The internet is rife with forum posts, blogs, articles, and videos about Marvel Cinematic Universe characters and their powers. Superfans intensely debate every aspect of the heroes' lives, from their origins, to their costumes, to their powers. But what MCU fan hasn't wondered who would win in a knock-down, drag-out, battle royale brawl featuring every Avenger? We have gotten tastes of such entanglements previously, like when Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America had a three-way stand-off, or when Tony Stark in his Hulkbuster armor politely asked an entranced Hulk to "go to sleep" with piston-like blows to the face. And, of course, there was the team-splitting airport battle over the Sokovia Accords in Captain America: Civil War.
But none of those fights lasted very long and we haven't gotten to see nearly as many matchups as we would like. Who would win in a fight: Iron Man or Thor? Who is more worthy to wield Mjölnir: Thor or Vision? Who has better tactical fighting skills: Captain America or Black Panther? Whose magic is stronger: Doctor Strange or Scarlet Witch?
Every hero has a learning curve, an amount of time and experience necessary in using their powers and abilities in order to reach their maximum effectiveness. So, for the sake of this nerdtacular thought experiment, we've chosen Avengers (and honorary Avengers) plucked from the MCU timestream somewhere between the opening of Thor: Ragnarok and the ending of Avengers: Endgame, when all of the heroes have achieved their fullest potentials. Which Avenger would win in the ultimate fight? We've broken down the most powerful Avengers by reputation, fighting style, weapons, and weaknesses, but it's up to you to decide. Vote up or vote down the be-all and end-all Avenger in the MCU!
- Photo: Avengers: Endgame / Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Reputation/Style: Wanda Maximoff grew up consumed with rage, which she expressed as a militant activist in her home country of Sokovia and as a test subject for Wolfgang von Strucker's experiments. She can be quick to anger and has no compunction about using violence and manipulation - even of her enemies' minds - as a means to an end. She is also quite compassionate, which helped her turn away from her alliance with Ultron and find love with Vision.
Fighting Skill Set: Wanda has not been trained extensively in hand-to-hand combat and relies on her Mind Stone-granted psionic powers. She can project energy blasts and bolts of telekinetic energy, create force fields, read and implant thoughts, and telekinetically move objects or herself, allowing her to "fly." Since her powers were derived from an Infinity Stone, she is capable of destroying Infinity Stones, as she demonstrated during the Battle of Wakanda.
Secret Weapon: Since she is unique and her powers are derived from an extra-dimensional source, there is no way of knowing the full range of her abilities or the limits of her powers, making her a true wild card. During the Battle of Earth, her powers had grown to such an extent that she was even able to fend off Thanos single-handedly.
Biggest Weakness: Though she has grown more even-tempered since joining the Avengers, Maximoff still has difficulty controlling her emotions. Unchecked, her rage and anguish can manifest in bursts of dangerous psionic energy, making her a potential risk to those around her.Victorious Avenger?
- 2Photo: Thor: Ragnarok / Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Reputation/Style: Thor Odinson is self-confident and full of bravado, but also arrogant, impulsive, and even impetuous. He revels in combat and is the type of warrior who strikes first and asks questions later.
Fighting Skill Set: As a virtually immortal Asgardian, Thor has been in countless skirmishes against all manner of enemies in his extremely long life. He is nearly unstoppable with his mighty war-hammer Mjölnir, and even more dangerous with his ax-hammer Stormbreaker, but he has proven accomplished with just about any weapon he lays his hands on. Even without a weapon, he is superhumanly fast, durable, and strong, even capable of going toe-to-toe, blow-for-blow, with the likes of the Hulk.
Secret Weapon: Thor once believed that most of his powers and abilities, including his control of weather, were derived from Mjölnir. He later learned that Mjölnir only helped him focus and control the powers he already possessed within himself. He can summon violent storm winds, rain, and snow, and can call down or even self-generate massive bolts of lightning.
Biggest Weakness: Despite Thor's braggadocio, his ego is more fragile than he lets on, and it's his biggest weakness. He has a hard time taking direction from others and difficulty processing more complex emotions. The grief and guilt he felt over the loss of his mother, father, and adopted brother, Loki, sent him into a self-destructive depression that sapped him of his will and his strength.Victorious Avenger?
- Photo: Doctor Strange / Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Reputation/Style: Though he matured considerably along the path that led to him becoming the Sorcerer Supreme, Stephen Strange possesses the arrogance that alienated him from his peers when he was a surgeon. As a healer, he is a pacifist by nature. He is more likely to use his magical abilities to remove potential threats from play - like when he assisted Thor in finding Loki, who was on Strange's "watch list" - or to subdue his enemies without violence.
Fighting Skill Set: Strange's training with the Masters of the Mystic Arts at Kamar-Taj included both the study of sorcery and of martial arts. His eidetic memory allows him to learn magical spells incredibly quickly and to retain their complex incantations and gestures. His genius-level intellect and limber mind make him a brilliant tactician capable of anticipating and preparing for threats and possible contingencies.
Secret Weapon: In addition to the magical spells he's committed to memory, Strange employs a number of secret weapons in the form of magical artifacts. Though the Eye of Agamotto is his most powerful tool, as it contains the Time Stone, his greatest secret weapon is his semi-sentient Cloak of Levitation. It has protected Strange from harm on numerous occasions, even while he was unconscious, and is powerful enough to briefly contend with the might of Thanos.
Biggest Weakness: Strange's hands never fully healed following the mishap that stripped him of his ability to practice medicine. He still has severe bone and nerve damage, and wielding weapons, even enchanted ones, can cause him a great deal of pain.Victorious Avenger?
- Photo: Captain Marvel / Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures
Reputation/Style: Having been controlled and manipulated her entire life - first, by earthly patriarchal norms; later, by a mind-controlling Kree super-intelligence - Carol Danvers is naturally cautious of others and rebellious toward authority. She is extremely focused and driven and prefers to work alone.
Fighting Skill Set: Danvers trained in aerial tactical and combat techniques as an elite pilot with the United States Air Force. After being kidnapped and mind-controlled by the Kree, she was taught the fighting style of the galaxy-conquering race and instructed in manipulating her Infinity Stone-granted powers. Her Kree blood transfusion granted her superhuman strength, durability, agility, speed, and enhanced healing, making her a formidable hand-to-hand combatant. After freeing herself of Kree control, Carol was also free of the limits placed on her cosmic abilities, which include flight, photon blasts, and energy channeling, manipulation, and absorption.
Secret Weapon: Danvers is capable of a heightened state of being called her "binary mode effect" by amassing massive amounts of cosmic energy. In this form, all of her abilities are increased exponentially to the point that she was able to single-handedly take out an enormous space ship by flying right through it and take a headbutt from Thanos without flinching.
Biggest Weakness: Physically, Danvers appears to have no weaknesses, but her rebellious nature and extreme self-confidence make her far from an ideal team player. She did not initially get along with the Avengers, but she came to respect their efforts to reverse the Snap and showed more team spirit during the Battle of Earth.Victorious Avenger?