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Headscratchers / The Avengers (2012)

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Headscratchers for The Avengers film. See here for the comics' headscratchers page.

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    Communication by ear piece? 
  • I know everyone is supposedly communicating by bluetooth ear pieces, but we don't see any. It just looks like they are pretending they have ear pieces while still being able to communicate.
    • Let's just assume/pretend that the earpieces are either transparent or very well hidden in the clothes/helmets. We indeeds don't see any, but it isn't entirely implausible that the technology in the MCU is so advanced that you can have "earpieces" that don't have to be worn on the ears and still fill that purpose.
    • The Avengers were equipped by SHIELD. If any human being in the MCU would have access to communications gear so miniaturized and/or camouflaged as to effectively be invisible, it's superspy Nick Fury.

     Controlling the inner Hulk 
  • The first time we see Bruce Banner turn into the Hulk was when he fell through a destroyed flooring with Black Widow. He was trying to stop transforming but couldn't, and basically attacked anyone he saw. Later on, when a big metallic slug alien from outer space charges right at him, he can suddenly choose to transform AND retain conscious control because "he's always angry"? This seems like a weak attempt at covering a plot hole, assuming it didn't create another one. Plus, when Hulk and Thor fight together, Hulk punches Thor from the side (which looks like it was meant to be funny), which means he remembers fighting Thor before and got "payback". Can anyone explain all of this?
    • The first time Banner turns into the Hulk was entirely involuntary. He fought it because he knew that that was what Loki wanted, to turn into the Hulk and destroy everything on the Helicarrier. So I'd say a mixture between additional stress and self-fulfilling prophecy caused Banner to loose control over the Hulk, as well as the Hulk going absolutely berserk (similar to what happened in South Africa in AoU). Later in Manhattan, Banner chose to turn into the Hulk with no external pressure. It was a controlled transformation and thus the Hulk did only fight those he was supposed to fight. Additionally, it seems that the Hulk has a personality similar to a tantrum throwing child. In Ragnarok, he hasn't transformed back to Banner for 2 years and now has a vocabulary like toddler and also can sit calmly besides Thor without transforming back to Banner. So, if the Hulk stayed in his form long enough one day he might have complete control over his emotions all the time, but as for now, if there's even the slightest reason to completely freak out, he will.
      • Bruce's comments in Ragnarok are also illustrative, because he mentions "Before it always felt like me and Hulk each had one hand on the wheel". Thus that means when they're struggling against each other for control the results are unpredictable and chaotic. During the Chitauri invasion they're both interested in steering the wheel the same way, they're "driving" together rather than against each other.

