Following Marvel Entertainment’s unforeseen success in their first foray into filmmaking with Iron Man (2008), a film that not only rejuvenated Robert Downey Jr.’s career but also injected fresh vitality into the superhero movie genre, The Walt Disney Company took over Marvel Studios. Fast forward over a decade since this acquisition, and guided by Kevin Feige’s leadership, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), drawing inspiration from Marvel Comics, has undergone a few massive changes already.

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Related: Upcoming ‘Avengers’ Movie Will Reboot the Entire MCU Universe

The first three Phases, renowned as the Infinity Saga, reached a highly praised conclusion with the arrival of the MCU film Avengers: Infinity War (2018) and its sequel, Avengers: Endgame (2019). Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, Endgame depicted the original six Avengers retiring — some out of necessity.

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With the beloved Tony Stark/Iron Man making the ultimate sacrifice to defeat Thanos (Josh Brolin) and Chris Evans bidding farewell to his portrayal of Steve Rogers/Captain America, passing on the Captain America legacy, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has opened the door for prominent superhero teams like the Fantastic Four and X-Men to take center stage and assume more substantial roles. The momentum has already been set in motion with projects such as the Nick Fury-led (Samuel L. Jackson) Secret Invasion (2023) and Loki Season 2 (2023) — yet, there’s more to come before the planned Avengers: The Kang Dynasty and Avengers: Secret Wars.

With what is essentially a power vacuum and lack of general direction within the MCU, it seems as if Marvel Studios is gearing up to re-invigorate the franchise with a whole bunch of young talent.

Who are the Young Avengers?

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The Young Avengers, a fictional superhero team in Marvel Comics, made their debut in 2005 as a group of teenage superheroes stepping into the void left by the disbanded Avengers. The original lineup included Iron Lad, a young version of Kang the Conqueror; Hulkling, a Kree-Skrull hybrid with shape-shifting abilities; Wiccan, Scarlet Witch’s son endowed with reality-warping magical powers; Hawkeye/Kate Bishop, the skilled archer; Patriot, initially believed to have super-soldier abilities; Stature, Ant-Man’s size-altering daughter; and Speed, Wiccan’s super-speed brother.

Credit: Marvel Studios

Over time, the team has experienced lineup changes and additions, with new characters joining their ranks. The Young Avengers have become a fan-favorite group in Marvel Comics, and there is ongoing speculation about their potential introduction in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

The seeds have already been planted, however — as following the MCU’s latest theatrical outing, The Marvels, (spoilers!) fan-favorite Ms. Marvel/Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani) was depicted taking on a “Nick Fury“-type role — assembling the Young Avengers.

The MCU’s Potential Young Avengers Lineup

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Now, with the Young Avengers assembling on the horizon, let’s take a look at all the potential candidates that will likely comprise the final lineup.

With recent reports stating that Marvel is set on scrapping previous plans for a Young Avengers movie, and instead pivoting to a Young Avengers television series over on Disney+ (Disney Plus), the ability for an even bigger cast (and a longer runtime spent building up these characters) is basically inevitable. Insert Thanos joke here.

Ms. Marvel/Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani)

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Let’s start with the obvious.

Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel’s (Brie Larson) biggest fan (and she would likely remind you, friend) Kamala Khan finally met her idol in The Marvels, and bonded with Carol Danvers, Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) — and rather importantly, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). Now, it seems as if meeting Fury has given Kamala Khan the confidence (and technology) to find and recruit the members of the new Young Avengers, if The Marvels post-credits scene is anything to go by.

Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh)

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Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff’s (Scarlett Johansson) sister.

Hawkeye/Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld)

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Clint Barton/Hawkeye’s apprentice from Hawkeye (2021) is absolutely going to join the Young Avengers.

Ironheart/Riri Williams (Dominique Thorne)

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Iron Man’s successor from Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2023), Riri Williams in the Marvel Comics is the super-genius kid with the AI of Tony Stark himself to guide her.

Could this be a way for the beloved Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark to return as Iron Man, in the realm of artificial intelligence?

