Things won’t be the same in the Marvel Cinematic Universe after Avengers: Infinity War. That may include heavy losses for the good guys. In the new plot synopsis for the next major Avengers movie, Marvel Studios teases the “deadliest showdown” yet for the MCU.

On Thursday, Marvel unveiled the official plot synopsis for Avengers: Infinity War, the nineteenth film from Disney-owned Marvel Studios that will pack an inconceivable amount of cinematic superheroes for one major mission: To prevent the cosmic titan Thanos (Josh Brolin) from collecting all of the Infinity Stones, which would grant him awesome power over the entire universe.

Tellingly, the synopsis hints at death and “devastation and ruin.” Could this mean that Infinity War may actually kill off some of the franchise’s most popular superheroes? With a threat as serious as Thanos, it may happen.

The synopsis reads:

“An unprecedented cinematic journey ten years in the making and spanning the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time. The Avengers and their super hero allies must willing to sacrifice it all in an attempt to defeat the power of Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.”

That the Marvel Universe chugs along without serious repercussions such as death has been a point of criticism against Marvel for some time. Debatably, that all of the Marvel heroes seem invincible removes the stakes of the situation, and while set pieces like the airport fight in Captain America: Civil War dazzle audiences, it’s hard to feel suspense when most of the heroes were going to walk away just fine, which they did. (Except for poor Rhodey.)

The only major MCU character to have died have been S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson (The Avengers) and the Warriors Three (Thor: Ragnarok). Even then, Coulson got an off-screen resurrection for TV’s Agents of S.H.IE.L.D., while the Warriors Three were so dramatically underwritten that their deaths in Thor: Ragnarok hardly registered with audiences.

Now, with Avengers: Infinity War introducing death — maybe literally, as the incarnation of Death was a major character in the original The Infinity Gauntlet comics — the MCU may actually wipe the slate clean of some of its beloved heroes. Are Captain America’s days numbered?

Principal photography on Infinity War wrapped last year. Work on the sequel, the still-untitled Avengers 4, just finished last week.

Avengers: Infinity War will be released in theaters on May 4.


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