Warning: SPOILERS For Avengers: Endgame!
Here are our biggest unanswered questions coming out of Avengers: Endgame. Joe and Anthony Russo's epic follow-up to Avengers: Infinity War concluded the Infinity Saga of Marvel Phases 1-3 and redefined the MCU going forward.
Avengers: Endgame was a truly monumental and emotional adventure for Earth's Mightiest Heroes. Five years after losing the Infinity War and Thanos destroying the Infinity Stones, the Avengers used the Quantum Realm to travel back to key points of past MCU films to retrieve the Stones so that they could bring back the billions who died from the Decimation. Meanwhile, the 2014/Guardians of the Galaxy-era version of Thanos learned what the Avengers were up to and that he achieves his ultimate victory in the future. The Mad Titan then set out to steal the Infinity Stones the Avengers collected for him and destroy the entire Earth in one fell swoop. Assembling to stop Thanos was just about every hero from the MCU, with Tony Stark making the ultimate sacrifice to save the world.
Avengers: Endgame provided fitting closure for the first three Phases of the MCU, as well as poignant endings for Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, and the other founding members of the Avengers. In honor of this being the 22nd MCU film, here are the 22 biggest questions we have about what occurred in Avengers: Endgame and what comes next for the future of the MCU.
6 Questions About Captain America's Time Travel Ending
Captain America had to time travel to return the Infinity Stones to their exact locations at the end of Avengers: Endgame, but this journey is a total mystery that could fill a movie all its own. Considering the trouble it took for the Avengers just to get the Stones - in Black Widow's case, it cost her life to obtain the Soul Stone - Cap returning the ingots must have been fraught with danger - and opens up some big unanswered questions.
22. What Did Cap Do With Mjolnir?
Cap took Thor's hammer with him back in time. Presumably, he returned it to Asgard in 2013 along with the Aether, but where in Asgard did he return it to? Even Thor didn't know where the hammer was when he summoned it (and it took a while to arrive in his hand).
21. How Did Cap Return The Aether?
Another question is how Cap actually returned the Aether. As Thor made clear, it's not technically a stone, it's a sludge-like entity that Rocket pulled out of an unsuspecting Jane Foster's body (and we were never shown how Rocket accomplished this). Did Cap somehow re-inject the Aether into Jane?
20. What Happened When Cap Tried To Return The Soul Stone And Saw Red Skull?
To return the Soul Stone, Cap would likely have to encounter the Red Skull, which would be the first time they have seen each other since 1945. Clint Barton vaguely referenced the Red Skull when the Avengers mourned Natasha's death but it's not clear if Steve realized Clint was talking about his arch enemy. So how did Cap return the Soul Stone and did he try to do anything to bring Nat back?
19. Where Did Cap Get The Shield He Gave To Falcon?
Old Man Steve passes the Captain America mantle to Sam Wilson but where did the shield come from when we saw it smashed by Thanos? It could be a totally new shield, perhaps from the alternate timeline, but that still means there's a Captain America walking around without it.
18. Did Steve Rogers Really Never Go Into Action As Captain America Again?
It's not entirely clear whether Old Man Cap came from an alternate timeline or from the past of the main MCU timeline, but it's inferred that Steve and Peggy lived happily together. But did Steve really never feel the need to go back into action? After all, Peggy was one of the heads of S.H.I.E.L.D. - who Cap knew were infiltrated by Hydra - so it's hard to imagine Steve didn't get involved in MCU events, even clandestinely.
17. Does Sharon Carter Ever Find Out That Steve Went Back To Be With Peggy?
It was never confirmed either way if Sharon Carter was a victim of Thanos' snap, but regardless, Sharon and Steve were on the cusp of a relationship in Captain America: Civil War. Then Steve became a fugitive for two years before the events of Avengers: Infinity War. Did he ever contact Sharon and does she ever become aware Steve went back in time to be with her Aunt Peggy?
16. So Half The Universe Returned To Life Five Years Later But At The Same Ages They Were When They Died?
Hulk's Infinity Gauntlet snap restored the half of all life in the universe Thanos killed in Avengers: Infinity War but they all return to existence in a world five years after they died. This wasn't dealt with explicitly in Avengers: Endgame but it's one of the most intriguing aspects of the MCU going forward: half of all life in the universe is now five years older than the other half. The five-year gap would likely wreak havoc with families, schools, businesses, politics, and every aspect of life.
Avengers: Endgame skirted this issue in its epilogue. The closest it came to dealing with this new reality is Peter Parker's reunion with Ned Leeds at the Midtown School of Science and Technology, which seems to set up Spider-Man: Far From Home. As it's a sequel, that means Peter and his entire group of friends were snapped out of existence and restored by the Hulk.
