The finale of a ten year long journey has arrived in Part 1 of the Avengers Infinity War duo (the next is coming May, 2019). While the post-credit scene was met largely with disinterest in the cinema I saw the movie in, the end of Infinity War itself was cause for audible gasps of disbelief from the audience. No one expected Disney/Marvel to leave the first half of the series at that place in the story.
**Seriously, Spoilers Ahead**
To recap, after fighting Thanos and his minions all around the galaxy, the Avengers and other heroes have drawn the line at stopping Thanos from gaining the Time Gem (from Dr. Strange) and the Mind Gem (from Vision). On Titan, Dr. Strange looks ahead into more than 4 million possible futures and discovers only one chance for victory for him, Iron Man, Spiderman, Nebula, and the Guaradians of the Galaxy. Meanwhile, on Earth, the Secret Avengers, with Bucky and Black Panther in Wakanda, are trying to detach the mind stone from Vision so Scarlet Witch can destroy it without killing Vision.
On Titan, the heroes give it all they have, but are ultimately defeated when Star Lord learns that Thanos has killed Gamora and interferes with Mantis’s spell. Dr. Strange then gives up the Time Gem seemingly to spare Tony Stark’s life. Thanos accepts before translocating away.
On Earth the battle could go either way. The heroes are beginning to falter until a revitalized Thor, wielding Stormbreaker, appears in a Bifrost beam (from his new hammer) with Rocket and Groot, turning the tide. Things are going well until Thanos appears, with five stones in the gauntlet. He easily defeats the heroes, but not before Scarlet Witch manages to finally destroy the Mind Gem, killing Vision (at his request). But that doesn’t stop Thanos.
With his newly acquired Time Gem, he restores Vision and rips the Mind Gem from his head before slotting it into the gauntlet and gaining his full power. Moments later, out of no where, Thor lands, plunging Stormbreaker deep into Thanos’s chest.
Thor, seemingly victorious, leans closer to hear Thanos’s final words, which are ‘You should have gone for the head.’ And with a snap of his fingers, the universe changes and we reach the most shocking part of the movie.
On Earth, Black Panther, Rocket, Groot, Falcon, and Scarlet Witch crumble to dust. On Titan, the same happens to Dr. Strange, Spiderman, and the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy. And just when the audience is wondering what can happen now… the credits roll and everyone gasps in shock.
So, what does this mean for the MCU, for the Avengers, for the Infinity War?
The first thing that struck me in regards to the hero deaths were that these were all heroes that we knew were coming back, because in at least three cases the sequels have already been announced. So initially I’d considered this to be a way for Disney/Marvel to reassure us that things will be put right. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized this wasn’t the end of the story.
In the comics, Thanos is told by Adam Warlock (a character who must be appearing in the next Avengers, since he was hinted at in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2) that he loses because he always leaves himself vulnerable. And he does this because in his subconscious, he doesn’t feel worth of victory. I believe the final scene of Infinity War is the producers doing the same type of plot line. That is, although Thanos claims all have an equal chance of being killed, in his mind, he has left all of the original Avengers alive. This, I believe, is meant to be his unconscious mind giving them a chance to defeat him.
It’s also a great way to bring the story back to the original Avengers from Avengers Assemble, closing out their story, while creating the nugget that forms the next Avengers (notably with Ant Man, Wasp, and Captain Marvel, all of whom will, presumably, play a big roll in the next Avengers movie).
Presumably Hawkeye will appear again in the next movie, as he should still be alive if my theory is right. The curious question is why Ant man would be alive. Either this would be luck and because he wasn’t fighting Thanos in this battle, or it could be that the plot of the Ant Man movie takes him and the Wasp into the quantum realm where time and space are meaningless and thus they would, potentially, be unnoticed by Thanos. Of course, it’s possible that they will crumble to dust at the end of their movie as the timelines meet.
So, that’s my take on the ending of Avengers Infinity War. What do you think? Does this make sense? How did you feel when the credits rolled? What was your thoughts on the movie, on the post-credit scene? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.