The finale of Avengers: Infinity War had jaws hitting the floor all around the world last April. Prior to the film’s release, people had been debating which heroes would bite the big one, with most reckoning that at least one or two wouldn’t make it to the credits. But if you’d have told them that the casualty list would include Nick Fury, Doctor Strange, Star-Lord, Drax, Black Panther, the Winter Soldier and.. *gasp* Spider-Man, they’d have laughed in your face. But, approximately 20 seconds after leaving the theatre, many immediately assumed that these heroes would be back in Avengers: Endgame, if only because a lot of them had upcoming films in development.
Despite the existence of Spider-Man: Far From Home, which pretty much confirms that these dusted heroes will return, Marvel Studios have been pretty cagey about showing them in promotional materials. That makes their inclusion on the below magazine cover by Matt Taylor promoting Avengers: Endgame all the more interesting.
Aside from being a pretty neat piece of art, you’ll notice that the dusted heroes appear to be undergoing the process right here. In fact, if you were to examine it out of context you might assume it to be a piece of art promoting Infinity War – though the inclusion of Hawkeye puts paid to that rumor. My bet is that the artist doesn’t actually know that these heroes will return, but thinks it’s likely and is hedging his bets a little.
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But if they do indeed come back, how will they be resurrected? Well, the current thinking revolves around some combination of time travel and Doctor Strange’s enigmatic reveal that the heroes only have an infinitesimally small chance of triumphing. Perhaps they’ll engineer the past to prevent Thanos from ever achieving his aim in the first place, thus erasing the unhappy present and bringing all our favorite heroes back into a slightly rejigged MCU (possibly one with room for some new mutant friends).
Or maybe the Russos have something entirely different planned for us? In any case, we’ll find out on April 26, when Avengers: Endgame opens big.