For over a decade, viewers have watched with amazement as some of the most popular and powerful characters in comic book history came to life within the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Fans have cheered the Avengers on as they fought against some of their greatest foes both separately and as a unit, and when Spider-Man, Black Panther, Doctor Strange and Scarlet Witch finally joined their ranks in recent years, it seemed like Earth’s Mightiest Heroes were absolutely unstoppable.
Then Thanos assembled all of the Infinity Stones in Avengers: Infinity War and erased half of all life across the universe with a mere snap of his fingers. We were forced to watch as several beloved characters dissolved into ash, and those that survived were left defeated and utterly hopeless. The remaining Avengers will undoubtedly mount some sort of attack on Thanos in Endgame and may undo his attempt to “bring balance to the universe,” but it’s possible they could have prevented his victory in the first place if all of the Avengers lived up to their full potential.
The countless heroes of Infinity War appeared to be trying their hardest to foil the Mad Titan’s plan, but comic book fans know that several Avengers have yet to use certain powers they have in the comics. We’ve never seen our favorite heroes utilize these gifts in the MCU yet, but they may have to use them soon if they want to beat Thanos. Here are 20 Wild Superpowers MCU Heroes Have But Have Never Used.
Click the button below to start this article in quick view
20 CAPTAIN AMERICA CAN WIELD MJOLNIR
When the Avengers gathered to celebrate their retrieval of Loki’s staff, several heroes tried their hand at lifting Thor’s hammer Mjolnir. Some characters joked that Thor’s control of the hammer was a mere parlor trick, but that didn’t stop them from attempting to discover whether or not they were “worthy.”
Tony Stark and Rhodey worked together to try to lift Mjolnir, but even their armored gloves weren’t enough to make it budge. Bruce Banner similarly failed to move the hammer. When Steve Rogers gave it a shot, however, Mjolnir wobbled the slightest bit. In the comics, Cap has been able to wield the hammer by proving himself worthy. Comic fans have been begging for this to happen in the MCU, and with time travel being a potential factor in Endgame, it’s possible Mjolnir will return and Cap will temporarily use it to fight Thanos.
19 SCARLET WITCH CAN ALTER REALITY
Before Scarlet Witch became one of the casualties of Thanos’ snap, she proved herself to be one of the MCU’s most powerful characters. She had the ability to fly, to control minds, to show people visions of their fears, and to shoot blasts of red energy at enemies. In the comics, she’s actually even more powerful and her superhuman abilities are practically limitless.
The comic book version of Wanda Maximoff can magically alter all of reality in a manner similar to that of the Reality Stone. In fact, just by uttering the words “No More Mutants,” she once caused the number of mutants in the world to drop from millions to a few hundred. If only she used this ability in Infinity War, she might have been able to eliminate Thanos’ army in a matter of seconds and freed the Avengers to focus all of their efforts on stopping the Mad Titan.
18 ANT-MAN CAN CAUSE ENEMIES TO EXPLODE
When trailers for Avengers: Endgame revealed that Scott Lang will join Earth’s Mightiest in their battle to take down Thanos and restore life to half the universe, fans joked that Ant-Man could single-handedly stop the all-powerful Titan by simply crawling into Thanos’ body while in his microscopic form and expanding to his regular size.
Believe it or not, this is an actual possibility and something Ant-Man is perfectly capable of. Heroes don’t typically choose to cause their enemies to explode in this manner so Ant-Man doesn’t utilize this gift, but if things get dicey against Thanos and billions of lives are at stake, it may be the Avengers’ best option.
17 HAWKEYE IS A SKILLED FENCER AND FIGHTER
Some MCU viewers believe that Hawkeye is nothing but a highly-skilled archer, but Clint Barton’s skills go far beyond his ability to shoot arrows. He’s also an expert fencer and gymnast, and while he doesn’t have superhuman strength, speed, or stamina to back him up the way Captain America and Black Panther do, he’s still very gifted at hand-to-hand combat and can hold his own against some of Marvel’s best fighters.
