2019 was quite a year for two of Disney's -- and pop culture, in general -- biggest franchises: the Avengers and Toy Story. Avengers: Endgame from the Russo Brothers wrapped the first three phases of the Marvel Cinematic Universe while Toy Story 4 brought an end to the decades-old beloved children's property.
However, courtesy of Reddit user VicenteG24, it appears both curtain-calls pretty much had the same ending, which involved the end of an era for the main hero and a passing of the baton to safeguard the future.
AN ICONIC FRIENDSHIP ENDS
Endgame concluded in April and from the post, we can see a shot-by-shot sequence juxtaposing Chris Evans' Steve Rogers finale to that of Sheriff Woody's (Tom Hanks). Sebastian Stan's Bucky Barnes is hugging Cap, clearly feeling emotional about this being the last time he'll see his bestie who he knows won't return from the time-travel mission to put back the Infinity Stones. Toy Story 4 has a similar shot of Buzz Lightyear (Tim Allen) hugging Woody who's going off to be with Bonnie, the love of his life.
Buzz was actually the one who convinced Woody to leave the rest of the toys behind as they were in good hands, especially after the Sheriff inspired in them a sense of family, unity and love. It's very similar to Cap doing the same for Earth's Mightiest Heroes in the MCU, stitching together a common bond of heroism between everyone despite their differences. While Bucky may not have egged Cap on to stay in the past like Buzz did his partner, he did know what Steve was going to do, and Bucky supported it fully, knowing it was a well-earned retirement.
From the various shots of Cap and Woody hugging their colleagues, it's obvious they knew a new road was ahead but still, it was tough to leave the past behind. This makes them human, after all, and to top it off, Bucky knew Cap was going to stay in the past with Peggy Carter. He fought enough wars and he wants to be with the love of his life, which is the path Woody walks a few months later with Bonnie.
PASSING THE MANTLE ON
The fourth Avengers film picks up on the retirement theme when Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) realizes Cap hasn't come returned to the present following his mission to return the Infinity Stones to their respective places in time. It's at this point, Bucky points to a bench where Old Man Steve can be seen sitting. There, Steve hands off the shield and Captain America moniker to Falcon, admitting it was time for Sam to become the symbol of freedom and the Sentinel of Liberty the world needs. It was a very emotional moment and well-earned, as Sam almost sacrificed his life on numerous occasions to save Steve and fight for truth, justice and the American way.
There's also a handing off of the baton in Toy Story 4 when Woody passed over the Sheriff's badge to Jessie (Joan Cusack) before she departed on new adventures with Bonnie. He knew the badge would be in safe hands with Jessie who always showed a readiness to succeed him as the primary watchdog of the group. She was seen to be an amazing guardian of the toys in the franchise and the fourth chapter proved to be no different against Gabby Gabby and her minions.
It's all about trust because just like how Cap knew Sam was a shoo-in for the position, Woody didn't think twice. Jessie embodied everything Woody represented in his younger days and without a doubt, she was the best choice to carry on the role. So with both heroes heading off on a new chapter of true love, they left their most valued possessions -- their icons of hope -- with people they knew would do right by everyone in order to continue building a better tomorrow.
Directed by Joe and Anthony Russo, Avengers: Endgame stars Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, Paul Rudd as Ant-Man, Don Cheadle as War Machine, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Danai Gurira as Okoye, and Bradley Cooper as Rocket, with Gwyneth Paltrow as Pepper Potts, Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, Benedict Wong as Wong, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, and Josh Brolin as Thanos. The film is now available on Digital HD, Blu-ray and 4K UHD.