Marvel Studios brought Avengers: Infinity War to Disney’s D23 Expo and San Diego Comic Con last weekend, unveiling Ryan Meinerding’s three-piece poster as well as a three-minute debut trailer. With Infinity War described by Marvel Studios as the culmination of Marvel Cinematic Universe since its debut with Iron Man in 2008, the Avengers threequel will unite all of the shared Marvel Universe — the Avengers, Spider-Man, Black Panther, the Guardians of the Galaxy — in Marvel’s biggest movie yet which, according to co-director Joe Russo, will be both an ending and a new beginning for the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
“Things always get deconstructed, right? You build things up and people enjoy the experiences you’ve built up,” he said. “But then you kind of reach an apex or you reach a climax, a moment where you go, ‘This structure is really going to start to be repetitious if we do this again, so what do we do now?’ So now, you deconstruct it. We’re in the deconstruction phase with Civil War and leading into Infinity War, which are the culmination films.”
“I think there will be finality to moments of Phase Three, as well as new beginnings that will mark a different, a very different, a distinctively different chapter in what will someday be a complete first saga made up of three phases,” added Marvel Studios president and producer Kevin Feige on Infinity War. We’ve seen just a pinch of what’s to come, and in a trailer packed filled with fan-pleasing surprises, here are the five best moments of the Avengers: Infinity War trailer. Be cautious: this article assumes you’re caught up with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and talks in-depth about the Infinity War footage shown, which has yet to be released online.
Thor Meets the Guardians of the Galaxy
The trailer kicks off with the Asgardian Avenger, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), running into the Guardians of the Galaxy — literally. With the god of thunder wiped off the windshield of the Guardians’ ship, the Milano, Mantis (Pom Klementieff), an empath, uses her abilities to startle Thor awake. “Who the hell are you guys?” Thor asks, a reasonable inquiry when you’re standing in a room with an anthropomorphic raccoon. Thor has met his share of alien and fantastical beings, but the moment is significant for one big reason: it’s the first time Marvel’s two biggest franchises — the Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy — intersect.
The Guardians have been relegated to their own cosmic corner of the universe, with their adventures in Guardians of the Galaxy and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 taking place in 2014 — before Thor re-teamed with the Avengers to thwart Ultron’s plans in 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, and before Earth’s mightiest heroes had a falling out in Captain America: Civil War, which caused a schism that effectively broke up the Avengers (as we know them).
We know that the Guardians eventually make it to Earth —Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Drax (Dave Bautista), and Mantis are seen alongside Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.) and Spider-Man (Tom Holland), with Star-Lord literally leaping into action by way of magic stepping stones conjured up by Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) — but other than assuming Thor takes his newfound friends to connect with his earthbound friends, we’ll have to wait and see exactly how the two groups come together.
Star-Spangled Man With a Plan?
Steve Rogers’ (Chris Evans) time in the trailer is brief, but we do see the former Avengers leader step out with a new look: namely a beard and a more low-key uniform that has done away with any trace of his star spangled superhero identity. It’s not just that Steve looks more rugged, it’s what the look implies: that “Captain America” is no more, at least for now.
Last we saw him, Steve broke into the Raft, an underwater prison holding Falcon (Anthony Mackie), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) following their illegal actions in Captain America: Civil War, Cap’s band of rebellious Avengers going against the government’s imposed Sokovia Accords — a move which ruled unsanctioned superhero activity illegal. Steve then took best friend Bucky (Sebastian Stan), a still-recovering former brainwashed assassin, to the African society of Wakanda, ruled by the powerful Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman). There, Bucky was put into cryogenic stasis; come time of Infinity War, Bucky is out and leading some kind of army.
With Captain America on the run and on uneasy ground with fellow Avenger Iron Man (Tony Stark), will Steve Rogers once again don the shield and resume his rightful place as leader of the Avengers in Earth’s most desperate hour? If (when) he does, let it be with his iconic rallying cry: “Avengers assemble!” (Maybe he'll even lift Thor's hammer, Mjolnir.)
Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Avenger
At the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming, smalltime superhero Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is offered a fancy new suit by tech guru Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) to go with the rookie hero’s newly awarded roster spot on the Avengers. Peter declines, choosing instead to stick close to the ground as a friendly neighborhood Spider-Man, holding onto his Stark-tech red-and-blues. Come Infinity War, things are going down and Spider-Man is seen flipping into action — complete with his Avengers armor. It remains to be seen what the new suit offers over its predecessor, which came stocked with everything from an A.I. system (dubbed “Karen” by Peter) to a body warmer (a nice touch).
Superficially, the suit has glowing eyes, not unlike those on Peter Parker’s all-new, all-different costume in the Marvel Comics, which he dons post-Secret Wars. Like Steve Rogers’ new look, Spidey’s upgraded duds are representative of something bigger: it means the webhead has joined the ranks of Earth’s mightiest heroes. Oh, sure. Recruitment tends to happen when its all-hands-on-deck because a purple body builder from space is threatening the entirety of existence, but after taking part in the Avengers’ airport battle in Captain America: Civil War and single-handedly putting a stop to the malevolent plot of the Vulture (Michael Keaton) in Spider-Man: Homecoming, Peter Parker just might have what it takes to swing with the big dogs.
Loki What We Have Here
Thor’s troublemaker half-brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston), has plagued the Asgardian demigod’s golden locks in both Thor and The Avengers, where Loki schemed to get his hands on the Tesseract, a glowing blue cube that houses one of the highly-sought after Infinity Stones: the Space Stone. The cube took part in unleashing a Chitauri invasion on New York in The Avengers, where Loki desperately attempted to please Thanos who, come the end-credits scene of Avengers: Age of Ultron, declares its time he assembles the Infinity Stones himself.
Loki only appears briefly in the Infinity War trailer, but he’s spotted with the Tesseract cube. Loki teased Thanos’ eventual coming to Earth way back in 2012, and now that Thanos is up and off his butt, the god of mischief may not be able to avoid his old boss any longer. Marvel hasn’t forgotten Loki’s servitude to Thanos, his involvement the payoff of a plot thread in the running for more than five years — one which was first set in motion in Thor and carried through The Avengers, which was, at the time, Marvel Studios’ biggest achievement to date. With Infinity War on the horizon (and a cast six times as big as The Avengers), it feels right for Marvel's ten-years-in-the-making epic to serve as pay off for every movie since Iron Man in 2008.
“Fun isn’t something one considers when balancing the universe, but this does put a smile on my face,” Thanos says, bringing some kind of spacecraft crashing to Earth. He’s finally on the Avengers’ territory, and daughters Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and Nebula (Karen Gillan) may not be able to stave him off any longer.
Bringing together the old and new generation of Marvel heroes as well as every franchise Marvel Studios has launched, Avengers: Infinity War will assemble Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bethany, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Benedict Wong, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Pom Klementieff, and Josh Brolin.
Avengers: Infinity War is directed by Joe and Anthony Russo (Captain America: Civil War) and opens May 4th, 2018.