Even though I’ve seen most of them several times, I usually have a hard time remembering what the biggest Marvel films were actually about. Don’t get me wrong, I love them. Deeply. It’s just that there’s so much glorious and exciting fighting and Mjolnir-throwing that sometimes the thing I remember most from a film is Thor gleefully smashing his ceramic coffee cup on a diner floor.
Since Marvel’s retitling its Avengers Infinity War films, I thought I’d do some retitling of my own.
Captain America: The First Avenger
Or, She’s All That But With More Muscles, Less Freddie Prinze Jr.
He doesn’t need muscles to be a hero, but they sure help.
Thanks to some Super Serum, big muscles, tighter pants, and a moral compass stronger than the Hulk, Steve Rogers goes from scrawny Brooklynite to bond-selling mascot to our best shot at winning a war against the Nazis and Hydra — the guys who ate Nazis for breakfast.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Or, Old Man in the Big City Goes On Ghost Adventures
Just when you were starting to get a handle on the whole “dying in the ‘40s and waking up in 2011” thing, the world needs saving. Again. Lucky for Steve Rogers, it’s not every day your best friend (who you watched die seventy years ago) shows up to fight you — a once supposedly dead man yourself — with a metal arm and no memory of your epic mid-century bro hangs.
One supposedly dead guy’s a party, but two’s a crowd.
Or, The One Where The Gang Saves And Also Destroys New York
When faced with an alien threat too big for any one hero to defeat alone, the Avengers take it on together. Sure, they make sort of a monumental mess out of New York City while doing it, but they come out on top and through it all, discover that the real winner is friendship.
Or, Norse God Discovers Coffee, Saves Earth From Metal Stay Puft Marshmallow Man
Some parents put their kids in timeout, but Odin isn’t your average pappy. When Thor does some serious shit-stirring in Jotunheim, Odin sends him to Earth to think about what he’s done as he burns a little Norse god vacation time in New Mexico as a mere mortal. Turns out that Asgardian parenting scrolls are pretty wild.
Or, Rich Bastard Installs Magic Pacemaker, Becomes Heroic Rich Bastard
Tony Stark may be a rich genius jerk, but now he’s a rich genius jerk who’s going to save your ass from threats foreign, domestic and galactic. You’re welcome.
Guardians of the Galaxy
Or, Rowdy Bunch of Assholes Versus The Blue Man Group
Star Lord and a band of unlikely and reluctant heroes stop Ronan from destroying the universe to the soundtrack of some really great ‘70s hits the world had mostly forgotten. They’re not great at the whole world-saving song and dance, but they sure try hard.
Side note: The first time I saw this movie in theaters, it was in Norwegian, which is how I know that “turd blossom” is a phrase that transcends language barriers.