Why "Divide And Conquer" Would Make Sense For The MCU
For all the excitement there may be over the title of Avengers 4, it's important to remember that it's really only a placeholder. In fact, Kevin Feige himself has suggested this secretive tactic has backfired, drawing too much attention to the title. "It's gotten entirely out of hand," he observed, "and now will have no chance of living up to any expectations of what it's gonna be." So the title isn't going to be as deep and meaningful as many fans are expecting; it's not going to be a massive commentary on the overarching direction of the Avengers franchise.
That said, Divide and Conquer does meet a lot of the most important criteria. It would indeed serve as a spoiler for Avengers: Infinity War; attentive Marvel fans would have noted how it fits with the narrative structure of the first Avengers film. They could easily have deduced that Thanos would win, a plot twist that Marvel went to desperate lengths to keep secret in the buildup to Avengers: Infinity War. Meanwhile, Joe Russo has said that the film title wasn't spoken in its direct predecessor, ruling out Endgame and No Time At All. But he was answering a very specific question, and many fans have assumed that means the title could have been spoken in another Avengers movie.
Meanwhile, it's interesting to note that Avengers: Infinity War ended with Thanos settling down on his homeworld of Titan, staring into the horizon and contemplating what he has done with his life. That's exactly where Starlin's Infinity War comic began, a detail that perhaps suggests a slightly deeper narrative link between the films and these particular comics. It's doubtful the Infinity War comic will go any further when it comes to providing inspiration for Avengers 4, though; it was a heady, complex plot that involves a lot of characters and concepts Marvel don't (currently) own the film rights to.
This is certainly a fascinating new theory, and frankly there is more evidence supporting it than for a lot of the rumored Avengers 4 titles. At the same time, though, it's still a long-shot. The most important point against it is that this title only works if there's a tremendously close relationship between Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers 4 - to the extent that they should essentially be treated as Parts I and II. There's currently no evidence supporting that kind of close narrative tie. In fact, if rumors of a five-year time-jump at the beginning of Avengers 4 are correct, they'll be entirely different stories. "They’re clearly connected," writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely have confirmed, "but they are definitely two different movies."
Whatever the truth of the Avengers 4 title may be, it can't be long before it goes public. Kevin Feige has promised that the trailer will drop before the end of the year; the title will probably be revealed shortly before that. Avengers: Divide and Conquer is another exciting possibility to add to the long list of prospective titles, but soon we'll be able to say for certain what the movie is really called.
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019