Avengers: Infinity War has been out for a short while now. Marvel fans and general moviegoers alike have turned out in droves to go and see it, which has in turn made it the fastest movie in history to gross $1 billion at the worldwide box office. The critics and audiences have fallen in love with the movie. Read our review of the movie here. It ties up a lot of loose ends, but it also leaves a lot of questions unanswered, either as hints to the audience or as setup for next year’s highly anticipated sequel. Here are 10 answers to those questions. WARNING: SPOILERS follow for Infinity War.
10. Why couldn’t Bruce Banner turn into the Hulk?
One of the most interesting running plot elements throughout Avengers: Infinity War was Bruce Banner’s little marital tiffs with the Hulk. Every time a big battle broke out, he was telling the Hulk to come out and fight and the Hulk refused. It was always very funny, and it finally gave Mark Ruffalo a chance to shine actually as himself without green latex and ping pong balls all over his body, but at some point, you had to ask yourself: why can’t Bruce Banner turn into the Hulk? The running thing in Avengers: Age of Ultron was that Banner was losing control of the Hulk. The running thing in Thor: Ragnarok was that the Hulk refused to turn back into Banner, because he’d made a nice life for himself. And then in Infinity War, Banner changes back while he plummets to Earth and then the Hulk refuses to come out for the entirety of the fight against Thanos. It’s interesting that we get to see Banner and the Hulk at all these different points in their relationship, but why now? Why does the Hulk retreat back into Banner’s psyche now? Well, there are a few reasons. Having been thrashed around and then killed by Thanos, the resurrected Hulk is afraid. That’s why he doesn’t want to come out. He’s scared to fight Thanos again. It really humanizes the big green monster. Plus, the Hulk has realized that Banner only wants him to come out when there’s danger to fight. He’s tired of getting Banner out of trouble. He feels undervalued. It’s actually kind of cute. Banner and the Hulk – even in the comics – have always had sort of a Jekyll/Hyde thing going on. They both fight each other for control and they’re constantly at odds. When Banner wants to be Banner, the Hulk won’t back down. When Banner wants to be the Hulk, the Hulk doesn’t want to come out and play. The Hulk doesn’t work around Banner’s schedule and needs – he has his own agenda and his own feelings.
9. Where were Hawkeye and Ant-Man the whole time?
In the early cast announcements for Infinity War, we were promised that Jeremy Renner and Paul Rudd would be appearing in their roles as Hawkeye and Ant-Man, respectively. Perhaps those announcements were referring to both the third and fourth Avengers movies, which were shooting back to back, so we’ll probably see them next year. But still, the world was ending at the hands of a cosmic force and half of their friends were disappearing into ashes, so where the hell were Clint Barton and Scott Lang in all of this? It’s worth noting that Ant-Man’s second solo movie is coming out imminently (like, a few weeks away now), so it might get explained in that movie. It’s also worth noting that both Barton and Lang are family men, so they have their kids to take into consideration. Directors the Russo brothers have hinted at this being a factor in their future storylines by saying, “We have a really interesting story cooked up for both of those characters, and part of that story required that they be under house arrest.” The last time we saw the two characters, they were in a prison in the middle of the ocean, being broken out by Steve Rogers. The events of Civil War have apparently taken a toll on both characters’ families. But how do you make family drama confined to a house exciting in a superhero movie? It’ll be interesting to see this play out.
8. Why did Red Skull come back?
We haven’t seen the Red Skull – Captain America’s Nazi arch nemesis with, well, a red skull – since Cap’s first solo outing, The First Avenger, back in 2011. His original name is Johann Schmidt and he was the leader of HYDRA during the Second World War, where he first butted heads with a certain super soldier named Steve Rogers. For the question of how he ended up guarding the Soul Stone, you have to look to Marvel’s prelude comic that was released before Infinity War, which shows what really happened after Red Skull’s ‘death scene’ from The First Avenger. He didn’t die – he just got sucked into some other world somewhere. And as we discovered in Infinity War, he was transported to Vormir, where he has become less maniacal and more jaded, to guard the Soul Stone. The role has also been recast. He was played by Hugo Weaving, better known as Agent Smith from The Matrix movies, in the 2011 Cap film, but for Infinity War, his Nazi boots were filled by Ross Marquand, aka Aaron from The Walking Dead, who is widely known for his spot-on celebrity impersonations. This is basically because Weaving had no interest in returning to the role and said that Marvel would have to “force” him to – it’s much friendlier and more diplomatic to just recast, right?