15. Did The Avengers Ever Find Out They Were Named After Captain Marvel's Callsign?
Captain Marvel revealed that Nick Fury's original name of his proposed group of remarkable people to fight the battles he never could was "The Protectors", but that the superspy changed it to "The Avengers" after he learned Carol Danvers' USAF callsign was "Avenger". Despite working with the Avengers during the five-year time jump, there's no scene in Endgame where Carol learns that the superhero team protecting Earth was named after her. Was she honored? And how did the heroes who'd emerged since her departure take it?
14. Will Thor Ever Get Back Into Shape?
Thor drank gallons of beer for five years and was out of shape in Avengers: Endgame. Many fans expected Thor to magically be transformed back into his muscular self when he called down his lightning before fighting Thanos but that didn't happen. In the end, Thor jetted off into space with the Guardians of the Galaxy but he's still in slovenly shape. Will Thor ever get back to his old fighting trim?
Thor forming the "Asgardians of the Galaxy" did have a hint of irony: in Avengers: Infinity War, the Guardians made fun of Star-Lord for seemingly gaining weight before they met Thor, the "pirate angel" who impressed Drax so much. But now it's Thor who is out of shape as he takes his place aboard the Benatar.
13. Where Did Loki Go With The Tesseract?
A huge wrinkle in the MCU timeline in Avengers: Endgame was created when Loki escaped 2012 New York with the Tesseract. Loki was killed by Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War, who then promised "no resurrections", so it seems like that version of Loki is indeed dead. However, the 2012 Loki remains a scheming villain who never posed as Odin to rule Asgard and never settled his issues with Thor, and there's no indication where the God of Mischief disappeared to. These questions will likely be answered in Loki's upcoming Disney+ series, but Loki loose with the Space Stone is definitely a dangerous proposition.
12. How Did Captain Marvel Know That Thanos Was Attacking Earth?
Captain Marvel arrived at Avengers: Endgame's final battle like a one-woman cavalry and took out Thanos' spaceship before she went one-on-one with the Mad Titan. But how did Carol Danvers even know Thanos was attacking Earth? The resurrected superheroes, the army of Wakanda, and their assorted allies all arrived on the battlefield thanks to Doctor Strange, Wong, and the Sorcerers' magical portals, but Captain Marvel arrived by herself. It wasn't clear that Wong even met Carol Danvers and Doctor Strange definitely didn't.
11. Were The Sokovia Accords Ever Rescinded?
The Sokovia Accords have not been officially dealt with in the MCU. The superhero legislation was an inciting incident for Marvel Phase 3 and was the cause of the Avengers' Civil War. Were the Accords rescinded during the five-year span when the world's governments were in shambles? After all, Steve Rogers was leading support groups and moving around in public so it seems like the Avengers were no longer fugitives. But what about now that everyone is alive again? It was never clear whether Secretary Ross was killed by Thanos' snap and, while he was present at Tony Stark's funeral, that doesn't necessarily do away with his legislation.
10. What Happened To 2014 Gamora?
The fate of 2014 Gamora, who turned against Thanos and joined with 2023 Nebula to kill the 2014 version of Nebula, is also not clear. The last time Gamora was seen was in the A-Force female Avengers team up sequence; in the aftermath of Tony Stark's Infinity Gauntlet snap, Gamora disappeared. It's possible that she was among the aliens dusted along with Thanos, but that doesn't quite synch with the set up for Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 with Star-Lord searching for Gamora. But if Gamora is alive, how did she escape Earth? All of Thanos' spaceships were dusted by Tony's snap and the Guardians took back the Benatar. If Nebula knows the answers, she isn't sharing them.
9. Why Was 2012 Hulk Acting Like Thor: Ragnarok Hulk?
The Hulk was acting strangely in the aftermath of Loki's defeat in The Avengers. The Green Goliath loudly complained when the rest of the Avengers banned him from the elevator and forced him to take the stairs, but why would Hulk be talking and acting as he did in Thor: Ragnarok? In the third Thor film, Hulk's intelligence had grown to become more like a toddler's after remaining as Hulk for two years on Sakaar. But he shouldn't even be that smart in 2012; he was a raging savage who stalked and tried to murder Black Widow on the S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier earlier in that film. And in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Hulk was still a mindless brute who didn't talk and had to be calmed into becoming Banner again by a lullaby. The portrayal of 2012 Hulk in Avengers: Endgame doesn't really make sense.
