In less than a week, Avengers: Endgame rolls into cinemas worldwide. I don’t know about you, but I’m INCREDIBLY excited.
It’s been a year since ‘The Snap’ took place and finally, fans the world over are going to get a conclusion to a movie series that has spanned 22 films and an 11-year period. But before all that happens, we still have time to talk theories.
What am I talking about?
I’m talking about fan theories as to how the Avengers (or what’s left of the Avengers) reverse the damage caused by Thanos. We know it’s going to happen – or at least we hope it will happen – but how will it play out?
Part of the fun of Avengers: Infinity War were the post-Infinity War discussions that popped up, trying to explain how the movie’s cliffhanger ending could be resolved. After all, this is arguably the biggest cliffhanger of all-time and everyone has a theory.
So, today I want to talk about Endgame theories, ramblings and general thoughts. I’m going to throw out a whole bunch of ideas and then I want you to come back to me with what you’re thinking.
To begin with, here’s what I feel needs to be considered.
- The team that remains (after ‘The Snap’) is largely composed of long-standing members, who have been with the series from the early days. This includes the original six Avengers (Iron Man, Cap, Thor, Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye). These are characters that are likely to be retired following Endgame. This is important – these characters will need a conclusion.
- There are six Infinity Stones. There are six original Avengers. Is there a connection here? I feel there is.
- Doctor Strange has seen all the possible outcomes of Infinity War (all 14,000,605 of them) and knows the only way to stop Thanos is to let him win. Doctor Strange knows that Thanos can be defeated. #TrustInStrange
- The Quantum Realm is a place where the laws of time and space do not apply. Is the Quantum Realm significant? I feel it is – and here’s why. During press interviews for Infinity War, Spider-Man actor Tom Holland mentioned that Benedict Cumberbatch had to recite a lot of lines about the Quantum Realm for the movie. Thing is, Cumberbatch (aka Doctor Strange) never spoke about the Quantum Realm during the course of Infinity War. Was Holland wrong? Maybe, but it’s possible (and very likely) that Holland actually let out a big spoiler for Endgame.
So, what does any of this mean?
Perhaps nothing. Perhaps everything. Either way, I feel these four things will be very important in Endgame.
Now let me throw out a couple of observations, along with some general musings.
Observation 1: The role of the Hulk
During the course of Infinity War, the Hulk refused to ‘surface’ following his fight with Thanos. This left his alter ego, Bruce Banner, effectively Hulk-less for the remainder of the movie. The obvious reason for the Hulk’s reluctance to fight was that he was scared, but the Hulk is a brute force, so why would he be scared?
Hmm… maybe because he is becoming more intelligent.
An intelligent Hulk would understand how powerful Thanos is and would be afraid to fight him. An intelligent Hulk would also realise that he is only intelligent because he is becoming more like Banner and less Hulk-like.
Think back to the events of Thor: Ragnarok. Banner spent years living as the Hulk. Was this because Banner had given in to the Hulk’s dominance, or was it because the Hulk was keeping Banner at bay?
Perhaps Hulk realised that the more he transforms back into Banner, the more he becomes Banner.
We’ve always seen the Hulk/Banner relationship as the pretty much black and white. Banner gets angry, becomes the Hulk, unleashes all kinds of destruction and then turns back to Banner. Repeat.
What if, with every transformation, the Hulk personality starts to erode? What if, the more anger and frustration that Banner expels from his body, the less Hulk there is overall?
So, why am I bringing this up?
In The Avengers, the Hulk played a key role in the movie – let’s not forget the “We have a Hulk” line. Could it be that the Hulk is a key figure in Endgame too?
What’s more powerful than an incredibly strong Hulk? An incredibly intelligent strong and incredibly intelligent Hulk.
It’s certainly something to consider.
Observation 2: The marketing of the movie
The marketing of Endgame is being very careful not to spoil too much of the movie. In fact, the trailers include barely any footage of the film.
With very little new footage, the trailers are focusing on old footage, specifically reminders of what has come before (Iron Man’s origin, Cap’s war years etc). Could this be a little more significant than we might think?
It has been suggested (with leaked set photos to back it up) that the Avengers will be revisiting scenes from the past. This is of course a great way to remind audiences of the journey we have been on with these characters.
Could a trip down memory lane also be for something more significant? Could we be heading for a situation in which the original Avengers get to live a happier alternate life – a sort of, reward for all their hard work?
Maybe the conclusion of Endgame will see the Avengers set on an alternate path. For example, maybe Cap will get to go on his date with Peggy Carter.
OK, enough with the observations, now time for some theories. Here are theories that may or may not pan out.
Theory 1: Wielding the Stones
The original Avengers will find a way to turn back the events of ‘The Snap’, but it will come at a huge cost.
Although all the remaining members of the Avengers will be involved in the plan (Rocket, Nebula, War Machine etc) it will rely on the original six members to wield the Infinity Stones. No matter what way the plan plays out, the only way for it to be successful is for each hero to be linked to a stone and that comes at a price.
Theory 2: The time loop
This plan involves Thanos being caught in some kind of time loop, similar to how Dormammu was defeated in Doctor Strange.
The heroes have to trap themselves in a time loop. The events of ‘The Snap’ are undone, but the original six Avengers remain trapped in time to keep Thanos captive in time.
Hmm… doesn’t sound like anyone gets a happy ending, does it?
OK, what about this?
Theory 3: The Quantum Realm
The Avengers travel back in time via the Quantum Realm.
In the Quantum Realm, time and space have no meaning. The Avengers enter the Quantum Realm, use it to go back in time and stop Thanos from clicking his fingers.
To ensure Thanos doesn’t attempt the same trick again, the team take him into the Quantum Realm and leave him stranded there.
Theory 4: The Hulk saves the day
Black Widow is reportedly getting her own movie, Hawkeye is getting a TV series and Thor, Cap and Iron Man are likely to be retired – but what about the Hulk? Due to some legal issues over the rights to the Hulk, it’s unlikely that we’ll see a Hulk solo movie again (at least not one produced by Marvel Studios), so what if Endgame is the end of the road for the Hulk?
If this is the case, what better way to conclude the Hulk’s journey than by him making the ultimate sacrifice in order to save the day.
A smart Hulk takes on Thanos, defeats him, but dies in the process. The universe is saved, the audience cries, the Avengers cry, the end.
Hulk is a very important member of the team. Just think about the way he is linked to (almost) every member.
- Tony Stark is good friends with Bruce Banner
- Black Widow has had a relationship with Banner
- Thor and Banner fought side-by-side on the planet of Sakaar
- The Hulk is the result of an experiment to recreate the Super Soldier Serum that birthed Captain America
Surely the Hulk is the most important character on the team?
Theory 5: All of the above (sort of)
What if the film uses a mix of the ideas I’ve suggested above?
The Avengers use the Quantum Realm to go back in time, wield the Infinity Stones, trap Thanos in a time loop, and the Hulk ensures Thanos remains trapped.
OH I DON’T KNOW!
As you can tell, I’m still scratching my head on this one. I believe I am getting closer to an answer, yet I’m still not quite there.
At this stage I’m more likely to predict next week’s lottery numbers than I am likely to figure out the plot of Endgame, but I’m still gonna keep trying. In the meantime, any suggestions?
What do you think is going to happen? All theories are welcome.
Sound off in the comments section. We have less than a week to figure it out!