Marvel's Civil War series was huge in the world of comics back in 2006. It's story of the U.S. government stepping in to impose a Superhero Registration Act crossed over to just about every one of their major titles and characters and the reverberations from the epic clash between Captain America and Iron Man was long lasting and still exists in the books today.
So how will this battle shape up in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and [Captain America: Civil War](movie:994409)? Beware of possible spoilers below...
Get the Hulkbuster!
The comic book series starts with a tragic catastrophe being triggered by a superhero which kills hundreds of civilians and notably a great deal of children. In response, the government wants all superheroes to be registered with the government.
For someone like Tony Stark, this isn't too big a deal - he already has his share of ties to the government. For Captain America, this kind of dictatorship goes against everything he's been fighting for. The government, with the help of Stark and the Fantastic Four's Reed Richards, go so far as to create a prison in the Negative Zone to lock up any superheroes that fail to comply with the new mandate. Yeah, Cap is having none of it.
So should we be expecting epic scale destruction and human losses in the next Avengers film? Well, it would seem there's a reason Tony is busting out the Hulkbuster in [The Avengers: Age Of Ultron](movie:293035). There have been plenty of rumors around the internet about Hulk even ending up in something like the rocket they shoot him off in for the Planet Hulk comic. It would be a sad state of affairs for the big green guy to end up killing hundreds of civilians but that's exactly the kind of conflict Marvel may have in store for the troubled Bruce Banner.
Spider-Man & Reed Richards: The Missing Marvels
Now the will-he-won't-he dilemma over bringing Spider-Man away from Sony and into the Marvel Cinematic Universe is a big deal for the future of the MCU, but it looks like it won't be too big a deal for the upcoming Captain America: Civil War. While Spidey's conflict about having to give up his secret identity in order to register plays a big part of the Civil War comic book, Marvel head-honcho Kevin Keige has a way around that.
Indeed, the Freedom vs. Security debate is more central to the story than secret identities. Is it just me, or it really strange to realize than none of the current Avengers have secret identities? Anyway, keeping the focus on Tony Stark's ties to the government and their encroaching oversight feels like they're staying true to what has been brewing all along.
Will the film go so far as to create a Fantastic Four-less version of the Negative Zone superhero prison? Reed Richards is another Marvel character that the film company hasn't been able to bring back into the fold. But the severity of this system - a nightmarish version of suspended animation, plays a big part in Captain America's argument against the registration proposal.
Keep An Eye on Crossbones and Carter
Marvel's Civil War series pretty much draws to a conclusion upon the assassination of Captain America by a Crossbones/Sharon Carter/HYDRA conspiracy. Both of whom were introduced in Winter Soldier and at the very least, Crossbones has been confirmed to return for Captain America: Civil War. There have been recent rumors that the MCU plans to stick to this trajectory and it would certainly make for one heck of an ending to the film - who wouldn't be on the edge of their seats waiting for Marvel's inevitable post-credits scene!
The longer lasting implications of the Civil War in the MCU will be interesting to see - how it plays out really could determine the fate of whether or not Spider-Man even makes sense to show up in this universe. Will the government end up distributing registered superheroes across the country in accordance to the Fifty State Initiative? Will Iron Man move on to become head of S.H.E.I.L.D.? Only time will tell. What seems pretty certain is that we will be seeing a very different Avengers line-up after Civil War.