8. How Did Thanos' Spaceship Have Enough Pym Particles To Time Travel To The Future?
After 2014 Nebula tortured her future self, she removed and swapped the red plates on her head to switch places and return to 2023 with the rest of the Avengers. Prior to that, she knelt before Thanos and offered him the vial of Pym Particles she took from future Nebula. But how did Thanos use those Pym Particles? A big deal was made that the Avengers only had enough Particles for one round trip and 2014 Nebula arrived in the future with the Avengers so she used hers. So how did Thanos then have enough to shrink his entire spaceship to make the trip via the Quantum Realm through the Avengers' time portal into 2023? Perhaps he developed his own from the tech, but that's not stated.
7. How Many (If Any) Alternate Timelines Were Made In Avengers: Endgame?
Avengers: Endgame's use of time travel is a little unclear, with it suggested that the heroes can and can't change the past at different points. It's implied by the ending that Steve Rogers returned the Infinity Stones to their rightful place and so everything was consistent (meaning he always lived in the past), although that still leaves some events unexplained. As the Infinity Stones are important for this (per the Ancient One), Loki taking the Tesseract likely changed things. And, obviously, there's Thanos, who comes from 2014 and is killed in the future, while Nebula kills her past self without impact; this would suggest that an alternate timeline, although his disappearance care of Tony may have reverted everything back to normal.
6. Where Did Valkyrie's Winged Horse Come From?
Valkyrie joining the final battle astride her pegasus was a cool visual that harkened back to her glory days on Asgard - and the Thor: Ragnarok flashback when the Valkyries were defeated by Hela. But where did Valkyrie's winged horse even come from? After all, when the Asgardians evacuated Asgard in Thor: Ragnarok, they didn't take any horses with them and only people boarded the ship Korg stole. Then Thanos wiped out half of the Asgardians when he took the Space Stone. There were also none sighted on New Asgard in Avengers: Endgame, so it's unknown how Valkyrie suddenly had a winged steed to ride into battle.
5. Why Was Harley At Iron Man's Funeral?
Tony Stark's lakeside funeral was well-attended by his fellow Avengers and his family but one character who was standing alone behind Scarlet Witch, Falcon, and Bucky wasn't immediately recognizable and confused many fans. This lone mourner was Harley, the boy from Tennessee Tony befriended in Iron Man 3. Actor Ty Simpkins returned to portray Harley but the character is now ten years older than he was in Iron Man 3 so it's understandable fans didn't register who he was. In-universe, though, the question of why he - and no other person Tony interacted with over the past decade-and-a-half - turned up is a bit confusing.
4. Where Was Katherine Langford's Rumored Character?
In October 2018, 13 Reasons Why actor Katherine Langford was reported to have been cast in Avengers: Endgame, so many were confused when she was nowhere to be found in the movie. It was never announced who Langford was supposed to play - speculation pegged her to likely portray the grown version of Tony's daughter Morgan Stark or possibly Kate Bishop, the future second Hawkeye (who is now expected to headline the announced Hawkeye Disney+ series). However, Langford was definitely MIA in Avengers: Endgame and Marvel haven't given fans even one reason why.
3. How Will Doctor Strange Defend Earth Without The Time Stone?
As the Ancient One warned the Hulk in 2012, the destruction of the Time Stone leaves the Masters of the Mystic Arts without their greatest weapon, the Eye of Agamotto, and vulnerable to be overrun by magical threats. The Ancient One ultimately trusted Doctor Strange's decision to surrender the Time Stone to Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War and the removal of the Infinity Stones seems to be part of Doctor Strange's one possible future where the Avengers win in the end. However, what happens next to the realm of magic is unknown (there's still the threat of Baron Mordo teased in Doctor Strange) and this will likely be the focal point of Doctor Strange 2.
2. Did Bucky Know What Steve Rogers Was Doing?
Bucky's behavior at the end of Avengers: Endgame is curious; he yielded the final moment to Sam Wilson, who spoke to Old Man Cap and received his shield. Bucky even urged Falcon to have that final conversation with Steve. It wasn't spelled out but it seems like at some point before his time travel, Steve let Bucky in on his intention to pass the Captain America shield (and presumably, the mantle) to Sam and not him. Whether Bucky objected at all is also open to speculation, but in the end, the former Winter Soldier looked on approvingly as Sam accepted the shield. There's sure to be no major hard feelings as the pair's adventures will be shown in the Falcon and The Winter Soldier series on Disney+.
1. Is There Still An Avengers Team At The End of Endgame?
One of the biggest questions coming out of Avengers: Endgame is whether the Avengers team still exists. With Iron Man and Black Widow dead, Captain America an old man, Thor off in space, Hawkeye retired, and Hulk's right arm severely injured, the Original Six are out of commission. Scarlet Witch, Falcon, War Machine, and Spider-Man are the last "official" Avengers standing - though it seems like Captain Marvel became part of the team during the five year gap - but the team's compound was completely destroyed. What happens next for Earth's Mightiest Heroes and how does the superhero team continue?