    Thor's Punching Power 
  • When Thor's fighting Iron Man in the woods, he slugs him in the face. The blow turns Tony's head to the side, but doesn't scratch the armor. Later, Thor punches the Hulk in the face and spins him around almost 360 degrees. Still later, Thor brawls with Loki and pummels him repeatedly but doesn't really move him, though he does cause some visible damage by the next scene. Why does he affect Hulk more than Iron Man? Why does he affect Loki less than either of the others, at least with individual blows?
    • Did Thor have his hammer when he punched Iron Man? Because he definitely had his hammer when he gave Hulk the 360.
    • No, Thor didn't have his hammer in either of the instances I'm referring to. He punches Iron Man after they land from flying to a mountain and back, and he punches Hulk before he summons Mjölnir, shortly after tackling him through the wall.
    • People don't always hit with the same strength? It depends on the situation and what you want to do.
    • It might have to do with momentum. He was probably charging at Hulk when he punched him in order to save Black Widow, while he was merely standing for the punch to Tony. As for Loki, Thor was initially holding back because he didn't want to hurt his brother, until Loki stabbed him.
    • It also has to do with the person receiving the punch. As I recall, the Hulk was focused on Black Widow; Thor caught him by surprise, and so he didn't have a chance to brace himself for the hit. Iron Man and Loki were both facing Thor and ready for a brawl.
    • OP here. Possible Fridge Logic may follow, with much verbosity. As was mentioned, Thor was holding back against Loki at first by virtue of not wanting to hurt him. This could possibly also extend to Iron Man and the Hulk. Thor punching Iron Man does almost nothing, but mere seconds later he dents the helmet and sends him flying away with a headbutt, which AFAIK, tends to not hit as hard as a punch. Thor also tries to reason with Banner at first, encouraging him to calm down. Even after he summons Mjölnir, he doesn't seem to be trying to subdue the Hulk so much as distract him. It's possible that Thor is holding back against pretty much everyone in the movie, except the Chitauri. Even then, if Thor went around slamming his hammer down like in Jotunheim, (and also when he helped Hulk kill that one Leviathan) he'd cause all sorts of collateral damage to the city. The idea of Thor holding back also fits in with his character development in his solo movie, and Odin's talk of "a warrior's patience."
    • Related to the above: when Thor hit Cap with charged up Mjölnir, did he somehow know it wouldn't smash right through his shield and rip Cap into pieces? Or punch shield into Cap smashing his bones? Because otherwise it looks like Thor was lethally (to Cap) reckless in their fight.
    • This was discussed at length in the archive pages; basically Tony had spent the last several minutes pissing him off, and interprets Cap telling him to put the hammer down as "you can't win so surrender." Warrior's patience or not, that riles him up even more, and keep in mind, Thor left a fair amount of time in his attack for Cap to move out of the way, and since he decides to stand his ground, that would indicate to Thor that Cap feels good about his chances.
    • The Character Development of Thor doesn't mean that his bad qualities are gone entirely. In the Norse Myths, Thor's anger issues were front-and-center of his character, to the point where he was sent to live with essentially foster parents because the Asgardians didn't know what else to do with him. While this curbed his anger greatly, it never entirely went away. Same thing with Thor in this film. His impatience and resort to force are toned down, but not gone completely. Note his big grin just before he summons Mjolnir to help him fight Hulk. He's finally got an opponent he doesn't have to hold back against, a fight he can really throw himself into and enjoy. That battle lust is still present, as is his occasionally-poor judgement. Thor attacking Cap with that kind of force was just him being pushed to the point where his character flaws were his dominant motivation.
    • Wordof God in the Avengers artbook states that Thor could have truly destroyed Iron Man if he wanted to, so it's very likely that Thor was indeed holding back against Stark, like what was said above. Not to mention that, as revealed in the tie-in comic and TDW guidebook, Thor was weakened and almost killed by the dark energy that Odin used to send Thor to Earth, so it wouldn't be as easy of a fight as if Thor was at his usual power level. Hulk is much stronger than Iron Man and while Thor might have been holding back against Hulk to some degree (as mentioned above), he'll still need to put in more effort to stand toe-to-toe against a raging gamma monster than a mortal man in a metal suit.

    The portal 
When the portal is opened, the far end seems to be in space, where there's no air. This end of the portal was on a planet with pressurized air. This would cause 917 mph winds. Perhaps the aliens are capable of moving against that, but iron man fell through it with nothing beyond the force of gravity. Also, the only reason he went in in the first place was to steer the nuke through it. He could have just brought it to somewhere in the general vicinity and the wind would have sucked it through. I think it would have sucked a few buildings through it too, although it's harder to work out as the strength of the wind would decrease with the square of the distance from the portal.

Everyone only seems to use one side of the portal. This seems odd, as the aliens could get their armies through twice as fast if they used both sides.

The nuke was set off before the portal was closed, and it wasn't all that far away. It should have burned down the buildings under the portal, assuming they were still standing after the hurricane-force winds it generates.

