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16 MCU Fan Theories That Retroactively Make 'Infinity War' And 'Endgame' Even Better

List RulesVote up the theories that make you appreciate 'Infinity War' and 'Endgame' even more.

The second a new film or series is announced - and sometimes a great deal of time beforehand - the Internet becomes rife with new MCU fan theories, and Avengers fan theories are easily the most numerous among them. But while theories that attempt to predict the Marvel Cinematic Universe adventures to come are plenty of fun, the real speculative enjoyment comes from gazing back at the stories of the past and trying to recontextualize them in a new way - one that makes them even more enjoyable than they were originally.

There’s little doubt that Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame represent the pinnacle of the franchise, and by now, every single Avengers Easter egg and subtle detail have been long since picked over. But by delving into the realm of the hypothetical, there’s always new ground to cover. In fact, fans might never stop speculating about what really happened in these films - and that’s perfectly alright with just about everyone. 

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    250 VOTES

    The Laura Barton Phone Call Plot Hole Is Easily Fixed By A Guess At Hawkeye’s S.H.I.E.L.D. Privileges

    It’s been said that Laura Barton calling Hawkeye a few seconds after being unsnapped in Avengers: Endgame is a bit of a plot hole. Really? Her phone is still charged and her plan is still active after five years of nonexistence? But as Redditor /u/OGCelaris points out, that’s not so surprising for the spouse of an agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.:

    Hawkeye said that Fury helped him keep his family and home a secret. That probably included phones that did not operate on the normal cell network to keep them from being traced. Something like that probably doesn't have a monthly bill.

    As for her phone still being charged, that’s as simple as the phone being on her person when she was snapped and returning in the same state it left. If it worked for Spider-Man’s web-shooters and Star-Lord's rocket boots, it works for Laura’s phone. 

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    Good theory?
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    607 VOTES

    Doctor Strange Only Finding One Winnable Future Makes Sense If He Also Had To Find One In Which He Survived, Too

    The events of Loki and What If…? have cast a lot of doubt on Doctor Stephen Strange’s assertion that he could only find one future in which the Avengers defeated Thanos and saved the Marvel Universe. But his words stand up better if one accepts that Strange was searching through a limited field - specifically, as Redditor /u/sonnytron speculates, only futures in which Strange himself survived to tell the tale:

    I don't think [Strange] was lying... I think he just couldn't see past the scenarios where he dies because he has no idea what happened afterward.

    So, by nature of him not being able to see past his own death, he couldn't see scenarios where he lived and Tony survived but they won.

    By limiting the scenarios to ones where he survives/returns after the Snap, he was already limiting scenarios to either:
    1) He survives the battle on Titan.
    2) He doesn't survive the battle on Titan but is resurrected later.

    So, for me, I see this as him thinking when he told Tony:

    "Out of 14,000,605 possible endings to the coming battle, narrowed down to the ones where I survived, or I die and come back to life, I only saw one where we win. There might be more, but because I can't see them, I have to treat them as not existing... Which means I can't find a way where we win and you don't die."

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    546 VOTES

    Tony Stark’s Sacrifice Wouldn’t Have Been Possible Had He Not Found Out About It At The Last Minute; Otherwise He’d Just Try To Invent His Way Out Of It

    Doctor Stephen Strange apparently knows all along that Tony Stark will sacrifice himself at the culmination of Avengers: Endgame, but he doesn’t let him know until seconds before the deed is to be done. But, as Redditor /u/GameCube99 explains, that may have been a strategic choice, not a callous one:

    Obviously, by the end of the first Avengers movie, we see the [“cut the wire”] line come to fruition, since Tony is willing to make the sacrifice play. However, it’s the next line that I feel is often overlooked in these discussions, especially considering it immediately precedes the “big man in a suit of armor” quote.

    “Always a way out.”

    Since the beginning of the series, Tony is the tinkerer, the thinker. He has backup plans and contingencies, and when he fails, he corrects those mistakes to the best of his ability. So why did I say all of this?

    Strange holding his finger up at the end of Endgame, and the subsequent realization on Tony’s face, is the acceptance that there’s no way out. How many futures had Strange tried telling Tony about his fate? How many times had Strange immediately told Tony what would have to happen? Tony is, at his core, a survivor. In every movie, this rings true, even when he doesn’t want it to.

    To me, the only way this outcome could ever work is for Tony to understand that once and for all, there was no way out. How many scenarios had failed because Tony sought another option? Yes, it’s clear he’s willing to make the sacrifice. We learned that from the first Avengers movie - honestly, you could argue we could see it in the first Iron Man.

    But the sacrifice play is only taken if it’s the last possible option. He will search again and again for an escape, a way to preserve himself. The beauty of that final moment, that look of understanding in Tony’s eyes, is the argument coming full circle. Just as Cap had proven himself worthy of Mjolnir just a short while earlier, Tony proves himself willing to lay down on the wire. After a lifetime of cutting it, or finding some other means to save himself and everyone, he sees Strange’s finger and understands his destiny.

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    Good theory?
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    317 VOTES

    The Existence Of Morgan Stark Explains Why Doctor Strange Had To Keep Tony Stark In The Dark

    To some, it comes off as a bit cruel that Stephen Strange foresees 14,000,605 futures and doesn’t give Tony Stark the slightest heads up about any of it, from the existence of his daughter to his inevitable sacrifice. But, as Redditor /u/sonnytron explains, there may have been a good reason to keep Tony ignorant, and it all comes down to Morgan Stark:

    Dr. Strange saw that in scenarios where he gave Tony too much information about what happens, Morgan's birth/existence changes how Tony's actions take place after the Snap.

    In some timelines, too much information led to Tony not taking part in the Time Heist because of his fear for his daughter growing up without him. In others, he participated but with hesitation and fear, which led to failure.

    The worst outcome? Tony and Pepper didn't have Morgan at all. Tony's knowledge of his fate led to him not having a daughter with Pepper at all, which led to Tony going into the Time Heist with too much aggression.

    Also, Tony's relationship with Morgan is what made him think of Peter before attempting to create the Time Travel GPS.

    I think the Avengers being careful to bring everyone who died back to 2023 and not trying to undo the last five years was critical to the success of the plan and, more importantly, the stability of the universe. But all that goes out the window if Morgan wasn't born, why? Because Tony would want to go back in time and try to have a baby with Pepper again.

    Tony was the key to everything, but how little he knew was just as important as him being the one to do the Snap.

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    Good theory?