Prognostications for Marvel’s Avengers: Age of Ultron, Part 2

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Day two of speculating on what will happen in Avengers: Age of Ultron is here, my readers! If you read my post the other day, then you know some of my thoughts about what may happen in the upcoming Avengers sequel.  But you do not know about all of my ideas.

As I stated before, if you do not want to hear anything about the film until it hits theaters, then stop reading right here.

For those of you who, like me, cannot keep a lid on your curiosity, read on!

Hawkeye
My Theory, # 2:  Hawkeye will be the Avenger who recruits the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver into the team’s ranks.

This is an instinctive idea I have had since I learned that the twins would not only not begin the film as Avengers, they apparently HATE the team’s collective guts.

Why the twins hate the Avengers no one but Marvel, the cast, and Joss Whedon know as yet.  Some suggest Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch are both being directed by Baron von Strucker through the power of Loki’s scepter, the same way that Hawkeye was controlled by Loki in the first Avengers movie.  I am skeptical of this idea; I am not sure Strucker would be able to influence the twins via the scepter’s power.  That he used the energy stored in the scepter to “mutate” the twins and give them their new abilities I do not doubt.

But giving them superpowers is a far cry from controlling them in the same way that Loki was able to convince people to do his bidding.  Loki knew what he was doing up to a certain point but Strucker is playing with fire; he has had no one to teach him how to use the scepter.  Presumably, Thanos or the Other gave Loki instructions on how to use his “magic wand” the way he did in the first film.  Strucker does not have any such guidance; he is essentially whistling in the dark.

If Strucker is controlling the siblings, I think it more likely that he is doing so the old fashioned way.  He has somehow convinced Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch that the Avengers are greedy warmongers (or something like that) who do not care about the collateral damage they leave in their wake.  Considering the trailer for Age of Ultron starts in a post-battle party setting, I would say the Avengers probably have become a little complacent with the way life has been going for them recently.  Such a party would certainly not make the twins think very highly of the Avengers, since Pietro and Wanda both grew up on their own, relying on no one but each other and trusting very few of the people they met – Baron Strucker being the possible exception to the rule.

Part of the reason I think Hawkeye may be the Avenger who changes the twins’ perspective of the team is that the rest of the Avengers are going to have their hands full. With the Hulk going on a rampage that Tony (and, it seems, Black Widow) are trying to stop and Thor fighting Cap over who is more worthy to pick up Mjolnir, about the only Avenger who does not appear to have a crisis blowing up in his face during the course of the film is Hawkeye.

More to the point, if Wanda is responsible for the berserk behavior of the Hulk and Thor, she may also be manipulating the other Avengers.  Playing off their fears and making them see things which are not actually happening, she could easily reduce the team to squabbling, convince them to fight the people they are trying to protect, or bring them all to an absolute stand still.

It is this very ability of Wanda’s that might give Hawkeye a fighting edge against her. After all, Loki took control of Barton in the first movie via the power of his “glow stick of destiny.”  And Wanda has received her powers from the same source.  For all we know, exposure to the scepter’s power may have given Hawkeye a resistance to mind manipulation, if not outright immunity to Wanda’s hypnotic ability since that seems to be fueled by the same energy Loki used to control him.  If she cannot influence Clint and make him see what she wants him to see, then she cannot control him.  And that means that he can at the least talk to her, if not get in close and fight her.

This theory also ties in with the original comics.  Initially, Hawkeye and the twins joined the Avengers at roughly the same time.  Hawkeye was only a few years older than the twins and had designs on dating Wanda, but those wishes never panned out for him.  (I am hoping Whedon will not include this history in Age of Ultron, considering Renner is almost twenty years Olsen’s senior.  That would make a romance story between the two characters on this silver screen a bit awkward in my opinion.)

Despite never winning the Scarlet Witch’s heart, Hawkeye and Wanda remained on friendly terms for a very long time over their years as teammates.  He even helped Cap train her in hand-to-hand fighting techniques.  (Hawkeye is one of the best hand-to-hand fighters in the Marvel Universe; even Marvel master martial arts expert Iron Fist thinks he is one of the best martial arts fighters around.)  If anyone can get through to Wanda that she and her brother are being played for fools by Strucker, I would be willing to bet it would be Hawkeye.

As for him talking Quicksilver into the Avengers, if Hawkeye’s silver tongue can persuade Wanda to change sides, then he has no need to speak to Pietro.  The number one influence on Pietro’s life is his sister; wherever she decides to go, he will follow her, and vice versa.  Sway one twin and you sway them both; if Hawkeye wins over Wanda then Pietro will follow her lead.

The only evidence I have to support this gut feeling/theory is a photo from the Age of Ultron set.  It shows Wanda crouching down, both her arms thrown out before her and crossed, her fingers half pulled in toward her palms.  She is obviously using her powers to do something and is concentrating on doing it.