In the comics, Hawkeye was trained in fencing, acrobatics and marksmanship by the criminals Trick Shot and Swordsman, and he was taught tactics, martial arts, and combat skills by Captain America. It looks like Clint will appear in Endgame as Ronin, a re-branded Hawkeye who became known for his proficiency with a katana and ability to turn any object into a weapon.
16 SPIDER-MAN CAN TALK TO SPIDERS
Not all superhuman powers are created equal, and it’s not entirely surprising that none of the various live-action films featuring Spider-Man over the past two decades have showcased the hero’s ability to speak to spiders. It’s certainly not as useful of a gift as Peter’s spider-sense, enhanced strength, or ability to cling to walls, but Ant-Man’s connection with ants has helped him a few times in the MCU and it’s definitely possible that communication with spiders could have its uses as well.
After Marvel Comics’ “The Other” storyline, Spider-Man emerged from a cocoon with extra powers, one of which was this ability to talk to spiders. In Doctor Strange #390, the Sorcerer Supreme also used magic to let Peter talk to his eight-legged friends.
15 QUICKSILVER CAN RUN INTO THE FUTURE
When Scarlet Witch removed most of Quicksilver’s mutant powers in the comics, he gained new gifts courtesy of the Inhumans’ Terrigen Mist. Suddenly, the speedster became more of an equal to DC’s Flash, as he showcased an ability to run through time and summon time-displaced duplicates of himself.
This power definitely would have come in handy in Avengers: Age of Ultron, in which Pietro lost his own life while trying to protect his friendly rival Hawkeye. He joked “bet you didn’t see that coming” one last time as he passed away, but if Quicksilver had used his ability to run into the future, he would have seen it coming and could have prevented his termination.
14 HULK CAN SEE THE ASTRAL PLANE
We’ve seen the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Hulk hold his own in battles against Thanos and Thor, so it’s clear that he is one of Earth’s most formidable brawlers. The green giant is more than just muscle, though, and he has a special power that few fans know about and that could actually come in handy in Endgame.
Hulk is capable of seeing astral projections and ghosts, and can see characters who are using magic to project their presence. It’s possible he could use this unusual gift to communicate with the fallen Doctor Strange, and since the Sorcerer Supreme has seen millions of resolutions to the Avengers’ fight against Thanos and knows the only route which will bring them success, Hulk may be able to provide his teammates with the knowledge they need to achieve victory.
13 BLACK PANTHER CAN CONTROL ZOMBIES
Recently in Marvel Comics, T’Challa was anointed “King of the Deceased” and was granted the power and knowledge of all past Black Panthers, as well as the ability to control the Undead. On a few occasions, he’s proven capable of actually reanimating fallen warriors and summoning departed spirits into the physical world with tangible forms.
It’s not very likely the MCU will ever explore this fairly new addition to the Black Panther’s skill set, but it would certainly come in handy. Countless Wakandan soldiers perished in the civilization’s battle between Killmonger and T’Challa and the war against Thanos’ Outrider army, and if the young king could bring them back to life, Wakanda would be able to mount quite a formidable offense against any threat.
12 THOR CAN SPEAK EVERY LANGUAGE
Thor mentioned in Infinity War that he was actually able to understand Groot because they taught Groot as an elective in schools on Asgard, but the God of Thunder shouldn’t have actually had to learn the talking tree’s language from a textbook. In the comics, he uses a gift called the All-Tongue to be able to instantly communicate with anyone in the universe, no matter which language they’re speaking.
Thor can use the All-Tongue to understand every form of language, and when he responds, this power allows whoever he’s speaking to, to automatically hear him in their native tongue. The MCU has made it seem like nearly everyone in the galaxy speaks English, but that just may be the All-Tongue making things easier for us to understand.
