Look, if the box office (something I don’t really care about at all) is any indication, just about everybody possible saw Avengers: Endgame this weekend. I know pretty much all the regulars in the Gabbing Geek bullpen did.
So, what did they have to say about it? SPOILERS below, obviously. You’ve been warned.
The Geeks had a lot to say. A lot. More than I care to even attempt to transcribe. So, let me more or less summarize much of what went down.
For the most part, the Geeks rated Endgame at a 10 out of 10. Jimmy and I went a little lower with a 9 and a 9.5 respectively. But if there’s one thing you can say about the Geeks, it’s that the minutiae of any sort of story of this caliber will lead to longer discussions than others. Hence a debate on how time travel worked for Captain America at the end of the movie, one that involved swearing and accusations and accusations of being various swearwords, the likes of which Watson likes to use when addressing people who are ostensibly his friends. Then there was debate over what constitutes an Easter Egg, how much money the movie will make (yawn), what Phase Four will be, which movie had the most Oscar winners and nominees in it, who the biggest surprise guest star was (I’d say it was the mostly retired Robert Redford), and at least one Geek who wished Pepper had died instead of Tony.
Perhaps the conversation that I would have liked to expand upon most was whether or not the battle in the final hour was the greatest scene in movie history. Given the project I gave myself last year, I’d say that was unlikely, and quite frankly, I do wonder if the overall quality of the last hour pumped the grade up for a few of us.
I’m not kidding there. The first two hours were fine, and it was great to spend time with these characters, three of them for what is probably the last time, but I felt the movie lacked a sense of urgency. There was no rush for the Avengers to do much of anything, and what obstacles they did find seemed to be nothing too strenuous. When the biggest block is the Ancient One saying no before she can be properly reasoned with (since, in essence, the Hulk came to bargain), then why should I worry that the Avengers won’t be able to save the day? But then Thanos returns, and the movie has a real antagonist again. That helped quite a bit.
But we got what we probably needed from this movie. We got a good final story with the full original Avengers line-up, and done in a way that acted as a good send-off for Tony and Steve (Natasha is another story). Did you want Steve to weld Mjolinir? You got it. Did you want Captain Marvel to show just how powerful she really is? It’s there. Did you want Thor to gain a lot of weight and become an angry gamer? OK, I’m not sure anyone wanted that, and I do have a friend who actually hated what the movie did to Thor after the events of Ragnarok–her argument was if this is Thor’s last appearance, it wasn’t very respectful to him for much of the movie and the fat jokes seemed more mean than funny, and I can see that–but at the least I think it’s safe to say no one saw that part coming. Did we get something that looked like an unofficial franchise hand-off? I’d argue as much when Hawkeye passed the new Gauntlet off to the Black Panther, and then Spidey and Carol Danvers.
Now, I think it could be argued Infinity War was a better movie. That sense of urgency is always there from the first moments where Thanos attacks the Asgardian refugees.
In the end, though, I saw pretty much every character in the MCU show up to square off with the first three phases’ ultimate evil, and that at least left me happy. It would be hard for Marvel to top this movie.
Maybe they’ll be smart and not even try. They could do something radically different for the next phase and not lead to one big story. No one would see that coming…