Avengers: Then and Now
In the eleven years since the start of the MCU, the ‘Original 6’ Avengers have defeated numerous bad guys, had a few makeovers and watched their lives, along with the world around them, change.
But how different are Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and the others since they first appeared in the MCU to the ultimate showdown in Avengers: Endgame? Read on to find out.
Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) has appeared in more MCU movies than any other character, and he’s come a long way since Iron Man. After becoming Iron Man, Stark transformed from a self-described ‘genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist’ to a man determined to be a force for good, and he’s faced many foes from every end of the universe to within the Avengers themselves.
Along with Spider-Man (Tom Holland) and Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Iron Man was unwittingly taken into space to battle The Children of Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War. Only he and Nebula (Karen Gillan) survived ‘the snap’, and Avengers: Endgame will pick up where that left off, with Tony stranded in space.
Steve Rogers aka Captain America (Chris Evans) is the most suited to the role of superhero because he was made to be one. In Captain America: The First Avenger, Steve Rogers signed up for a ‘super-soldier’ experiment and gained enhanced human abilities. After keeping the tesseract – one of the Infinity Stones - out of dangerous hands, Rogers was frozen for decades, waking shortly before the events of Avengers Assemble.
In Avengers: Infinity War, Rogers is still considered a criminal after defying the government in Captain America: Civil War, but he, Black Widow and Falcon are soon recruited to help fight Thanos in the battle of Wakanda.
The first lady of the Avengers made her debut in Iron Man 2 acting as Tony Stark’s new assistant before her real identity as S.H.I.E.L.D agent Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) is revealed.
As her alliance to Steve Rogers and Tony Stark was strained in Captain America: Civil War, she is also on the run from the government and in hiding by the time Avengers: Infinity War begins. Like the other Avengers, Natasha survived the ‘snap’ and is willing to do whatever it takes in Avengers: Endgame.
Much like Tony Stark, the crown prince of Asgard is a changed man since debuting in 2011. In Thor, the eldest son of Odin, King of Asgard, is arrogant, reckless and regularly goes against his father’s wishes. As punishment, he is stripped of his strength, his hammer Mjolnir, and banished to Earth while his brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) seizes the throne.
Thor (Chris Hemsworth) first faced Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War when the purple brute commandeered a ship filled with Asgardians and kills Loki. He literally lands on the windshield of the Guardians of the Galaxy’s ship, finds a new weapon and new friends in Rocket and Groot, eventually landing in Wakanda to face Thanos again.
While the ‘super soldier’ serum turned Steve Rogers into a superhero, it didn’t work out as planned for nuclear physicist Dr Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) . In an effort to recreate the World War II-era programme, extreme exposure to gamma radiation created The Incredible Hulk.
In Avengers: Infinity War, Hulk is the first Avenger to fight Thanos but he is quickly overpowered and left so traumatised by the defeat, he refuses to appear for the rest of the film and Bruce Banner is forced to go it alone in Iron Man’s ‘Hulkbuster’ suit.
Eagle-eyed Marvel fans spotted Clint Barton aka Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) in an uncredited cameo in 2011’s Thor, but audiences didn’t become familiar with him until much later.
Unlike the other Avengers, Barton was not seen in Avengers: Infinity War because he, along with Ant-Man/Scott Lang, was on house arrest, but what we do know is Clint will return in Avengers: Endgame with a new weapon and a new haircut.
Avengers: Endgame is released on 25 April.