Avengers: Infinity War is getting closer than ever. We just got our first major look at what's to come with its first (amazing) trailer, and it looks incredible. Not much of the plot can be discerned from the brief glimpses we got in the trailer, but that hasn't stopped it from adding fuel to the fan theories surrounding the movie. We've been getting interesting little tidbits from Kevin Feige and various members of the cast for months on end, but nothing to0 definitive except that some of our longtime heroes WILL die, some new heroes WILL be introduced, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it will change forever.
We have also recently learned that Marvel Studios has plans for at least 20 more films after Avengers Part Four, so we can be sure that the next few Avengers films have a few cards up their sleeves ready to play. Marvel fans have been listening closely to every new tidbit that releases on Avengers: Infinity War, and they've been piecing together a few puzzles that reveal some extremely exciting twists for the next installment of the Avengers franchise. Here are 15 incredible Infinity War fan theories (that might actually be true!)
*Sam Wilson: Captain America fan art in header image by @marcohtx
15 THANOS WILL RIP THE MIND STONE OUT OF VISION'S HEAD
We learned for certain in Captain America: Civil War that one of the powerful Infinity Stones sought after by Thanos was embedded in Vision's forehead. His very existence is dependent upon the mind stone, so its removal would spell certain death for Vision. Since we can almost guarantee that Thanos is going to acquire all the Infinity Stones at some point, that means bad news for Vision.
Fans have been speculating that Thanos ripping the Mind Stone out of Vision's head will be the crux of Avengers: Infinity War that will push the Avengers from a state of resolve to a state of hopelessness when their most powerful and invulnerable ally is destroyed in front of their eyes with a casual amount of effort from Thanos.
14 CAPTAIN AMERICA WILL BE KILLED OFF FOR GOOD
One thing Marvel has been very clear about regarding Infinity War is that it will mark the definitive end for some major characters in the MCU, and the name that everyone's placing their bets on is Captain America. There was a lot of talk earlier this year about Chris Evans' contract with Marvel coming to an end, and it looks like there's been no talk of renewal past Avengers Part Four.
Remember that in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Tony saw Steve lying dead next to his shattered shield in the nightmare vision from Scarlet Witch, but maybe more importantly, Thanos killed Captain America in the source material in 1991's Infinity Gauntlet #4. The Infinity Stones were ultimately used to resurrect him, but MCU Cap might not be so lucky.
13 A NEW CAPTAIN AMERICA WILL RISE
Steve Rogers might be sacrificing himself for the world by standing up to Thanos, but that doesn't mean that Captain America is gone for good. In the comics, Steve Rogers has died plenty of times, but Captain America is an ideal, a symbol to the world greater than the man himself, and the mantle of Captain America is always taken up by someone willing to represent what Steve Rogers fought for.
In the past, both Bucky Rogers and Sam Wilson have stepped up as the new Captain America and it's likely that one of them will do the same in the MCU. Sebastian Stan, who plays Bucky, even released a picture of himself on Instagram with a very Captain America-esque shield on his back and the caption: "Will come in handy..."
12 STEVE WILL BE SENT BACK IN TIME TO REUNITE WITH PEGGY
It would be pretty cruel to the audience (and Steve) to just kill him off after all the tragedy and pain he's gone through since The First Avenger. Not only is nearly everyone Steve ever knew and loved long dead, but he was even forced to leave behind Peggy Carter, the love of his life, when he was frozen in 1945. He later had to watch her suffer from dementia before attending her funeral.
One fan theory suggests that Infinity War will sidestep the super depressing ending and, rather than kill Steve, Thanos will use the Time Stone to send him back to his own time in the 1940s, where he'll finally be able to have that dance with Peggy. This would explain Steve's vision in Age of Ultron, where Peggy asks if he's ready for their dance in a 1940s ballroom, when everyone else had visions of the future.