Standing barely two feet in front of her, bow drawn, is Hawkeye.  But he is not aiming at Wanda and is standing out of her line of fire.  His bow is held in such a way as he reaches for his quiver that you can see he is lining up for a shot over Wanda’s shoulder. The two are clearly working together to protect and help each other in the middle of some big battle, probably the final battle of the movie.

If that does not flatly imply a friendship springing up between Hawkeye and the Scarlet Witch in Age of Ultron, then I do not know what does.

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Rumor 3: Death, death, and… death.

Long ago, Joss Whedon stated that “death would play a part” in the Age of Ultron storyline.  I think Thor, Cap, Iron Man, and the Hulk are not likely to be killed off.  Thor and Cap still have a future solo movie each in the pipes and there is talk of an Iron Man 4 and a Hulk movie at some point in the near future.  Black Widow is the only leading lady Marvel has introduced in the Avengers’ franchise so far, and I doubt that she will be going anywhere anytime soon.

I also doubt that Whedon would introduce the twins just so that he could kill them off.  I have heard some say that Wanda is going to get the axe in the film, but I do not think Whedon would kill her now.  He has barely introduced her – wiping her off the slate at the same time he adds her to it makes no sense at all.  Quicksilver would likely also be allowed to keep his head for the same reason.

This leaves the two characters that have yet to truly get their time in the spotlight in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as potential “deaders”:  Hawkeye and Rhodey.

Honestly, I am not sure there is anything that would prevent Hawkeye from being killed off in this film.  Although Whedon has stated that he had fun writing for Hawkeye this time around, I am sure he would have fun whether the archer lived or died.  Sorry, Hawkeye fans, but we might all have to say good-bye to the World’s Greatest Marksman in Age of Ultron.  Fingers crossed that he will make it through, but we have practically no assurances of whether he will live or die.

Rhodey might be a potential “deader” for Age of Ultron, but I doubt it.  If Marvel wants to continue its Iron Man franchise, Rhodey will have to stick around for a while yet.  That might be wishful thinking on my part – either of these characters could be slated for death, or any Avenger could be killed – what fan knows what Joss Whedon’s got planned?

However, the Avenger I think could be easily killed off and then brought back – I am not sure Marvel would let Whedon kill an Avenger if they could not be resurrected again for future films – would be Vision.  As a synthezoid/android, ol’ Viz could be killed defeating Ultron, then repaired and “brought back to life” by Tony and Bruce (or just Tony, we do not know what the team’s roster will look like after this film).

On top of this, we have been told that all the actors are “locked up” for Avengers 3.  While that is not necessarily assurance that none of them will die (they could show up for five minutes in a cameo, after all), it is the only comfort we fans can really draw on at the moment.

As with everything else I have contemplated here, though, we will have to wait and see.

Iron Man

Rumor 4: Tony’s terrifying vision at the end of the trailer.

Now to that vision Tony has at the end of the trailer Marvel previewed at Comic Con.  In the trailer, Tony apparently wakes up – unarmored, wearing his regular clothes – on a rocky outcrop somewhere out in space.  He gets up, takes a few steps forward, then falls to his knees next to Cap’s shield, which is broken in two.  He starts to get choked up as the camera pans out to reveal Steve and the other Avengers dead in a place some believe to be Thanos’ lair.

I do not for a minute buy that the whole team (with the exception of Tony) dies and gets brought back in the course of Age of Ultron.  It is a possibility, but an unlikely one.  I think/hope.

However, that this vision could be the nightmare which spurs Tony to build Ultron, or a hallucination fabricated by Wanda at some point in the film – that I think very likely indeed.  There is also a third possibility.  In some early interviews, as I understand things, Elizabeth Olsen was said to have stated that Wanda can catch glimpses of the past, parallel universes, and the future.

What Tony sees might be a vision Wanda somehow transmits to him: a possible future in which his team and friends lie dead at his feet.  Or it could be a vision Wanda experiences herself at some point in the film and shows to Tony.

A snag in this theory, though, is that the list of dead Avengers is vague.  I know Thor and Cap are said to be among the dead, but if the twins are not present with them and the others then the vision could be a hallucination Wanda generates for Tony.  Certainly, during Age of Ultron, his greatest fear would be that he will inadvertently cause his friends’ deaths in having built Ultron.  That the very thing he designed to help his team so that they could get some R&R then goes and kills them – this would be a fear Tony could end up dealing with in the film.  And if Wanda can invent hallucinations using her enemies’ greatest fears, then this vision of defeat would be an image with which she could beguile and antagonize Tony.

But we will have to wait and see.

 

I hope you enjoyed this bout of conjecture, my readers.  I know that the hype around Age of Ultron is going to keep on rising, but I just had to get my two cents in on this one. Fingers crossed that Age of Ultron leaves us all saying, “Avengers Assemble! When does number three come out?!?”

I will close with one final question for you, my readers. Does anyone know where I can find footage of the Age of Ultron trailer that was previewed at Comic Con this July?  I would sure like to see it!!!

Later,

The Mithril Guardian

The Scarlet Witch

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