The ending of Avengers: Infinity War left fans shocked, not just because of the specifics of what happened in the film's story, but also for the remarkable breakaway from the default notion that 'the good guys always win'.
For once, this was a film that had a villain with an angle. Thanos wasn't just any other revenge-seeking Ronan or crazed neophyte Ultron or baselessly mischevious Loki -- he had a proactive plan for what he perceived to be a universal problem (which author Dan Brown had also focused on in his book Inferno).
Whatever the merits and demerits of Thanos' solution may be, right from the start he went about accomplishing it in a manner that had his opponents completely swamped. The Nova Corps was decimated, Asgard's remnant was scattered, Vision was brushed aside, Knowhere was breached and altered before the Guardians could arrive, Nebula had given him a clue as to the location of the soul stone and Doctor Strange also eventually relented. And therefore, despite the best efforts of Thor and his new Thanos-killer, the mad Titan succeeded in wiping out half the universe.
This, of course, means that a number of our favourite superheroes also died. And now, the big question before Avengers 4 is which of these will be brought back to life.
Speaking t io9, Kevin Feige, the president of Marvel Studios and the man who is widely credited as being the driving force behind the decade-long blockbuster franchise, who has long been thought to be the only one with the entire grand design in his head, has given a hint as to what the logic is for those who are still alive and those who aren't.
First, here's who is alive (and which upcoming non-Avengers film they to be involved in):
Nebula (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
Rocket Raccoon (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
And here's who's dead:
Gamora (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
Spider-Man (Spider-Man: Far From Home)
Black Panther (Sequel ?)
Star-Lord (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
Doctor Strange (sequel ?)
Groot (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
Mantis (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
Drax (Guardians of the Galaxy 3 ?)
Nick Fury (Captain Marvel)
And here's what Kevin Feige said:
"I think for a film series that is going on 10 years and is gearing towards a conclusion with Avengers 4, which you don't usually have in these kind of movies, you can sort of do the math and realise that it's the original Avengers that are left"
So, it's not by accident that only the original guys are left (and Rocket and Nebula who are remnants of the not-exactly-brand new Guardians of the Galaxy!) And thus, after expanding the series for ten years, in one shot, Marvel narrowed it down to precisely those people it had wanted for the grand climax before the core team disbands and others take the series forward.
Ant-Man and the Wasp releases on July 13, Captain Marvel on March 8, 2019, and Avengers 4 on May 3, 2019.
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