11 GAMORA IS CAPABLE OF RAPID HEALING
One of the most surprising moments of Infinity War was when Thanos revealed his genuine love for his forcefully-adopted daughter Gamora and ended her life to obtain ownership of the Soul Stone. Fans weren’t expecting a major Guardians of the Galaxy character to meet such a tragic end, and Gamora’s passing was a big part of why Star-Lord ruined the plan to strip Thanos of his Infinity Gauntlet.
Peter Quill may have overreacted to Gamora’s apparent elimination, though, because in the comics, she has an accelerated healing factor. Her ability to rapidly heal might have saved her from the fall off that cliff on Vormir. The films haven’t ever shown any signs of this ability, though, so it’s possible that the MCU’s Gamora sadly doesn’t share the same gifts as her comic book counterpart.
10 VISION CAN MATERIALIZE INSIDE OF SOMEONE
Doctor Strange’s poor use of the Time Stone in Infinity War upset a lot of fans, because he was able to trap Dormammu in an unstoppable time loop in his solo film but barely mounted any considerable offense against the likes of Ebony Maw or Thanos. Viewers should be similarly disappointed in Vision for being so weak in the film, though, because one of the Avengers’ best weapons was eliminated without doing much of anything.
So far in the MCU, Vision’s ability to phase through solid objects has been used as a defensive tactic to keep his enemies from being able to touch him. That power can be used offensively, though, as Vision can phase inside of foes and then materialize. It’s a very intense gift, but it’s one that he should have used against Thanos to keep him from eliminating countless innocent lives.
9 FALCON CAN COMMUNICATE WITH BIRDS
In Captain America: Civil War, viewers were introduced to Redwing, the reconnaissance drone Falcon used to spy on his enemies during his missions with the Avengers. The MCU Redwing is a Stark Tech prototype, but in the comics, he’s an actual falcon that Sam Wilson has a telepathic link with.
Red Skull used the Cosmic Cube to create a mental connection between Falcon and Redwing, and Falcon later revealed he could extend this empathic link to see into the minds of other birds as well, giving him “over six billion pairs of eyes in the United States alone.” Clearly Marvel decided that was a bit too far-fetched for their live-action universe, but it definitely could make Falcon a much better spy and asset for Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.
8 VALKYRIE HAS A HEALING FACTOR
At the start of Infinity War, viewers discovered Thanos and his Black Order had already attacked Thor’s spacecraft filled with powerful Asgardians. The Mad Titan’s forces proved to be too much for the God of Thunder and his friends, but since Thanos claims he’s all about bringing balance to the universe and only ever tries to eliminate half of all existence, it’s possible that half of the Asgardians on the ship were allowed to leave the attack unscathed.
Valkyrie’s fate in the MCU is still up in the air because we don’t know who Thanos took out and who he showed mercy to, but if Ragnarok‘s Valkyrie shares her comic counterpart’s abilities, she should be perfectly fine. After all, the powerful female warrior possesses a heightened healing factor which allows her to recover from serious injuries in just a few hours.
7 BLACK WIDOW CAN ALSO LIFT THOR’S HAMMER
Fans have been clamoring for Steve Rogers to wield Thor’s mighty hammer Mjolnir ever since he caused it to budge in Age of Ultron, but he’s not the only Avenger to prove themselves worthy in the comics. In an alternate universe, the Black Widow also actually briefly held the iconic weapon.
Natasha turned down the opportunity to try her hand at lifting Mjolnir in the film because it was a question she didn’t need answering, but if Thor’s original weapon returns in Endgame, it’s better in her hands than in Captain America’s because he has powers of his own and has already shown that he can hold his own against Thanos in hand-to-hand combat without it.
6 GROOT CAN CONTROL TREES AND PLANTS
Between the Avengers, warriors of Wakanda, Rocket Raccoon and Groot, Infinity War‘s final battle against Thanos’ alien Outrider army already had enough soldiers fighting in it to captivate audiences. It probably would have been a bit much if the intense conflict also featured gigantic fighting trees like the ones seen in the Lord of the Rings films, but Groot’s unique powers could have made that a possibility.
