10 New MARVEL CINEMATIC UNIVERSE Characters We're Thankful Were Introduced In 2021

Happy Thanksgiving! The holidays have got us thinking about what we're thankful for this year, and these newly introduced Marvel Cinematic Universe characters quickly come to mind. See who made the cut...

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It's been a busy year for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and that means we've been introduced to a lot of new heroes and villains. In the wake of Avengers: Endgame, the stage is clearly being set for a new era of storytelling, and some great characters are being lined up to be part of it.

Today is Thanksgiving, and that got us thinking about which of the major new players in the MCU we're most thankful for. We've decided to only highlight those who have a future in this franchise rather than any who were clearly meant to be a one-and-done (so, no Mandarin, unfortunately). With that in mind, we're definitely keeping one eye on what comes next in this ranking.

We're sure you'll have a lot of fun here, and there are definitely some characters featured you might not be expecting to see...who should 100% be on your radar if they aren't already. 

To take a look through this feature, all you guys need to do is click on the "Next" button below! 
 

10. Kate Bishop

We've only just met the MCU's new Hawkeye, but c'mon, how could you not love Kate Bishop? Hailee Steinfeld's take on the character ensured she was instantly likeable, and it feels like the stage is being set for the archer to be a major player moving forward. 

There's clearly more to Kate than just being Clint Barton's sidekick, and while she's very much a rookie at this stage of her superhero career, she has the makings of a truly mighty Avenger. 

Something tells us the character will be put through the wringer in a big way over the next four weeks, particularly if our theory about her mother being involved with organised crime is accurate. However, that could be the push Kate needs to embrace her destiny as a hero, and if you're not excited about what the future holds in store for this tough as nails young woman, we don't know what to say.
 

9. Sersi

Eternals introduced a lot of characters to the MCU (too many, in fact), but this future Avenger was among those who left an indelible mark on us. While she may have been whisked away by Arishem, it's clear Marvel Studios has only just begun to tap into Sersi's abilities and the impact she can make.

With the help of her fellow Eternals, Sersi turned a Celestial to stone and saved Earth. That's incredible, as was Gemma Chan's work in a movie that too often moved the spotlight away from her to less interesting heroes and villains. We're excited to see where Sersi's story goes next, and when she does return to the planet she called home for 7000 years, it could be game-changing.

Of course, we're similarly intrigued by what comes next for Dane Whitman after that post-credits scene, but he didn't get enough screentime to earn a place here. Fingers crossed for a reunion with Sersi. 
 

8. Captain Carter

Yes, Peggy Carter is a character we've met before, but certainly not in this guise. In What If...?, we were taken to countless new realities, but the one where it was Peggy who took the Super Soldier Serum instead of Steve Rogers left a lasting impact and created a truly great new superhero. 

We didn't get to spend a huge amount of time with this Peggy Variant, but like Steve, she was a hero through and through. Brave, bold, and willing to make the ultimate sacrifice, Captain Carter's story continuing in some form is a must, and we're hoping those Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness rumours prove to be correct as a live-action debut would be epic

It goes without saying that the T'Challa Star-Lord Variant deserves a place here, but after the death of Chadwick Boseman, it seems likely that character is, sadly, also going to be retired. 
 

7. Mobius

Loki brought a lot of new characters into the MCU, pretty much all of whom we're excited to see again. However, Owen Wilson's Mobius left a bigger impact on us than any of us could have ever imagined. His apparent death was one of the biggest gut punches Marvel Studios has ever delivered, and we're definitely relieved that the TVA agent was later revealed to be alive and well. 

Based on how the first season ended, the God of Mischief could be spending time with a Variant Mobius to begin with, but the original being a key part of the proceedings is an absolute must. 

The fallout of the Sacred Timeline's destruction and the death of He Who Remains promises to have major consequences; Mobius seems accepting of that after being lied to for countless millennia, but we're expecting him to step up in a big way (especially to help rescue the stranded Loki). 
 

6. Agatha Harkness

"It was Agatha all along."

