Warning: This post contains MAJOR SPOILERS for Avengers: Infinity War!
The screenwriters of Avengers: Infinity War have no regrets over the death of a certain beloved hero during the finale. Avengers: Infinity War marks the conclusion of the first decade of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so there was no way the studio wasn't going to make it a major event. It unites an incredible number of heroes in an epic battle against Thanos, who is on a quest to collect all six Infinity Stones that will grant him the power to wipe out half the universe.
Given those stakes, it would have seemed like a huge cop-out if a few major heroes hadn't met their demise, but the third Avengers film doubles down on those expectations by having Thanos actually succeed in his genocidal goal during Infinity War's ending. He assembles all the Infinity Stones and – just like the comic that inspired the movie – snaps his fingers, killing half the universe instantly. This results in the deaths of several Avengers as well, who collapse into ash. This includes several characters who have their own solo Marvel franchises, such as Black Panther.
Black Panther was a massive critical and commercial hit earlier in 2018, with audiences quickly falling in love with T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman) and the world of Wakanda. So, for him to be one of the first to crumble to ash was quite shocking. Now, Avengers: Infinity War co-writer Stephen McFeely revealed to Buzzfeed that neither he nor writer partner Christopher Markus have any regrets over the decision – even if it was painful for viewers:
"First of all, we would do it all over again. But remember, when we’re writing [Infinity War], and even shooting, there is no Black Panther movie. We don’t know it’s going to be so good, so effective, so resonant. And we had to treat all these characters the same. People who leave us [in Infinity War] are the leads of their own franchises. And Black Panther’s no different.
"We wanted that thing that happens at the end of that movie to have as much impact as possible. If you're very carefully getting rid of your supporting cast, then it does seem like you’re pulling your punch."
McFeely makes a strong point since Marvel have been accused – somewhat fairly – of being reluctant to kill off major characters. In the past, characters like Agent Phil Coulson and Nick Fury either died or apparently died in their movies, only to be resurrected soon thereafter. For Avengers; Infinity War to truly leave an impact, some major players had to go. The outpouring of love that greeted Black Panther only made T'Challa's death all the more emotional during the finale.
That said, a Black Panther sequel is certainly on the way, as have sequels featuring other deceased Infinity War heroes, so the untitled Avengers 4 film will likely have its fair share of resurrections. That said, it was still a gutsy move to end Avengers: Infinity War on such a solemn note, and if Marvel had pulled its punches on showing the consequences of Thanos snapping his fingers, it would have been more of a disappointment to fans.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 05, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Ant-Man & The Wasp (2018) release date: Jul 06, 2018
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019