  • A) It's a magic SCIENCE! portal. There's no reason it can't have some contrived techno-babble reason why it doesn't suck air through it.
    B) What in the world are you talking about, "one side of the portal"? It's a door. You go through and end up on the other side. Trying to use both "sides" of a door at the same time makes no sense.
    C) Depending on how big the Chitauri mothership was, the nuke might have actually been quite a large distance away from the portal. With no air in space there's nothing to carry the shockwave back to Earth, and again, there could be any number of techno-babbly reasons why the heat and radiation didn't travel back through the portal.
  • A) There's no evidence that they're in a vacuum. The Chitauri can breathe in that environment, after all.
    B) There's no evidence that the portal works that way. All indications are that it is one-way from one side.
    C) The nuke's blast is clearly not passing through the portal by the time it closes and therefore would not have affected the city.
    • If the portal was one-way, Iron Man and the nuke wouldn't have gone through. Asgardian magic science seems the best answer.
    • Not that kind of one-way. The portal opens up in the sky and the Chitauri exit from beneath it. The original question was why weren't they coming in from the other side of the hole in the sky, which is to say above the portal. The answer is that it's functionally a door.
  • The portal is artificially created by a sophisticated machine with force field capabilities. It was probably engineered to avoid issues with the pressure differential, so the Chitauri invasion could go as smoothly as possible.
    • Indeed, if they couldn't negate the effects of any such pressure differential, the Chitauri probably wouldn't have invaded in the first place until they could do so. They don't want to mess up their own realm-of-origin by letting a huge blast of Earthly atmosphere and alien debris come funneling in from their intended target, after all.
    • The question of air pressure is actually answered in the film. When the Chitauri first invade, there's a shot from their perspective, passing through the portal. As they pass through, for several seconds, you can see that there's a transparent barrier layer of something - thick air, a force-field, something along those lines - across the portal itself. Then the air clears, and they're above Manhattan.
  • You can't use both sides of the portal, because the other side is the other portal in another part of the universe. Just take the door analogy literally: You can only access a door from the other side if you're in the other room. That's how a portal works.
    • I think I get the question. Imagine two coins set up on their rims on opposite ends of a tabletop. Let's suppose the coins are magic, in that, if an ant crawls up onto the Heads side of one coin, it instantly ends up on the Tails side of the second coin and vice-versa. Now, the movie's portal connects two points in space, but at each point manifests as flat, circular entity in 3D space, and thus would very likely have at least two sides, Front and Back. If the "Front" of the portal in space connected to the "Rear" side of the portal on Earth, it would seem to be the case that the Front of the Earth-portal ought to connect of the Rear of the space-portal. So the Chitauri could enter through both the front and back of the space-portal and therefore emerge, respectively, from the back and front of the Earth-portal. The answer, I think, to why the movie didn't display this is that it simply didn't think of it.

    "Make a move, Reindeer Games." 
  • In Stuttgart, Tony aims every single weapon the Mark VI has at Loki. This includes not just the repulsors, but the smart bullets, the "Tank Missile" the explosives used on the Hammeroids, and presumably the cutting lasers. For some reason, Tony forgets that he has these 10 minutes later while fighting Thor, only using repulsors and physical blows. Why?
    • Because they're brawling. It's the superhero equivalent of an angry fistfight. Tony generally only resorts to his heavier weaponry when he absolutely needs to, and his repulsors and fists were doing a perfectly adequate job at pummeling Thor. Note how during the battle against the Chitauri, he reserves most of his non-repulsor weaponry for critical moments because he wants to conserve his ammunition. He's not going to fire off his heavy weapons during an angry brawl with Thor unless he absolutely has to.
    • Not to mention that he doesn't seem to want to actually kill Thor. The lasers, the missiles, the bullets, they're all pretty much guaranteed to be lethal. He knows Thor can take a repulsor blast because Loki did.
    • I'm not so sure Thor would definitely be killed by Tony's best weapons, but with his main ones being ineffective and Thor getting progressively more pissed off, he could have tried something different, since he had to stop Thor or lose the Tesseract.
    • When Tony showed off all his weapons it was not with the intent to use them all, but to show them all off as a show of force. Think of a cat arching it's back and its fur rising to make itself look bigger. That was basically what Tony was doing. Would he have used all those weapons? Maybe. But from a character stand point, Tony is not an aggressor, he is a defender, so if it had come down to it, he probably would have done the same thing to Loki as he did to Thor. That is he escalated force as necessary.
    • If you watch closely you can see he is, in fact about to use the wrist missiles on Thor right before Cap finally intervenes. He stows them once Cap tells them to stop, right before Thor knocks him away.

