From Rocket to War Machine, these MCU ‘sidekicks’ (and sometimes heroes in their own right) are hard to rank… but not impossible.
For most Marvel fans, the Marvel Cinematic Universe was about the heroes who took center stage. However, the ones in the back often did as much heavy lifting as those in the forefront. For fans of Captian America, the definition of a true sidekick will be Falcon or Winter Soldier. And as much of a loner as Iron Man was, he did have a few who loved to fight by his side.
The MCU also extended outside of the big screen with characters such as Iron Fist, Daredevil, Daisey, and more. A second look back at certain movies and shows will reveal just how important the sidekicks were to the success of the heroes who took top-billing over the years in the MCU.
10 Star-Lord (Rocket Raccoon)
Guardians of the Galaxy was a surprise hit for Marvel. There was no Captain America or Nick Fury. The cast was slightly different than what the MCU had done elsewhere. Star-Lord christened himself the leader of the crew and while everyone objected, there was only one who actually challenged his authority.
Rocket Raccoon has been historic in the MCU. His personality meshes well with Star-Lord’s and that’s what makes Guardians of the Galaxy work. Rocket doesn’t tell jokes, he speaks his truth. Not too much hand-to-hand combat coming from Crockett, just comedy relief.
9 Black Panther (Shuri)
The younger sister of T’Challa will play a huge role in the future of the MCU. Shuri is the brains behind the Black Panther and Wakanda. When fans thinks of technology it’s normally Tony Stark that comes to mind. However, Wakanda has proven to be light years ahead of what Stark Enterprise is capable of. While T’Challa gets all the glory, it’s Shuri who’s the glue.
Their bond is much stronger than those of the other sidekicks as this is one shared through blood. Shuri is not afraid to get her hands dirty either as she was seen in battle fighting alongside the other heroes when it mattered most.
8 Luke Cage (Misty Knight)
Being bulletproof doesn’t mean that help is not needed. For Luke Cage, that help came in the form of a Harlem Detective named Misty Knight. In the first two seasons of Luke Cage, the relationship was just being touched upon. Misty was sent to take Luke down but soon learned that they were on the same side.
Misty is determined to rid Harlem of corruption and crime, so much so that she literally gave her arm in the process. By the end of Season 2, Knight and Cage were at odds with each other.
7 Iron Fist (Colleen Wing)
The Immortal Iron Fist was once a member of his own clan but fled back to the United States to reclaim his life. Trouble would soon follow and in those trying times, he found solace and love in the form of Colleen Wing aka The White Tiger. Colleen herself trained in the martial arts field and proved to be quite reliable as a sidekick for Danny Rand.
Colleen had her own demons to slay while helping Danny and in turn, it caused a rift between the two by the end of Season 2. Nevertheless, Colleen is still a character many fans of the MCU want to see again.
6 Ant-Man (The Wasp)
At times, many wondered if Ant-Man was the sidekick and The Wasp is the official leader. Scott and Hope began a strange relationship that would morph into a superhero partnership. Their pairing in both movies proves how a team can work well together.
While Scott was learning his new power, it was Hope who had it under control. Mya is more hands-on and serious while Scott just goes with the motion. He’s intelligent, but also reckless. Despite their differences, this is a perfect match.
5 Iron Man (War Machine)
While Iron Man likes to consider himself a bit of a loner, the facts show that War Machine has been by his side through most of the MCU. War Machine is the altered version of Iron Man in terms of armor and his thought process. In the beginning, there was a bit of a tussle between the two characters but once the studio replaced Terrance Howard with Don Cheadle, War Machine took off.
War Machine is about the battle. Unlike Tony Stark, Rhodey has seen combat and understands the hierarchy of power. While he does fight alongside The Avengers, his allegiance is to Iron Man.
4 Captain America (Bucky Barnes)
It’s rare for one superhero to have two sidekicks. While Falcon earned that spot through loyalty, Bucky Barnes was given it out of love. Bucky and Rodgers grew up together in Brooklyn and joined the Army only to be separated. Bucky would later become The Winter Solider.
In the MCU, Bucky Barnes may have caused more damage than Thanos himself. Bucky tore down the Avengers way before Thanos snapped his fingers.
3 Captain America (Falcon)
When Bucky vanished, it was Sam who took over the role as Steve Rodgers’ friend and most trusted partner in the MCU. Armed with the ability to fly, Falcon became a fan favorite. Much like War Machine for Iron Man, Falcon’s loyalty lies with Captain America.
Falcon is another person who served his time in the Army. The friendship started with admiration then turned into a true brotherhood. So much so that when Steve Rodgers gave up the shield, he looked to Falcon to carry the Captain America torch.
2 Iron Man (Spider-Man)
It may be strange to call Spider-Man a sidekick, but in the MCU, that’s exactly what he was. Iron Man had War Machine but by the time Captian America: Civil War came along, Spider-Man was added to that shortlist. Although there were different versions of the web-slinger throughout the years, the MCU version has made the greatest impact.
Peter Parker idolized Tony Stark and the story arc between the two is what drove the emotion for Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame. Spider-Man broke out into his own in the MCU but he was introduced under Tony.
1 Nick Fury (Phil Coulson)
In the first Avengers movie, no one thought too much of Agent Phil Colson. He came off a bit square and then was killed by Loki. On all accounts, viewers just knew that was the last we would see of the huge Captian America fan. But Marvel had big plans for Coulson.
Brought back to life, Coulson was given the mantle as leader of the Agents of Shield. He would comprise his own team of heroes and keep up the fight that he learned during his time with Nick Fury.
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