If anyone hasn't realized it by now, it's the Marvel Cinematic Universe's world and we're just living in it. The Marvel Cinematic Universe, aka the "MCU" burst on to the scene with 2008's Iron Man, the film that started it all for the now dominant franchise. Audiences have since been treated to multiple acclaimed box office smashes from the MCU including Thor, Captain America, Guardians of the Galaxy, Doctor Strange and two Avengers flicks.
The MCU has become the highest grossing film franchise of all time (unadjusted for inflation). We've had the pleasure of seeing a plethora of comic book characters that at one point were thought would never see the bright lights of the big screen; Disney and Marvel Studios proved that notion incredibly wrong. The MCU has also sprawled onto the small screen as well with hit Netflix shows such as Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on ABC. One of the highlights of the MCU is that there are a lot of contributors that make the Marvel machine tick; a lot of those characters are women, and it's our job to highlight them as much as possible. So with that said, take a look at 17 must-see photos featuring the ladies of the MCU!
16 Brie Larson Out Of Her Captain Marvel Uniform
If anyone doesn't know about Brie Larson yet, they certainly will on March 18th, 2019 when Captain Marvel debuts on the big screen. The MCU's first big-budget woman superhero offering features Brie starring as the title hero. Captain Marvel (first known as Ms. Marvel) is a well known hero in comic lore, especially due to her famous altercation with Rogue, who took Marvel's powers, having huge ramifications for both characters. Now, there will be no X-Men characters in Captain Marvel's movie (damn studio rights), but make no mistake that the uber talented (and super hot) Brie Larson will bring life and levity to the powerhouse. Here's a quote from Comingsoon.net of Brie describing what it's like for her to play the Marvel hero:
"...When it comes to her, I mean just the fact that she can be a bridge between two worlds, that she can go between Earth and space and that her own personal place is in this little area between where Earth ends and space begins and that’s only hers is so moving to me. I’m just inspired. I’ve been so inspired going through the comics and reading them right now..."
15 Remember Jaimie Alexander As Sif In Thor?
Jaimie Alexander plays Sif within the confines of the MCU. Lady Sif is the Goddess of War and one of Thor's main allies. She's appeared in Thor, Thor: The Dark World, and even in episodes of Marvel's Agent's of S.H.I.E.L.D. Anyone that's seen the Thor movies can surmise that Sif may or may not kinda sorta have a some kind of thing for Thor. Regardless, we can all agree that Jaimie Alexander, whether she's Sif or not, is super hot and certainly a welcome addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Alexander described her love for the character in an interview with Variety:
"...I genuinely love the character Sif. Each time I get to play her, there’s this growth in the character and we find out more of who she is. That is a blast, because I’ve been able to slowly create this woman while still taking directions from all the comic books that existed before my performance. It’s interesting that Sif has such a big backstory..."
14 Kat Dennings Plays Darcy Lewis
Kat Dennings is known for a lot of things, specifically her two orbs of goodness that always has the media buzzing and plenty of fans looking (let's be real here okay?). The star of 2 Broke Girls' contribution to the MCU is through playing Darcy Lewis, a political science major, intern and friend of Jane Foster (Natalie Portman). This photo features Dennings from the Thor premiere back in 2011. Dennings went on to continue to play Ms. Lewis in Thor: The Dark World. Thor: Ragnorok is going in more of a cosmic direction so there will be no Darcy in the next movie. Kat Dennings is yet another super attractive woman to grace the screen of an MCU movie. When you're involved in one of the hottest properties going in all of Hollywood, you know your career is going to skyrocket; that's exactly what happened for the curvaceous starlet.
13 Natalie Portman Always Catches Lighting
Natalie Portman played Jane Foster, the female lead and main love interest for the God of Thunder in Thor and Thor: The Dark World. Here's the Oscar winning actress being as hot as ever at the Thor: The Dark World Paris premiere. Natalie's outfit allows for everyone's imagination to totally run wild. Portman isn't starring in the latest Thor feature but that doesn't negate from the fact that the A-lister is yet another must-see lady of the MCU. Her character of Jane remains a major plot point for Thor, especially when it comes to the time he's spent on earth. There's no doubt that Ragnarok, like the first Avengers film, will have to address Jane's whereabouts in the much anticipated sequel. Portman isn't a stranger to comic book related films, she also starred as Evey Hammond in 2006's adaptation V for Vendetta.
12 Chloe Bennet From Marvel's Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Chloe Bennet stars as Daisy Johnson, aka Skye (or formerly known as such) in ABC's Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.l.D. The TV show is the small screen's extension of the MCU and thus is canon within the ongoing storylines featured in the franchise. As everyone can see with this tantalizing photo, Chloe Bennet is pretty damn hot and is a welcome addition to the ladies of the MCU. She hasn't been featured in any of the movies yet, but that doesn't mean her character hasn't had an impact on the show, which will be going into its 5th season in the winter of 2018. With women such as Chloe playing meaningful characters, it can definitely be said that the MCU is absolutely stacked with female talent playing powerful and meaningful characters.
