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The Spoiler-ific Avengers Endgame and other Marvel Madness Discussion!


So the Black Widow movie in the works…

Prequel? Origin movie? Or classic comic book character coming back to life cause they never really stay dead for long?


I’ve heard it’s a prequel. Although she’s one of my favorite characters, I’m generally in favor of people staying dead otherwise it just cheapens death (which is my least favorite superhero comic thing).


To be fair, I feel a way back for Black Widow was written into the film. The whole “soul for a soul” trade thing. In order for a balanced trade, it stands to reason that returning the Soul Stone to it’s place would bring back the sacrificed person.

At the same time I have to admit that would cheapen the cost of getting the stone in the first place if you knew you could get your loved one back by returning it.


I’m not sure this explanation entirely fits what they say, tbh…

Basically, the closing off of the alternate timeline isn’t a general thing. Taking the time stone away causes a branch, bringing it back where it was taken from closes the branch. Which makes logical sense.

But returning all the stones doesn’t close off all the branches. It doesn’t close off vanishing Loki and dead Thanos. Why would it? It just closes off the branches where the stones are no longer present, if that makes sense. You only close off the Thanos branch by not killing Thanos and returning him to the past (which they don’t do).

The theory the film postulates - mainly in the Banner ‘BTTF doesn’t work’ scene is that the present is immutable and if you alter what happens you create a branching parallel timeline in the past.

Regardless, the Cap bit at the end doesn’t really make any sense given that. And it’s a pity, because it feels like it’s there to set up the Falcon/Winter Soldier show rather than being entirely necessary.


The more I think about it, Banner in the BTTF scene (the present is immutable) directly contradicts himself in the talk with the Ancient One (if the stones are returned, the current time line is maintained no matter what happens in between). They very much flip between time as a single linear stream, changes making diverging alternate timelines, and timelines somehow merging back together as is convenient. All three of those eventualities conflict each other.


Multiple streams is the only answer that makes any sense, given the events of the film. There is now a reality in which Thanos simply disappeared and never clicked (and that also had its full set of infinity stones, and two Steve Rogers). Gamora and Nebula don’t exist either, so probably neither do the Guardians of the Galaxy? And there’s the ‘mainline’ reality we saw in the film.

But the Avengers could have got exactly the same result by time travelling back and killing Thanos as a baby, saving a whole lot of trouble. If you’re creating alternate realities anyway then you don’t need to preserve anything.


You see, as i say, I think the Ancient One scene implies something different from that suggestion.

I think the implication is that if you change the past (take the stone, let Loki escape, etc), you creating a branching alternative past, but you don’t change the future. So the present is immutable, but you’ve altered the past.

In other words, taking the Time Stone potentially creates an alternative branch of history where the Ancient One et al no longer have the time stone and it just vanished.

All of these paths are different, so they effectively create four different alternative universes during the course of the film - one where Loki escapes after the battle of New York, one where Thanos just vanishes from the universe, and two really minor ones where Thor and Stark have touching conversations with dead parents.

They potentially created another six by taking the stones, but by returning them they’ve closed those potential branches.

I think. This is just my take on one viewing of the respective scenes. (I don’t think it makes masses of sense, really. There’s an interesting article on Den of Geek covering more of it, if it’s of interest).


Oh, and after a search… the only bit that doesn’t fit was Cap at the end. But the Russos have said he has to travel back from the alternate past to pass on the shield, rather than he just lives until he can. (It’s not clear how he ends up there without using the main platform).

So it just about fits together and is internally consistent if you squint (and don’t mind that they don’t clarify that last bit on screen).


There’s one way Cap showing up at the end makes sense: he was always meant to go to the past and stay there. Meaning there were always two Caps in history from that point, one in the ice and one who kept himself hidden from the public to live a normal life, knowing that everything ultimatly works out so he does not need to involve himself in big world events.

I am not sure Steve Rogers could really take a back seat like this, but it is the only possibility that makes sense to let him show up at the end.


Yeah did that occur to me, if only because of the comic book movie meaningful repetition of “soul for a soul”. :wink:

I mean, if billions of deaths were erased already in the franchise, what’s another one? :woman_shrugging:


Well, see above, the Russos have basically said Cap doesn’t quite do that - he travels back, lives out his life in an alternate timeline, then returns to the present, prime timeline at the end to pass on his shield. But I will say that this is interviews online, and the implication of what we see on screen is broadly what you state.


