The first Avengers: Infinity War trailer has arrived, and hype levels are through the roof. It's been a long journey to this point, and by the time the film comes to cinemas in May 2018, it'll have been 10 years since the MCU's introduction with the first Iron Man film. Ten years! It's a lot to digest, even without all the new problems this film will bring, so we understand if you've got questions. We've got a few ourselves.
First, let's address some questions we actually have answers to:
Who's the purple guy?
That's Thanos. He was first seen in the stinger at the end of the first Avengers film, cracking a wide, evil smile. In the comics, Thanos is a conqueror and tyrant who seeks the Infinity Gems (in the movies, they're Infinity Stones, but are functionally the same).
What are Infinity Stones?
These ancient artifacts give those who possess them immense power. Each Stone corresponds to a different aspect of existence: Power, Reality, Time, Space, Mind, and Soul. In the MCU, each Stone has also been held inside of a device so that mortal beings can utilize them. The Power Stone is held in the Orb, the Reality Stone is the Aether, the Mind Stone was part of Loki's scepter, the Space Stone is the Tesseract, and the Time Stone is part of the Eye of Agamotto. The Soul Stone has not been seen thus far. Read more in our guide to the Infinity Stones.
Where are the Infinity Stones right now?
The Power Stone was given to the Nova Corps at the end of Guardians of the Galaxy. The Reality Stone is part of The Collector's extensive museum. The Time Stone is in Doctor Strange's possession. The Space Stone was sealed in the Asgardian vaults. The Mind Stone is embedded in Vision's head. Nobody knows where the Soul Stone is (yet).
Does Thanos have any of the Stones yet?
When we last saw Thanos, he didn't have any Stones in his possession. However, we can see in the trailer that he's acquired the Power Stone, and during the film will also acquire the Space Stone.
Who is attacking Captain America?
Thanos is the big bad of the MCU, but every major villain needs underlings. It's been known that Infinity War will introduce the Black Order, AKA the Children of Thanos, an elite group of assassins that the Mad Titan deploys when he has need. These four secondary antagonists were revealed earlier this year, and include one by the name of Proxima Midnight. Blink and you'll miss her motion-blurred face, but it's definitely her.
Now for the stuff we don't know:
How did Banner get here, and who's in control of his body?
Thor: Ragnarok made a big deal about the separation between Banner and his green-skinned alter-ego. In the film, Banner has to be 'woken up' by force, and once he finds out what happens, he states that changing again could mean he'd lose himself completely. Indeed, Ragnarok ends with Banner still transformed. But in the Infinity War trailer he's in human form, seemingly in a daze at the bottom of a large hole. So did Banner wrestle control from Hulk, did Hulk get punched by Thanos so hard that he reverted to his weaker form, or what?
Does Peter have spider-sense now, and how useful is it?
Spider-sense is one of Peter Parker's trademark powers. Bordering on pre-cognition, it allows him to detect danger before it happens and thus evade it. Here, we see the hairs on his forearm stand up, as if he's experiencing an intense tingle (and in case you weren't aware, Spidey has a major habit of saying/thinking "Spider-sense tingling!" every time his sixth sense triggers). So A) why does he have it now when he didn't seem to have it in Spider-Man: Homecoming, and B) is it really any good if it takes an enormous machine that literally everyone around him also notices with their boring old human perception to activate it?
Who are the dead that Loki(?) is stepping over, and what's his angle?
At first I thought this was just a shot of an attack on Kamar-Taj, the place where Stephen Strange trained to become Sorcerer Supreme. The body in the foreground's simple robes would suggest a fairly modest people. But if you look in the background there's someone wearing heavy armor, and another body with unique tattoos with what may not even be a human head. So where is this, and who are these unfortunate souls? If the legs stepping over the broken do indeed belong to Loki and aren't a trick of editing, I'd wager this is the Asgardian ship that Thor and his mischievous brother escaped on at the end of Thor: Ragnarok. Loki was once an agent of Thanos, so is this him trying to bargain his way out of being obliterated?
Why does Thanos look like cartoon Bruce Willis?
I mean, he really does, doesn't he?
What is this thing?
Seriously, what is it? This shot looks super cool, but it also kiiind of feels like an excuse to show Chris Hemsworth flexing and grunting. Not that there's anything wrong with that!
Is Vision going to die?
Vision is powered by an Infinity Stone, and Thanos wants them. Unfortunately for our dear android, someone (likely Corvus Glaive, another of the Children of Thanos) has him pinned down and it looks like they're about to rip the Stone right from his head. Barring an extremely last-minute save, could Vision be one of the heroes rumored to bite the dust before Infinity War's closing credits?
How much time does this movie cover?
Early in the trailer, the camera zooms in on Scarlet Witch and Vision having a tender moment, and it doesn't look like the first time the pair have been intimate. Later, we see Chris Evans in a full beard as Captain America. Clearly some time has passed between the events of Captain America: Civil War and now. But we also saw Banner and Tony Stark in the streets of New York, yet here they are fighting in Wakanda (okay technically we don't know that it's Tony in the Hulkbuster armor, but there's only one musclebound green guy in the MCU). So is Thanos attacking on two fronts, meaning our heroes have to split their efforts across the globe, or does one attack precede the other?
Why does Tony Stark have another Arc Reactor?
You know the Arc Reactor - that incredibly powerful device in Tony Stark's chest that he built in a cave? With scrap? While it was originally both an electromagnet used to keep himself alive as well as an energy source for his suits, the device was removed from his body at the end of Iron Man 3. Yet there it (or a new one) is, peeking out from under his hoodie. So what's the deal? Stark has definitely been under a lot of stress, so is this just an extra-cool pacemaker or...?
Why does Vision look human?
On the one hand, making himself look human seems like something an android with a crazy-powerful rock in his head should be able to do. On the other, we've seen Vision wearing civilian clothes but retaining his red skin. Did he just notice Thor's eyepatch, Black Widow's hair, Captain America's beard, and say "Screw it, everyone else is getting a makeover, I'm getting one too"?
Why are Thanos' forces in Wakanda?
Speaking of fighting in Wakanda... why? The secretive nation is the home of vibranium, a fictional metal that's impossibly strong and durable (in the MCU, it's the material the Black Panther suit and Cap's shield are made of) but that's not ever been suggested to be something Thanos would care about. And considering the fact that there's an army of alien monsters sweeping the land, this doesn't seem like an attack aimed at flat-out destroying the place. Perhaps Wakanda is where we'll find the Soul Stone, which is so far MIA?
Where is this golden-lit place with funky gravity?
At several points in the trailer (mostly the bits showing Thanos himself), we can see a background that's bright yellow in hue, where gravity is apparently a bit wonky - notice all the floating debris. The clouds in a blue sky suggest this is Earth, but where, and why the aforementioned messed up gravity? It's not clear what the enormous circular machine we see early on in the trailer is or does, but some speculate that it's capable of absolutely ravaging a planet's surface. Mayhaps this is the result of it being turned on?
That's all from us - what did you notice? Got any theories you want to throw out there? Let us know in the comments!