5 HYDRA Agents Ready For "S.H.I.E.L.D."
When S.H.I.E.L.D. hits the small screen in fall, which Marvel baddies will show up in it? Nobody knows yet, but here's a group of HYDRA agents that could help make the spy agency a TV hit.
As part of Marvel's "Phase Two," the second part of their Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) storyline, Avengers scribe Joss Whedon is currently filming the series pilot for S.H.I.E.L.D., an MCU-based, post-Avengers show centered around six S.H.I.E.L.D. agents.
Although there isn't much information about the show beyond character descriptions and time-period, one thing that has been mentioned is that the series will not be a high-powered super-spectacle like the films of the MCU. Instead, it will feature human problems with human solutions - highly trained, well-armed humans to be sure, but humans nonetheless.
Given the history S.H.I.E.L.D. has with HYDRA, the worldwide terrorist organization first introduced to the MCU in Captain America, it's not unlikely the first season will focus on the relationship between the spies and the bad guys.
Here's a few HYDRA agents that could fit into the narrative comfortably and offer story material that isn't unreasonable for the tone the television program wants to achieve. I've left Wilson Fisk (The Kingpin) off the list due to my alluding to him in my S.H.I.E.L.D. script. Since he isn't known primarily as a HYDRA operative, I don't think his exclusion diminishes the choices I was left with. HYDRA is huge, after all, so there were plenty more to pick from.
Tony Masters a.k.a. The Taskmaster
Although his picture makes him look like a Skeletor-level villain, the truth about Tony Masters is much more mundane - he has an eidetic memory and can replicate any physical movement he sees. Just by watching them, he learned the fighting styles of most of his major opponents. We've seen this power before on television thanks to a character on the short-lived Heroes, but Whedon and company could get a lot more out of it than the former were able.
Although it is later revealed that his natural eidetic memory was substantially enhanced by a form of steroids not dissimilar to the Super-Soldier Serum, he was originally written as just a well-trained human who could fight very, very well.
In the series, he could be best utilized in the manner he was first intended - an expert martial arts and weapons trainer for criminal organizations, most notably HYDRA. Putting his abilities and weapons skills against Agent May in a bloody battle for survival could be epic if choreographed right. Additionally, he was one of the trainers for...
Jessica Miriam Drew a.k.a. Spider-Woman
It may seem strange to argue that Spider-Woman should show up in S.H.I.E.L.D. even though Sony controls Spider-Man, which means they probably control Spider-Woman just based on name alone - having characters with names so similar is a recipe for confusion.
It would be strange, but I'm not making the argument that Spider-Woman should appear; I want to make the argument that Jessica Drew should appear. Without her costume and spider-based powers and superhero moniker, Ms. Drew is still a genuine badass with a story much more closely aligned to S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA than anything else.
Jessica Drew's father was a scientist doing research for HYDRA. After he and her mother went missing, she was recruited by HYDRA and trained by Taskmaster to be a real force in their war. Eventually, she would become much too powerful for a handful of S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, but the story that delivers her from new recruit to terrorist agent of note is solid enough it could last multiple seasons. Her tenure on the show could wrap up with her joining S.H.I.E.L.D. as an agent for good.
Not to mention, her introduction to the MCU would create avenues for the inclusion of High Evolutionary, the Inhumans, and even Heroes For Hire and S.W.O.R.D. once her transition to the light side is complete.
Silvio Manfredi a.k.a. Silvermane
In the early days of the superhero, our favorite characters often spent as much time fighting against terrorists and criminal syndicates as they did fighting powered villains and arch-nemeses.
One of the characters that was both a terrorist and the leader of an organized crime ring was Silvio Manfredi, nicknamed "Silvermane" because of the color of his hair.
Silvermane started out as a Spider-Man villain, but as his character developed so did his role in the Marvel Universe. A Sicilian immigrant that started out as a low-level member of the Maggia crime family, Silvio would eventually set his sights so high he would become the Supreme Hydra of the East Coast. If S.H.I.E.L.D. is based out of New York like I'm prophesying, his journey to the head of HYDRA's table could be used to set him up as a major villain by the second or third season, moving on to other titles once he's established in the MCU.
Silvio's inclusion would add depth to the criminal underworld. He's worked with Wilson Fisk, fought against Cloak and Dagger, hired creeps like Tombstone and Hammerhead to do thug work for him, and his son, Joseph Manfredi, would become the villain known as Blackwing. On his own he doesn't bring much to the table compared to most baddies, but he has an impressive reach that can pull in a lot of muscle.
Paul Norbert Ebersol a.k.a. The Fixer
A scientist with a knack for taking gadgets apart and putting them back together even better than they were originally, Paul Ebersol is the underworld's answer to Forge from the X-Men.
In the way that the character of the Taskmaster could shoulder the show's burden of responsibility for creating elite but human baddies, the Fixer gives HYDRA their very own Q. The James Bond Q, not the Star Trek Q.
He has no powers, just a super-genius level of intelligence focused on technology. With the inclusion of Advanced Idea Mechanics in Iron Man 3, finding him a reasonable introduction into the thick of things isn't difficult. Once the Fixer is established in the MCU, his name can be whispered in any movie as an excuse to use incredibly advanced but merely human technology to blow things up and hurt good guys.
An appearance by The Fixer could also lead to an appearance by Mentallo. Or vise-verse.
Bob, Agent of HYDRA
Although he is a staple of the Deadpool franchise in the Marvel comics universe, there is no reason he couldn't be utilized in the MCU to great effectiveness.
"How is that possible?" you may ask. "How can he be used effectively when his whole shtick is not being particularly effective at anything?"
"Hail HYDRA!" Bob would scream, because Bob isn't good under pressure.
"No, seriously," you might demand next. "How is you being a useless sod beneficial to anyone?!"
"Cut off one head and two more will take its place!" he would yell, followed by a HYDRA salute.
"You can't even hide right!" you may shout. "I'm yelling at you because I see you."
"If I can't see you, you can't see me!" he would offer, with his hands covering his eyes like a child.
And then Bob would run. You could chase him, but he would invariably get away even though his hands would remain over his eyes, because the one thing Bob is really good at is running - not running for a track and field event, but running for his life.
That would offer him the chance to show up again. With the right actor, the role could be comedy gold.
Thanks for reading! Check out my CBM fansite for more lists, essays and randomness.
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