Following their devastating loss to Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, Earth’s Mightiest Heroes finally have a chance to live up to their name with the fulfillment of Tony Stark’s (Robert Downey Jr.) memorable speech in The Avengers in Avengers: Endgame. Brought together by Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) when an extraterrestrial threat became apparent, the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s original superhero team assembled for the first time in 2012, successfully protecting the planet from Loki’s (Tom Hiddleston) invasion. Since then, Iron Man, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America/Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), Black Widow/Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye/Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner) have become Earth’s go-to protectors.
Operating for more than six years now, the Avengers have been on a few missions, and each time they eventually accomplished what they were set out to do. That is, until the Sokovia Accords and Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) came between Stark and Rogers in Captain America: Civil War, leading the team to split up. By the time Infinity War rolled around two years after, the Avengers were still disassembled.
The original heroes (excluding Hawkeye) fought Thanos on two different battlefronts (and two different planets), which unfortunately ended with their first ever real loss after failing to stop the Mad Titan from successfully wiping out half of life in the universe. However, not only will the original team get another crack at defeating the villain in Endgame, they also get the chance to rightfully earn their name as the “Avengers” considering that they finally have something to avenge for.
- This Page: Tony Stark’s Speech & The End of Avengers: Infinity War
- Page 2: How Endgame Delivers On The “Avengers” Name
Tony Stark’s “Avengers” Speech
One of Tony’s best moments in The Avengers was his one-on-one conversation with Loki in Stark Tower right before the Battle of New York began. While Tony stalled Thor’s brother from making a move as he waited for his suit to power up, he warned Loki that there was no way he was going to get away with his devious plan. Even if they failed to stop him, Tony was confident that Loki won’t be getting away with it, saying: “If we can’t protect the Earth, you can be damn well sure we’ll avenge it.”
Stark had a lot of quotable lines in The Avengers, but this particular piece of dialog became particularly memorable as this was the first time that Nick Fury’s group of heroes were acknowledged as a unit – especially after they spent most of the first two acts of the film butting heads with each other. It was particularly pivotal for the big speech to come from Tony considering that out of all six members, he was the least interested with being part of a superhero squad – something that he’s been adamant about since Iron Man 2. The fact that this came from him made it easier for the audience to buy the notion that the team is finally coming together.
However, as cool as the whole scene was, it really doesn’t make sense that the heroes are collectively called the “Avengers,” because there wasn’t much to avenge at that point. Though Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg) was believed to have died, which became the spark that brought all heroes together, the overall battle was still going on and Earth was ultimately saved.
The Original Six Avengers Are All That’s Left
Infinity War pulled a surprising move by specifically sparing Phase 1 characters – some of whom were expected to die in the film. However, it’s no coincidence that after Thanos’ supposed random genocide, all six core Avengers members survived while most of their contemporaries were disintegrated into dust. It’s the perfect set-up for a reunion for the original MCU heroes as they attempt to take down the Mad Titan and restore peace and order in the galaxy.
It’s been more than four years since fans have seen the core Avengers on a mission in 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron. Since then, they’ve mostly gone on their own missions with Thor and the Hulk going off on a space adventure in Thor: Ragnarok, while Romanoff and Barton got caught in the middle of Stark and Rogers’ conflict in Civil War. By the time Thanos made his move, they were all scattered, minding their own thing, making it the perfect time for the villain to strike. Even throughout Infinity War, the original six were separated with Thor only joining Captain America and Black Widow in Wakanda in the final act, while Iron Man was in Titan with Spider-Man, Doctor Strange and some of the Guardians of the Galaxy. Hawkeye’s whereabouts, on the other hand, are yet to be revealed in Endgame.
How Endgame Delivers On The “Avengers” Name
Despite functioning as a superhero team for quite some time now, the group technically aren’t the “Avengers” yet, considering that they’ve won every single huge battle they’ve fought. But after suffering a devastating loss at the hands of Thanos, they finally have a shot at rightfully earning their name as they gear up for another bout with the villain in Endgame.
Aside from the overall goal to defeat Thanos and restore peace and order in the universe, the upcoming battle has also become personal for the core six heroes. With each of them affected by The Decimation, every hero now has something or someone to avenge. Thor watched the murder of Loki, Heimdall and half of his people. Cap and Romanoff lost loyal friends and allies in Bucky (Sebastian Stan) and Falcon (Anthony Mackie), while Hulk was beaten to a pulp for the first time. Hawkeye (presumably) lost his whole family and Tony Stark is forced to live out his worst nightmare, not to mention having has to watch his protégé die in his arms. If the supposed death of Coulson in The Avengers is any indication, fans can expect the original Earth’s Mightiest Heroes giving it their best to make sure that justice served against the Mad Titan.
How Earth’s Mightiest Heroes take down Thanos remains to be seen. But knowing that Peter Parker is back alive in Spider-Man: Far From Home is a hint that whatever they plan in doing in Endgame succeeds, thus, officially making them worthy of the name “Avengers.”
Should There Be A New Marvel Team After Endgame?
Marketed as the culmination of everything that has transpired in the MCU since 2008’s Iron Man, Endgame will cap off the 22-film arc that revolved around the six Infinity Stones leading up to Thanos’ official debut in Infinity War. Given this, it’s expected that some of the Phase 1 heroes will be passing the baton to their contemporaries, who will usher the franchise into Phase 4. Marvel Studios’ president Kevin Feige has said that the movie will be the final chapter for some of their founding characters, that means that the Avengers we know and love may no longer be around after Phase 3.
For years, Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, and Hawkeye have been the face of the MCU. Even with new heroes regularly being added to the lineup, they remain to be their top-tier characters. If most, if not all of them are gone by the end of Endgame, it’s unknown whether Marvel Studios will simply revamp the Avengers, or whether the heroes will be mostly operating independently. The latter option is viable, considering that Cap and Natasha were training a new crop of heroes that includes Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), Vision (Paul Bettany), War Machine (Don Cheadle) and Falcon by the end of Age of Ultron. Other heroes such as Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Spider-Man (Tom Holland) and even Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) can eventually join the crew. That said, if Marvel Studios decide to step away from ensemble films for a while and focus on introducing new heroes such as The Eternals and Shang-Chi, it will be curious how fans of the franchise will take the idea that there won’t be any official Avengers team, at least in the foreseeable future.
Infinity War was the perfect set up for the much-anticipated reunion of the founding heroes of the MCU in Avengers: Endgame. Whether or not it will be the final appearance of these particular mix of members remains to be seen. But assuming it is, fans can bet that by the end of the current Thanos crisis, the team will have successfully avenged the whole universe, making them worthy of their name.