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Five things we’d like to see in Marvel movies after “The Avengers”

A scene from Marvel's The Avengers

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Now that “The Avengers” is a bona fide hit for Marvel Studios, the next question naturally becomes, “What’s next?”

We already know that “Iron Man 3” will be the next installment of Marvel’s rapidly growing cinematic universe, but along with sequels for “Captain America” and “Thor,” there are a few more elements I’d like to see added to the Marvel movie canon.

In no particular order, here are the top five things I’d like to see in Marvel’s cinematic future:

1. A new Hulk solo movie

After two mediocre films featuring Marvel’s green goliath in the space of five years, no one expected that he’d be the character we’d want to see more of after “The Avengers” — but that’s the case. Whether the credit goes to “Avengers” co-writers Joss Whedon and Zak Penn or Mark Ruffalo’s take on Bruce Banner, the end result is that the latest version of Hulk is the best we’ve seen on the big screen so far. Not only did we get some character development from both Banner and his monstrous alter ego, but “The Avengers” managed to expertly blend brutal action and clever humor whenever the character smashed his way into a scene.

I have a feeling I’m not alone in wanting to see more of this particular take on Hulk, so here’s hoping we get it in the near future.

2. The original Avengers, assembled

I loved the modern-day spin on how the Avengers came together, but the absence of some of the team’s best-known members in the comics world — including some of the team’s founders — was felt acutely by fans of the team’s comic-book counterpart. Over the course of the next few films and into “The Avengers” sequel, I’d love to see some of the other major players in Avengers canon be introduced to the cinematic universe, like Hank “Ant-Man” Pym (who’s likely to be introduced in Edgar Wright’s upcoming “Ant-Man” movie), Janet “Wasp” Van Dyne, and even some of the later members, like Vision.

3. Welcome to Avengers Mansion

The notion of a mansion in Manhattan where all the Avengers hang out might be a little quaint in the modern era, but there’s something to be said for what we learn about the team’s members when they not only save the world together, but live together, too. One of the most interesting parts of growing up with Avengers comics was seeing how the team lived, loved, and fought like housemates are prone to do when they were living in the confines of Avengers Mansion, and there was nothing more humanizing than to see these superheroes eating breakfast together (or shawarma) or playing a board game in their down time.

While we don’t need to see the classic Avengers Mansion make the transition to the big screen, it would be nice to see some element that gives us that human, personal side of these larger-than-life heroes.

4. A team is only as strong as its enemies

Sure, we’ve seen two big Marvel villains make the jump from page to screen with Loki and Red Skull, but what about some of the other, more frequent foes the team has faced in the Avengers comics? First and foremost on the list would likely be Ultron, the killer android created by founding member (in the comics, at least) Hank Pym. Ultron’s introduction could easily be paired with the arrival of Hank Pym in the Marvel movie-verse, with the latter introduced in the upcoming “Ant-Man” movie — possibly while working on a secret invention that will end up becoming Ultron.

If Marvel wants to go for broke, bring in fan-favorite villains like the time-traveling Kang the Conqueror or my personal favorite, M.O.D.O.K. We’ve already seen Arnim Zola (played by Toby Jones) in “Captain America: The First Avenger,” so it shouldn’t be too difficult to bring that character into the fold, either. Of course, the post-credits scene hints at a villain from the cosmic side of the Marvel universe, but that doesn’t mean any of the aforementioned bad guys are entirely off the table. After all, anything is possible in comics… and comic book movies.

5. Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.

We’re six movies into Marvel’s cinematic universe, and we still don’t know all that much about Nick Fury, the head honcho of S.H.I.E.L.D. Given the character’s rich history in Marvel’s comics, it would be nice to see some of that back story emerge in Marvel’s live-action world, too. Sure, the Sam Jackson version of Nick Fury is significantly different than the original, cigar-chomping version of the character, but that doesn’t mean there are any fewer stories to tell. If the studio mines some of the old, noir-style spy stories from the character’s past and gives us a look at Nick Fury’s early years with S.H.I.E.L.D., we’ll have yet another character to cheer for the next time the Avengers assemble on the big screen.

What would you like to see in the next round of Marvel movies? Chime in below or on Facebook or Twitter.

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G.I. Jeez

Stomach Bugs and Prom Dates

E.Coli High is in your gut and on IFC's Comedy Crib.