7. What happened to Scarlet Witch’s accent?
Sokovian orphan Wanda Maximoff, aka Scarlet Witch, played by Elizabeth Olsen, has always been distinguished by her very thick Eastern European accent, but you may have noticed during Infinity War that her accent is all but gone. You may have thought that Olsen had just gotten lazy, an assumption that a lot of people will make that could harm her reputation, but really, it was a story decision by the directors. They figured that, since she was on the run with Vision, she would have been filtering out her most distinguishing characteristic. If you were looking for her, the first thing you’d be looking out for was that accent. If she had slowly been working to get rid of it, then eventually you wouldn’t be able to hear it at all and it would help her to hide herself from the bad guys. It’s essentially the same thing that Natasha Romanoff, aka Black Widow, did before we caught up with her in Iron Man 2. If we’d seen her whole story (which we hopefully will, eventually, in a very, very long overdue solo movie), then we would’ve seen her with a heavy Russian accent. But when we meet her, there’s no trace of it. She went through the same process as Maximoff, except we got to see Maximoff’s. But also, this could be seen as an excuse for making it easier for Olsen to play the role – the same goes for Romanoff hiding her distinguishable red hair by ‘disguising’ herself by dying it Scarlett Johansson’s natural hair color.
6. What will the next Avengers movie be called?
When the third and fourth Avengers movies were announced to be shooting back to back and to tell the full story of Thanos’ quest to gain control of all the Infinity Stones, they were announced to be called Infinity War – Part 1 and Infinity War – Part 2. But then they changed that, because the Marvel people didn’t see it as a two part film and they didn’t want the audience to think that they were only watching the first part of a movie – they wanted us to think that we were watching a definitive standalone movie. But like, there’s a massive cliffhanger at the end that resolves nothing, so we kind of did watch the first part of a movie. Anyway, the next one is still, even though it’s less than a year away, known only as “Untitled Avengers film,” and Marvel chief Kevin Feige has said that this is because the title of the fourth one contains spoilers for Infinity War. But Infinity War’s out now, so what’s the next one called? Feige has already shot down speculation that it’s called Avengers: Infinity Gauntlet after the title of the comics. But unless it’s called Avengers 4: They’re Not Really Dead or something like that, can’t they just tell us what the title is already? Depending on the new/old character turnover, it could be called The New Avengers or Avengers Disassembled. Who knows? For now, all we have are fan suggestions and we can rule out the occasional ones that Feige confirms aren’t the title.
5. Which deaths are permanent?
Before Infinity War was released, producer Kevin Feige wanted to instil into the minds of fans that anyone who died in the movie would be permanently dead. If you see them die, then they’re dead and you’ll never see them again. He said these things to get across the gravity and the seriousness of this one above all the others that came before it. Every MCU fan was heading into this movie, ready to see some permanent deaths. But then they sneakily ended the movie with a bunch of characters disintegrating in ways that could’ve been deaths and could’ve been interdimensional transportations. They were neither here nor there. So, the death debates rage on. It’s pretty obvious that Loki will remain dead – there’s even that on-the-nose “no more resurrections” line right after he dies. Vision might be able to live on as a computer program, but without the Mind Stone, he may never be Vision as we know him again. Gamora’s death is debatable. She wasn’t killed in cold blood or for vengeance like some of the others who Thanos killed. In fact, her death scene is one of the only times where we see any emotion or humanity in Thanos. She was killed on Vormir as a special sacrifice that would trade Thanos’ love for the Soul Stone. That, combined with the fact that Thanos was reunited with child Gamora at the end inside the Soul Stone itself, suggests that maybe she isn’t permanently dead and lives on in there instead.
