Yes, we realize that we spend a disproportionate amount of time talking about The Avengers and all things related to it. It’s not because we’re Marvel fanboys (well, mostly) but instead we view the roughly $1.5 billion the movie pulled in at the box office as a strong indicator that The Avengers has captured the cultural zeitgeist. Capitalism tells us that this is what you want to read about, and thankfully, with the Blu-ray release of The Avengers now less than a month away, Marvel Studios is obliging our efforts to ramble on and on about Joss Whedon’s epic by releasing new deleted scenes from the film on what seems like a daily basis.
Remember The Hulk’s existential crisis? How about this jarring alternate opening for the film? Both are included on the Blu-ray iteration of The Avengers, alongside today’s new clip. It’s entitled “Man Out Of Time,” and features a confused Captain America meeting both an attractive woman and the most iconic comic book creator of all time.
As Latino Review points out, this scene, along with giving Chris Evans room to flex his bewildered pouting skills, contains a few elements that would have served to flesh out the version of The Avengers we all saw in theaters. To wit: That blonde waitress is the woman saved by Captain America during the film’s climax who is later interviewed by reporters. Theoretically this deleted scene could have propelled her role into that of a love interest for Cap, or at least a familiar human element in a modern world that obviously makes the supersoldier uneasy. Likewise, this scene shows Captain America finally making the connection between Howard Stark (genius inventor and partial co-creator of the process that gave Cap his superpowers) and his son Tony (who you’d know best as Iron Man). Overall it’s a bunch of minor details, but they’re still interesting and could work in the greater overall context of the movie.
More importantly than any of that however is the cameo from legendary comics creator Stan Lee. Sure, Lee has made a habit of appearing in cameo roles in almost every Marvel movie to date, but this one is special. Instead of popping up as a (surprisingly canonically accurate) mailman or some random old person with one meaningless line, Lee actually insults Captain America to his face before resuming lunch. So the guy can punch out Hitler and dismantle the Third Reich, but he can’t ask a cute waitress out to dinner? Stan Lee apparently won’t tolerate such things, and urges Cap to make his move before straight up calling him a “moron.” Say what you will about Lee’s propensity for self-promotion, but you can’t deny that the man is bursting with charisma, and even at age 89 Lee is more than capable of stealing the show from anyone, even the living embodiment of American idealism.
Oh, and those of you growing tired of Avengers coverage can rest easy: This is the last time we’ll be putting together a story specifically about one of these deleted scenes. Granted, if some huge news related to such a thing occurs we’ll have to cover it — that is what they pay us for, after all — but otherwise the next time you watch footage cut from the original version of The Avengers, it will be because you’ve cued it up on your Blu-ray player.