The Avengers: Endgame saw the Infinity Saga draw to a close, with a spectacular finish that left us speechless with sentiment. Marvel has nested the Endgame with dozens of easter eggs that proved to be a real treat for long-time fans. But with references from a backlog of 21 movies and even more comics, chances are you might’ve missed a couple of details. Here are 17 important details you won’t want to miss from the Avengers: Endgame movie.
**Yes, definitely a spoiler alert**
1. It All Started With A Mouse
A span of 5 years passed while the world attempted to recover from the devastating event. We are invited to witness the after-effects of the tragedy that happened in Infinity War. But suddenly, there’s hope. An unassuming mouse treads upon the control panel of Luis’ van, releasing Ant-Man out of the quantum realm. That’s when Ant-Man proposes his solution of time travel to the Avengers, renewing hope in the broken-hearted heroes and spurring the Time Heist.
It’s a nice parallel to Walt Disney’s famous quote, “It all started with a mouse.” Just as Disney’s success was made possible by its first character Mickey Mouse, Marvel has thrived from the buy-over by Disney, which injected marketing dollars and expertise, expanded movie budgets, and helped Marvel regain the rights to some of its older franchises. Once again, a humble mouse has saved the day -- now in the MCU in The Avengers: Endgame.
2. Tony’s Nightmare Vision
In The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Stark had a vision induced by Scarlet Witch, where he saw the Avengers lying dead among rubble and Captain America accused, “You could’ve saved us all.” While Wanda’s original intent was to heighten Stark’s worst fears, it seems possible that this vision was actually one of the 14,000,605 outcomes mentioned by Doctor Strange in the Infinity War. This interpretation is made even more likely by the fact that Stark’s heroic sacrifice at the end of Endgame turns out to be the only winning solution out of all 14 million scenarios.
3. Clint Calls His Daughter Hawkeye
In one of the opening scenes, Clint Barton coaches his daughter on how to use a bow and arrow. Amidst their training, he calls her ‘Hawkeye’. This is a major Marvel easter egg that mirrors Hawkeye’s mentoring relationship with young Kate Bishop from the Young Avengers comic. Perhaps his daughter Lila will rise up to become a new hero as she matures.
4. “America’s Ass”
The Time Heist sees the Avengers revisiting pieces of their past. For Captain America, he doesn’t just see Peggy -- he encounters his old self.
Rogers has apparently lightened up over the years, perhaps to cope with the devastation. He is now able to make fun of himself, joining in the running joke to admire “America’s ass” whereas his previous self would’ve been a lot more uptight. But it seems that some things never change — like his love for Bucky. Knowing that he is unable to beat himself with sheer physical strength, Capt pulls out his trump card: “Bucky is alive”. Upon hearing this, his old self falls back in shock and is easily defeated. This Marvel easter egg reminds us of Capt’s stubborn affections to people from his past, and may be a prelude to his eventual choice to return to Peggy.
5. “Hail Hydra”
This Avengers: Endgame easter egg can leave many of us confused, especially if we haven’t read the comics. “Hail Hydra” references to the Captain America: Steve Rogers Vol. 1 comic, where Capt revealed that he had been a spy for the Nazi terrorist organisation all along. In the case of the elevator scene in Endgame, Capt outwits the Hydra agents with the simple “Hail Hydra” salute that convinces them that his orders do come from the top. This leaves them speechless, and he walks out coolly with the scepter without a fight.
6. Sam Returns “On (Capt’s) Left”
“On your left,” was Steve Roger’s line every time he sped annoyingly past Sam Wilson (Falcon) on their jogging routine. This detail is a callback to Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
In Endgame, Rogers struggles alone in his final battle with Thanos. He’s pale as death, and appears to have no help by his side. Suddenly, he hears Sam say, “On your left,” before appearing out of Doctor Strange’s portal along with a massive backup of revived heroes. This role reversal comes at a welcome time. The reminiscent moment had fans hooting and cheering in theatres.
The brief moment reserved for Steve and Bucky (coined Stucky) at the end disappointed some fans and hinted at a lack of screentime for fuller development. However, their brief interaction does point to the depth of their friendship. “Don’t do anything stupid until I get back,” jokes Rogers before he steps into the time portal. “How can I,” replies Bucky wryly. “You’re taking all the stupid with you.” This easter egg references back to Captain America: The First Avenger.
The exchange appears strange, however, given that the danger has already passed. This Avengers: Endgame detail makes sense only on hindsight, when Capt returns as an old man, having returned to his past and spent his life with Peggy, the woman of his dreams. Bucky is the first to spot Capt on the bench, and appears completely unsurprised by the turn of events. It seems Bucky needs no explanations to understand his best friend’s heart.