    "The humans slaughter each other in droves...." 
  • Loki declares that we're slaughtering each other in droves, but Tony claims in Iron Man 2 to have "successfully privatized world peace." Is Loki just trying to get in Thor's head? And if he is, wouldn't Heimdall and thus Thor by proxy know that he's lying?
    • Loki's way older than modern humanity and likely is pooling all our history into one big lump. To him it may look like just a long timeline of war, with Tony's efforts being one brief recent peace that will soon be replaced by more war again.
    • Tony "privatizing world peace" is a case of Tony relieving tensions between major superpowers. Brush wars and localized violence are still going to happen. The fact that SHIELD still exists and is still working on mundane, human threats like Russian arms trafficking indicates that there's still plenty of violence in the world.
    • You are taking the line way too literally. He's referring to the effect the private market and private citizens are having on working toward world peace. Its worth remembering also that due to the success of the Avengers it is now a franchise which means that 1) there is currently a confirmed sequel 2) we can assume that it will also mean new Marvel superheroes given how sequels are nearly always designed to be bigger and it will give the studio an excuse to sell more merchandise. In other words a universe that contains Captain America, Iron Man, the Hulk, Nick Fury, Thor and potentially the X-Men, Spider Man, the Fantastic Four and the Punisher I think any hope of World Peace is pretty ridiculous.
    • Tony very clearly isn't talking about that. The meeting with the line about having privatized world peace takes place when the government is trying to confiscate his armor. Which he later comes around to something resembling an agreement with. While comic book Tony has bouts with alcoholism movie Tony has been shown as a heavy drinker precisely once when he's forces Rhode to take an armor. Which drunk as he was it's difficult to believe that Tony doesn't have all sorts of back up systems that could have stopped Rhode anytime he pleased. World Peace also tends to be in reference to actual wars. With the debatable exception of some of Captain America's moves since it's unclear who S.H.I.E.L.D. answers and the Fantastic Four in cases of Dr. Doom nothing any of these heroes do is likely to rise beyond what are ultimately petty and personal squabbles with surprisingly little collateral considering what they are capable of.
    • Stark only said he'd privatized world peace, i.e. established that a private individual, not just governments, can undertake to play a significant role in the enforcement of peace. He never claimed that he'd actually achieved it.

    Is Loki Really More Powerful? 
  • This is sort of a meta-question, but why do some feel that Loki is more powerful in this movie? His Chitauri scepter didn't seem any more powerful than Gungnir in terms of blasting ability, his throwing knives have apparently lost some of their oomph, and he gets beaten down by anyone Iron Man level or above. Sure he has an army now, but in THOR he was the King of Asgard with access to a planet-busting super weapon and the Odinspear. It seems like the only thing he can do now that he couldn't do better in THOR is control minds. Yet even Tom Hiddleston claims that Loki is a lot more powerful and dangerous in this movie.
    • "Power" is a nebulous concept. Loki's power in the first movie came from thin lies and opportunity. His power in this film came from control over an entire army gifted by Thanos himself. "Power" in this case comes from the capacity to be a threat beyond what only Thor could handle.
    • I agree with the previous post about power being a more nebulous concept, but also, if you simply mean physical (and magical) power, it is entirely possible he has gotten stronger. Take into account his absence after falling through the worm hole. Further consider what we do not know about what happened to him with the boss and what changes to both psyche and physicality he might have endured. Plus there is a line he spouts to his brother Thor about how he has seen things his brother could only dream about. Perhaps he has not just seen things. As for "anyone Tony-strength" being able to take him down... keep in mind Loki is playing a role here. As has often been indicated in various sources, it is entirely possible Loki has been taking a dive this entire time. So one could say he let Tony beat him down. As for the Hulk, well Loki was not exactly prepared for the pure brutality of Hulk, nor the absolute strength he wielded. Aside from Hulk, Loki took all the blows of The Avengers in stride if you pay attention. And now... he won't underestimate the Hulk, so beware.
      • Power is also a relative concept. Aside from this we've only seen Loki against Asgardian foes or people on the level of Asgardians — Frost Giants, Dark Elves, and the like. Loki physically outclasses all but one or two people on the entire planet of Earth; the only ones who might be able to stand up to him physically are the Hulk, Thor, and just maybe Iron Man. Loki's more powerful here because everyone else is that much less powerful than his normal enemies.

