What was your favorite moment from the movie?
Lev Akabas: Every single time that Thor called Rocket “Rabbit.” Also the ending. I know some may criticize it for taking the easy way out with a cliffhanger or exploiting cheap emotion, but it was also genuinely surprising. I’ve been consistently entertained by Marvel for the past ten years, but truly surprised? It’s been a while.
Andrea Yang: A five-way tie between Loki looking at Thor and admitting for the first time that he’s Odin’s son, Thor crawling over to hold Loki’s body in his arms, Steve introducing himself to Groot in the middle of battle, the four-women fight between Wanda, Natasha, Okoye and Proxima Midnight and when Peter disappears in Tony’s arms. Okay now I have to go cry again.
Ruth Park: When Thor shows up at Wakanda with his new axe, providing a fresh wave of hope and excited gasps to the audience.
David Gouldthorpe: My favorite moments, plural, were any time characters met who never had before. When the Guardians meet the Avengers, or when people end up in Wakanda, so on and so forth. Those interactions bring out more of the characters involved, plus it’s just flat out fun!
Jonvi Rollins: The ending. After years of watching a similar formula, in which the heroes face a villain with similar powers and then win in the end, this movie delivers something that’s almost the opposite.
What was your least favorite aspect of the movie?
Akabas: The Peter Dinklage casting was distracting, the Wakandan cast didn’t get enough screen time and the breakneck pace and overstuffed nature of the story stripped some characters of their nuance (Star-Lord especially).
Yang: How compact the storyline is such that the onslaught of emotions simply doesn’t stop.
Park: The end credits scene, which did not provide as much information/resolution as I had been expecting, especially since the movie’s ending was very abrupt.
Gouldthorpe: It was definitely stuffed to the brim with climax after climax, and in any other film it’d be exhausting. But Infinity War has so much on its plate, and honestly… I wouldn’t know what to cut. When you’re juggling over 25 heroes, everyone needs something to do!
Which character was the MVP of Infinity War?
Akabas: Iron Man. He remains the emotional core, even if some of the other characters like Spiderman or Black Panther have matched or surpassed him in terms of humor and fighting ability, respectively. It’s like the 2014 San Antonio Spurs. Tim Duncan was always the true MVP of that team, even if Kawhi Leonard was a better player in the Finals.
Yang: Thor, even though I love them all.
Park: Black Panther! I mean, the final battle scenes were all under his jurisdiction/command. And, he’s the Black Panther. WAKANDA FOREVER!
Gouldthorpe: I was delighted that my personal favorite, Doctor Strange, had a sizable role in the film, but Thanos was the best part of all this. He’s the most fully realized villain that Marvel has put together. We were promised that he’d be the greatest threat our heroes had ever faced. Sure enough, he was imposing, developed and one of my new favorite comic book villains.
Rollins: A tie between Thanos and Thor. Thanos for being the most powerful being in the MCU that we’ve seen thus far (maybe until Captain Marvel comes out), and Thor for getting the closest to stopping Thanos when he was at the height of his powers.
What does this movie mean for the state of the Marvel Cinematic Universe?
Akabas: It means the MCU is fucking lit. In all seriousness, though, the auteurism from Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther didn’t carry over and the Russo Brothers still don’t shoot action scenes in an innovating way — yet the movie was entertaining and satisfying all the same. Maybe when you’re dealing with 50 billion characters, just making a coherent movie is enough, but I hope that we’re not lowering our artistic standards, especially after Taika Waititi’s and Ryan Coogler’s stylistic imagination showed us what’s possible for the genre.
Yang: It set an amazing example for the possibility of a massive superhero movie that also has meaningful character developments and beautiful relationship arcs. Hats off to the Russos, they have my respect.
Park: Marvel has spent so much time — almost a decade — building up this hero lineup, and they ended this movie by killing a lot of beloved characters, which will keep people eager to see the second portion of Infinity War. It seems like a great tactic for mainstream superhero movies with complex plots!
Gouldthorpe: The film has broken records and raked in the highest first weekend gross ever. It’s a high point for Marvel, which has had fans ecstatic. The question does become, of course, how do you top it? But it also seems to show that the “Marvel fatigue” that James Cameron wished for does not seem to be in sight.
Rollins: The impact and early success of this movie is something that DC may never be able to match, and not due to a lack of quality, but to an absence of patience, planning and respect to source material. That said, unless the next few MCU phases build up toward a Secret Wars movie or a battle with Galactus, I’m not sure if Marvel can make a crossover event this ambitious and this good in the near future.