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Looking For Avengers Hints? Watch Thor Closely

Avengers Hints? Watch Thor Closely” width=”560″/>
Now that Thor has smashed into theaters like the mighty Mjolnir caving in a frost giant’s skull, the stage is fully set for next year’s The Avengers. While the Iron Man movies and The Incredible Hulk planted the seeds for the team’s formation, Thor dropped major plot hints and further expanded the connected Marvel movie universe.

While we know that Thor, Iron Man, Black Widow, and Captain America will all be in The Avengers, Thor added new characters to the mix. Stellan Skarsgard’s scientist character, Dr. Selvig, looks to be playing a key role in The Avengers, while one of Thor‘s major villains could be plaguing the superhero team. Let’s take a look at some of the fun hints that Thor offers for 2012’s superhero team-up extravaganza. But beware: as Thor would say, “Verily! There be spoilers ahead!”

samuel-l-jackson-nick-fury-125.jpgThat glowing thing in Nick Fury’s briefcase? It’s important.
You stayed after the credits right? If you did, then you saw a bonus scene where Dr. Selvig, under the control of Loki, gets a peek at a mysterious glowing object courtesy of Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury. (So that’s what was in the case in Pulp Fiction!) While Fury never identifies the object, it’s a safe bet that it’s the all-powerful Cosmic Cube. Word is the Cube (which is reportedly being called the “Tesseract”) factors into Red Skull’s plan for world domination in July’s Captain America: The First Avenger. Could the plot of The Avengers involve a battle over one of the Marvel Universe’s most coveted weapons?

mark-ruffalo-125.jpgBruce Banner might be working for S.H.I.E.L.D.
Dr. Selvig dropped a major hint about Bruce Banner’s involvement in the Avengers when he mentioned a former colleague who had discovered gamma radiation and then vanished after coming into contact with S.H.I.E.L.D. Remember the end of The Incredible Hulk when Tony Stark approached Banner about joining up with the “Avengers Initiative”? Looks like The Avengers could start with Banner working for S.H.I.E.L.D. in an effort to find a cure for his green, rampaging monster within. But how will the screenwriters explain why Edward Norton suddenly looks like Mark Ruffalo? More Loki magic, perhaps?

Jeremy-Renner-hawkeye-125.jpg“Agent Barton” will be signing up with the Avengers
Did you catch Jeremy Renner’s cameo as a terse, eagle-eyed archer ready to take down Thor? Agent Coulson referred to this character as “Barton,” who Marvelites know as Clint Barton, aka fan-favorite purple archer/longtime Avengers member Hawkeye. Renner has already been confirmed for Avengers, and his brief turn in Thor indicates he has the proper tough guy attitude for the role. So will Renner don Hawkeye’s signature purple tunic and mask or opt for the stripped down “Ultimate Hawkeye” look? Renner doesn’t seem like much of a tunic guy, so chances are we’ll be seeing a Hawkeye who is more in keeping with the sleek black S.H.I.E.L.D. agent style.  

thor-tom-hiddleston-125.jpgLoki could menace the Avengers
Anyone who has read Avengers #1 knows that Thor’s devious brother played a role in the team’s formation after he tricked Captain America, Iron Man, and the rest into thinking that Hulk was destroying a train track. (Train travel was all the rage back in 1963.) Loki’s appearance in the S.H.I.E.L.D. facility at the end of Thor suggests that he’ll be returning for The Avengers. With Dr. Selvig under his control, Loki could set off events that lead to the team’s formation. Will he steal the Cosmic Cube/Tesseract? Or cause Hulk to go all smash-y on a NYC subway track in an homage to the original Avengers adventure? Hulk hate commuter rail!

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