Think back to 2012. That was the year that the world was supposed to end for humanity. I argue the opposite: Marvel gave us something to look forward to with the creation of the first (and so far) best live-action superhero team-up film. [The Avengers](movie:9040).
Just think: they took four pretty good films (I am discounting Iron Man 2 now, due to its status as a sequel): Iron Man, The Increbible Hulk, Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger. Think of it as blending up a smoothie at Jamba Juice. With these four films they were gathering the correct ingredients for a summer blockbuster. They added in a few extra characters for extra dynamic, one super bad-ass villain (who I hope does not quickly disappear from Marvel's radar) and Samuel L. Freaking Jackson, and BAM! Avengers hits theaters and now is one of the highest grossing films of ALL TIME! ALL TIME!
The same has been done for Phase Two, but somewhat dialed back build-up. Don't get me wrong, there were some fantastic films made in Phase Two, but did they properly set the scene for Avengers 2: Age of Ultron? Think about it: What is the natural "sequel," if you will, of Iron Man 3? What's going to happen next? In [Thor: The Dark World](movie:206462), we see a HUGE shift in power up in Asgard that will change the game for Thor: Ragnarok, but I don't think it should interfere with Ultron's plans. Or maybe it will?
And then there was my personal favorite film of Phase Two: Captain America! (Mostly because of the elevator fight scene) It's legacy can be plainly seen in Marvel's [Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.](series:722469). For those who haven't watched Season 2, I won't ruin it but there are big developments happening that are connected to the downfall of S.H.I.E.L.D., not to mention the possible debut of the Kree and even Inhumans suggested.
Speaking of Kree, that brings me to my little brothers' favorite Marvel movie, [Guardians of the Galaxy](movie:424073). What a fantastic film! It paved the way for underdog Marvel films and it sparked DC to add Suicide Squad to its list of upcoming movies. Guardians laid much groundwork and insight into Thanos, who we might see in a post-credits scene. But we know for sure that he is hunting the Infinity Stones, six gems that when put together in a gauntlet (glove) gve the wearer limitless power. Will Thanos make an appearance in Avengers 2? I doubt it. Some have speculated that there may be a connection between Ultron and the Mad Titan. Again, I think it's unlikely. But we'll just have to wait and see. But here are some reasons why this next Avengers movie will be the best one yet and the best film overall in 2015:
1. Joss Whedon is working on it. DUH! He was key to making the first Avengers film such a big success and a fairly stable foundation for Phase 2 to kick off after the events of the first film.
Quicksilver, Scarlet Witch & More
2. The new characters and the people that play them. There are three known characters that will be introduced that Marvel fans can be certain that they will join the Avengers line-up. Formerly husband and wife in Godzilla, Kickass' Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Silent House's Elizabeth Olsen team up, now as the twin mutants (Oops. Sorry Fox. Meant to say "non-mutants") [Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch](movie:1081109), respectively. There is a good amount of acting talent between the two, so I think they'll do an stellar job. The third is Vision, played by J.A.R.V.I.S. voice actor Paul Bettany. You know? The monk dude from Da Vinci Code? Ah, forget it. Either way, he has voiced Jarvis for all of the Iron Man movies and in the first Avengers film, so I expect good things.
3. Ultron. Need I say more? Yes. It's voiced and mo-capped (Andy Serkis was doing something else at the time) by Blacklist and Office actor, James Spader. I personally love his performance in the Office and could talk about it for hours, but I gotta move on to some other tidbits. In the two trailers we've seen so far, we've seen the mo-cap king, Andy Serkis, appear. Many think he is playing Ulysses Klaw, the sworn arch-nemesis of [Black Panther](movie:9047), and I beleive them. In the most recent trailer if you look closely you can see a necklace with a claw on it. So it's pretty much all but confirmed by the big Kevin Feige upstairs. But one things is for sure. Ultron is gearing up to be my favorite MCU Villain. Sorry, Tom Hiddleston.
All in all, Marvel has been laying groundwork for each team up movie. They did it with The Avengers and they've done it for Avengers 2: Age of Ultron. We know this is all building up to something. Is it [The Avengers: Infinity War](movie:738027)? Is it Phase 4? We'll probably have to wait a few years to see if the MCU will go beyond the Mad Titan. But I know I don't want to miss a second of it!