    Loki's invulnerability 
  • Loki seems nigh immortal in this movie, having things happen to him that would have killed a human a hundred times over. Is that natural to him? It seems like Frost Giants weren't all that hard to kill in Thor.
    • Loki was raised as an Aesir, and is wearing his Asgardian clothes. When Thor was depowered, his Asgardian clothes was taken from him, so maybe it's a case of Clothes Make the Superman. The raised-as-an-Aesir part may play into having altered his physiology; maybe Asgardians have a really good diet/training/augmentations that cause them to grow more durable.
    • Actually, the Frost Giants are extremely tough. Consider this. Loki is basically a runt Frost Giant. He's obviously not as strong as Thor, so he's probably about as strong and durable as your average Asgardian. In THOR, it was difficult to tell exactly how physically powerful Asgardians and Frost Giants were since they mostly were in other worlds. In the Avengers, we see how Loki stacks up against more measurable adversaries. He no-sells bullets and Captain America's blows. He gets thrown around by Iron Man's repulsors and by explosions, but is otherwise unhurt. Only Thor and the Hulk are capable of causing him visible damage. Presumably, if you took one of the Frost Giants from Thor and subjected them to the attacks Loki tanked, they would handle them just as well, if not better. This retroactively makes Thor slaughtering dozens of Frost Giants much more impressive.
    • But we see Frost Giants be immediately disintegrated from one shot from the Destroyer. Later Loki gets shot with a reverse-engineered Destroyer beam and he's fine, albeit humiliated.
    • What makes you think the reverse-engineered weapon is going to be anywhere near the same strength as the Destroyer itself?
    • Especially when observed effects from the weapons in question wildly differ. One emits a short, bright burst that knocks Loki through a wall. The other is a massive beam of energy that blows apart buildings and vaporizes Frost Giants. There's a tremendous difference between the two.
    • Also, it's fully possible Loki's half-Aesir. It goes back and forth in the comics, but he is occasionally referred to as a "half-giant," and in Kenneth Branagh's commentary for Thor, he describes the casket scene as Loki discovering that he's "at least half-Jotun," which opens the possibility for the MCU.
    • It's occasionally mentioned in the comics that, after Thor and Odin, Loki's actually the third strongest and most durable asgardian. He's stronger than an ordinary frost giant or Aesir because he uses magic to enhance his strength and durability. In Dungeons & Dragons terms, he's permanently cast bull's strength, bear's endurance, and stoneskin on himself.
    • Right near the end of the first Thor movie, Loki took the rainbow bridge exploding in his face without a single scratch. Loki has always been extremely durable. Obviously not to the extent of Thor or Hulk, but certainly way more than an average human.

    Cap's tactical expertise 
  • Cap is meant to be the tactical mind of the operation, except, is he? He might tell everyone what to do, but does that truly make a difference? The Avengers are doing fairly well before any plan is made, and even after the plan, some forget about it (Thor doesn't bottleneck the portal for long) without it making a difference. Not to mention that his plan seemed to have been fight the aliens, with the frankly obvious need to close the portal completely eluding him. It felt like it didn't matter what the plan was, because with such powerful individuals following it, almost any plan would have worked.
    • Not quite. Everyone was holding their own before Cap made his plan. But what he was ordering was for everyone to work together to contain the Chitauri and keep them from getting any farther in the city. Anybody who could fight at long range like Hawkeye or Tony were kept in the air so they could keep the area surrounded. It would have been wasting their potential to let them keep fighting on the ground. That's what they were all doing before Cap's plan, and they were winning at it currently, but it would have either got them overwhelmed faster by a huge Zerg Rush or some of the smarter aliens would have used the ground troops to distract the Avengers while they fly off to wreak chaos wherever they want. With Cap's plan, none of the aliens got very far. Listen closely to him HERE, you'll notice almost all their orders are about keeping the Chitauri in one place.

      Also, Cap didn't forget about closing the portal. He had heard from Tony that it was surrounded by an unbreachable shield. Note that the first lines of his plan are "Until we can close that portal..."
    • Thor is the only person who actually breaks off from his part of the plan at first, and the breakdown of the overall tactical plan comes naturally as the Chitauri overwhelm the Avengers with sheer numbers. Remember that the first casualty of any battle is the plan.
    • Precisely. The idea was to buy time and minimize damage to the city until they could figure out how to close the portal, which is exactly what Black Widow does. Since Selvig only wakes up a couple of minutes before she reaches the tower, Cap's plan worked about as well as it could have.

    "Should I try Miss Potts, sir?" 
  • Just a small nit-pick; when Tony called Pepper at the end, she was on a plane. Why is her phone even on? I know it's a private jet, but still, it shouldn't be allowed even then.
    • Actually since the end of last year most commercial aircraft now allow cellphones on aircraft as the fears of them effecting equipment are now largely considered overrated. They are still banned on take off and landing though.
    • Dude, that's Tony Stark's personal plane. It probably has its own communications satellite.
    • For starters, that was pretty much definitely a private plane, and you could always use cell phones on private planes. Secondly, even before the restriction was lifted on commercial flights, they had Wi Fi, and you can set up your phone number (with something like a Google Voice number) to forward to your Skype number which would work if you're on Wi Fi.
    • In large part, the reason they don't like people using cell phones on planes is partially due to the navigation systems, but also because if there's an emergency announcement, they need to you to be paying attention NOW, not busy playing Candy Crush or whatever.

