Marvel Removes 4 Original MCU Avengers from New Character Cover (Official)

By Jennifer McDonough Posted:
Iron Man, Captain America, Black Widow, Thor, Marvel Studios logo

Publisher Dorling Kindersley recently revealed the newest edition of its Marvel Studios Character Encyclopedia, but when compared to the original book, not every Avenger remained present and accounted for.

DK Books has long been known for its colorful informational books on topics that range from inspirational quotes to the animal kingdom.

They‘ve also essentially cornered the market for fun, accessible guides to various pop culture franchises, and the MCU has been no exception to their coverage.

With its Marvel Studios’ The Marvel Cinematic Universe: An Official Timeline due out in October, DK’s Marvel publishing initiative continues.

New MCU Guidebook Swaps Out Key Avengers on Cover

The newly-shown Marvel Studios Character Encyclopedia Updated Edition from Dorling Kindersley (via Penguin Random House) includes some big-name, high-profile MCU characters on its cover:

Marvel encyclopedia cover

She-Hulk, the Scarlet Witch, Shuri’s Black Panther, and Sam Wilson’s Captain America are all visible. But the original version of this book from 2019 had a dramatically different lineup, meaning Marvel and DK have effectively replaced some of the MCU’s original Avengers on the cover of this new volume.

The MCU has indeed changed a lot since the original edition arrived on bookstore shelves, however, so it makes sense as to why characters like Steve Rogers may no longer factor in.

The cover of the 2019 Character Encyclopedia can be seen below:

Marvel encyclopedia cover

As one can see, OG Avengers the Hulk, Steve Rogers, Nick Fury, and Natasha Romanoff - as well as T’Challa and Peter Quill's Star-Lord - have all been removed from the new cover. It’s important to note, though, that many of these characters have either left the MCU by this point or have taken on smaller roles.

These Key Avengers Won’t Be the Book’s Only Omission

Steve Rogers and Nat Romanoff not being present on the cover of the Marvel Studios Character Encyclopedia New Edition should by no means be cause for alarm. MCU fans can rest assured that these iconic heroes will show up on the pages of the book itself.

But there will be missing characters in this book.

To clarify, readers should not expect any characters, places, or events that have specifically and solely appeared in Sony’s MCU Spider-Man films (Homecoming, Far From Home, No Way Home) to be included (such as Zendaya’s MJ). This has been the case with every past MCU book that DK has released. The Spidey movies aren’t even listed in the publisher’s description.

Why might this be? It’s assumed that due to the sharing agreement between Sony Pictures and Marvel Studios, certain elements specific to the Tom Holland-led solo films are off-limits to certain branches of consumer products, including, apparently, publishing.

This likely would only change in the event that Marvel was to reacquire the Spider-Man film rights, which Sony holds onto with an iron grip.

The Marvel Studios Character Encyclopedia New Edition is currently available for pre-order and will officially release on April 16, 2024.

- About The Author: Jennifer McDonough
Jennifer McDonough has been a writer at The Direct since its 2020 launch. She is responsible for the creation of news articles and features. She also has a particular affinity for action figures and merchandise, which she revels in discussing in the articles she writes, when the situation calls for it.