We're inching closer to the release of Captain America: Civil War, and it's safe to say that the hype train won't be slowing down any time soon. In fact, with all the promo that's been going on this week, the train done went and jumped from Amtrak to Maglev speed levels.
Since Monday, Disney-owned ABC has been fueling the fire by having members of the movie's cast stop by and chat on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and a new minute-long trailer popped up online Thursday. There's not a whole lot of new stuff to either fawn over or to over-analyze, but it makes great use of footage from previous entries into the Marvel Cinematic Universe to set the scene for what's certainly going to be the end of the MCU as we know it.
I don't know how familiar with the storyline of the Civil War comics you are, but by the time the smoke cleared, the lives and statuses of many of our favorite heroes were flipped upside down for quite a while – and no, I don't meant that they went to live with their aunties and uncles in Bel Air.
Examples include: Iron Man assumed Nick Fury's role as the head of S.H.I.E.L.D and assembles a new group of Avengers. Black Panther and Storm join the Fantastic Four while Mr. Fantastic and Invisible Woman go on sabbatical. And of course, the most startling of developments, Captain America was assassinated shortly after turning himself over to the authorities.
Shocking, yes, but how do we know any of that will happen in the movie? Simply put, we don't.
As per industry standard, the intrinsic details of the movie's plot and outcomes will be hush-hush until its release. Plus, as evidenced by the fact that Bucky Barnes is the dividing factor that leads to the cinematic Civil War as opposed to a superhero registration act is an obvious sign that the movie isn't going to follow the comic storyline to a "T."
In other words, anything can happen come May 6. However, there are a few predictions that can be made about how the final product will turn out. Keep in mind that these aren't clairvoyant peeks into the future or anything like that, but in the words of J.P. from the Angels in the Outfield remake, "It can happen."
1. Things will get very ugly, very fast
For starters, the plot is mired in politics, and as we've seen with the recent coverage of the presidential election, politics can get rather ... messy, to say the least.
Thunderbolt Ross, representing the U.S. government, wants to put the Avengers in check for the collateral damage they cause everywhere they seem to go. Tony Stark and a smattering of other teammates agree. Cap, on the other hand, isn't really feeling it, and leads the charge against any government interference in official Avengers business.
Instead of debating these issues like regular folk by using words or legislation, they decide to throw hands. Keep in mind that these are individuals who are enhanced by either super serums, high-tech armor, weapons, mutations, and intense assassin training. When they fight, things get broken. People included.
Also, this has the propensity to be the most emotionally scarring experience the MCU has seen so far – as evidenced by the exchange between Cap and Tony seen within the trailers:
Cap: “Sorry, Tony. You know I wouldn't do this if I had any other choice. But he's (Bucky) my friend.”
Tony: “So was I.”
Ouch. That was like ripping the band-aid off of the Kelly and Brenda sized wound that was left when they called off their friendship because of Dylan. We, collectively as an audience, have been there since the beginning of Cap and Tony's relationship. We watched them grow from contentious co-workers to trusting teammates and to watch all of that crumble away is going to be a rough watch.
2. Somebody isn't going to make it out alive
At some point during the movie, Tony's best buddy James Rhodes (War Machine) gets shot down and appears to be badly injured. Based on that, all signs would point to Rhodey being the first and probably only casualty of the War, but I feel like this is just careful misdirection on Marvel's part.
Maybe they want you to think Rhodey won't make it out alive to distract you from the fact that another character, one that people have become more emotionally connected to over the years, will lose their life. As mentioned before, in the comics Cap is assassinated after he surrenders. He was gunned down by his former S.H.I.E.L.D./Hydra adversary Crossbones and a brainwashed Sharon Carter, both of whom are returning in Civil War.
Chris Evans has two more movies under his contract with Marvel Studios, so if Cap does bite the bullet, it most likely won't be for long. He didn't stay dead in the comics, so they'll find some way to resurrect him before the Infinity War begins in the MCU.
Plus, Marvel can't seem to kill off any of their major characters for long. Agent Coulson died in the original Avengers, and was headlining his own TV show months later. Pepper Potts supposedly fell to her death in Iron Man 3, but then somehow, she survived. They couldn't let a tree be dead for more than five minutes without saying "Sike, he's okay! Look, see, he's dancing!" Hopefully, it'll be different this time around.
3. Spider-Man will steal the show
The movie may have Captain America's name plastered all over it, but Ol' Web-head is poised to reclaim his spot as the (masked) face of Marvel.
The five seconds that he appeared in the last trailer that came out was the moment that sparked the most discussion and reaction on the internet, and rightfully so. Spidey's loose, laid-back, and quippy demeanor is a perfect fit for the MCU, and it's an absolute shame that he was contractually forbidden to be a part of it from the beginning.
I mean, I'm not trying to knock everything that Sony did with the character. The first two entries in Sam Raimi's trilogy are solid to this day, and Marc Webb's take with the first Amazing Spider-Man isn't bad either.
Characterization, however, is everything here. Tobey Maguire was perfectly understated as Peter Parker, but too serious and emotional as Spider-Man. Andrew Garfield had the flair to be Spider-Man, but not the sensitivity to portray Parker. Maybe with Tom Holland, the right balance will be found. If it isn't, he'll still be fun to watch. Maybe.
4. The post-credit scene will most likely involve Doctor Strange
It's been reported that the trailer for Benedict Cumberbatch's Doctor Strange debuts next week. The movie will be released later this year in November. So basically, there's no way of getting around a cameo from the Doc.
How they'll manage to fit him in will be the interesting part. The only reference to Doctor Strange in previous MCU entries was when Agent Sitwell name-dropped him during The Winter Soldier. There's knowledge of who he is and what he can do, but the audience hasn't gotten a glimpse of him yet.
His origin will obviously be addressed in the standalone feature, but I'm interested in seeing how he'll introduce himself before the screen fades to black.
5. Hawkeye will still be woefully underused
This is starting to become a recurring theme. The only person that he can actually keep up with during this entire thing is Black Widow, and they'll no doubt do a little sparring throughout. But other than that, dude can't really be that close to the action.
For real, if he tries to use his hands and feet against Iron Man or Black Panther instead of sharpshooting, it's a wrap. They'd have him looking like Apollo after Drago got those love taps in. You know, dead.
This kind of raises the question of why they even keep bringing Hawkeye to the party time after time again. Yes, he's very good with a bow and arrow, but how does that translate to being a valuable member to the team? They have a Hulk (Well, not right now, but still). Having an archer just seems unnecessary, but that's just one man's opinion.
What are your predictions for Civil War? Discuss them below in the comments!