It's out. After watching countless shoddy, blurry leaks, we finally have the real-deal Avengers: Infinity War trailer, and it is goddamn GLORIOUS. As of this writing, it has 1.5 million Likes on Youtube - within about 12 hours of being posted. That's a pretty shocking number, as no movie trailer EVER has gotten over a million Likes before this...and this is already over 500K Likes past that WITHIN THE SAME DAY.
Fans are responding to this trailer like nothing the internet has ever seen - there are levels of hype over this film that might seem a little inexplicable to journalists bemoaning "superhero movie fatigue" amongst the general audience.
But we think we know why - why people are so rapturously in love with this trailer and the film...it's because we NEEDED THIS. Not only that, we needed this TODAY.
Let's get this out of the way: NO ONE is happy with Justice League, and its performance at the box office is just the tip of the iceberg. Warner Bros. is unhappy with the film, which is all but certain to be the LOWEST grossing film in the entire DCEU up to this point (the fact that the CLIMAX of everything they've done is the worst-performing - the total inverse of Marvel - has gotta hurt). Fans of the DCEU are unhappy with the film, angered at WB the 2 hour runtime and Joss Whedon reshoots to the degree they have been rabble rousing for a "Zack Snyder cut" relentlessly since release. And casual viewers are unhappy with the film (which scored a B+ on CinemaScore, pretty low as far as big blockbusters are concerned), as would anyone having to witness Henry Cavill's face being mutilated by substandard CGI like that.
Nearly two weeks since the film's release, we can now approach the film a little more objectively since the shock of it all is wearing off. And wow - that was just...not good. It felt rushed and muddled, unclear in what it wanted to achieve and how it wanted to present itself, and really barely justified the NEED for a Justice League, since Superman did virtually all of the heavy lifting by himself in the climax of the film. DC dropped the ball big-time, and what we thought would be a hearty meal of a film that would fill us up for months has left a lot of fans still hungry.
It's disheartening - DC is realistically the only potential challenger to Marvel Studios in the big, interconnected superhero film genre, and good competition makes for a healthier marketplace. But Justice League went over as well as a wet fart - and that's a bummer. There was once a point where there was legitimate hype over a Justice League movie. Who didn't want to watch Flash and Batman and Superman and Wonder Woman and Cyborg and Aquaman all team up? References to Green Lantern and Captain Marvel (the Shazam one)? HELL YEAH, SIGN ME UP. I love what Marvel's done with their film universe, but the big heroes of my childhood were the members of the Justice League.
And now I and many others are left with Justice League blue-balls. Hype and expectations gave way to the sinking, mediocre reality...a team-up film that brought nothing new to the table, and continued the DCEU's legacy of wasted potential.
We need something to fill that void - a team-up film that can live up to the hype. We need Avengers: Infinity War.
The previous Avengers film, Age of Ultron, was....not good (to put it lightly). There are good SEQUENCES in the film (Hawkeye's conversation with Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, Vision's final moments with Ultron, most of the party scene, etc.), but it's a sloppy, choppy mess of a film on the whole - which makes sense, as this was one of the final films to fall victim to the so-called "Creative Committee", wherein suits like Ike Perlmutter had the power to mess with films based on whatever whims were coming to him that day. The process was so grating and soul-sucking, it chased away Joss Whedon from the world of Marvel entirely - and led to baffling decisions like Thor leaving the plot for an hour to go freakout in a cave.
But...this was the follow-up to The Avengers, a groundbreaking, genre-defining film that changed the rules of what was possible with superhero movies. They brought together DIFFERENT heroes from DIFFERENT franchises into a single unit. The Avengers was a film that brought something genuinely new to the table - Age of Ultron was...just a sequel. It didn't do anything different or interesting - it didn't bring in anyone new or special (Vision and Scarlet Witch are neat, but they were introduced IN that film). It was mostly the same...and with it, the name "Avengers" meant a little bit less in terms of spectacle.
Infinity War looks to be the TRUE successor to the legacy left by The Avengers - while The Avengers brought together four film franchises (uh, assuming you consider The Incredible Hulk a franchise, I guess), Infinity War is the net result of Marvel Studios' increasing expansion - it's bringing together EIGHT film franchises (that are also increasingly different in terms of tone and place):
And maybe even Ant-Man (although we didn't see any real evidence of that in the initial trailer). This one film is serving as a direct sequel to 8 separate franchises, intermingling them in a way that feels organic and natural, and (presumably) providing a satisfying story even to people who don't follow every single other franchise under the Marvel banner. This is what an Avengers film should be - not James Spader's snarky dumb robot trying to make a boring, beige city float.
The long-awaited trailer for 2018's Avengers: Infinity War came at an auspicious time - the morning of its release, the amount of horrible, grim news stories flooding our feeds seemed even more aggressive than normal. Hell, this was what used to be about 4 weeks of news, all condensed into a single morning:
A lot of these types of news stories have become normalized - seemingly kind celebrities revealed to be sex monsters, the President tweeting insane bullshit, war criminals swallowing poison in The Hague...just normal, everyday stuff. Looking at the trending news items of the day, it looked chaotic and miserable...except for one shining beacon.
Amongst all of this chaos and discontent, we finally had that Infinity War trailer.
If it sounds manchild-ish or immature to bring up the Infinity War trailer as a source of hope and joy in the face of actual pain, suffering, and anguish people are being forced to endure, you're not wrong. It is. But when things are SO bad and SO out of our control, you need to find little things to hold onto. And that 'little thing' is T'Challa ordering a subordinate to "...get that man a shield." as a star-less Captain America walks out of the shadows and reveals his gloriously bearded self. And then he has, like, panther-gauntlets on or something while he, Black Panther, Winter Soldier, Falcon, War Machine, Black Widow, and Hulk charge at an oncoming horde of aliens trying to invade Wakanda.
That's pretty dope.
Thanks, Infinity War. Now....don't you DARE suck.