Avengers: Infinity War left Marvel fans with a year of suspense. After Thanos snapped his fingers with the Infinity Gauntlet, half of the sentient beings in the Marvel universe disappeared. Fans sensed that this would be undone in Avengers: Endgame, but Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige doesn't think it's fair to call Infinity War's ending a cliffhanger. "One of the reasons why we don't consider Infinity War a cliffhanger is because the end of the movie is not the heroes disappearing," Feige says in the Marvel's Avengers: Endgame - The Art of the Movie book that released this week. "The end of the movie is Thanos content on a planet in a rather shockingly idyllic environment doing exactly what he told us he would do: sit and look upon a grateful universe. He succeeded, and that's the end of the film. Will the Avengers try and stop him? Maybe. They'll try. But they didn't have much luck before, and I don't think he's worried that they're going to have much luck now."
This idea fits with what writers Stephen McFeely and Christopher Markus said in a recent interview, describing Thanos as the "hero" of Avengers: Infinity War. "[T]he idea was to reinforce that this was a kind of reverse hero's journey and we wanted to tag that it's not a cliffhanger," McFeely said. "Everything ended, and in fact, it ended really well for the guy who was driving the story [Thanos]."
Markus added, "The hero won, and he got to retire to his shack — just like every cop who's one week away from retirement [in a movie] and usually gets killed. Thanos made it all the way. He got his little fishing post."
In the strictest sense, they're right. There's no impending threat or danger at the end of Infinity War. The blow has fallen and the damage been done by the time the credits roll. Fans may ask how the heroes are going to recover, but that's not a question that needs immediate, urgent answering, as Endgame would go on to prove.
What did you think of the ending of Avengers: Infinity War? Let us know in the comments.
Upcoming Marvel Studios projects include Black Widow on May 1, 2020, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier in fall 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, WandaVision in spring 2021, Loki in spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, Spider-Man 3 on July 16, 2021, What If? In summer 2021, Hawkeye in fall 2021, Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021, and Black Panther 2 on May 6, 2022. Ms. Marvel, Moon Knight, and She-Hulk are also in the works for Disney+.