With the conclusion of Kevin Feige's Infinity Saga, it's hard to not overlook some incredible characters who made a bigger impact on the MCU than the audience may have realized initially. Giving credit where credit is due, half of the universe would still be "blip'd" out of existence if it wasn't for the likes of the household name Avengers, but some underappreciated characters definitely deserve some kudos. Ranging from brilliant spies to aliens with numerous abilities, what these characters lack in screen time they make up for in effectiveness.
Here are some of the most underrated characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Wong. Gets. Stuff. Done.
Seriously. Without his behind-the-scenes organization of the Masters of the Mystic Arts, the final clash of Avengers: Endgame wouldn't have happened. Upon receiving Doctor Strange's orders once The Snap was undone, the fact that he was able to dispatch teams of wizards to fetch the forces of Wakanda, New Asgard, The Ravagers, and even Howard the Duck, as well as Pepper Pots and The Wasp, in such a small window of time is astounding.
Given what little we know about the upcoming Doctor Strange sequel, Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, and how it will very likely involve Wanda's powers, it will be interesting to see how Wong factors into the story. But what we do know: He doesn't get very much credit.
Played By: Benedict Wong
Happy Hogan is basically the friend that everybody deserves. Happy's journey began all the way back in Iron Man where he was introduced as Tony Stark's personal chauffer, bodyguard, and best friend until the day he passed.
When Stark's influence over everything that's happened in the MCU is considered, at the end of the day, Happy was always there off-screen, offering guidance to the most ambitious Avenger. Following his friend's passing, Stark indirectly bequeathed Happy's guidance onto Peter Parker. Now, viewers can get a taste of what Happy did for Stark in his early days through the eyes of Peter, but this time, he's got invaluable experience.
Played By: Jon Favreau
Initially thought of as the English girl on the army base as seen in Captain America: The First Avenger, Margaret "Peggy" Carter's massive career single-handedly facilitated the formation of the Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement and Logistics Division (S.H.I.E.L.D.) and eventually the Avengers.
Following her initial film debut, she worked for the Strategic Scientific Reserve (S.S.R.) in New York, acting with the agency when her male superiors tried to force her into a secretarial role following World War II as seen in Agent Carter. Eventually with Howard Stark and Chester Phillips, she co-founded S.H.I.E.L.D. in 1965, which absorbed the S.S.R. after the remaining HYDRA factions were snuffed out.
Played By: Hayley Atwell
When Drax is introduced to audiences in the first Guardians of the Galaxy film, we learn about his beef with Thanos (slaying your wife and daughter will leave a mark). While Drax has about as much tact as a raccoon going through a dumpster, he really experiences the most growth out of the Guardians over the course of the three films where he actually speaks. In Guardians Vol. 1, his character is defined by his need for revenge, not wanting anything else or really caring about who got in his way. Then, in Guardians Vol. 2, we see him come out of his shell due to his interactions with Mantis and a more developed family/team dynamic with the other Guardians.
When Avengers: Infinity War rolls around, we still see the same man who wants to avenge his wife and child, but after getting his butt firmly handed to him when the Guardians encountered him on Knowhere, he somehow - quietly - becomes rational. This is evidenced by his ability to remain collected when the team of heroes arrives on Titan to try to take the Infinity Gauntlet from Thanos but fail because of Peter Quill's hot temper.
Drax is often written off as the comedic relief - the barbarian in the china shop - but he's learned how to process his past and handle his emotions incredibly well over just those three films.
Played By: Dave Batista