Warning! MAJOR SPOILERS for Avengers: Infinity War ahead
Avengers: Infinity War kills a lot of characters - but how many of them do we expect to actually stay dead? This is a comic book movie, after all, and comic books are notorious for being a place where almost no one stays dead forever.
At the very end of the film, after Thanos has managed to collect each of the Infinity Stones and place them in his gauntlet, he uses the power of the stones to kill half the population of the universe. It's a genocide on an immense scale and not even the Avengers are spared. One by one, several characters begin to crumble and turn to dust before their teammates' very eyes, leaving just a handful of heroes still alive.
These deaths are by far the most dramatic seeing that they happen all at once and rather suddenly in the film's final minutes, leaving audiences dumbstruck by what they've just witnessed. But they are also not the only characters who die in Infinity War. Some characters are killed off before Thanos even uses the Infinity Gauntlet, and it's those deaths that might just really stick.
Who Could Come Back?
When Thanos snaps his fingers and sets in motion his plan to kill half of the universe, several of the Avengers and their allies die: Bucky Barnes, Black Panther, Groot, Scarlet Witch, Falcon, Mantis, Drax, Star-Lord, Doctor Strange, Spider-Man, Maria Hill, and Nick Fury. The death toll is incredibly high, but given the nature of these deaths, there's a very good chance that some of these characters may yet return.
There is still a lot we don't know about Avengers 4 (including its title), but we assume the film will see those who survived Infinity War trying to undo the devastation Thanos caused when he snapped his fingers. Whether this involves time travel, tapping into the Quantum Realm, or trying to wield the Infinity Gauntlet themselves remains to be seen. But one thing is for certain: some of these characters will return from the dead - someway, somehow.
The reason we know this is two-fold. First, some of the characters who die in Infinity War have upcoming sequels - Black Panther 2, Spider-Man 2 and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. So it seems safe to assume that T'Challa and Peter Parker will be back, as will most (if not all) of the Guardians. Secondly, the fact that it's mostly newer characters who are killed in Infinity War and not the veterans most fans were expecting implies that Avengers 4 will close out Phase 3 with one last hurrah for those original Avengers. Tony Stark, Steve Rogers and the rest will then be handing it over to a new generation of heroes; characters like Bucky, Wanda, Sam, and Doctor Strange. Fury and Hill, too, have as good a shot as any to return since S.H.I.E.L.D. is sure to continue playing a role in the MCU.
But those that are killed by Thanos with the Infinity Gauntlet aren't the only characters with a shot at resurrection. Vision, for instance, is an android and therefor could return as long as there are characters smart enough to figure out how to do it. It's explained in Infinity War that Vision is much more than just the Mind Stone, so even with it ripped from his body, there's a chance he could be still be revived. Another character would could return is Gamora, which might feel a little cheap considering how significant her death is in the film, but Infinity War does hint at the possibility. (Not too mention, Zoe Saldana may have just confirmed it.)
Who Is Really Dead?
Almost all of the characters who die in Infinity War have at least a chance at coming back, but there are two deaths that do appear to be quite permanent - Loki and Heimdall. They both die during the film's opening scene when Thanos attacks the Asgardians' ship. First is Heimdall, who gets stabbed through the chest after he summons the last of his strength to send Hulk to Earth via the Bifrost. The second is Loki, who after trying to trick and kill Thanos, is then gruesomely throttled to death. It is a devastating way to open the movie and immediately impresses on the audience just how serious of a threat Thanos poses.
What makes these deaths the real deal, however, is that they are doled out in a pretty mundane manner; just your average stabbing and strangling. Unlike those who die by the Infinity Gauntlet's power, it seems unlikely that Avengers 4 would spend any time trying to reverse their deaths. And honestly, as sad as many fans surely are to see Loki and Heimdall go, them remaining dead is a good thing. Killing a couple of characters and keeping them dead gives the MCU a sense of risk that's long been absent from the films. And while not all of Infinity War's many casualities need to be permanent, these two really should be.
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- 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
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019
- Black Panther 2 (2022) release date: May 06, 2022