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How Will the MCU Proceed After Infinity War?

written by Khaled Arisheh May 6, 2018
Iron Man from Avenger: Infinity War

Spoiler alert! If you haven’t seen Avengers: Infinity War yet, do not read past this sentence.

Seriously, don’t.

You have been warned.

The long-awaited showdown between Thanos the Mad Titan and our beloved heroes has finally come to be.

Was it what we were expecting? I’d say so. Most of the characters were given an appropriate amount of screen time; some more than others. However, even those who we saw little of were let go gracefully and heroically. The plot and storytelling were relentless and full of action. You can read our review here, but that’s not the point of this article.

Did we expect many deaths? The Russo brothers did warn us that not all will survive the fight against Thanos.

Did we expect so many? Hell no! Of all the Marvel teams, I’d say the Avengers were the luckiest. Most of the original team members survived the cull. Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, the Hulk, and War Machine made it. Other team-ups weren’t as fortunate. The only surviving Guardians are Rocket Raccoon and “barely a Guardian” Nebula. The Black Panther team is without a Black Panther, as M’Baku and Okoye are the sole survivors of the Wakanda heroes, while Shuri’s fate is unknown. The mystical branch of the MCU is probably survived by Wong alone and even he is not verified alive. The remaining survivors of Asgard were decimated by Thanos and the Black Order in the very first minutes of the movie. We no longer have a Spider-Man. Even S.H.I.E.L.D. was not spared as Maria Hill and Nick Fury dissolved into dust in the most depressing post-credit scene of all time.

Those who let out a sigh of relief when Thor seemingly bested Thanos with his newly-forged weapon Stormbreaker were quickly disappointed that Thor’s aim was a little lower than it should have been. A snap of the Titan’s fingers was all that was needed to wipe out half the population of the universe, leaving the protagonists in despair and the viewers in bewilderment.

The questions came in quick succession around me as I was walking out of the movie theater.

“How can Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 be happening with just Rocket and Nebula?”

“Who is gonna be Spider-Man in Homecoming 2?” “Kevin Feige assured us that the success of Black Panther would bring a sequel… but Black Panther is dead!”

These are all thoughts I had myself, but then the wheels started spinning and a variety of possible scenarios sprung to mind. Below you will find my thoughts on how I believe things will move on in the MCU and how some heroes who are supposedly gone forever will be resurrected.

Gamora pointing sword in Avengers Infinity War

The Soul Stone

In order to obtain the Soul Stone, Thanos had to offer the soul of a beloved person. That person happened to be Gamora. In one of the final scenes of the movie, right after Thanos snapped his fingers and eliminated half the universe, we see him having an out of body experience where he is talking to a young Gamora. The orange hue of the scene makes me think that this is happening within the Soul Stone. This in all probability means that Gamora is either trapped in the Soul Stone or is herself the Soul Stone. Being that she is the only thing that Thanos ever loved, it is quite possible that this connection might be the spark that signals the reversal of the Infinity War fallout.

Vision - Infinity War Movie scene

The Mind Stone

As the battle against the remaining members of the Black Order was raging at the borders of Wakanda, Corvus Glaive secretly made his way to Shuri’s lab, where she was trying to separate the Mind Stone from Vision. As she was forced to stop the operation and fight, we see her saving what she could from the procedure, before engaging the villain with her signature panther gauntlets. Given that Shuri’s fate is unknown, it is possible that she could use the information she retrieved against Thanos in Avengers 4. She may even be able to resurrect Vision.

The Time Stone

Dr. Strange unequivocally stated at the beginning of the film that if he were to choose between saving Stark and Parker over the safeguarding of the Time Stone. they would surely be on the losing end of that decision. When on Titan, Dr. Strange seized the opportunity and used the Eye of Agamotto to look into the future to find out how they would beat Thanos. Out of 14,000,605 scenarios, there was only one that played out in their favor. In surrendering the Time Stone to Thanos in exchange for Iron Man’s life, Dr.Strange obviously is playing towards the endgame and a positive outcome in the battle against Thanos. As he dramatically explained to Tony before fading out, “There was no other way.” This could possibly be the gateway to a “happy ending” in Avengers 4.

The Collector Taneleer Tivan - Infinity War

The Power Stone

Thanos got to the Power Stone that was in the Collector’s hands off screen. The demise of Taneleer Tivan is merely shown with the help of the Reality Stone. As an Elder, just like his brother the Grandmaster, I find it hard to believe that Tivan is actually dead. The Elders and especially the Grandmaster are known for playing games and manipulating situations for their enjoyment. This whole quest for the Infinity Stones could be one of their schemes, which hopefully will have a positive ending for the universe. Although a far-fetched scenario, cosmic beings are often known to meddle in the affairs of the lesser beings of the Marvel universe, which brings me to my next theory.

Stan Lee in Thor movie

The Watchers

Those who have seen Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 surely didn’t miss Stan Lee’s cameo. We get a brief glimpse of him talking to the Watchers. In what capacity I cannot say, but him being a Watcher could possibly explain his appearance in every single Marvel movie. The Watchers are a race of extraterrestrial beings that are spread across the Galaxy and are responsible for overseeing the workings of the universe. They are mere observers and are forbidden from intervening in even the most alarming of situations. In the comics though, a Watcher that is responsible for the sector that includes Earth (cough Stan Lee cough) has been known to disobey the Watcher code and help save Earth,. That would be the Watcher Uatu. So a Watcher coming to the aid of our heroes would not be an impossibility.

Captain Marvel - Infinity WarCaptain Marvel

In the post-credit scene, we see Nick Fury trying to warn someone with the use of a pager (yes, really). Seconds after he is turned to dust, we see Captain Marvel’s insignia appear on the screen of the beeper. Given that we know that the Captain Marvel movie is going to act as a prequel to most of the MCU films, save for Captain America: The First Avenger, it is safe to say that we will not be seeing Carol Danvers engaging with Thanos directly. Her mentor Marv-Ell, a Kree posing as a human, has had several encounters with Thanos in the comics. It wouldn’t be a leap to say that Danvers could be the key to defeating Thanos in Avengers 4. The fact that the villains in her standalone movie are the Skrull makes the appearance of Ronan (Lee Pace), who was sent to retrieve the Power Stone by Thanos in GotG, a major connecting point to Infinity War.

Last but not least, two heroes were not involved in Infinity War at all. Their absence was simply explained by them being under house arrest.

Ant-Man and the Wasp movie sceneHawkeye, Ant-Man and the Wasp

I think that their absence in Infinity War will play a major part in Avengers 4. I’m willing to bet that Avengers 4 might even start with Clint Barton witnessing his family fading into nothingness. His thirst for revenge will be the driving force for him rejoining the remaining Avengers. With him having nothing more to lose, we might get to see a darker version of Hawkeye and that would be none other than Ronin. As for Ant-Man and the Wasp, even though it is not stated in the trailer which you can see here, I’m guessing that its events occur simultaneously to Infinity War. We can see in the trailer that the Quantum Realm is heavily involved in the sequel, which might be the saving point for these characters, leaving them unaffected by the aftermath of Thanos’ actions.

Final Thoughts on ‘Infinity War’

Well, these are my thoughts on possible paths the MCU could follow to allow for the already announced sequels to become a reality, especially those that involve characters that passed away in Avengers: Infinity War. However, if The Last Jedi has taught us anything, it’s that fan theories often fall through, leaving us in the wrong and sometimes bitter. You can read my opinion on this matter here.

Do you have any theories or connections that I might have missed? Please share your thoughts in the comments!

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