In mid-2013, Hugh Jackman raised the possibility of Wolverine, the most famous of the X-Men, being in the Avengers’ movies. In the ‘source material’ – the comics – Wolverine has been an Avenger for nine years (!) Yet that hasn’t stopped his membership in Earth’s Mightiest Heroes from being continuously questioned by long-time fans, with some of them adamant that Wolverine should not be on the team.
Wolverine was brought into the Avengers in 2005 along with Spider-Man when the series was relaunched in order to have the line-up contain more of Marvel’s star characters. Since then he has been a constant fixture on the team, often appearing in multiple Avengers books. That should make him definitely part of the team, right?
For me though, Wolverine has never really fitted into the Avengers. He was the first character brought into the team since the founding five members specifically for the reason that he was a ‘star’ character (though it wasn’t justified in the comics in that way) – before then Avengers’ members may have been ‘stars’, but they developed into them as part of the team. The fact that Wolverine was in the team when none of his fellow X-Men were (until recently in the ‘Uncanny Avengers’ book) just underlined the artificiality of his membership – he was the only X-Man who was in the Avengers line-up simply because he was the most popular one.
Wolverine is an X-Man. And the X-Men are outsiders. I’m fine with him being part of the ‘Uncanny Avengers’ line-up since the whole purpose of that book is to have mutants in the Avengers team, but once that series morphs into something else I’d boot him from the group. Get him back to doing what he does best – moping around in the shadows, ready to pop his claws at a moment’s notice. I promise the Avengers won’t even miss him.