    How does Mjölnir not weigh down the Helicarrier? 
  • Mjölnir can't be lifted or moved by anything besides a worthy person's grip. In the Thor movie, a pickup truck tethered to the handle by a chain succeeds only in tearing the truck apart. Mjölnir doesn't seem to damage anything it's simply set on, but it's uncompromisingly heavy. On any of the occasions it was set down in the SHIELD Helicarrier (most obviously that brief moment where it pinned the Hulk's hand to the floor), why didn't it present its unmovable problems to the whole craft?
    • For the same reason it doesn't rip a hole to the center of the planet when it is set down due to the planet's insane speed while orbiting the sun. Whatever magic is involved with the hammer, said magic is smart enough to make it only impossible to be lifted by someone actually trying to pick it up. When it is set down on a surface, it stays rooted to that surface. If it was completely immobile, the moment Thor set it down it would cut a hammer-shaped hole in the surface of whatever planet it was on.
    • OP here: I didn't think it'd cut a hole in the helicarrier, either. I thought it'd just be incapable of doing anything besides dropping, with Earth as its reference point. The helicarrier itself, being a vehicle (and not a valid reference point for Mjölnir's immobility) wouldn't be able to move it.
    • Why? Observed behavior indicates that it doesn't work that way. Mjölnir can be set down on a surface and it will not hinder that surface's movement. (that and an object that small capable of stopping the Helicarrier from moving would slice through the ship regardless; basic physics re: concentration of force) If Mjölnir can be set on the planet's surface without damaging the planet thanks to the massive amount of kinetic energy involved in its orbit, then it can be set on the surface of a moving vehicle without hindering that vehicle. If someone tries to lift it using that vehicle, then they're not likely to succeed. If the hammer is set on that vehicle by Thor, it could move it (as there's a tacit implication that it is Thor's will that the hammer be transported by the act of putting it down). Whatever magitech that is involved in Mjölnir, its smart enough to recognize when it is being transported and when it is being lifted.
    • That's probably the most plausible explanation I've seen for it so far. I'm basing my observations right now solely off the MCU and how Mjölnir has been portrayed in it. I can't think of any times besides the helicarrier where Thor set his hammer down on something that continued to be able to move after he did so. Accordingly, I didn't really know how to conceptualize it in the helicarrier's case. Are there any other times it's transported like that, and I just don't remember them?
    • Mjölnir isn't particularly heavy. The enchantment isn't "It's really heavy, except for to those worthy." It's that the hammer cannot be moved and wielded by someone who isn't worthy. I.e., it can't be moved by conscious effort.
    • OP still here: I didn't think Mjölnir to be particularly heavy, but what threw me off was that it's been demonstrated that machines can't move the hammer either. Does it just know whether someone is trying to move it, and it locks up when they are? And when it's just being moved around without anyone trying to keep track of it, it's fine? Hopefully none of the SHIELD crew running the ship learned that Mjölnir was on board.
    • All indications from observed behavior is that when the hammer is set on a surface, it cannot be moved from that surface without Thor's own hand. If it is set on a planet, it remains rooted to that spot despite the planet's orbit. Since the Helicarrier is moving, the hammer stays rooted to that spot on the Helicarrier.
    • When the hammer was lying in New Mexico at the Thor film, it was moving: it was set over the surface of a planet that's moving around its sun, and it goes with that planet. It's not really much different than if it was left on a human vehicle, the vehicle is simply smaller, but that's just a matter of scale (Earth is also much smaller than other planets and stars). As for using machines to raise it, that's simply cheating. Either with his own hand or using a machine to do it, the issue is whenever the man is worthy or not.
    • My understanding is that Mjölnir's restriction on "movement" is conceptual, rather than absolute or relational. Which is to say, if for example, Thor put his hammer down in say a boat, it wouldn't necessarily sink the boat, nor stop it from moving. The hammer can move in terms of absolute or relative position to anything (and seeing as its solid matter at above absolute zero, atomic physics says the whole thing should actually be constantly vibrating, thus moving), but it cannot move in terms of its theoretical positioning. For example, if I put my keys on my desk and then go to dinner, the keys move in the absolute sense (Earth is rotating, etc.), and the relative sense to say, me, but their theoretical position (on my desk) remains constant. So if Thor set Mjölnir on the helicarrier, it is moving in relation to the Earth and any other relative positioning, but it remains constantly where he put it down, that is the helicarrier.
    • Mjölnir is an artifact from Viking mythology. Would the god-hero of a culture that practically lived on boats have a signature weapon that he couldn't set down on the deck without it ripping a hole in the hull? The hammer's worthy-wielders-only restriction wasn't laid upon it by an idiot.
    • It does, however, very effectively pin down Loki on the Rainbow Bridge in the first Thor film. Loki reacts as though it is actually physically heavy, and he can't even slide around while it's on his chest.

