My Guardians of the Galaxy write ups were met with mostly positive comments despite me making an error or two. As a follow up to those I am going to introduce a few of the characters who will also be debuting August 1, 2014 when James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy comes to theaters.
Taneleer Tivan, AKA The Collector, is one of the oldest beings in the Marvel universe. One of the Elders of the Univierse, Tivan has been apart of the galaxy since it came into being. The details of the origin of Tivan are quite inconsequential, but suffice to say he's been around a long, long time and he lived most of it peacefully with his wife and daughter, whom he imagined to be, for the most part, immortal as he was. Unexpectedly his wife died by simply losing the will to live leaving him in a state of mental disrepair. In an attempt to remain alive and, for the most part, sane, Tivan began meditating. During meditation he grew to be aware of his ability to see the future but the future he saw was dark and full of powerful beings who would put the universe of which he had always been a part in great jeopardy.
Tivan set out to do what he could to preserve bits and pieces of civilization from all over the universe by COLLECTING species from every inhabited planet he came across and stashing them into his gigantic spacecraft. His hope was that, if there were some universal destruction, he could help repopulate the places impacted and help them rebuild.
The first of these visions warned him of the coming of Thanos of Titan, someone with whom we will all start to become more familiar as he will be present in some way in many of the upcoming Marvel movies after making his presence known in the mid-credit scene of Avengers as the being behind the Chitauri army and the one who was in pursuit of the Tesseract, which has recently been revealed to be one of the MCU's Infinity Stones (it's the Space gem). Thanos's initial attempt to rule the galaxy was thwarted by the Avengers without the help of The Collector who, on a few occasions set out to collect the heroes for his creepy space ark. While we can't be really sure what the connection is between Thanos and the Collector in the MCU, there definitely is one there.
The Collector's second vision foretold the coming of an even greater threat: the man named Korvac. Korvac lived on Earth in the future; a future in which the alien Badoon, who we will see in Guardians of the Galaxy, conquered the galaxy. Korvac helped the Badoon and they turned him into a machine-man. Eventually Korvac gained so much knowledge that he was able to transform himself into a god and was basically omnipotent. Korvac changed his form and traveled to Earth where the Collector set into motion a plan to stop him. The Collector sent his daughter, Carina (who may just be in Guardians of the Galaxy as well) to spy on Korvac. The plan, however, backfired as Carina fell in love with Korvac and revealed her father's plans to destroy him. The Avengers, who due to some fun tricks the powerful Korvac played, were aware of an enemy they needed to find but were unable to find him quickly, were about to be given the info they needed by the Collector when Korvac interrupted by disintegrating him. I do think, as I mentioned here, that this is a story line we may see in the MCU down the line.
Fortunately for the Collector, when you die in comics you rarely, if ever, stay dead and he was resurrected after his fellow Elder, The Grandmaster, beat Death in a contest, sort of like in Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey when they beat Death at Battleship. The Collector goes on to be involved in numerous other cosmic happenings including foreseeing the an attempt by the enormous fire-demon Surtur to destroy Asgard, the realm eternal and the home of Thor.
Benicio del Toro is going to portray Taneleer Tivan on screen in Guardians of the Galaxy, but he made his first appearance in the mid-credits scene of Thor: The Dark World. In the scene, Tivan takes the Aether off the Asgardian's hands in order to keep 2 of the Infinity Stones away from each other, the Tesseract being the other and currently in the Asgardian vault. Tivan is definitely out to get theses stones, though we don't know why just yet. We do know that del Toro is signed up for multiple movies so we can expect to see him again outside of Guardians of the Galaxy. I expect him to pull off a pretty great portrayal of the Collector as he is a very fine actor who could do a heck of a job playing a whacked out space-Noah and, if you've seen Thor: The Dark World, you know just how whacked-out he is.
The Collector is going to be an interesting addition to the MCU. Though he may come into conflict with the Avengers and Guardians, he is no villain. Now you have a bit o'background on him in advance of his intro, possibly sooner than expected.