Directors Joe and Anthony Russo almost pulled a fast one on us. They would have gotten away with it, too, if not for a pesky little inclusion in the Avengers: Infinity War TV spot Marvel Studios released this morning. The trailers have not been telling us the whole story, but now we can see it.
This is all part of an officially released TV spot, so technically, it’s not a spoiler. It is, however, something that has obviously (and intentionally) been hidden in previous trailers and could have just been an oversight in this latest piece of marketing. If you don’t want to know what I’m referring to (and will further speculate about), turn back now.
The previous Avengers: Infinity War trailers and TV spots have shown Thanos with only two Infinity Stones at multiple locations. He already has the Power Stone and adds the Space Stone during the attack on the Asgardian ship with Loki and Thor. Thanos still only has those same two stones later on Titan and on Earth (see gallery).
I’ve been thinking about this a lot. Why would Thanos spend so much of Infinity War with only two Infinity Stones? Would he really get the remaining four in some crazy, cosmic windfall near the end of the film?
On a recent episode of the Marvel Studios News podcast, I wondered aloud if Marvel Studios was simply hiding the truth about how many Infinity Stones Thanos has and when he gets them in the film. It would be easily enough to digitally conceal (or simply not add) other Infinity Stones in the trailer shots similar to how Marvel hid the fact that Thor loses an eye in trailers and TV spots for Thor: Ragnarok.
Those suspicions have been confirmed via a very quick shot of Thanos in the new TV spot.
Thanos’ hand doesn’t even appear in the frame when you watch the regular, widescreen version of the “Chant” TV spot on YouTube. It appears in the square format version of the spot used on Marvel Studios’ social media channels.
The red gem above Thanos’ ring finger is the Reality Stone, which means Thanos has paid a visit to the Collector. The Collector was given the Reality Stone (a.k.a. The Aether) by Volstagg and Lady Sif of Asgard during the mid-credits scene of Thor: The Dark World. We know the Guardians of the Galaxy check on the Collector, based on their arrival in Knowhere in the second Infinity War trailer (Thor probably tells them to go there), but perhaps they will be too late.
The orange gem above the Mad Titan’s pinkie is the Soul Stone. That is the one Infinity Stone we have never seen in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but now we know we will definitely see and learn about it in Infinity War. Where Thanos acquires it is anyone’s guess.
Given that an obvious effort was made to conceal how many Infinity Stones Thanos actually has throughout the film, I wonder how the Russos feel about this apparent slip. It’s not much of a spoiler, as I’m sure I wasn’t the only one thinking the truth about the Infinity Stones was being digitally concealed.
Regardless, now we know that Thanos will indeed be acquiring new Infinity Stones throughout the film rather than a fast start and fast finish without much happening in the middle. If nothing else, that will be much better for pacing.
Avengers: Infinity War is in theaters April 27.