West Coast Avengers cover

Who was on that initial team? Hawkeye recruited Mockingbird, Wonder Man, Tigra and Iron Man (who was actually James Rhodes and not Tony Stark … a mystery that was kept from the team for the first few issues). Eventually, the WCA added Hank Pym – better known as Ant-Man – the Vision, and Scarlet Witch as team members.

We know that Ant-Man is part of Marvel’s third phase. Edgar Wright is hammering out details on that production as we speak. Whedon just dropped Scarlet Witch hints. Anthony Mackie is set to play The Falcon in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and he'd make a fine addition to a West Coast team. And you must have heard the rumors and fanfiction that the “deceased” Agent Coulson could be used to create the Vision … if that Marvel storyline can play out.

Why do it? There are numerous reasons. Eventually, Marvel is going to have to branch away from the core of the Avengers franchise. Downey already is dropping hints that he’s ready to walk away. Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth also could (and probably should) top out at three standalone films for their characters. And that’s not to say they couldn’t come back and be part of a West Coast Avengers sequel. But Marvel needs to explore fresh avenues, and a WCA series could be the right move.

It also would be a good way to take advantage of Renner. Admittedly, his talents were wasted in Whedon’s films. The Bourne Legacy proved he can carry a movie. And Hawkeye from the West Coast books was such a charismatic, sarcastic hero. He’s a better character than Renner has been able to portray. Give him a separate West Coast Avengers franchise and see where he can take it.

This very topic came up a while back on ComicBookResources, and the users in that forum seemed to think that we’ll see a New Avengers franchise before we ever saw a West Coast series. I believed them, at the time.

Then I saw Shane Black drop Tony Stark’s mansion into the Pacific Ocean. I began to think what Marvel might do in an effort to rebuild its Southern California base. I stepped back and saw War Machine, Hawkeye, Hank Pym and, possibly, Scarlet Witch, in play. The pieces are moving around the chess board. I’m not declaring that West Coast Avengers is in our immediate future. But you’d be crazy not to realize that it’s a very real possibility based on the multiple moves Marvel has made to this point.

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