I’ve been weirdly emotional all day, specifically about Steve Rogers’ ending, and I don’t really know why, because I’m not particularly attached to that character. I mostly like his relationships with Peggy and Black Widow respectively. Part of it is the idea that he never really got to have a relationship with Peggy at all. So it’s always felt unfinished, something that’s nagged me a little with every movie Captain America is in.

But then there was a tickle in my brain and I realized what that ending reminded me of. Has anyone watched the 12 Monkeys TV series? (Not the movie) It’s a show entirely about time travel, and the final season in particular had a lot in common with Endgame (to such an extent that when I read a review of the series finale, the phrase “time-heist” was used). Anyway, I think I’ve subconsciously attached the emotional resonance of the 12 Monkeys finale to that final scene of Endgame, which is why I’m so affected.

And you know that Steve and Peggy aren’t going to just settle into suburban bliss together. She’s still going to found SHIELD (and maybe keep a look out for those pesky HYDRA agents), and there must be lots of threats for Captain America to deal with in the 1940’s. Their buddy Howard Stark will no doubt get them into lots of trouble. Won’t that be weird for Steve? To see the parts of Howard that were in Tony? I really liked Agent Carter so I’m envisioning something like that.


My wife (and myself to a lesser extant) have experience the same weird emotional state all week. I think part of it is feeling like something has ended that’s been a large part of our married-dating life. Not
That the movies will end, but a big chapter has closed and there’s a finality to that.

I read this quote from the Russo’s about Cap’s ending:

“If Cap were to go back into the past and live there, he would create a branched reality. The question then becomes, how is he back in this reality to give the shield away? Interesting question, right?

Maybe there’s a story there. There’s a lot of layers built into this movie and we spent three years thinking through it, so it’s fun to talk about it and hopefully fill in holes for people so they understand what we’re thinking.”

So Steve definitely creates an alternate timeline and somehow gets back to the “main” timeline as a geezer to return the shield. Their own lack of a concrete answer bothers me. For a series that has had so long to plan itself out I want it to make sense and fit perfectly!

I dunno. I can suspend my disbelief, and do all the time for these movies, but this part sticks in my craw for some reason.


Actually, I think Steve said the shield was not used or something to that effect. I am thinking he had Howard make it and just held onto it to give to Sam in the future.

It would have been better if the Russo’s hadn’t said anything and just let us wonder.


I think because it’s something specific? Like anything and everything to do with Thanos’ motivations and logic and actions is bullshit, but there is so much wrong there that there’s no one obvious thing to start with.


So I finally saw it. I have problems with it, and Infinity War, but honestly I’m too emotional to talk at length about it for the time being. Gimme a day or three.

I saw a lot of this coming from a mile away, but that still didn’t soften some of the big moments and twists.

And that is admitting, this is despite the ridiculous arc this franchise has been following.
(let’s be honest, though, this is no worse or less nonsensical than actual comic books, only it’s cost several billion dollars more to make).


Seeing Endgame back-to-back with last week’s episode of Game of Thrones was almost too emotional, but we were too worried about spoilers to space things out.


Saw it again last night. I liked it a lot more the second time. I think knowing all the story beats just let me sit back and analyze it and appreciate the little things more.

The time travel is still a bit messy, but on a repeat viewing made more sense to me. Cap returning the stones still raises questions for me, but the rest seemed to fit fine.

This article sums up a lot for me:

As a nerd the fact that this exists, and has been part of my life for a decade, is nuts! I love what they’ve created and pulled off.

Last night we saw it with friends and it was their first viewing. They experienced a similar emotion of finality and mourning that we had when we first saw it. My friend said it was like finishing the last Harry Potter book and it felt like it was just done. I don’t go that far, but a very large chapter has ended. This go around there was still some sadness, but I had a lot more joy around what I saw.

For a bunch of people in spandex hitting each other there’s a whole lot of emotions!


It’s time travel. It doesn’t have to make sense because it DOESNT make sense!


Well, for me - Effects 5*, Action 5*, Acting 4*, Plot… 1*

Just too many logical inconsistencies, and no final dialogue to wrap it all up. I’ve read the explanations here of “collapsing realities” and I’m sorry, that doesn’t do it for me. Either they are going the alternate realities route or they aren’t, and if they are that is a real can of worms they don’t want to open.

To be honest the movie thrilled me whilst I watched it, then left me angry.