What AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR Comic Book Parallels Could Mean for the MCU

Infinity War homages
Credit: Marvel Comics

This week’s new, second Avengers: Infinity War trailer brought some fresh new footage that has begun to paint a clearer picture of what the film has in store for some of its characters. Judging by some of the new scenes, if the story is going where it seems to be going, it may be bad news for a significant portion (about half, to be exact) of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

We're not hovering over our crystal balls here - some huge plot points in the trailer parallel big moments in both the original 1991 Infinity Gauntlet story and from 2013's Infinity. And according to the films's directors, there's nothing accidental about the comparison.

 “Certainly the Starlin book was our jumping off point," Anthony Russo told Marvel.com. "It’s a brilliant comic, and the ideas behind it are so large, it’s what pushed us to go for the scale that we’re going for on these movies.”
“Anth and I love the post-modern comics," added Joe Russo. "We’re also drawing from newer Infinity stuff, and we’re kind of combining it all into…how do we see elements from each helping the story that we want to tell.”

The new trailer is loaded with context clues pointing to which parts of the comic book saga of Thanos and the Infinity Stones they’ll draw on, and just about all of it spells curtains for some of Marvel’s most beloved characters. 

Read on, as we spell out the biggest comic book homages in the new Avengers: Infinity War trailer:

Credit: Marvel Comics

“With a snap of his fingers”

In the beginning of the new trailer, Gamora educates Tony Stark not just on the power of the Infinity Stones, but on Thanos’ dark will to use them.

“He only has one goal – to wipe out half the universe. If he gets the Infinity Stones, he can do it with a snap of his fingers.”

Ominously enough, that’s exactly what happened when Thanos assembled the Gems in the original 1991 Infinity Gauntlet. With Mephisto and Death looking on, Thanos simply snapped his fingers, and half of all life in the universe was snuffed out – to even Mephisto’s disbelief.

That doesn’t exactly bode well for the MCU.

Credit: Marvel Comics

Doctor Strange Vs. Ebony Maw

2013’s Infinity introduced the Black Order, Thanos’ team of henchmen who will appear in Avengers: Infinity War. Several members of the order appear in the new trailer – in particular the psionic manipulator Ebony Maw.

As in Infinity it looks as though Ebony Maw will square off with Doctor Strange – a confrontation that, in comic books, ended with Ebony Maw invading Strange’s mind.

Credit: Marvel Comics

The Invasion of Wakanda

It’s no secret that Wakanda plays a key role as the film’s final battleground between the Avengers and Thanos – a setpiece taken straight from the same 2013 Infinity comic book event series.

In that story, Thanos’ Black Order breach Wakanda’s borders only to be repelled by Black Panther and the forces of Wakanda.

But in comic books, Wakanda had already been destroyed the year prior in Avengers Vs. X-Men, when Namor created a tidal wave that decimated the country. There’s not much chance Namor will pop-up in Avengers: Infinity War - but there’s still a target on Wakanda’s back.

Marvel is promising Black Panther sequels and maybe spin-offs, and "Wakanda Forever" is now a big thing, but with all of MCU reality in play over the next year, who knows?

Credit: Marvel Comics

Captain America Vs. Thanos

One of the most iconic scenes in the original Infinity Gauntlet is a confrontation between Thanos and Captain America – one of the last heroes left alive to stand against him.

Cap gives a stirring speech, staring into the face of the man who killed half the universe, and refusing to yield.

”As long as one man stands against you Thanos, you’ll never be able to claim victory.”

But it’s not enough; immediately after that, Thanos handily dispatches Captain America, killing the last of the heroes to stand in his way – and immediately bringing himself back to full strength with the Infinity Gauntlet.

And the worst part is, he only used the Power Stone to do all that.

Given how closely the final moment of the Infinity War trailer mirrors this scene, maybe it's time to start saying our goodbyes to Steve Rogers?

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