8. Iron Man Rests At Last
In Iron Man 3, Tony tells Pepper Potts, “I can’t sleep.” His identity as Iron Man prevents him from resting when “threat is imminent”. After failing to stop Tony from getting involved in various battles for most of their relationship, Pepper becomes Tony’s pillar of strength in Endgame. She assuages Tony’s fears and reminds him of the bigger picture. It’s a bittersweet moment when Pepper holds Tony’s hand as he rasps through his last breaths. “You can rest now,” she forces a smile, “We’re going to be okay.” At last, Iron Man has saved the world, and he can finally rest with a peace of mind.
9. The A-Force
The Avengers: Endgame features an epic lineup of female heroes at the final battle. This lineup decidedly references the A-Force, from Marvel Comic Secret Wars launched in 2015. The comic flaunts powerful female superheroes in an alternate universe -- namely She-Hulk, Singularity, Medusa, Nico Minoru, Dazzler and Captain Marvel. Of course, Marvel has yet to introduce most of these characters in the MCU. The Endgame lineup shows Captain Marvel, Pepper Potts (Rescue), Valkyrie, Wasp, Scarlet Witch, Nebula, Gamora, Mantis, Okoye and Shuri. It’s an impactful scene that makes a strong (albeit cringey) statement for feminism.
10. “They Are Unruly And Therefore Cannot Be Ruled”
Thanos made his first appearance in the MCU in The Avengers’ post-credit scene, where the Other warned, “Humans… They are not the coward wretches we were promised. They stand. They are unruly and therefore cannot be ruled.” This foreshadowed that Thanos’ quest to obtain all the Infinity Stones and wipe out half of Earth’s population would be met with fierce resistance.
This warning turns out to be truer than Thanos expected. In Endgame, Thanos sees future Nebula’s memories and realises that the Avengers have come back from the future to change Earth’s fate. Even after Thanos’ future self has succeeded, the Avengers found a way to fight back and resist their destiny. Thanos then calls them “unruly wretches”, making a callback to the first moment from the post-credits scene.
11. Thor’s Hammer Mjolnir
One of Capt’s suavest moments is when he comes charging in with Thor’s own hammer, Mjolnir. Thor doesn’t look surprised, instead exclaiming with delight, “I knew it!” This terrific moment throws a callback to the Age of Ultron. In a casual, light-hearted scene where Thor allows the Avengers to attempt lifting his hammer, there is an instant where Capt manages to budge the great Mjolnir. The scene is left at that, but now we know that Capt was probably worthy of lifting the hammer all along. Fans of the Marvel comics would also recognise this from The Mighty Thor, dated 1998.
12. Black Widow’s Sacrifice
Fans have rallied against Natasha Romanoff’s death in her heartbreaking sacrifice for the Soul Stone. But her noble sacrifice does seem to bring things to a full circle. We’re not sure what happened in Budapest, but it seems that Clint Barton was one of the first real friends she had. Sent on a mission to kill her, he eventually decided to spare her instead, and led her out of her dark past to start a new life. It only makes sense that she would want to keep her unspoken promise from the beginning of the movie to reunite Clint with his family again, even if it means giving her own life to restore his.
13. Loki’s Escape
With all the action and tear-jerkers going on in the Endgame, we might’ve left the theatres forgetting this important detail. It seems that fans’ favourite anti-hero Loki is back after all, and is alive in some other timeline. This creates a great lead-up to Loki’s series on the upcoming channel, Disney+.
14. Namor, The Sub-Mariner
Would Marvel have slipped in half a minute of talk about oceanic disruptions without a reason? It seems unlikely. After all, Marvel has previously left another easter egg about the existence of Atlantis on SHIELD’s map in Iron Man 2.
Namor the Sub-Mariner boasts similar powers to DC’s Aquaman, with flight thrown into the mix. But unlike DC’s peace-loving hero, Namor intrigues us with his unpredictability. This unconventional anti-hero deeply resents surface dwellers for supposedly destroying his home. In the Marvel Comics, Namor has sided before with both Captain America and supervillains, and has made repeated attacks on innocent surface dwellers.
Marvel has long made known its interests in restoring its rights to the character, but things are apparently complicated. Is Marvel preparing fans for Namor’s arrival with this controversial easter egg in The Avengers: Endgame? We’ll find out.
15. Captain Marvel’s Haircut
In the middle of the movie, Captain Marvel gets a haircut. She dons an edgy, pixie-cut hairstyle which is pointed out by Rocket. More than just a fashion statement, this haircut mirrors the character’s original look in the Marvel Comics.
16. Black Widow’s Past
Romanoff may be gone, but she’s definitely coming back in her prequel, Black Widow. Before her demise, she finds out her father’s name from Red Skull. This adds yet another missing jigsaw piece to the puzzle that is Romanoff’s past. If Marvel was hoping to whet our appetite for Black Widow’s debut movie coming up in 2020, they definitely succeeded.
17. Post-credits Tribute
Contrary to expectations, the finale of the Infinity Saga closes without a post-credits scene. But there’s something else-- the sound of Tony Stark forging his first armour back from when it all began, in Iron Man 1. It’s a solemn remembrance, and a tribute to the man who made the MCU possible.
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