     How did Cap get away with breaking into the helicarrier armory? 
  • Obviously, he waited until no one was around, but there must be some kind of video surveillance or something. We see security cameras in the hallways when Loki is being escorted to his cell. There must be at least one looking at the armory door. It's an important place to look.
    • Maybe Tony's virus caused the cameras to shut down. I'll have to rewatch the scene to see if the editing allows for said break-in to occur with the virus being activated.
    • Tony's virus was already in effect by the time Cap went off on his investigation, but the virus was supposed to just break into SHIELD's encrypted files, not disable systems around the ship. That seems like something people would notice, and Tony didn't expect Cap to go do that anyway.
    • "Sir, I've got Captain America going into the armory." "And?" "He's breaking into the armory." "And?" Uh..." "It's Captain America, Lenny. If he's breaking into the armory, he's got to have a good reason to do so."
    • One would think they'd at least tell Fury (or Hill, or whoever's running things at the moment) what's going on. Also I want to meet Lenny now.
    • Lenny is probably aware that Loki has mind control powers, and anyone acting suspicious is potentially working for him.
    • But Loki's been locked up all this time. People were just talking to Captain America not too long ago, and he didn't display any signs of mind control like blue eyes or such.
    • It doesn't really matter, they can't just sit there and do nothing while someone breaks into the armory. Even if it's Captain America and they're not going to stop him, they should at least let someone know. Which I'm pretty sure would quickly get back to Fury, who would really rather Cap not find the HYDRA stuff they have stashed there.
    • First off, it isn't the ship's armory, it's labeled as "Secure storage 10-C." In other words, a cargo area, one of no doubt many on the ship. It's only carrying weapons because they evacuated the SHIELD ground facility's Phase 2 research materials onto the carrier. So there's no reason for it to have extra security. And someone may have noticed and tried to alert Fury, but he may have already been on his way to confront Tony by then.
    • This is probably the best bet I've seen for it. You're right about the secure storage part, I hadn't actually looked at the scene in a little while. Misspoke with the entry title. I didn't think the storage room would have extra security, the actual armory required a retinal scan for Coulson to enter. I just thought it'd have the same surveillance as the rest of the helicarrier, which would still be enough to see Cap breaking in. It would put Cap's break-in chronologically quite a bit ahead of his discussion with Tony and Bruce, though. Like, at least a few hours ahead. The sun had time to come up, after all.
    • It's Captain freaking America. Who's going to stop him? Even if someone had seen him, (and presumably someone or many someones had to have seen him walking through the halls with that gun), why would they question him carrying the gun or breaking into the storage? They might have made note of it and told higher ups, but in the end Captain America is a living legend and living legends tend to be able to get away with stuff that regular folks wouldn't.
      Random Guard: "Sir, you can't come in here."
      Cap: "Son, just don't."
    • Why assume whomever monitors those cameras even knows there are experimental weapons in that storage room? The Helicarrier's crew are unlikely to be kept informed about all of SHIELD's research projects, especially top-secret ones; all they know is that a bunch of stuff from the evacuated base wound up there. Heck, for all they know it's an ordinary stockroom and Cap is just looking for some metal polish to give his shield a buff.