Fans of the comic books had guessed Agnes was really Agatha Harkness, but it made the eventual reveal no less satisfying (and catchy). Her role in manipulating Wanda Maximoff may not have been what some fans wanted (there was no sign of Mephisto), but she proved herself a formidable foe to the Scarlet Witch. 

By the time all was said and done, Agatha was left trapped in Westview, but we know the brilliant Kathryn Hahn will get to return in Agatha: House of Harkness

The actress did such amazing work as this villain, it's no wonder she's being given the spotlight in such a meaningful way. We're not sure where her story could or should go next, but it would have been a real shame to sideline Agatha after the events of WandaVision
 

5. Sylvie

Loki introduced the mind-bending concept of Variants, and while we loved spending time with Alligator Loki and Classic Loki, it was the "female Loki" Sylvie who ultimately stole the show for us. 

Quickly proving herself a complex, interesting character, this God of Mischief's unexpected dynamic with the MCU's Loki resulted in one of the best television romances of the year. She was far, far more than just a love interest, though, and both quite a bit smarter and tougher than Thor's fan-favourite bother!

After Sylvie chose a vengeful path by plunging that blade through the chest of He Who Remains, the stage has been set for her story to head to a lot of very interesting places. We're excited to see her and Loki reunite, but even more thrilled by the prospect of her arc continuing to take us to unexpected places.
 

4. John Walker

We clearly weren't meant to like John Walker when he was named the new Captain America, but that made the character no less fascinating. Dealing with PTSD, it was clear John was never fit to wield the shield, though there were the makings of a true hero buried within the trauma he was dealing with.

His decision to take the Super Soldier Serum was key and set the stage for the MCU to get its own U.S. Agent. The future potential for him is now significant, especially if the Thunderbolts or Dark Avengers are going to assemble in the not too distant future. 

Beyond any possible team-ups, though, we just can't wait to see what happens with John following the events of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. Could a clash with the new Captain America, Sam Wilson, be on the cards? It doesn't feel like he should be a villain, but the sooner Marvel Studios starts utilising the underrated Wyatt Russell, the better. 
 

3. Shang-Chi

We always had high hopes for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, but the movie completely smashed expectations. One of Marvel Studios' best origin stories, we found a lot to love here, and Simu Liu's Shang-Chi was definitely somewhere near the top of the list. 

Tony Leung's Mandarin did steal the show, but his story is over, and it's now time for Shang-Chi to make his mark in the MCU. Those Ten Rings clearly have ties to a greater cosmic power, and it feels a lot like he'll be a key player moving forward (especially after that meeting with Wong, Bruce Banner, and Captain Marvel). 

Liu delivered a likeable, formidable new hero who also happens to be one of this shared world's best fighters. The sooner that sequel is announced, the better. 
 

2. Ikaris

After revealing himself as the true villain of Eternals (well, depending on your pespective), Ikaris helped his fellow immortals before flying into the sun. Clearly devastated that he helped stop the birth of Tiamut the Celestial and took a fellow Eternal's life, it seems the Superman-like character couldn't live with his actions or the fact he'd lost Sersi for good. 

It's worth noting we didn't actually see his demise, of course, and the fact that Arishem has access to the memories of these Eternals means he could be resurrected in some way. Richard Madden is too good as this character to be left on the shelf, while it's even possible the all-powerful Celestial stopped Ikaris before he could end his life so he too could be judged.

We're optimistic that he'll return in some form, even if it's hard to say exactly how that would happen.
 

1. Yelena Belova

We've been able to highlight a lot of great female characters in this feature, but Yelena Belova does stand out as the one with the brightest future in the MCU. 

Natasha Romanoff's story has reached its end, and filling the void left by Scarlett Johansson was never going to be easy; however, Florence Pugh already feels like she's done that and more. This layered, quirky Widow is suitably badass and far from just Nat 2.0. In fact, she stole the show in the Black Widow movie released earlier this year, and will soon return in Hawkeye

There, she'll be targeting Clint Barton after being led to believe he was responsible for his fellow Avenger's death. We're certainly hoping Yelena learns the truth before heading down a villainous route, but whatever the case may be, we can't wait to see where this character's story goes next.
 

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