris is played by Richard Madden in the “Eternals”
Ikaris was the former tactical chief of the Eternals. While on Earth, Ikaris realized that his true mission was to assist in the Emergence for the birth of Tiamut the Communicator, believing that Earth and humans were a necessary sacrifice in order to create more life in new galaxies.
During his journey, he starts a relationship with fellow Eternal Sersi. In the comics, Ikaris was a third generation member of the Eternals and cousin to Druig. His first appearance in the comic was in “The Eternals No. 1” in July 1976. In the MCU, Ikaris is portrayed by Richard Madden.
Dane Whitman is played by Kit Harington in the “Eternals”
Professor Dane Whitman is a historian at the Natural History Museum in London, as well as the heir of an ancient family. Whitman had a love affair with Sersi, an Eternal. She persuaded him to make apologies with his uncle when he learnt of the impending Emergence, prompting him to re-examine his family’s history.
In the comics, Dane Whitman is the descendant in a long line of warriors possessing the mystical Ebony Blade and title of Black Knight. His first comic appearance was in “The Avengers No. 47” in December 1967. In the MCU, Whitman is played by Kit Harington.
Maya Lopez is played by Alaqua Cox in “Hawkeye”
Maya Lopez is a deaf athlete and martial artist who can mimic the actions of others with most precision. Following the death of her father William Lopez as a result of Ronin’s quest for criminals, Lopez rose to become the new leader of the Tracksuit Mafia, vowing vengeance on Ronin.
Maya Lopez, alias Echo, is currently an opponent to our heroes, but that could change in the future. American actress Alaqua Cox portrays her in the MCU TV series “Hawkeye”, which was released in 2021. The first comic appearance of the character was in “Daredevil No. 9” in December 1999.
Kazi is played by Fra Fee in “Hawkeye”
Kazimierz “Kazi” Kazimierczak is a member of the Tracksuit Mafia. He had known Maya Lopez since childhood and became her second-in-command and her personal sign interpreter. Kazi was the son of a member of the Tracksuit Mafia and as an adult, he served as a lieutenant and second in command under William Lopez for four years.
Following Lopez’s death, Kazimierczak continued to work for the Mafia, now led by Maya. Kazi is played by Irish actor Fra Fee and he’s known as the Clown in the comics. The character’s first comic appearance was in “Hawkeye No. 8” in February 2013.
Kingpin is played by Vincent D’Onofrio in “Hawkeye”
Wilson Grant Fisk, aka Kingpin, is a businessman and crime lord who wants to rule New York City. Fisk, who had forged partnerships with other criminals, leveraged the aftermath of the Battle of New York to gain control in the city, wrecking and gentrifying Hell’s Kitchen in the process. His criminal activities brought him into conflict with Daredevil, as well as some of his partners who betrayed him, causing him to be finally arrested.
Kingpin appears in the “Hawkeye” finale, and is played by Vincent D’Onofrio. His first comic appearance was in “The Amazing Spider-Man No. 50” in July 1967.
Laura Barton is played by Linda Cardellini in “Hawkeye”
In “Hawkeye”, Laura Barton was revealed to be former Agent 19. She’s a reimagining of Clint’s wife from the comics, Mockingbird. Linda Cardellini portrays her, and she first appeared in “Age of Ultron.”
Barbara “Bobbi” Morse is Mockingbird’s real name in the comics. Although Adrianne Palicki’s version of the character was introduced in “Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.,” most of “AoS” hasn’t been accepted as canon in the MCU. Her first comic appearance was in “Astonishing Tales No. 18” in June 1973 as Agent 19 and in “Ultimates 2 No. 2” in March 2005, as Laura Barton.
Kate Bishop is played by Hailee Steinfeld in “Hawkeye”
Katherine Elizabeth “Kate” Bishop admired the Avenger Hawkeye after losing her father during the Battle of New York, and trained herself to become a superb archer throughout her adolescence. She competed and excelled in many combat sports.
In the comics, Kate Bishop took on the moniker of Hawkeye after Clint Barton’s death. When Barton was revived by Scarlet Witch, they started to work with each other, sharing the “Hawkeye” mantle. She’s also a member of the Young Avengers. Hailee Steinfeld entered the MCU as Kate Bishop. The character’s first comic appearance was in “Young Avengers No. 1” in April 2005.
Hawkeye is played by Jeremy Renner in “Hawkeye”
Clinton Francis “Clint” Barton, aka Hawkeye, is a highly proficient marksman, a former S.H.I.E.L.D. special agent, and one of the Avengers’ founding members. He was responsible for recruiting Black Widow, with whom he had a great friendship.
In the climax of the “Hawkeye” series, we finally got a more comics-accurate purple suit for Hawkeye — at least, more comics-accurate to the Matt Fraction 2012 comics run on which the show is based. Barton is played by Jeremy Renner in the MCU. The character’s first comic appearance was in “Tales of Suspense No. 57” in September 1964.
Arnim Zola played by Toby Jones in “Captain America”
Johann Schmidt invited Swiss-born Doctor Arnim Zola to join HYDRA in 1934. During World War II, Zola was tasked with studying the Tesseract in order to develop technological weapons that Schmidt planned to utilize for world dominance. Captain America captured Zola as the war drew to a close.
The Allies then offered Zola a job in S.H.I.E.L.D., a newly founded peacekeeping organization. However, Zola took advantage of his new position to secretly revive HYDRA. His first comic appearance was in “Captain America No. 208” in April 1977. In the MCU, he’s played by Toby Jones.
The Ancient One is played by Tilda Swinton in “Doctor Strange”
The Ancient One was the Supreme Sorcerer as well as the Master of the Mystic Arts’ leader. For millennia, the Ancient One has defended Earth against mystical threats while also dedicating herself to aiding individuals in need by teaching them the magical arts.
In the comics, the Ancient One was an ancient Tibetan magician named Yao, and the previous holder of the title of Sorcerer Supreme. He was also male, but was gender-swapped in the MCU to female. The character was played by Tilda Swinton. The first comic appearance of Yao was in “Strange Tales No. 110” in July 1963.
Annette Bening as Supreme Intelligence in “Captain Marvel”
The Supreme Intelligence is the ruler of the Kree Empire and an artificial intelligence that embodies the empire’s brightest brains. Everyone sees the Supreme Intelligence as a separate individual, with Vers seeing him as Mar-Vell. Annette Bening portrays a version of the Supreme Intelligence, the artificial intelligence that dominates the Kree Empire in both the film, Captain Marvel, and the comics.
The character’s first comics appearance: “Fantastic Four No. 65” in August 1967. When looking for an actress to play the lead part of Mar-Vell and the Supreme Intelligence, they chose Annette Bening, who you may know from “American Beauty.”
Erik “Killmonger” Stevens is played by Michael B. Jordan in “Black Panther”
Erik Stevens, also known as N’Jadaka, was a former US Navy SEAL with Wakandan ancestry. N’Jadaka gained the moniker Killmonger for his ruthlessness while working with a US military black-ops team. His uncle T’Chaka killed his father Prince N’Jobu when he was a child for betraying Wakanda.
This inspired Killmonger to commit his life to dethroning his cousin, T’Challa, in order to carry out his father’s original plan. Michael B. Jordan portrayed Erik “Killmonger” Stevens, the son of a disgraced Wakandan ruler, in 2018’s “Black Panther.” The character’s first comics appearance was in “Jungle Action No. 6” in September 1973.