And hidden within the new footage we couldn’t help noticing a few callbacks, Easter eggs and clues to what we can expect from the finished movie next year – and these were just a few of our favourites.
1. “There was an idea…”
The Avengers: Infinity War trailer begins with some familiar words, spoken in turn by Samuel L Jackson’s Nick Fury, Robert Downey Jr’s Tony Stark, Paul Bettany’s Vision, Chris Hemsworth’s Thor and Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow.
The voiceover says: “There was an idea… to bring together a group of remarkable people… to see if we could become something more. So when they needed us, we could fight the battles… that they never could.”
And eagle-eared Marvel fans will recognise this speech from the very first Avengers film, when Jackson’s Nick Fury used it as a rallying cry (worded slightly differently) to unite the then-squabbling team.
“There was an idea, Stark knows this, called the Avengers Initiative,” he said at the time.
“The idea was to bring together a group of remarkable people, see if they could become something more. See if they could work together when we needed them to fight the battles we never could.”
Clearly, the Avengers mission statement has remained steady all these years.
2. The team is split
Perhaps less steady, though, is the team itself, which fractured in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War and appears to remain divided when the film begins. A bearded Captain America’s case is pleaded by Chadwick Boseman’s Black Panther at one point (“give this man a shield!”) suggesting that he’s still on the outside, and a lot of the footage depicts the team split into smaller groups.
Iron Man, Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Wong (Benedict Wong) and Banner/Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) seem to be in New York (where Tom Holland’s Spider-Man is also swinging around), with Cap (Chris Evans), Black Widow, Bucky (Sebastian Stan), War Machine (Don Cheadle) and Black Panther battling elsewhere (though admittedly joined by Ruffalo’s Hulk, suggesting he at least travels to meet them).
Meanwhile, all the footage of Thor and the Guardians of the Galaxy (Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista et al) takes place in space, suggesting they might have a more intergalactic role to play.
Don’t worry, though – we’re sure that in the end we’ll get a big spinning shot of all the heroes standing in another circle before taking on Thanos’ hordes, and all will be right with the world again.
In Thor: Ragnarok it was heavily implied that Loki (Tom Hiddleston) stole the Tesseract from Asgard’s vault prior to the realm’s destruction, and the new trailer confirms it – though why exactly the God of Mischief is seemingly handing one of the Infinity Stones over to Thanos (Josh Brolin) remains a mystery.
Still, they did work together waaaay back in the original Avengers film so maybe they’re just resuming their partnership. Who knows?
Iron Man’s fan-favourite Hulkbuster armour (which has a long history in the comics) makes a return here after its first onscreen appearance in Avengers: Age of Ultron, with Tony Stark using it to battle Thanos’ legions of deadly minions.
Fun fact – the suit is nicknamed ‘Veronica’ as a counterpart to longtime Hulk love interest Betty Ross, which fans of Netflix’s Riverdale may recognise as an Archie comics reference.
We also see one of the Hulkbuster arms next to a non-Hulked out Bruce Banner in one shot, which could suggest the armour is destroyed in battle.
5. Iron Spider
And Tony Stark isn’t the only hero to get a costume upgrade, with the tougher ‘Iron Spider’ armour that was offered to (and turned down by) Tom Holland’s Spider-Man in this year’s Spider-Man: Homecoming finally getting an outing.
This suit is ALSO based on an outfit from the comics, a similarly shiny Spider-suit gifted from Tony Stark to Spider-Man that the wallcrawler wore during the comic-book Civil War storyline. Fingers crossed it helps keep Peter Parker in one piece as he tries to take Thanos down all by himself, as seen in the trailer…
6. My Spider-sense is tingling!
After it was largely ignored in Spider-Man’s solo film (a conscious choice by director Jon Watts who thought the idea had been overly covered in previous Spidey films), we get a quick look at Peter Parker’s iconic Spider-sense in the trailer, with all his hairs standing on end to alert him to some immediate danger – specifically, a giant engine of destruction presumably sent to Earth by Thanos.
7. Blonde Black Widow
If you thought Scarlett Johansson’s new ‘do was just the actress keeping her natural hair colour for the film, well, you’d be right – but it’s also an interesting visual callback to the SECOND Black Widow, a character who appeared in the original Marvel comics as another Russian spy trained by the same programme as her predecessor.
Called Yelena Belova, this particular Black Widow shared her red-headed former comrade’s training and skills, but topped it off with a shorter blonde hairstyle rather like the one Natasha Romanoff is trying out for Infinity War. A nice visual Easter egg, that.
8. Human Vision – and a dark future for Scarlet Witch
One surprising clip from the footage shows Paul Bettany’s android The Vision looking surprisingly human, with Bettany’s non-made-up appearance (with an added forehead crystal) apparently functioning as a new “civilian” appearance for the hero.
Now, it could be that this is some new disguise the Vision has managed to develop for himself (or with the help of his science genius pals) – but we can’t help wondering if it’s actually the work of Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olson), who tenderly touches Vision’s human face in the footage.
In the comics, the pair did eventually get together, after all, and all went well – until Wanda used her reality-altering powers to create two children for them, forcing the Avengers to wipe her memories which in turn led her to become unhinged, remaking the world in a new image in 2005 storyline House of M.
So perhaps this new look for Vision is the beginning of the movie version of this storyline, with Olsen’s Avenger using her powers more and more irresponsibly hereon out – with potentially dire consequences.
9. The death of Vision?
Speaking of Vision, he doesn’t appear to be having a great time in this new trailer. Later on, we see big baddie Thanos attempting to pull out the gem from his forehead which is, lest we forget, one of the six Infinity Stones needed to power the gauntlet Thanos is trying to gain control over (which will, in turn, make him something like a god).
However, the Mind Stone in Vision’s forehead is what gave him life in the first place – so if Thanos is successful (which we kind of have to assume he is) that could mean the end of our red-faced hero.
10. Power Stone
At one point in the trailer we see Thanos drop the Space stone – aka the cube-like Tesseract – into his Infinity Gauntlet, presumably after receiving it from Loki.
And interestingly, already nestled in there is the purple power stone, the MacGuffin of the first Guardians of the Galaxy film. Now, considering that we left that particular item in the care of outer-space police the Nova Corps at the end of GotG, it seems likely that Thanos has already visited and defeated them by the time he lands on Earth (as seen in this trailer).
11. Black Panther hints
Lest we forget, Avengers: Infinity War isn’t actually the next Marvel film we’ll be seeing in the cinema. That honour instead falls to Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther, so the shots of that film’s lead T’Challa (Boseman), his chief bodyguard and Bucky leading an army of Wakandans does give away some hints about where that particular film will end up, most notably implying that Bucky (who was left recuperating in Wakanda’s medical facilities at the end of Captain America: Civil War) might make an appearance in that film given his apparent alliance with Black Panther here.
12. No longer ‘armless
Oh, and speaking of Bucky, he has a new robotic arm! The first one was severed in Captain America: Civil War so it’s good to see he got a replacement.
13. Guardians of the Galaxy
We see very little of the Guardians of the Galaxy in the trailer, with the interstellar space travellers only popping up at the end for a quick hello with Thor. This makes it difficult to judge their role in the final film – they can’t be seen in any of the battles scenes – or even how much they’ll appear in it.
But there is one thing we CAN tell. Based on Groot’s size, Avengers: Infinity War will take place quite a while after Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, though possibly around the same time as one of its post-credits scenes (which sees a similarly-sized teenage Groot).
For any other information, well, we’ll just have to wait and see. Only a long, long five months to go…
Avengers: Infinity War will be released in UK cinemas on the 27th April