Groot has the ability to control plant life, so he could have actually weaponized the environment surrounding Wakanda to help fight Thanos’ forces. His ability to expand his branches and use them to attack foes has definitely been useful in the films thus far, but he’s barely touched on the full extent of his powers.
5 CAPTAIN AMERICA HAS ENHANCED EYESIGHT
By now, even casual Marvel fans know that Captain America has superhuman strength, speed, and stamina and that he’s one of the Avengers’ top tacticians. His ability to throw and instantly recover his vibranium shield is similarly well-known, but even the biggest Steve Rogers-enthusiasts don’t know about one of his most useful powers from the comics.
Steve also has enhanced eyesight, which allows him to process incoming visual stimuli faster than any other information and pick out information that may be useful. Iron Man’s technology helped him determine Cap’s fighting patterns and mount a counter-offense in Civil War, but Steve’s heightened sight helps him do that all on his own, even if the films haven’t explained how.
4 IRON MAN IS A TECHNOPATH
When Tony Stark nearly perished during a fight against the villainous Mallen in the comics, he injected his nervous system with modified techno-organic virus-like body restructuring machines which rewrote his own biology. This allowed him to partially merge with his Iron Man armor and gave him the gift of technopathy.
Tony became capable of communicating with and controlling every piece of technology, and thanks to his ability to interface with communication satellites and wireless connections to increase the range of his power, his technopathy is practically limitless and effortless. This would definitely come in handy in the MCU, as Tony is currently stranded on Titan with nothing but a spacecraft he has no idea how to operate.
3 DOCTOR STRANGE HAS MARTIAL ARTS TRAINING
Doctor Strange is a master of the mystic arts and the most skilled sorcerer on the planet, but he doesn’t always have to rely on magic in battle. Benedict Cumberbatch’s Stephen Strange hasn’t ever demonstrated any real hand-to-hand combat prowess, but the character he’s inspired by has been trained in several martial arts disciplines and can hold his own in a fight without uttering a single incantation.
Doctor Strange is extremely proficient at Judo and is good at wielding a wide variety of weapons, including swords and axes. He’s used the Axe of Angarruumus on numerous occasions in the comics, and the Doctor Strange film featured a brief Easter egg where Strange tried to grab it to battle Kaecilius before his mystical cape dragged him towards an alternate weapon.
2 CAPTAIN MARVEL CAN SEE THE FUTURE
It’s hard to believe that Captain Marvel failed to show off the full extent of Carol Danvers’ powers, because she was so ridiculously overpowered in the film. Some fans are having a hard time believing that Thanos will even be able to give Captain Marvel a fight in Endgame after witnessing how powerful she is, without even knowing that Carol also has the gift of precognition and hasn’t bothered to use it yet.
Carol’s ability to see glimpses of the future is strong enough that it’s been deemed a “seventh sense.” She hasn’t demonstrated that power in the MCU, and since she didn’t seem to know what Thanos was up to until Nick Fury contacted her, it’s possible she isn’t even aware she has precognition in her back pocket yet. If she ever does develop it, Captain Marvel will become even more unstoppable.
1 HULK CAN RESIST PSYCHIC CONTROL
When Scarlet Witch was working with Ultron, she used her superhuman abilities to mess with the Avengers’ minds. Wanda caused Thor, Black Widow, Iron Man, and Captain America to relive their worst memories or see their fears come to life, but it seems she did something even worse to the Hulk. She increased his rage so dramatically that the hero nearly destroyed an entire city and caused the entire world to fear him.
This wouldn’t have been quite so easy in the comics, as Hulk is supposed to be capable of resisting psychic control. His unparalleled rage makes even the most powerful psychics struggle to reign him in, so he may be the Avengers’ best hope if Thanos tries using the power of the Mind Stone to force Earth’s Mightiest Heroes to turn on each other