Though March Madness, college basketball’s national championship tournament, has been cancelled this year, we thought it would fun to present an imaginary MCU bracket that pits Marvel’s surviving heroes against one another. In some cases, it’s solo hero vs. hero battles, but in others tag teams of heroes take on an opponent. We imagine these encounters as training exercises the heroes engage in to hone their battle prowess to better prepare them for future, unknown threats within the universe. Who do you think is best in superheroic combat? The outcome will depend on YOUR votes! Be sure to check @therealstanlee Instagram stories and @realstanlee Facebook stories for your chance to vote, starting tomorrow!
Here’s our analysis of The Superhero 16’s first eight match-ups:
Hulk vs. Captain Marvel
Our first bracket pits the Incredible Hulk, unvanquished champion of Sakaar, against Marvel’s Cosmic Crusader. Will Captain Marvel quickly overcome her opponent with the incredible power at her disposal or just hurt the Hulk enough to make him mad? And the madder he gets, the stronger he gets. In other words, she won’t like him when he’s angry.
Black Panther vs. Drax and Mantis
Our next bracket sets the King of Wakanda against a pair of the Galaxy’s Guardians. Will Black Panther’s vibranium suit be able to absorb those vicious attacks by Drax which he fails to dodge with his cat-like agility? And will T’Challa’s mental fortitude and personal willpower be enough to resist the psychic powers of Mantis?
Hawkeye vs. Falcon
Will Falcon’s mastery of flight and weapons be enough to outmaneuver Hawkeye’s deadly aim? And will he bear Captain America’s shield to deflect those arrows that that are on target? Who will win this battle between two of Marvel’s avian-themed heroes?
Spider-Man vs. Ant-Man and Wasp
This insect-themed battle of titans should be interesting. Can Spider-Man’s agility and uncanny spider-sense avoid the quick-flying attacks of Ant-Man and Wasp? Will Spidey be fast enough to catch these two insect-like adversaries in his web, or will this battle result in a Gi-Ant-Man victory?
Dr. Strange vs. Thor
The Master of Magic vs. the Master of Mjolnir. Thor has dealt with magic opponents before, with centuries of experience battling Asgard’s foremost sorcerer Loki. But Dr. Strange has plenty of tricks hidden beneath his Cloak of Levitation to frustrate even the Thunder Gods’ power.
War Machine vs. Rocket and Groot
War Machine is a technological marvel, and now that Iron Man is gone, War Machine is the best living example of the unique and powerful Stark Tech armor. But Rocket knows machines through and through and might jury-rig a few tricks to make War Machine’s life difficult. Add the growing power of young Groot to the mix, and War Machine is gonna have a real battle on his hands.
Nebula vs. Winter Soldier
Nebula pits her advanced cybernetic abilities against Winter Soldier’s bionic arm and unequalled combat skills, learned at the side of Captain America himself and honed over years of black ops. The daughter of Thanos versus the closest thing to a brother that Captain America has ever had? The outcome is far from certain.
Scarlet Witch vs. Starlord and Gamora
Finally, the tag-team of Starlord and Gamora, the latter another daughter of Thanos, versus the reality warping abilities of the Scarlet Witch. The outcome would seem to favor Scarlet Witch but remember that Gamora was raised and trained by Thanos himself, and Peter Quill is the son of Ego, the living planet, and still hasn’t realized his full untapped potential.
Who will win each of the eight battles of the Superhero 16 round? It’s up to you to decide!