How exactly did Captain Marvel know where to go to save Tony Stark and Nebula at the beginning of Avengers: Endgame? At the very end of Avengers: Infinity War, Thanos snapped his fingers and wiped out half of all life across the universe. While that meant seeing characters like Black Panther and Spider-Man turn to dust, it also left the rest of the heroes reeling from the loss. But, no characters were in worse position than Iron Man and Nebula.
The two were part of the fight against Thanos at the end of Avengers: Infinity War and the snap left them as the only two survivors on Titan. They did have a ride home thanks to the Benatar, but with limited resources and manpower, the early trailers for Avengers: Endgame showed that they were adrift in space. Food and water was already gone and oxygen would run out in the morning. But, the trailers also showed that they did make it safely back to Earth, leaving fans to wonder how this would come to pass.
It had long been theorized that Captain Marvel would be the one to save the unlikely duo at the beginning of Avengers: Endgame, and sure enough, that is exactly what happened. She arrived at the perfect moment too, as Tony was on his last legs. As great of a moment as it was to see Carol Danvers - the possible new face of the Marvel Cinematic Universe - save them, how she actually found them could be a bit puzzling.
At the end of Captain Marvel, the mid-credits scene establishes that Carol comes back to Earth shortly after the snap, while Avengers: Endgame picks up roughly three weeks after the event. During this time, Carol has been working with the Avengers in some capacity, and as the only one truly capable of space travel, she is the obvious choice to go and rescue Tony and Nebula. Avengers: Endgame doesn't explicitly lay out how she knew where to find them, but there are a few possible explanations.
Captain Marvel most likely knew where to go thanks to the recordings that Tony was trying to send to Pepper Potts back on Earth. He is not sure if Pepper is getting them, but it appears that she was and alerted the Avengers that Tony was still alive. The messages themselves may even include the location of the origin, giving Captain Marvel exact coordinates to find Tony and Nebula. Additionally, Pepper is already at Avengers HQ when Captain Marvel returns with Tony, so she likely just stayed at the facility after telling the Avengers, as Carol's light speed abilities could make this a relatively short wait.
Messages across the universe with GPS tracking may sound far-fetched, and they are to some extent, so there is an additional explanation that could be true. It would still require Pepper to know that Tony and Nebula are still alive and share this information with the Avengers, but figuring out where they are could actually be thanks to Rocket. He would know that the Benatar was the ship the Guardians of the Galaxy took to Titan, making it the likely escape vehicle for Tony and Nebula. Considering his technological expertise, he could have a way of tracking the location of his ship and give it to Captain Marvel so she can rescue them.
Captain Marvel only knew to look for Iron Man and Nebula - and likely where to go - thanks to her being on Earth and with the Avengers. Even though it is not confirmed how she knew exactly where to look, tracing the messages or tracking the Benatar are two of the most likely explanations of what lead up to Avengers: Endgame's opening. Maybe the Russo brothers will confirm exactly what happened at some point in the future though.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019