There was an idea, to bring together a group of remarkable people; to see if we could become something more. So when they needed us, we could fight the battles that they never could.
It’s finally here, ladies and gentlemen.
On May 4, 2018 it will be ten years. Ten years since Marvel took one of their B-list heroes and decided to make a film on him. Not only did the film exceed all expectations, it very subtly laid the ground for more to come. Towards the end of that film, after the credits, a certain man with an eye patch approaches Tony Stark and expresses a desire to talk to him about the Avengers initiative.
The words sent fans into a tizzy. Could this be possible? Could a film studio be doing the unthinkable and actually going for a shared universe? Would there be more films? Would those films culminate into one of Marvel’s greatest superhero teams? The answer to all these questions was yes. Slowly, steadily, Marvel churned out film after film with such alarming success that many began calling their approach the ‘Marvel formula.’ Finally, in 2012, the films and stories came together with a bang that echoed throughout the box office. The Avengers were here and they ruled.
The question on everyone’s lips, of course, was how Marvel would follow it up. These fears proved largely unfounded as Iron Man 3, Captain America: Winter Soldier and Ant-Man hit the theatres. Of course, it is a separate film that could be seen as their crowning achievement and that would be Guardians of The Galaxy.
It was GOTG that truly heralded a change in the tactics of Marvel. Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and Hulk, though awesome, never quite touched the surface of the beautiful absurdity of Marvel’s rich comic universe. GOTG changed that however, with a talking racoon and a tree as its main characters. Through this film, the Marvel Cinematic Universe completely embraced the zany, fun and colourful world of comics and that vision has only expanded. If you think it hasn’t, answer this question. How likely did you think a Planet Hulk movie was, when you watched Avengers in 2012? Almost zero possibility. Well what do you think now?
Marvel doesn’t just lead in the superhero genre it actually defines it in today’s age. Any superhero film that is made is compared either favourably or unfavourably to the MCU. There have been criticisms levelled at the studio, like its lack of inclusivity or a non-existence of LGBTQ+ characters. However, even that has begun to change, a change that is extremely visible in Spiderman: Homecoming and in the upcoming Black Panther (Seriously though, how fucking awesome is that going to be).
Marvel gave us a taste of what to expect when they gave us Captain America: Civil War. This was a film that truly turned the entire film universe around on its head. Allegiances were broken, relationships were destroyed and new faces were introduced. Despite all that, however, Marvel has never lost of its ultimate goal. Everything that we have seen, has been meticulously plotted and planned to the last detail. It has all come down to this.
The Infinity War.
A celebrated storyline from the comics, Infinity War is the tale of Thanos finally ending his search for the six Infinity stones and using them to ‘balance the universe.’ The story is of epic scale and is one that needs to be read to be believed. It is also in the film that the entirety of the Marvel Cinematic Universe is coming together.
That’s right. The cast of Avengers: Infinity War, as far as we know right now, consists of 30 members. Every actor you have seen, from Benedict Cumberbatch to Robert Downey Jr., are going to be a part of this film and if that isn’t enough to make you dizzy then here is the trailer:
This is how it ends. After all this time, many of us are going to see their dreams come true. What is Rocket going to think of Tony? How are Groot and Hulk going to talk to each other? Is Doctor Strange going to get along with Tony? Is Peter Parker about to become best friends with Star Lord? Are Gamora and Black Widow going to sit around and talk about all the people they’ve killed? Is Bautista going to have a sparring session with Captain America? How does Black Panther fit into all this? And if the last shot of the trailer is any indication, are we going to live long enough to see Avengers 4?
Also, is someone going to die?
I was in school when Iron Man came out. I am 25 now, and yet, these films have lost none of their charm. This is the Golden Age of comic book movies and I am glad to be born in this time. It is going to be a bittersweet end, as the next two Avengers movies are going to mean farewell for many of these characters. But that’s all right. We couldn’t have possibly asked for anything more.
Thank you, Disney. Thank you, Marvel Studios. And thank you, all you actors who have immortalized these characters for us on film.