Ever since Captain Marvel came out, my niece and nephew have been playing “superhero” nearly non-stop. Last night they came over to bring me their homemade version of Thor’s hammer. It’s just an empty kleenex box attached to a paper towel tube, covered by an obscene amount of duck tape. They made it entirely on their own and gifted it to me so that I might someday join in their “superhero” game and be their Thor.
What does this have to do with the new Avengers: Endgame trailer?
I’m getting to that.
Get to it faster. Because, newsflash, everyone with a Facebook account thinks their kids or nieces or nephews or whatever are the cutest things in the world. They’re not!
(Clutches imaginary pearls)
So, as I was saying, they want me to be their Thor. I humbly agreed, but I had to warn them of the following: after Endgame, Thor might not even be a character in the movies anymore. In fact, Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hulk, and Hawkeye…along with Thor…could all be on their way out. I’ve told them this before, of course, but they’re kids – iron traps, their memories are not.
Confronted with this not-really-new-but-let’s-go-with-it new information, they looked horrified. So, I asked them to choose which of those characters they’d miss the most and which they’d miss the least. Predictably, there was a consensus pick for the latter category:
As for who they might miss the most, not Cap. Not Iron Man. Not even Hulk. Nope, the nephew said Thor (Ragnarok is in his MCU top 5) and the niece said, Captain Marvel.
She’s 6. She didn’t understand the question.
When re-assured Captain Marvel isn’t going anywhere, she did a little dance. After that, she claimed Black Widow would be her most-missed character. (She pretty much only cares about the female characters, btw. It’s a big reason why she’s not interested in Shazam! – does a girl have even a single line of dialogue in the trailer?) Again, when I admitted, actually, Black Widow has her own solo movie in the works, the niece did another little dance before I could use my nerd voice to explain, “Technically, it might be a prequel meaning she still could, but probably won’t die in Endgame.”
I didn’t say that. I just let her dance.
Are you still talking about those kids? When are we getting to the
fireworks factory Avengers: Endgame trailer?
Oh, you mean this trailer:
I opened with my little anecdote because we are all soon going to be in the same exact position as my niece and nephew were last night, forced to choose which characters we’re going to miss the most and which ones we’ll hardly notice are gone. As the – and yes, I’m finally getting to it – Avengers: Endgame trailer goes to great lengths to point out, these are all characters who have experienced loss – Thor and Odin, Cap and Peggy Carter, Hawkeye and his daughter, Ant-Man and his entire family. To finally live up to their name and avenge the lost friends and loved ones who can no longer fight for themselves, Cap, Nat, and the crew will do “whatever it takes,” even if that means dying so that their friends might live.
Cue hero shot set to Alan Silvestri’s Avengers score.
Cue title card.
Send them out on a joke.
It’s almost like the Marvel marketing folks have this movie trailer formula down. They’re damn good at it.
Now, the internet does its little dance of obsessing over every frame. Like, why does Black Widow’s hair seem to change in every single scene in the trailer? How do Iron Man and Nebula end up back on Earth? Why are they doing their best The Right Stuff impression at the end? Is that them preparing to go into space…or into the quantum realm? Where could they possibly be fighting that Ant-Man ends up climbing up the side of a pencil eraser? How much should we read into the fact that only Cap, Iron Man, and Thor have scenes from their older movies revisited in the trailer?
Plus, what about the stuff we don’t see? Like, where’s Hulk? Or Okoye? How does all of this prove or disprove that [insert one of seemingly thousands of fan theories] about how it’s all going to end?
The one certainty in all of his, however, is that it will end. Infinity War’s general plot may have ultimately proved to be somewhat predictable based on the trailers, but few guessed Marvel’s version of an Empire Strikes Back ending would be as severe as “half the universe is now dead.” Now, the common expectation is Endgame will simply undo all of that and kill or write off those contract-expired characters we expected to perish in Infinity War. That makes it seem as if Endgame ultimately has less of a chance to surprise us than Infinity War.
Yet, I like that based on the trailers which have been released so far I really don’t know what’s going to happen in this movie. The endgame of, well, Endgame seems clear – the OG Avengers save the universe and not all of them make it out alive.
I don’t want to know any more than that. I don’t want to be spoiled. If time travel proves crucial to beating Thanos, I want to find that out April 26th. If all the presumed dead are just hanging out in the Soul Stone with wee little Gamora, hit me with that April 26th, no sooner. And if this is all culminates with literally every Marvel hero, even Hank Pym and the original Wasp, back, alive and pretty much crushing Thanos en masse, don’t give me that shot until…you can see where I’m going with it.
Thankfully, Marvel has complied. The trailers have been light on spoilers, heavy on “get ready for some more heartbreak” messaging. Soon enough, when my niece and nephew play “superhero” they might have an entirely new group of Avengers to choose from. However, I imagine they’ll still ask me to use their homemade hammer and be Thor. My nephew will still use his homemade shield to be Captain America. And my niece will still be a little Carol Danvers.
Because these characters have endured for decades in the comics and will continue to do so long after they’ve been killed or written off in the movies. The next generation is on its way, and Endgame is shaping up to be a long goodbye to the old. I can’t wait to see how exactly it all plays out.
Wild prediction: It all ends in a dance-off for the Infinity Gauntlet, and the Avengers are about to win due to Scott Long’s crazy dance moves…
…until Ronan somehow emerges from the Soul Stone to warn Thanos, “Don’t fall it for it. They tried this on me one time. It’s a trap!”
What do you think of the trailer? What are some of your actual predictions for what might happen in the movie? Who, among those who might not make it past Endgame, will you most the most? Least? Let me know in the comments.