In Phase Four, Marvel Studios finally made the MCU’s TV projects count. Shows like Agents of SHIELD and the Netflix series was tangentially connected to the wider world (if it recognized it), but the new Phase Four Disney+ shows directly influence the events of the films.
A-list actors from films like Tom Hiddleston and Jeremy Renner are now appearing on the small screen, along with exciting newcomers like Hailee Steinfeld, Kathryn Hahn and Owen Wilson. Phase Four streaming content offers plenty of great performance.
ten Richard E. Grant as classic Loki in Loki
Most Marvel heroes have to make a few appearances before they win over fans, but Richard E. Grant made “Classic Loki” a fan-favorite icon in a single episode of Loki.
Classic Loki gets a heartbreaking death scene (delivered beautifully by Grant) in the same episode he featured. He makes the ultimate sacrifice to save the other Lokis in the climactic battle against Alioth.
9 Jeffrey Wright as a Watcher in What If…?
Jeffrey Wright’s rich, resounding voice was perfect for “The Watcher,” the Rod Serling-esque narrator of What if…?‘s multiversal hijinks. Wright effectively conveys the gravity of each hypothetical scenario.
The actor had more of a chance to shine than ever in the Season 1 finale. The Watcher himself takes it upon himself to piece together every storyline of the season as he assembles the “Guardians of the Multiverse” to take down Infinity Ultron.
8 Jeremy Renner as Clint Barton in Hawkeye
By the time Hawk Eye broadcast, the story of the passing of the torch was quite familiar in the content of the MCU’s Phase Four. But Jeremy Renner made it work beautifully. He brought more depth to Clint Barton than ever before and shared spectacular chemistry with Hailee Steinfeld as young protege Kate Bishop.
Like Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine in LoganRenner’s Clint is introduced as a grizzled, aging anti-hero at the end of his road, bitter about his mythical status and ready to retire.
7 Owen Wilson as Mobius Mr. Mobius in Loki
Who would have expected that, in a show full of Lokis, a mild-mannered bureaucrat would be the main character? Owen Wilson came back strong with his turn as Mobius Mr. Mobius opposite Tom Hiddleston in Lokithe first season.
Wilson brings Mobius the same low-key, dry line deliveries that make his performances in Wes Anderson films so enjoyable to watch. As seen previously in Midnight in ParisWilson shares hysterical chemistry with Hiddleston.
6 Kathryn Hahn as Agatha Harkness in WandaVision
Agatha Harkness became the best supporting player in Wanda Vision, thanks in large part to the mesmerizing performance of Kathryn Hahn. After being billed as the classic “snoopy neighbor” sitcom archetype, Hahn initially did a phenomenal job transitioning from one TV comedy style to another.
Midway through the race, she stole the show with the musical number “Agatha All Along” announcing her as Wanda Visionis the secret big bad. After that, Hahn’s performance completely changed. She leaned into the wacky eccentricities of an evil Disney villain to dramatic effect.
5 Wyatt Russell as John Walker in The Falcon and the Winter Soldier
Wyatt Russell’s performance as John Walker was one of the saving graces of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. Appropriately, Russell plays Walker — the government-appointed replacement for Captain America — as the anti-Steve Rogers. Initially, he just portrayed the character with annoying smarm and arrogance. But throughout the series, he slowly peeled back the facade and revealed the monster that Walker really is.
Russell pissed off the audience with Walker’s nasty trick when he beat a Flag-Smasher to death with the Cap shield. The character got some undeserved redemption in the finale, but Russell still did a great job portraying Walker as the villain who sees himself as the hero. Eventually, he begins to believe his own lies.
4 Jonathan Majors as the one who stays in Loki
the Loki The finale introduced fans to a twist on the iconic time-traveling supervillain, Kang the Conqueror, who secretly ruled the TVA from the far reaches of the universe. Jonathan Majors’ MCU debut offered a hilariously goofy and subtly sinister take on the Wizard of Oz archetypal “man behind the curtain”. “He Who Remains” stole the show from the trickster god himself.
This character was loaded with pages and pages of exposition setting up the MCU’s next big bad and the creation of the multiverse. Majors’ delightfully eccentric and unpredictable performance ensured this exhibit was utterly compelling.
3 Hailee Steinfeld as Kate Bishop in Hawkeye
Hailee Steinfeld gives quintessential Marvel performance as Kate Bishop in Hawk Eye. With the perfect mix of heart, humor and heroism, Kate combines the best parts of Steinfeld’s previous performances: the underdog determination of Mattie Ross, the inspiring courage of Emily Dickinson and the biting wit of Nadine. Franklin.
Steinfeld’s turn as Kate is a triple whammy of big laughs (bantering with Yelena), moving drama (helping Clint communicate with his son over the phone), and triumphant superhero moments (single-handedly defeating Kingpin).
2 Elizabeth Olsen as Wanda Maximoff in WandaVision
Elizabeth Olsen nailed comedic timing in all Wanda Visionthe familiar sitcom scenarios of. She delivers every joke just right, whether she conjures up the catchy dialogue of The Dick Van Dyke Show or the rambling talking heads of modern family.
But the dramatic side of his performance also offers a poignant study of mourning. Olsen’s well-established chemistry with Paul Bettany is stronger than ever in Wanda Vision. The two make perfect stage partners, both comedic and dramatic.
1 Oscar Isaac as Marc Spector / Steven Grant in Moon Knight
Marvel’s latest streaming series, Moon Knight, has already introduced one of the most fascinating new Superhumans in Phase Four. Oscar Isaac gives a generally incredible performance as the titular antihero, delving deep into his troubled psyche by way of a Karl Pilkington impression.
Moon Knight is a unique Marvel hero in that his brain contains two separate personalities fighting for control of the same body. One is a mild-mannered “gift buyer”, the other is a highly skilled mercenary who kills without remorse.
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