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Brothers-in-law Kevin Barker and Ben Miller have just made the mother of all Comedy Crib series, in the sense that their Comedy Crib series is a big deal and features a hot mom. Animated, funny, and full of horrible bacteria, the series juxtaposes timeless teen dilemmas and gut-busting GI infections to create a bite-sized narrative that’s both sketchy and captivating. The two sat down, possibly in the same house, to answer some questions for us about the series. Let’s dig in….

E.coli-class-

IFC: How would you describe E.Coli High to a fancy network executive you just met in an elevator?

BEN: Hi ummm uhh hi ok well its like umm (gets really nervous and blows it)…

KB: It’s like the Super Bowl meets the Oscars.

IFC: How would you describe E.Coli High to a drunk friend of a friend you met in a bar?

BEN: Oh wow, she’s really cute isn’t she? I’d definitely blow that too.

KB: It’s a cartoon that is happening inside your stomach RIGHT NOW, that’s why you feel like you need to throw up.

IFC: What was the genesis of E.Coli High?

KB: I had the idea for years, and when Ben (my brother-in-law, who is a special needs teacher in Philly) began drawing hilarious comics, I recruited him to design characters, animate the series, and do some writing. I’m glad I did, because Ben rules!

BEN: Kevin told me about it in a park and I was like yeah that’s a pretty good idea, but I was just being nice. I thought it was dumb at the time.

ecoli-computer

IFC: What makes going to proms and dating moms such timeless and oddly-relatable subject matter?

BEN: Since the dawn of time everyone has had at least one friend with a hot mom. It is physically impossible to not at least make a comment about that hot mom.

KB: Who among us hasn’t dated their friend’s mom and levitated tables at a prom?

IFC: Why do you think the world is ready for this series?

BEN: There’s a lot of content now. I don’t think anyone will even notice, but it’d be cool if they did.

KB: A show about talking food poisoning bacteria is basically the same as just watching the news these days TBH.

Watch E.Coli High below and discover more NYTVF selections from years past on IFC’s Comedy Crib.

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Hacked In

Funny or Die Is Taking Over

FOD TV comes to IFC every Saturday night.

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We’ve been fans of Funny or Die since we first met The Landlord. That enduring love makes it more than logical, then, that IFC is totally cool with FOD hijacking the airwaves every Saturday night. Yes, that’s happening.

The appropriately titled FOD TV looks like something pulled from public access television in the nineties. Like lo-fi broken-antenna reception and warped VHS tapes. Equal parts WTF and UHF.

Get ready for characters including The Shirtless Painter, Long-Haired Businessmen, and Pigeon Man. They’re aptly named, but for a better sense of what’s in store, here’s a taste of ASMR with Kelly Whispers:

Watch FOD TV every Saturday night during IFC’s regularly scheduled movies.

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Wicked Good

See More Evil

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is on Hulu.

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Okay, so you missed the entire first season of Stan Against Evil. There’s no shame in that, per se. But here’s the thing: Season 2 is just around the corner and you don’t want to lag behind. After all, Season 1 had some critical character development, not to mention countless plot twists, and a breathless finale cliffhanger that’s been begging for resolution since last fall. It also had this:

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The good news is that you can catch up right now on Hulu. Phew. But if you aren’t streaming yet, here’s a basic primer…

Willards Mill Is Evil

Stan spent his whole career as sheriff oblivious to the fact that his town has a nasty curse. Mostly because his recently-deceased wife was secretly killing demons and keeping Stan alive.

Demons Really Want To Kill Stan

The curse on Willards Mill stipulates that damned souls must hunt and kill each and every town sheriff, or “constable.” Oh, and these demons are shockingly creative.

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They Also Want To Kill Evie

Why? Because Evie’s a sheriff too, and the curse on Willard’s Mill doesn’t have a “one at a time” clause. Bummer, Evie.

Stan and Evie Must Work Together

Beating the curse will take two, baby, but that’s easier said than done because Stan doesn’t always seem to give a damn. Damn!

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Beware of Goats

It goes without saying for anyone who’s seen the show: If you know that ancient evil wants to kill you, be wary of anything that has cloven feet.

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Season 2 Is Lurking

Scary new things are slouching towards Willards Mill. An impending darkness descending on Stan, Evie and their cohort – eviler evil, more demony demons, and whatnot. And if Stan wants to survive, he’ll have to get even Stanlier.

Stan Against Evil Season 1 is now streaming right now on Hulu.

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