Theoretically, everyone could die in Avengers: Infinity War, but that might just be wishful thinking on my part. For too long, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has spared its heroes from apparently uncertain death (Quicksilver aside, we most definitely saw that coming). Hopefully Avengers: Infinity War will show that superheroic violence has ultimate consequences harsher than a strongly worded accord or an out-of-control robotic suit. But who among Earth’s mightiest heroes and intergalactic bad guys will fall? Characters like Black Panther, Spider-Man and Doctor Strange can surely rest easy; they can rely on their anticipated sequels to rest easy at night. Until April 27th, when my fictional character blood lust will at long last be quelled, we the audience are left to wonder who will meet their demise. Here are the six most likely contenders to die in Infinity War:
If Marvel post-credit scenes have taught audiences anything, it is that Thanos is ready to get off his ass and fight! It’s not as if he will die within the first five minutes, or perhaps even the first movie. To end on a quasi-positive beat, Marvel should leave his death to the final moments of the still-untitled Avengers 4. But what a huge bummer it would be if he quietly slipped into the sunset too soon. We have been building up to his villainy since May 2012 and the payoff better be great.
The trickster god himself might be looking at his last film. Loki is uber popular (certainly as popular as Uber) within the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s fans. His allegiances switch quickly and frequently, so who knows if he will be on his brother’s side for longer than five minutes, or instead partner up with Thanos once again. Whether or not Thanos forgives Loki for his failures (and loss of the Space and Mind Stone) in The Avengers remains to be seen. But given Thanos’ penchant for violence, my guess would be a firm no. Loki has had such a fascinating arc over all three Thor films and The Avengers, so to see how he would die would be a bittersweet departure. Still, all chances point to a grim fate for this fan favorite character.
4. Steve Rogers
This would sting. To lose someone as important as Captain America would be a punch right to the American gut. After five films (seven if you count cameos), it is time for Marvel to kill someone fans will be heartbroken over. It is in his personality for Captain America to throw himself into battle to save someone he cares about. He should go out sacrificing himself for the greater good (or a good buddy, like Bucky or even Tony after they reconcile). Great as Cap is, there is simply no way this super soldier can withstand a monster with an infinity stone, let alone a full gauntlet.
3. Drax the Destroyer
The Guardians of the Galaxy are a jammed-pack team. Pretty soon, they won’t have room on Star Lord’s ship for everyone. Of all the guardians, Drax the Destroyer is the most likely to go. Like Captain America, he throws himself into dangerous situations, and less like Cap, he is extremely impulsive. Plus, his personal axe to grind with Thanos gives him the perfect backstory to exploit in a fight between them early on in the film to show the Guardians how powerful Thanos really is. This explosive combo of impulsivity and vengeance is likely to ultimately be Drax’s fatal flaw.
No doubt about it, Vision is a goner. His fate has practically been signed, sealed and delivered. If the infinity stone squarely in his forehead did not make him enough of a colossal target for Thanos, Infinity War‘s trailer does not hold out too much hope for Vision to make it to another film. Vision sits at the number two spot only because the emotional aspect of his death would not hit audiences as hard my number one pick. Of course, Scarlet Witch would be the most upset. Vision was a supporting player from his first appearance and would be a necessary casualty for the story to progress. His death would not change the MCU as we know it, unlike…
1. Tony Stark
Ah, Robert Downey Jr. The man whose tweet can provoke a film studio to release a movie a week earlier. After new art has circulated, rumors are running wild about Tony’s connection to an infinity stone. Stone or not, Thanos will be setting his sights on Tony Stark. Captain America: Civil War beat Iron Man down, but not entirely out of the superhero game, as we saw in his tutoring of Spider-Man. Downey may be taking a page from Hugh Jackman by bowing out of the role that must be second nature for him by now. Either Infinity War of Avengers 4 would be the perfect opportunity for Iron Man’s death. While it would be devastating for fans, the characters in the franchise would undoubtedly be shaken too. Plus, it would bring full circle the vision Stark has in Avengers: Age of Ultron of the Avengers unable to beat Thanos’ and his army. Killing off a character of this caliber, who made the franchise what it is today, would be the most impactful death to see.