Marvel has put Thor through Hell in his last two movies, but with Avengers: Endgame the god of thunder is once again the butt of the joke – assuming fans have caught it in the film’s marketing.
We’re not referring to Thor’s standoff with Captain Marvel, or any other clip of him in the early Avengers: Endgame trailers or TV spots. Believe it or not, the joke is delivered in so subtle a fashion, fans probably never even noticed it in the poster for Avengers: Endgame. As the likes of Iron Man, Captain America, and the rest of the Avengers (and Black Panther‘s Okoye) stand united and ready to take down Thanos… Thor’s artificial eye seems to be blinding him to the actual threat.
To some movie fans, there is always a bit of comedy to the “group” poster for a Marvel release, photoshop-ping just about every single cast member into one massive mountain of celebrity, regardless of scale or context. The single hero posters for Avengers: Endgame capture the movie’s serious stakes, including Thor’s stoic face concerned only with “Avenging the Fallen.” We don’t think that title includes his missing eye, destroyed in his fight with Hela and now replaced with an orange-colored, robotic one Rocket Raccoon had lying around.
Taking a closer look at the group shot in the Avengers: Endgame poster, it seems Thor’s right eye might not be as sharp as the original. Maybe he actually WAS aiming for Thanos’ head this whole time…?
As literally every other hero on the poster with their eyes open (Okoye’s face and eyes are downcast in grief) is taking in the threat off the poster to the left, readying weapons and preparing for battle… Thor obviously didn’t get the memo. That detail is impossible to read as anything but a tongue-in-cheek allusion to his faulty eye, which just so happens to be the one failing to register what everyone else is focused on. And while we can’t say that the team who designed this Endgame poster is the same one responsible for the secret Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker poster joke, it’s a clear indication that Marvel movie Easter Egg hunters now have to include the posters, as well.
Not every Marvel character could be teased in such playful fashion, especially not where a physical injury or prosthetic is concerned (we don’t expect War Machine’s spine injury to be explored, let alone joked about). But coming out of Thor: Ragnarok and Infinity War, Thor has established himself as the one hero willing to laugh at his losses, his trials, and his injury. So it seems oddly fitting–perhaps even poetic, considering his cinematic refresh with Director Taika Waititi–that his place among the other Avengers to save the universe is a perfect fit. But take a look closer, and he’s delivering a punchline promising spit-take-inducing comedy in addition to the cosmic stakes.
The potential for eye-based comedy was almost immediately tossed aside when Rocket produced the aforementioned substitute. And while the Thor/Guardians of the Galaxy team-up is mainly remembered for producing Thor’s new axe, Stormbreaker, any reference to Thor’s flaws–or just the one–is welcome. Then again, perhaps Thor is just trying to avoid the Avengers: Endgame spoilers along with the fans.
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