Marvel’s Next Big Thing: Quesada, Kelly and More on Disney XD’s ‘Marvel’s Avengers Assemble’

This afternoon we took part in a Marvel’s Next Big Thing press call with Marvel Chief Creative Officer Joe Quesada, Man of Action’s Joe Kelly, VP of Marvel Animation Cort Lane, all involved with Disney XD’s Marvel’s Avengers Assemble. The new animated series premieres in July, though the pilot is now available for free on iTunes and a one hour sneak airs this Sunday.


Though the execs remained tight-lipped about most of the proper nouns, we did suss out a few key details about this latest iteration of the small screen Avengers. Based primarily in the status quo and characterizations of the live action Marvel’s The Avengers, the series also seems to mesh with other animated offerings like The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes! and Ultimate Spider-Man. “I think it’s fair to say that when we write and create these series, they exist in the same universe,” Quesada explained. “but going back to an earlier question, we want to make sure these shows are inclusive.” Everyone involved seems particularly focused on balancing fan service with accessibility. Cort Lane suggested that fans of The Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes! will likely recognize familiar elements in this new series and that we could also expect close integration with the upcoming Hulk: Agents of S.M.A.S.H. series.

So don’t worry about any reboots or rehashed origin stories. These are characters with a history. All save for Falcon, a character debuting in Marvel’s Avengers Assemble, well before his live action role in Captain America: Winter Soldier next year. Falcon is the youngest Avenger and serves as surrogate for the audience, a young man thrust into the company of giants. As for villains, the central threat is the Cabal, a group led up by Red Skull and a very unusual cast of rogues including M.O.D.O.K. and…Dracula?

We asked about some of the key relationships to look out for. Thor and Hulk continue their scene-stealing rivalry from the live action film, while Captain America and Iron Man enjoy the typical camaraderie and leadership tension. The biggest departure from the filmic depictions might be Hawkeye, far less severe and more comical as befitting his funny books roots. Expect him to fill the Spider-Man shaped hole in the ensemble.

As for any cosmic incursions leading up to Infinity and the Guardians of the Galaxy film, Joe Q. is keen for synergy. “That’s a big part of my job,” he said. “to make sure we’re all talking to each other and we know what’s coming down the pike. You’ll see things that will not just be reflected in the Avengers Universe but at Marvel as a whole.”


  1. “Prince of Thunder” is such a cop out.

  2. I’ll always miss Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, but looking forward to more Marvel on Saturday (or is it Sunday now) mornings.

  3. Cool to see Falcon is on board!

  4. Wow just watched the iTunes episode. This was….not good.

  5. The first episode got a decent review on IGN, that made me curious to try it. I wish I’d have watched EMH’s but I fell behind and lost interest (stop taking such long hiatuses!). So far tho, I haven’t been too Impressed with Disney’s cartoon line up.

    • EMH is streaming on Netflix (at least it was last time I looked).
      Treat yourself to something wonderful and watch it.

    • It still is, and I saw EMH on the streaming list. Next time…Wait, what about YouTube? I’m checking that tomorrow.

    • I think EMH was pretty overrated. It was good and solid, but I think a lot of people went wild over it because it referred back to a lot of old Marvel stories.

      I think Young Justice was overrated, too. It was great at times, but really seem to wander in the second season.

      This show I have pretty low expectations for, but I am sure many many folks will complain about it replacing EMH – just like they complained about Ultimate Spider-Man, Teen Titans Go, Beware the Batman, etc, etc.

  6. After seeing the trailer I must say the animation is not doing it for me, there’s something off about it. I’ll check out the first episode when it airs, but I have my reservations.

  7. I’m surprised they didn’t tr and squeeze in a line about shawarma too.

    Must be saving that as the close out to the first episode.

  8. Looks good! I’ll watch it!

    Nuff Said!

  9. They canceled EMH for this? Lame.

  10. IronMan’s design looks better in a still, more filled out than that skinny face helmet they had before but this animation is mediocre and Cap, Tony & Hawkeye’s voice all pretty much sounded the same to me. Earth’s Mightiest Heroes was a solid, fun and classic Avengers style cartoon that managed to mix in the old and modern things going on. Much better than the movie animated continuation with bad animation.

  11. I get trying to focus with the movies. But it just feels. way off. I would watch Earths Mightiest Heroes w/ my 6yr old and he’d fall in love with characters like Antman etc. I fear with this show. only people they have in movies will make an appearence.

    Earth’s Mightest Heroes was so amazing. it’s a shame it’s gone

  12. That animation is awful,
    but not as awful as the Downey impression.

  13. I see that I’m in the minority, I thought that the show was great. The new voice actors are different, I miss Eric Loomis as Iron-man from EMH.

    This to me is a much better show than Ultimate Spider-man with their cheesy, kid sequences. We’ve only seen the first episode. I’m sure that they will have other hero’s and villains as the season progresses.

  14. I’d almost prefer the fourth-wall-breaking and slapstick jokes over the one-liners and series of macho moments shown here. All I got were 22 minutes of “snikt-bub” equivalents.

  15. I liked the look of the iTunes free episode, but the dialog put me to sleep. And the voices all sucked.

  16. Suddenly not having Disney XD on my cable provider doesn’t seem so bad after reading these reviews. Wow! I was worried I would be missing out on something but it sounds like not so much.

  17. #horriblyshitty

    why they decided to ruin the avengers by turning them into this shitty knockoff of shitty anime is beyond me

  18. Terrible….really really bad…looked like a rush job both writing and animation. the last show was better. Sigh, where’s Young Justice when you really need it?

  19. Why does this and Ultimate Spider-Man have such chintzy intros?

  20. Ok, I gave it a try and I have a few issues with the pilot.

    1) The animation was a bit off at times, there were a couple of transitions and action scenes that looked straight out of a motion comic or maybe a view master.
    2) I’m not a fan of the power ranger type Power Up scene, it just smacks of stock animation that can be re-used episode after episode to take up a minute of screen time and save money on new animation. Hopefully it’s just for the sake of the pilot’s character introduction.
    3) The Falcon, I like the character but why does he tug on his ear to activate his suite’s tech? I’m sure/hope they’ll re-think that.
    4) Team Animosity- Sure it’s just the pilot and there might be story points behind it, but I don’t need that level of bad attitude being shown to my son. The last thing I need is him being shown how funny it is to hit somebody at random over and over and over and over again. In general both the Hulk and Hawkeye were poor characterizations for a children’s show (Hawkeye admittedly less so). As everyone is probably familiar with EMH, that is an example of those characters with the same general personalities done better, more family friendly.

    My 7 year old son is a fan of Ultimate Spider-Man (along with EMH, Green Lantern, Young Justice, Tron, Batman B&B, sigh…), but I’m going to be less inclined to record this show for him if they can’t get their team dynamic down. Does anyone know when the new Batman show airs? I hope that one is good.

    PS. My son thinks the new Titans show is kind of funny but doesn’t want me to record it, hmmm.