However, in telling its story, Homecoming also raises some significant questions about the MCU's next stage of development, by sprinkling in small tidbits of info that could later turn into major developments. Examples like Avengers tower being sold, or Captain America getting a new prototype shield are things that fans are currently buzzing about; however, as Marvel movie fans are starting to look at the bigger picture (and doing a little mental math), there's also a major issue with the film's place in the MCU, which is starting to come into focus:
Here's how Spider-Man: Homecoming Creates a Major MCU Timeline Problem for Avengers: Infinity War.
The Eight Year Conundrum
Spider-Man: Homecoming opens with Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton) and his crew working on cleaning up The Battle of New York - aka the Avengers battle against The Chitauri in the first Avengers movie. Toomes is barred from continuing his operations by shadowy government agents, at which point - at which point the film makes a huge time jump.
The main story of Spider-Man: Homecoming is stated (by the film itself) to take place eight years after the events of Avengers. That time jump creates some massive MCU timeline problems, as it contradicts several previous timeline establishments, which Marvel Studios itself has confirmed in the past.prevnext
The MCU's Past
As you can view by clicking above, Marvel has established a chronology for the events of the MCU, using milestone events as time markers instead of years. However, some simple historical knowledge and math can help to correlate events.
Captain America: The First Avenger opens in 1942 when Red Skull finds the Tesseract; it concludes in 1945, when Steve Rogers is frozen in the Arctic sea. That event is set 64 years before Tony Stark reveals that he is Iron Man to the world, making the events of Iron Man take place in 2009 (a year later than when the film was released) - but it's also been stated that Iron Man could be set in 2010. Either way, six months after that point, the events of Iron Man 2, Thor, and The Incredible Hulk all take place in the span of a week (known as "Fury's Big Week"). In an interview with Kevin Feige in 2013, the Marvel Studios head stated that The Avengers takes place about a year after the events of "Fury's Big Week."
Marvel Studios has been purposely vague on assigning exact years to a lot of its films, but the math approximates to this:
- Captain America: TFA (1945)
- Iron Man (2009)
- Iron Man 2 (2010)
- Thor (2010)
- Incredible Hulk (2010)
- The Avengers (2011)
The major point of contention / confusion comes from the generally accepted notion that (with the exception of Iron Man), Marvel's Phase I films follow a real-time chronology that corresponds to their release. So, that means Avengers would be set in the spring or summer of 2012, with Iron Man 3 starting Phase II around Christmas and New Years of that same year.
Spider-Man: Homecoming then muddies the waters entirely with its eight-year jump, setting that movie in the 2019 or 2020 range!prevnext
Here's the major mess of chronology that Spider-Man: Homecoming has now created:
The eight-year jump from Avengers to Homecoming doesn't really make sense when compared to the events of Captain America: Civil War. Civil War is presumably set in 2016 (which has previously been confirmed by several Marvel execs), a year after Age of Ultron - with the events of Spider-Man: Homecoming set just about half a year after Peter Parker returns home from battling Cap's team in Civil War. In Captain America 3, The Vision establishes a chronology for the events of that film, by saying the Avengers now exist at a point 8 years after Tony Stark first revealed himself as Iron Man to the world.
Ironically, it's Guardians of the Galaxy that further confuses things. Both Guardians films take place in the same year, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 actually has year dates which reveal that both of the films take place in 2014. Kevin Feige himself has already said that four years will pass between the events of GotGV2 and Avengers: Infinity War - placing at least the first part of Infinity War in 2018.
So, here is the major timeline confusion we're left with:
- How can Spider-Man: Homecoming take place both eight years after Avengers, and just half a year after Captain America: Civil War - when Civil War is already set eight years after Iron Man?
- It's been previously stated that the Homecoming trilogy will follow Peter through each subsequent year of high school - starting with his sophomore year in Homecoming - but that Homecoming 2 starts immediately after Infinity War 2. So, are we to believe that both halves of Infinity War take place in the span of time between the second half of Peter Parker's sophomore year and some point in junior year of high school?
This is now a major timeline conundrum that exists in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. And though some fans would argue that the exact details don't matter, creating a cohesive cinematic universe sort of demands that the chronology be exact, no?
Most of this could be cleared up if Kevin Feige were to simply amend things he may have said on the fly in interviews - specifically that Guardians / Infinity War time span, which currently forces Infinity War to be set in 2018.
Another "fix" would be to amend the idea that the Homecoming franchise has to be set in an exact progression of Peter's high school years; if he were to take a leave of absence to, say, go into space and save the universe? It would allow for him to return to school later than expected, so that the events of Homecoming 2 could still be set in high school, and still pick up immediately after Avengers: Infinity War II. Breaking away from the idea that the Homecoming franchise has to be entirely set in high school would also fix that issue.
What do you think Marvel fans? Is this MCU timeline too messy for your tastes? Or doesn't it all make sense to you? If so, let US know how it does @ComicbookNOW!prevnext
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- Homecoming Has Massive Marvel Cinematic Universe Plot Hole
Are you excited for Avengers: Infinity War? Rank your anticipation below!0comments
Avengers: Infinity War is described by Marvel Studios as the culmination of everything in the Marvel Cinematic Universe since Iron Man in 2008. The movie is filming now under directors Anthony and Joe Russo, from a screenplay by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.
The expansive confirmed cast includes 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 as the villain Thanos.
Avengers: Infinity War and its as-yet-untitled sequel are filming back-to-back for a May 4, 2018 and May 3, 2019 release, respectively.prev