The answer is: if RDJ wants it. Essentially, this is absolutely possible — as we’ve seen JARVIS take on the personality of a real person, as well as the birth of Ultron and even Vision (Paul Bettany). The MCU definitely supports fully-functioning human-level intelligence AI — so Ironheart would be an amazing (and perhaps inevitable) asset to the Young Avengers.

Miss America/America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez)

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Debuting in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, America Chavez (Miss America in the comic book realm) is a key member of the Young Avengers with her Multiversal universe-jumping powers.

Her powers were clearly pivotal in Doctor Strange — so powerful, in fact, that a grief-stricken Scarlet Witch wanted to use her as a battery for immense, Multiverse-endangering means. A mega-powered hero like that will surely take on a major role in Young Avengers.

Wiccan/Billy Maximoff/Billy Kaplan

Credit: Marvel Studios, Netflix, Inside the Magic

Portrayed by Joe Locke (Heartstopper) in the upcoming Agatha: Darkhold Diaries (formerly Agatha: Coven of Chaos and Agatha: House of Harkness), the young star is almost definitely going to be a part of the Young Avengers.

With magic powers just like his mother, it seems like the magic-focused, witchy WandaVision sequel starring Agatha Harkness (Kathryn Hahn) and Patti LuPone (Lilia Calderu) will bring Wanda Maximoff’s missing children back into the mainly MCU (Sacred Timeline?) fold.

Speed/Tommy Maximoff

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Not much to say here other than the fact that since his brother is more than likely to join the Young Avengers, he’s likely to join right alongside!

Speed is another classic Young Avengers member, and as the son of the Scarlet Witch, a powerful one, at that.

Cassie Lang (Kathryn Newton)

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Cassandra Lang AKA Cassie Lang is Scott Lang/Ant-Man’s (Paul Rudd) daughter, and the step-daughter of the Wasp/Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly), granddaughter of the legendary Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer).

Properly debuting as an older teen in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (2023), Cassie Lang is likely set to be the hero Stature from the Marvel Comics, fully realised in the MCU as a key Young Avengers member.

Skaar (Wil Deusner)

Skaar, the son of the Hulk. Literally, the son of (sort of) Bruce Banner (it’s complicated, according to Bruce). And that’s Mark Ruffalo Bruce, not Edward Norton Bruce.

Now, this interesting character is likely here to set up a “World War Hulk” storyline — and maybe even movie — but his presence in the MCU, albeit brief, cannot be ignored.

He’s the literal son of one of the Original Six. If he isn’t part of the MCU’s new Young Avengers squad, that’d be a real surprise.

Hulkling/Teddy Altman (Miles Gutierrez-Riley)

Contrary to his name, he isn’t the son of the Hulk. Or another son of the Hulk. Or really even related to the Hulk at all.

Credit: Marvel Comics

Now, the reason one Theodore Altman makes this list is because it’s been essentially confirmed that Agatha: Darkhold Diaries will bring Wiccan’s famous Marvel Comics romantic interest into the MCU fold, portrayed by Miles Gutierrez-Riley.

A Skrull-Kree hybrid, this young man is more than just Billy’s boyfriend from the comics — in fact, he’s also extremely powerful, with shape-shifting Hulk-like abilities and superhuman strength. Hopefully, seeing two young, green, (potentially topless?) Avengers won’t get too confusing for audiences.

Credit: Marvel Studios

Other heroes worth mentioning that might just make the cut? Kid Loki from the Loki (2021) series might also be a contender.

With all these younger heroes set up by Marvel, it’s clear that a new generation is now ready to take over from the older, original Avengers. With The Kang Dynasty and Secret Wars fast approaching, and the crazy plots scheduled for these new Avengers adventures, a whole new world is about to dawn for the MCU.

Perhaps it’s time to let Clint Barton (finally) retire. It has been a decade (and counting), after all.

What do you think of our list of the Young Avengers potential lineup? Is there anyone we missed? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

 Following Marvel Entertainment’s unforeseen success in their first foray into filmmaking with Iron Man (2008), a film that not only rejuvenated Robert Downey Jr.’s career but also injected fresh vitality into the superhero movie genre, The Walt Disney Company took over Marvel Studios. Fast forward over a decade since this acquisition, and guided by Kevin  Read More