4. What was that post-credits tease all about?
At the end of every MCU movie, the diehard fans stick around to see the mid-credits scene after all the main credits and then the post-credits scene after all the rolling credits that have absolutely everyone’s names on, down to the guy who shines Robert Downey, Jr.’s shoes. But in Infinity War, there was no mid-credits scene, and halfway through the reams and reams of rolling credits, there was a fear that maybe there wouldn’t be one at all. But then it happened. We fade in on Nick Fury and Maria Hill in a car, swerving through all the madness of Thanos’ wrath. Already, we see how this thing is affected the world at large. We were busy focusing on which half of the Avengers would die in Wakanda or on Titan – we didn’t even think about the other billions of people who make up half of the world’s population. Amid the chaos, after Hill has disintegrated, we see Fury frantically paging someone before he himself disintegrates. The camera pans down on Fury’s pager to see a star with red and blue colors behind it. Passive viewers were baffled, but comics fans instantly recognized the insignia of Captain Marvel. Captain Marvel is getting her own solo movie next year. She’ll be played by Brie Larson and it’ll be set in the ‘90s, with Nick Fury playing a major role (that’s why he had her on speed dial when Thanos attacked). She’s extremely powerful. She’s like Marvel’s Superman (but she’s a woman, so even better). What will likely happen in Avengers 4 is that she will save the day at the last second.
3. What is Doctor Strange’s plan?
At the beginning of the movie, Stephen Strange tells Tony Stark and Peter Parker that he will happily let them die before giving up the Time Stone. Then later in the movie, when Tony’s life is on the line, Strange gladly gives up the Time Stone. He hands it over without even the slightest bit of fuss and then Thanos goes on his merry way. So, why was the Sorcerer Supreme so quick to go back on his word and save Tony like that? Well, a key point in that is Strange’s line where he tells Tony that this is “the only way.” Remember that scene earlier on where you see Doctor Strange’s head bobbing around really fast as he goes through millions of different versions of the Avengers’ war with Thanos and then tells the other guys that out of all of those possibilities, there was only one where they won? Well, that was an important moment. That showed us that only Strange knows how this ends. He’s the only one who knows exactly how they can beat Thanos, and for that, he will likely play a very large role in the next movie. But for now, his giving up the Time Stone to save Tony’s life is a sign that Tony will be a crucial element in the Avengers winning this war next year.
2. What was up with that ending?
There were a lot of jaws dropping in the movie theater when Infinity War ended, because damn near every one of the heroes who we have been introduced to over the past ten years crumbled to dust and disappeared off the face of the Earth: Spider-Man, Black Panther, most of the Guardians of the Galaxy, everyone! It was a stunning way to end the movie that begs the question of what’s going to happen next and gets you really excited about the next one, due in theaters almost exactly one year after this one. So, what’s next? Everyone’s gone! Thanos fulfilled his promise of wiping out half of humanity at the snap of his fingers. But are they all really dead? That’s not even really a question. There’s no way they’re all dead! Like Disney would let that happen. Plus, most of those characters have upcoming sequels on the release slate. Spider-Man 2, Black Panther 2, and Guardians 3 are all on the docket. So, you can rest easy. Don’t worry. They’re not dead – at least, it’s highly unlikely that they’re dead. The likes of Tom Holland and Chadwick Boseman will be signed on for dozens of movies – not just three.
1. Where did everybody go?
We can all more or less agree that everyone who disappeared at the end of Infinity War is still alive somewhere. A better question about the movie’s ending would be where exactly the ‘dead’ characters are and how they’re going to get them back. There’s one fan theory that they all disappeared to the Quantum Realm, an alternate dimension that you can only reach by using magic or Pym Particles. The Quantum Realm has been mentioned previously in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Hank Pym described it to Scott Lang as “a reality where all concepts of time and space become irrelevant as you shrink for all eternity.” So, it wouldn’t be a very fun place to be – but at least our favorite characters wouldn’t be dead. Another theory is that they were all transported into the micro universe inside the Soul Stone with Thanos. Either way, it sets up the fourth Avengers movie nicely by having all the key original members – Thor, the Hulk, Iron Man, Cap, Black Widow etc. – kept alive. This way, the big finale will bring it all back around by having the originals struggling to save everyone else. How do they come up with this stuff?