Sidebar: Chloe Bennet is half-Chinese and has a singing career where she performed under her birth name Chloé Wang.
11 Cobie Smulders Always Has Nick Fury's Back
Fans of the MCU will have no problem identifying Cobie Smulders as a "familiar" face. Smulder's plays Maria Hill, a high ranking S.H.I.E.L.D. agent who works alongside Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). Smulders has been featured in Marvel's The Avengers, Captain America: Winter Soldier, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and will be featured in the upcoming sequel Avengers: Infinity War. Cobie, like her MCU co-stars, had to get fit and train for her role. Smulders described her training process in an interview with ScreenRant back in 2011:
"I hired this amazing black-ops trainer to teach me how to hold a gun, take me to a shooting range, how to hit, how to hold myself, how to walk, and basically how to look. I don’t do a ton of fighting in the movie, which is why I wasn’t offered a trainer, but I wanted to look like I had the ability to."
10 ScarJo Is Forever Black Widow In Our Hearts And Dreams
We all know who this woman is and we all know why she's on this list. It's the undeniable, curvaceous, voluptuous, beautiful, ample, sultry, sexy Scarlett Johansson, aka ScarJo. She entered the MCU in 2010's Iron Man 2, playing badass assassin Black Widow. Widow's real name is Natasha Romanoff, and she has no doubt been one of the most notable stars added to the Avengers roster. ScarJo's Black Widow has become a huge fan favorite and has been in many major plot points within the MCU. She's also starred in Marvel's The Avengers, Captain America: Winter Soldier, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and 2016's Captain America: Civil War. Widow will also be featured in Avengers: Infinity War; that's a lot of movies ya'll. There has even been talk of a Black Widow solo movie. With female led superhero movies about to come out left and right, there's a strong chance that we will be seeing a lot more of ScarJo's Black Widow in the future.
9 Krysten Ritter Will Totally Investigate You
Krysten Ritter had already shown her talents in what many would say is the greatest TV show of all time, Breaking Bad. She played Jane Margolis, Jesse Pinkman's girlfriend in Breaking Bad's 2nd season. Ritter would earn a key gig in her career, becoming the title character in Netflix's Jessica Jones. Anyone that's seen it knows that Krysten Ritter has no problems getting down and dirty. She drinks a lot of whiskey, loves sex, and is a huge badass; without a doubt one of the more interesting and compelling characters within the MCU. Anyone that knows about Jessica Jones knows that she's a former superhero that starts a private investigation service called, Alias Private Investigations. In the comics she's married to Luke Cage; so we all know where her relations with Luke Cage are headed in their respective TV shows. Ritter's Jessica Jones will once again be featured in the MCU in Marvel's The Defenders and season 2 of Jessica Jones.
8 Deborah Ann Woll Sure Loves Vampires And Vigilantes
Deborah Ann Woll may be more known to the masses as Jessica Hamby from HBO's True Blood, but she found on-screen life again in Netflix's Daredevil. She plays Karen Page, Daredevil's long time love interest in the comics. Daredevil is definitely one of the best comic book shows out there and helped to change the game for comic book related shows with its TV-MA rating, allowing for more violence and a lot more cursing.
Anyone that's watched True Blood knows that Deborah is pretty damn hot and is in fact one of the hottest redheads on TV, ever. There has been speculation as to whether or not characters from the Netflix Marvel shows will make appearances in MCU films; Marvel Studios head and MCU architect Kevin Feige says the timing must be right for a film-TV crossover. It would be pretty funny to see Karen Page interact with a flirtatious Tony Stark right? We can only dream. Woll will be featured in the much anticipated Netflix Marvel crossover miniseries, Marvel's The Defenders later this summer.
7 Rosario Dawson's Claire Temple Is The Defender's Backbone
Rosario Dawson plays Claire Temple, a night shift nurse who works at Metro-General Hospital in NYC. Claire has become the most consistent character in the MCU's Netflix shows, coming in contact and medically treating Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Danny Rand. Dawson is definitely one of the hottest women on the planet, let alone one of the hottest women in the MCU. Her portrayal of Claire turns out to be one of the most humanizing caring characters within the MCU. She's the link that brings all the heroes together, leading to Netflix's much anticipated miniseries The Defenders. Her meaning as a character can be summed up with this quote:
"I've seen a man, a blind man who can see... because his other senses are so amplified. And this other man who survived a shotgun blast to his head and recovered from a brain hemorrhage in a few hours! And they both needed my help. I think that's what I want to do. Is to help people with abilities."
