In a film as packed with big personalities (and a Black Widow) as The Avengers is sure to be, you still need some perspective and frame of reference around which you can anchor the action and dialogue. Without one, it’s much tougher to find your moments of change in a scene, highlight character shifts, and just generally make a good movie. Joss Whedon realizes this and in speaking with EW (I suppose in the new issues with the hilarious Batman cover) he let loose which Avenger will serve that role in his film, and it’s probably exactly the character your would guess… Captain America.
“I set out with a very simple problem: There is no reason for these people to be in the same movie. So that’s what my movie has to be about. So much of the movie takes place from Steve Rogers’ (Chris Evans) perspective, since he’s the guy who just woke up and sees this weird ass world. Everyone else has been living in it.”
“The new guy” structure is a classic and has worked wonders for high-concept action films like The Matrix, Inception and Men In Black in the past. Steve Rogers is pretty much the ultimate new guy because he’s being brought into both a new super-group, and an entirely new (to him) America.
Of course, this structure is also super rough on sequels, which always find it hard to recapture that spirit of newness and discovery once all that fun world-building is out the door. I’m sure The Avengers 2 will be able to side-step that trend though (assuming the first is good), since there are so many characters and layers to the universe to keep it going.
I’ll be happy to see such a well performed character as Steve Rogers be exploited by a strong writer that can take him new interesting places, surrounded again by great characters that will hopefully be doing much less dumb and inert things, since they’re the goddamn Avengers.
Still looking for that new trailer… keep your eyes peeled. We will be.