When Avengers: Endgame revealed that it planned to use time travel to reverse Thanos’ snap, I figured that no matter how tightly the film was written that we were in for some plot holes. After all, stuff not making sense if you think about it logically is a cornerstone of pretty much every time travel movie, and Endgame proved to be no exception.
The plot hole that generated the most discussion revolved around Steve Rogers’ whereabouts as he lived his life with Peggy. Was he in the background of the MCU the entire time laying low, or was this another timeline? But another one, almost as fiercely debated, asked how 2014 Thanos managed to travel five years into the future to swipe the Infinity Stones and try to wipe out all life in the universe?
His arrival in the present certainly made for a bombastic finale, with the Mad Titan arriving with a bang alongside his Black Order, a fleet of battleships and an apparently endless army of Chitauri warriors. But how did he do it?
Well, courtesy the directors’ commentary for the digital release, we now have an answer. Anthony and Joe Russo explain that Thanos utilized the Pym Particles stolen by past Nebula from present Nebula and used them to time travel.
“There is a guy called Maw in his army, he was a great wizard. Thanos himself was a brilliant genius as well. Those two easily reverse engineered and mass produced Pym Particles.”
While it might have been nice for Avengers: Endgame to actually show us Maw doing this, I guess there’s a lot going on in the film already and running through this would have slowed the pace. Besides, it’d have spoiled the surprise of the climax. Now that the mystery is solved though, it’s nice to know that they did indeed have an explanation for what happened, even if we had to wait until the home release to hear about it.