11 THANOS WILL KILL HEIMDALL FOR THE SOUL STONE
Five of the six Infinity Stones have been accounted for in the MCU, and some fans believe that the final Stone is what gives Heimdall his unique ability. According to Loki in Thor, Heimdall is the only being in Asgard who can instantly find someone anywhere in the nine realms. In Thor: The Dark World, Heimdall tells Thor that he "can see into nine realms and over ten trillion souls." To top it off, in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Thor has a vision that Heimdall has been blinded before he says, "We are all dead."
Chances are that Thanos will take Heimdall's eyes for the Soul Stone, after taking the Reality Stone from the Collector, the Power Stone from the Nova Corps, and the Time Stone from Kamar-Taj, but before taking the Space Stone from Loki, and the Mind Stone from Vision.
10 THE INFINITY STONES WILL BRING DEAD VILLAINS BACK TO LIFE
It has been said that some of Marvel's best comic book villains have been woefully underdeveloped and under-utilized in the MCU before being killed off in a single film. Just look at Baron Wolfgang Von Strucker, one of the Avengers' most deadly enemies, who gets about a minute of screen time in Avengers: Age of Ultron before he's unceremoniously killed off.
Infinity War gives Marvel the chance to retroactively correct those mistakes by having Thanos use the Infinity Gauntlet to bring back all of the Avengers' most deadly enemies to fight for him. Not only would it give some great characters a second chance to shine, but imagine the epic battle that would ensue if the Avengers have to take on Red Skull, Malekith the Accursed, Ronan the Accuser, maybe even Ultron, all fighting alongside Thanos.
9 SPIDER-MAN WILL GET HIS BLACK SUIT
Spider-Man and all his associated characters have partially shared rights between Marvel Studios and Sony Pictures, but it's unclear what exactly that entails. Although Spider-Man has become a big hit in the MCU, Sony Pictures is still moving forward with their own Spidey-less Spidey Cinematic Universe, and the question of how connected the two universes will be (if at all) is still kind of a gray area.
It could be a telling sign that Sony is kicking things off with Venom in 2018 just after Infinity War could take Spider-Man into space where he might find an alien symbiote. Some fans think Marvel's last favor to Sony will be for Peter Parker to find and lose the symbiote in Infinity War, only for it to find its way to Eddie Brock later that year.
8 EVERYONE DIES! (BUT THE TIME STONE BRINGS THEM BACK)
In Avengers: Age of Ultron, Scarlet Witch gives Tony a nightmarish vision where he sees all his fellow Avengers lying dead as the Earth is invaded. You might think this is just a manifestation of his own fears rather than something that could ever really come to pass in the MCU, but that's exactly what happened in the original Infinity Gauntlet storyline when all of the Earth's greatest heroes died horrific deaths at the all-powerful hands of Thanos.
It would be the most insane way of all time to end a superhero film, but Doctor Strange has already shown us that the Time Stone can reverse death itself. If Marvel really wanted to hit the audience hard, it would kill nearly everyone at the end of Infinity War, before someone used the Time Stone to bring them back in Avengers Part 4.
7 OVER 60 MARVEL CHARACTERS WILL APPEAR IN THE FILM
We've known for a long time that Avengers: Infinity War would bring together every living superhero we've seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far. There will have been 18 films since Iron Man by the time we get to Avengers: Infinity War, so we've racked up a huge number of characters to fit into a single film.
While most of those characters won't get a lot of screen time compared to the major players, Scarlett Johanssen let slip during an interview on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert that "at one point 61 or 62 Marvel characters" in the film, and "in one particular scene, there's like 32 of us. There's a lot." We've been introduced to a lot of heroes, but if there are really "61 or 62," then we can count on some new and unexpected faces to pop up.
6 CAPTAIN AMERICA LIFTS MJOLNIR
Remember in Avengers: Age of Ultron when everyone is trying to lift Thor's hammer and Steve just slightly budges it before letting go? That contest had nothing to do with Steve's super-soldier strength. Mjolnir can only be lifted by one who is worthy. Captain America is about as "pure of heart" as a human being can get, so it budged, but only just.
