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At the end of Avengers: Infinity War, my oldest daughter was in tears.
How could she not be? The heart-wrenching scene of Peter Parker disintegrating in Tony Stark's arms, saying, "Mr. Stark, I don't feel so good," was enough to cause most people to instantaneously break down on its own—let alone the disintegrations of so many of our favorite heroes. Certainly, there was quite a bit of humor, especially in the exchanges between Thor and his "rabbit" friend, Rocket Raccoon, but Infinity War is quite probably the darkest Marvel movie to date. It's pretty much a sure thing that Endgame will be of a similar tone, especially given audiences will be anticipating some key deaths in the movie, but all is not lost. Now that a number of trailers for Endgame have hit, promising that this will be the biggest superhero movie—if not the biggest movie, period—of all time, there is far more hope than any of us might have felt when Infinity War ended.
Let's be honest. Even though we know that this will probably be Captain America's final stand, if not Tony Stark's, there is a certain hopefulness that somewhere along the way, these two men will resolve the devastation that's been left in the wake of Thanos' devastating #Snap. We know that Ant-Man has somehow made it out of the Quantum Realm, even though we know that the Pym family was completely wiped out as a result of the Snap while Ant-Man was in the Quantum Realm. We also get to see Hawkeye—as Ronin—for the first time. Anyone who's seen Captain Marvel will also feel oddly delighted when Thor says, "I like this one," after Captain Marvel doesn't flinch when he summons Stormbreaker and it whizzes past her ear. It's a virtual certainty—or at least my hope—that Thor and Marvel's latest cinematic superhero will enjoy some screen time together that will no doubt be filled with dry one-liners.
We already know that Peter Parker and Black Panther will somehow make their returns. The sequels for both Spider-Man and Black Panther have been planned for some time, with Spider-Man: Far From Home set to bow in the summer of 2019, so that's pretty much a guarantee both Peter Parker and T'Challa will somehow be back in the flesh at some point.
While I am worried about the fate of Tony Stark and Captain America, I know that there seems to be some degree of hope for a reconciliation between them, so at least any bad blood will be essentially resolved. Given the longstanding complicated history between the two men, it will be nice to have them finally find some peace before the film comes to its climax.
This is sure to be a movie without parallel, at least until the next sweeping saga is created and takes cinematic audiences by storm. There are reasons why so many tickets have been sold; audiences love the characters that have been fleshed out on the big screen from comic book pages, and these audiences want to embrace them once again before moving on to the next phase of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Regardless of who comes back and how, I know that countless audiences will be literally on the edge of their seats, waiting to see how this latest phase of the #MCU come to a close before moving on to Phase 4. While there will be some heartache in watching these characters potentially fade into the background, the promise of further hope in Endgame than we saw in Infinity War has people excited for April 26.