In April Marvel will be releasing a number of reprints of classic Avengers comics, to coincide with the release of Avengers: Endgame. One particular comic – Avengers #71 – stands out for its title: “Endgame.” The identical name may simply be a coincidence… or it could confirm the real inspiration for the movie’s title.
Even before Avengers: Infinity War hit theaters, fans were tossing around all sorts of theories on the title of the fourth Avengers movie. The official reveal didn’t come until the release of the first trailer for Avengers 4 in December. “Endgame” was one of the more popular theories, partially because it had been leaked in the past. It also made sense, given that the word was used by Doctor Strange prior to his death in Avengers: Infinity War. After Thanos successfully obtained all of the Infinity Stones and wiped out half the universe, Strange told Iron Man that they were now in the “endgame,” suggesting all was not yet lost. And the comic may show exactly why.
Marvel’s April 2019 solicits reveal three reprints of classic Avengers comics under the “True Believers” line. Oddly enough, all three feature the Black Knight, a key member of the superhero team, but what may be most interesting is the inclusion of Avengers #71. Originally released in 1969, the comic was titled “Endgame!” but the story is best-remembered for being the comic where Black Knight finally joins the Avengers.
“Endgame!” was the second part of a storyline surrounding a game played between the cosmic Grandmaster and Kang. The two were fighting over the Earth, with Kang using the Avengers as his pawns, pitted against the Squadron Sinister. The heroes lost the match when Black Knight interfered in Hawkeye’s one-on-one match against the Whizzer. But in “Endgame!” a second round was arranged. This time, the Avengers had to travel back in time to defeat Captain America, Namor, and the original Human Torch. In the end, Kang betrayed the Avengers and succeeded in killing them. However, their deaths were undone by Black Knight, who defeated Kang. The Avengers’ lives were then restored by the Grandmaster.
Even though Avengers: Endgame has no known connection to Kang the Conqueror, Grandmaster, or Black Knight, there are two specific events in the comic that fans are expecting to happen in the upcoming movie. Set photos and other details have indicated that the Avengers will travel back in time during the film. Also, since “the snap” at the end of Infinity War wiped out half of the Earth’s population, including many of Marvel’s biggest heroes, this will most likely be undone – not unlike what Black Knight did in the movie’s comic book namesake.
So considering these similarities, and Marvel’s decision to reprint this particular issue now, the shared titles between the movie and the comic may not be a coincidence after all.
True Believers: Avengers: Endgame! #1 goes on sale in April.
Source: Marvel Comics