6 Jessica Henwick Is One Of The Few Highlights Of Iron Fist
The absolutely beautiful individual featured here is Jessica Henwick...Talk about striking. Henwick made her MCU debut playing Colleen Wing in Netflix's Iron Fist. Wing runs the Chikara Dojo and becomes Danny Rand's ally in his battle against The Hand. Henwick's Wing manages to show off a lot of martial arts skills, kicking ass left and right and definitely outshining her comrade in the process. In an interview with Collider.com Wing made it a goal "to pull out that sort of very dry humor and that no bullshit New Yorker demeanor" that Wing's comic book counterpart is known for having.
Iron Fist didn't get the best reviews but let's just say it's not because of Jessica's portrayal. Henwick will play Colleen Wing yet again in Marvel's The Defenders. Henwick isn't a stranger to the small screen aside from being featured on MCU-TV; she was Nymeria Sand in HBO's Game of Thrones.
5 Gwyneth Paltrow Always Sizzles As Pepper Potts
Gwyneth Paltrow is perhaps the longest tenured lady within the MCU, debuting in 2008's Iron Man, the movie that started the franchise juggernaut it's become today. Paltrow played Pepper Potts, Stark's personal assistant and love interest. Paltrow was featured in Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Marvel's The Avengers, and Iron Man 3. Here's Paltrow looking absolutely stunning, wearing a white dress and radiating that beauty that rock star's like Chris Martin longed to have. As of now the MCU OG isn't scheduled to appear in any future movies; although she was referenced in Captain America: Civil War. Paltrow remains one of the hottest ladies of the MCU and is one of the biggest examples of why Marvel Cinematic Universe movies have become a destination for many actors of her caliber. Who knows when and if Paltrow will ever portray Pepper Potts again, but if she does, everyone would welcome her with open arms.
4 Simone Missick's Misty Knight Believes In Justice Served!
Simone Missick graced the MCU with her blazing hot presence in Luke Cage, playing Misty Knight, an NYPD detective based out of the show's primary setting of Harlem. Simone adds a strong sense of determination to Misty, who becomes completely infatuated and intrigued by Luke Cage's shady background. In an interview with CBR.com, Missick gives many reasons why she embraces Misty Knight's motivations. Missick cites how Misty is an individual who actually believes in the system and is invested in protecting her community. That particular theme in a Black-centric show like Luke Cage is huge especially due to all the controversy between the police and the African-American community today.
"...She believes in the system, even though in our current times it's hard to believe in the system," said Missick, noting the hope that her character brings. Missick will be returning to the MCU yet again in Marvel's The Defenders.
3 Jemma Simmons Is The Smartest In The Room
Damn...You know those girls that are extra hot, especially when they're smarter than you and everyone else? Yeah, that would be Elizabeth Henstridge. Henstridge plays Jemma Simmons in Marvel's Agent's of S.H.I.E.L.D. She's an agent brought to Coulson's team as a life sciences specialist and the team's resident biochem expert. Henstridge's character isn't particularly fond of anything superhuman and "cosmic" but still manages to display immense loyalty when it comes to Agent Coulson. The cool thing about Jemma Simmons is that she actually appeared in Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D as a fictional character before being featured in an actual comic, a testament to the MCU's world building and consistency. She's played the character in other mediums as well, including being the voice of Simmons in an episodes of Ultimate Spider-Man and the Sinister 6. Henstridge is going to be featured yet again in the next season of the ABC hit show.
2 Barbara Morse Is Ready To Kick Your Butt
Can you say, hot? Adrianne Palicki looks like she's ready to open a can of whoop ass in this one. Palicki plays Barbara Morse an ex-wife of Lance Hunter and an actual agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. Palicki's Morse has done some seriously badass sh**. She worked as an undercover agent, posing as member of Hydra. She's also the founding member of what is deemed as the "real S.H.I.E.L.D." Fortunately, Palicki is actually a real life comic book lover. She's such a comic book lover that she actually hesitated to take on the role, thinking "I will never be able to play another Marvel character if I go forward in this role..." before eventually taking it. Palicki had to learn how to use arnis sticks due to Morse's fighting style, which bares similarities to Black Widow.
1 Rachel McAdams Has No Problem Taking Care Of You!
Rachel McAdams is definitely one of the more famous actors to be in the MCU. She made her franchise debut in 2016's hit movie Doctor Strange. She played Christine Palmer, a surgeon and ex-lover of Dr. Stephen Strange. The interesting notion of her character is that she's one of three in Night Nurse which was a comic published back in the 70s. In the comics Palmer was one of three nurses that became best friends that specialized in treating superheroes. Within the MCU Rosario Dawson's Claire Temple obviously takes that main role, but McAdams was obviously able to portray a version of Palmer on the big screen. MCU architect Kevin Feige revealed that while they dropped the idea of Christine Palmer being a Night Nurse in the movie, they wouldn't be against making her a Night Nurse in future films.