One post-credits sequence for Ant-Man and the Wasp provided fans with their first look at the post-Infinity War Marvel Cinematic Universe...albeit briefly.
Spoilers ahead for Avengers: Infinity War and Ant-Man & the Wasp, both in theaters now.
At the end of Avengers: Infinity War, the heroes failed to stop Thanos from gathering the Infinity Stones to power his gauntlet and, with a snap of his fingers, erasing half the life forms in the universe from existing.
That happened in the final moments of Infinity War and left little sense of what to expect going into Avengers 4. Even post-credits scenes for the movie essentially doubled down on the "half the world disappearing" theme.
Fast-forward to Ant-Man and the Wasp, out this week. It was a light-hearted heist romp with significantly lower stakes than most Marvel films and a notable absence of any giant hole in the sky or anything like that in the third act. So how do you do a movie like that in the context of the post-Infinity War hangover, where every fan is wondering whether or not their fave will make it out of the sequel alive?
...Well, by side-stepping it entirely and doing a movie set before the events of Infinity War. Because how else would you do it?
And of course, in order to explain why Ant-Man was not featured in Infinity War, there was a post-credits sequence.
In that sequence, a newly-reunited Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), Hope (Evangeline Lilly) and a long-missing Janet van Dyne (Michelle Pfeiffer) ignite a smaller Quantum Tunnel, intending to send Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) back into the Quantum Realm to collect Quantum healing particles.
The mission complete, Scott awaits the trio to retrieve him for re-entry, only to receive no answer. We return to the outside world, where we see the remnants of Hank, Hope and Janet as their dusty remains dissipate into thin air.6comments
It's after this that director Peyton Reed went back to Scott Lang's apartment for a second post-credits stinger -- this one featuring the super-sized ant that had stood in for Scott during his incarceration (long story). The ant, surprisingly, does not get "snapped" away, but in the establishing shots, the audience does get to see a New York City that is eerily still, with periodic bursts of fear and chaos, through Scott's windows. On his TV, the emergency broadcast system is playing.
This is the world post-Thanos, or as much of it as fans are going to get to see until Captain Marvel comes along in March.