Some fans are suggesting that this was just a preview of what's to come in Avengers: Infinity War. When the Avengers face their darkest hour in the battle against Thanos, Steve Rogers will stand up against him knowing that he could never overpower the Mad Titan. In that moment, Steve will truly become worthy and wield Mjolnir against Thanos. After it was destroyed in Thor: Ragnarok, it could even materialize to Steve in the moment when he needs it most.
5 CAPTAIN MARVEL WILL UNITE THE GUARDIANS WITH THE AVENGERS
Captain Marvel is set to release between Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers Part Four, but no one is exactly sure what her role is going to be in the battle against Thanos. In the comics, Carol Danvers is the director of S.W.O.R.D., an organization whose aim is to protect the world from alien threats. We saw that Thor will meet the Guardians of the Galaxy in the Infinity War trailer, but it still seems unlikely that Thor would recruit them in the battle for Earth since they come off more like a band of misfits than warriors for the galaxy.
Captain Marvel, on the other hand, will already have files on the Guardians and their exploits, as well as Gamora and Nebula's relationship with Thanos, which makes them valuable assets. She'll recruit the Guardians and use Thor's connection with the Avengers to bring them all together and unite against Thanos.
4 LOKI WILL SACRIFICE HIMSELF FOR THOR
Loki, by far, has been the most well-developed villain in the MCU, and he's also one of the most likable. Though he's constantly putting innocent people in danger, it's hard to even call him a villain, because he always seems like he's just on the verge of doing the right thing and redeeming himself, even if he is holding the Cosmic Cube in the trailer.
One theory on Loki's role in Infinity War suggests that he might just finally complete his transition from villain to anti-hero to real hero by sacrificing his life to save Thor in one final selfless act of redemption. Thor: Ragnarok saw Loki coming closer than ever to finally accepting Thor as a brother and trying to start things fresh between them, and Infinity War could see the culmination of this character arc, with his death.
3 HULK WILL BE KILLED OFF FOR GOOD
Thor: Ragnarok was the closest thing we've gotten to an Incredible Hulk sequel, and some fans are saying that it's as close as we'll ever come. The Hulk has been a tricky character for Marvel Studios since the beginning thanks to Universal Pictures owning distribution rights over the character. It's why we never got a proper sequel, and it could be why Marvel is thinking about killing the character off for good.
Mark Ruffalo has stated that he doesn't see another solo Hulk adventure in the cards for him, and frankly, there's not much left they could do with the character. Thor: Ragnarok doubled as a Planet Hulk adaptation, the character's most beloved storyline, and now that he's headed back to Earth, it makes sense that his final battle will be against Thanos.
2 NOVA WILL MAKE HIS DEBUT
One hero that Marvel fans have been demanding en masse to see on the big screen is Richard Ryder, aka Nova, and given what we know about Avengers: Infinity War, the long wait may finally be over. Thanos will almost surely have to destroy the Nova Corps to take the Power Stone, leaving Richard Ryder as the sole survivor who returns to his home planet of Earth to warn Doctor Strange and the Avengers about the coming of the Mad Titan.
In the Infinity Gauntlet comic book arc, which looks like it's going to be the main source material for the film, it's actually Silver Surfer who comes to warn Doctor Strange, but since the Surfer's rights are still with 21st Century Fox, Nova would be the most logical replacement. With the rest of the Corps destroyed, Nova will take it upon himself to keep the universe safe.
1 THE SKRULL SECRET INVASION WILL BE REVEALED
There has been a longtime fan theory in the MCU that right under our noses, many of Earth's heroes have been replaced by shape-shifting aliens known as Skrulls, following the Secret Invasion comic book arc by writer Brian Michael Bendis and penciler Leinil Francis Yu. More fuel was added to that fire when it was confirmed that the Skrulls would be the main antagonists of Captain Marvel, which will take place in the '90s.
If the Skrull secret invasion is revealed in Infinity War, it makes sense for Captain Marvel to flashback to the '90s to show how it started. We also know that the title of Avengers Part Four is a spoiler for Infinity War, which doesn't leave a lot of possibilities, but Avengers: Secret Invasion would definitely be a pretty massive spoiler.
What are you looking most forward to in Infinity War? Let us know in the comments!