So I went and saw Avengers: Endgame on Monday night because several people told me that I’d likely enjoy it.
And yes, in the moment, I enjoyed it a lot. It’s well-paced, beautifully shot, the effects are well done. And it doesn’t really give you any time to think about anything until it’s over.
So this is gonna get spoiler-y as all get out after this.
I’ll just give you a few more lines of spoiler space here.
Um, taking my migraine meds at the start of the movie did keep me from getting one afterward, so that was nice. And we went to the booze-y theater so that was good.
This went live on the Patreon on my 25th wedding anniversary. Seriously, we’ve made it 25 years without either of us suffocating the other in their sleep.
Ok, that should be enough space.
First off, I want to state that it is a time travel movie, and those are super hard to do well.
I’m not going to give you blow by blow of the plot. They find Thanos to try to steal the gems back to fix everything. Thanos destroyed the stones. And Thor kills him because vengeance.
Then Scott Lang gets back from the Microverse 5 years later, because a rat wanders across the controls. Which, of course. And his reunion scene with Cassie is awesome.
So they decide they’ll travel back in time and steal the stones at different points, fix the universe, and then put them back.
Now, I get it, they tried to link the time travel to stuff that happened that came up in other movies. Tony running into his dad while his mom is pregnant and getting some closure. Steve sees Peggy. Thor gets to see his mother, who is not fooled, because Frigga.
To get the soul stones, Nat and Clint fight over who is going to sacrifice themselves for it, and by that I mean, they are each volunteering for their own reasons. Nat “wins.” And by wins I mean, is the one to die.
Some people have a problem with this, but I don’t. This felt like a genuine end to Nat’s story arc and a loop around to the “red in my ledger” comments to Loki in the first Avengers. Because lets face it, the best lies are founded in truth. So, yeah, Nat had agency in this. She’d been hanging on by her fingernails for five years, holding everything together with Steve, Rhodey, Okoye, and Captain Marvel.
They get the stones, but because past Thanos can access future Nebula’s memories, he knows what is going on and follows them. They fix the world, but past Thanos comes in and threatens to obliterate all life this time, blah blah blah…
Cue awesome battle scene, and the return of all the heroes vanished by Thanos five years ago.
And this fight scene is pretty. It starts out brutal and ugly, Steve, Tony and Thor against Thanos. Steve wields Mjolnir, and we all knew he could. And then the others return.
Pepper in the Rescue suit made me tear up.
Thanos gets the gauntlet that Tony built, but Tony steals the stones, and wields them, sacrificing himself to vanish Thanos and all his creepy buddies.
They send Steve to put the stones back, but he doesn’t return, and then Bucky points out old Steve on a bench, and Steve gives Sam the shield.
Which, Yay, Sam!!!!
Ok, now let’s get into all the reasons this falls apart the second you have time to think about it too hard. And by too hard, I mean at all.
First, they altered the timeline left and right while stealing the stones. You cannot tell me that even if past-Steve did think he was fighting Loki, hearing “Bucky’s alive,” did not send him into a globe spanning search IMMEDIATELY.
And Loki escapes again.
Tony talks to his Dad.
Thor talks to his mom and Rocket stabs Jane.
The interaction with the Ancient One and Bruce.
Then we get to the the disappearing of Thanos and his buddies. Now, I suppose that it’s possible that Tony was thoughtful enough to think “Put them back with no memory of what happened.”
However, we are talking about the bronze medalist in Marvel’s Bad Decision Olympics (Reed Richards is Gold, and Hank Pym is Silver. So I think it’s far more likely that he didn’t think that through and shit is gonna be real strange.
A. I don’t see Steve abandoning Bucky when he just got him back again.
B. If he did abandon Bucky, I do not see him going back to live his life with Peggy and letting her run “Secretly HYDRA In Every Last Department”* or not going back to that installation in Siberia and rescuing Bucky. I CANNOT see him leaving Bucky to be tortured by HYDRA for seventy years.
C. Also can you see him living through the McCarthy era or Vietnam and not telling the government to go fuck themselves? I can’t.
D. What are the odds he stops a bank robbery and outs himself within a year?
E. Also this makes the Sharon thing extra creepy, just from the other side.
So, yeah, it’s a good popcorn movie if you don’t think about it at all. And while you’re watching it, it is beautifully paced so you don’t have time to think too hard about anything. It’s gorgeous. It’s fun. I definitely hate it less than Infinity War, I may hate it slightly less than Civil War.
*Owlet on Archive of Our Own has this fantastic MCU fic called “Infinite Coffee and Protection Detail” and if you can, I highly recommend reading it. It is fantastic. She coins this phrase in it. If you want to avoid the slash, she warning labels everything, so it’s pretty easy to do.
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