     How did Cap survive getting shot with a Chitauri laser blast? 
  • We clearly see in the final battle that Captain America takes a Chitauri laser blast square in the gut, but simply takes it as if he took a gut punch and then stands up all okay and "ready to go another bout." How did he survive a laser blast? Is his uniform laser proof? (I doubt that, though, as it shows a tear with some blood on it after he gets shot). Does his super-serum give him some measure of laser-proofness?
    • Why are you assuming the blast is somehow instantly fatal? Nothing shows that it is, any more than a gunshot would be. Possibly his uniform has some kind of armor in it, like kevlar.
    • This is probably a big part of it. The Chitauri infantry weren't using HYDRA disintegration bolts. The energy weapons they were using, in fact, are weaker than any we've seen from anyone else (compared to HYDRA's Tesseract weapons, Iron Man's repulsors and the Destroyer's beam). Cap was hurt when he got hit, but between the relatively weak impact, his uniform's protection (seeing as the WWII one was a carbon weave, this one was probably quite a lot better), and his being a super-soldier, that wasn't going to keep him down for long.
    • Heck, the fact that the Chitauri weaponry isn't as potent as HYDRA gear is why they needed Loki to steal the Tesseract for them in the first place.
    • Cap is explicitly superhuman. The fact that he managed to survive being frozen in the Arctic for sixty years and can knock down punching bags with such ease that has to keep dozens of spares, plus can go toe-to-toe with Loki and hold his own shows that he's not a baseline human. He withstood the shot because he's tougher than any normal human.
    • Cap is explicitly not superhuman. He's a Badass Normal, and always has been; his super power is being the peak of human physical ability in every possible aspect, give or take some slightly-improved healing/recovery. Keep in mind the Chitauri were there to conquer the humans, not wipe them off the planet; they threaten, they corral, and they definitely terrorize, but they don't make any serious attempts to kill anyone who isn't at least in the vicinity of someone who's fighting back. Chances are those lasers are non-lethal concussion force only, more designed to discourage resistance than to kill anybody.
    • Someone hasn't seen Winter Soldier yet. Cap is doing things way, way beyond Badass Normal. We see him do things from dropping out of a moving jet over hundreds of feet into the water with no parachute (twice!), he takes direct hits to the face from a cybernetic arm that explicitly breaks concrete, knocks down locked doors on pure momentum from his charges, kicks humans hard enough that they fly a good twenty feet away horizontally, gets shot three times in the chest and gets up and continues fighting, after lifting a massive steel I-beam, and does some frankly amazing parkour that would be impossible for a human to pull off.
    • Cap is not a Badass Normal and he never has been. He is explicitly at the peak of human perfection in every aspect, which is something that is completely impossible for a human to achieve. Someone who has gotten as physically strong as a human can ever be is going to be the exact opposite of agile. Someone who is as agile as a human can possibly be is not going to be exceptionally strong. Captain America lives in the freakish outliers of every possible physical trait. He can out-lift any strongman, outperform any gymnast, he has the most robust immune system, the toughest skin, the strongest bones, the keenest eyesight, the sharpest hearing, etc. He's the mother that lifts a car to save her baby...except he can do it at will any time he wants.
    • You're talking comics Cap. Movie Cap is a separate continuity with a different power level. Oh, and in the trailer for 'Winter Soldier' we see Movie Cap do a 500+ foot jump out of an airplane into water without a parachute and come back up fresh as a daisy, so he's totally superhuman. (To a normal human being, hitting water from that high up is not materially different from hitting concrete.)
    • Peak Human potential isn't just Olympic level. It's full adrenaline, pushing the human form to its very limits level. Cap can with minimal effort lift a motorcycle over his head and leap far distances, as well as land on his feet with no issues. He's basically superhuman (if a weak one) in everything but a technicality. This is the same in the comics too. So yeah, he can take a blast like that much better than say Hawkeye or Widow could, but can't just shrug them off like Thor and Hulk can.
    • Cap's body is capable of healing from injury far faster than the typical human, or even the peak human, thanks to the serum. The blast did do some significant damage, and if you pay attention, he doesn't take the shot and then immediately pop back up, he's down for at least two minutes. That two minutes was sufficient for him to heal enough to walk and fight.

     "What are you prepared to do?" 
  • When Nick Fury and Thor are talking about Loki, Nick insinuates that they could probably coerce Loki into talking if they put him through enough pain, and Thor asks him, "What are you asking me to do?" And that's pretty straightforward. He's just saying like, I'm not going to torture my brother for you. Fury's response is a little confusing, though. He answers with, "I'm asking, what are you prepared to do?" Which seems a bit on the cryptic side. I don't really know what he was getting at there.
    • The conversation starts with Fury asking if Thor could make Loki talk. Thor responds with doubt, saying he's unsure whether pain would be effective on Loki. Fury counters that a lot of guys think they're tough enough to hold out until the pain actually starts. Thor asks "What are you asking me to do?" "I'm asking, what are you prepared to do?" In other words, how far would you (Thor) be willing to go in order to extract information from Loki. Fury knows if Thor won't play ball, then SHIELD has one less chance to locate the Tesseract.
    • Given that we are shown that Fury's plan was to send the Black Widow in to play mind games, it seems highly unlikely that Fury actually wants Thor (or anyone else) to torture Loki. The 'what are you prepared to do?' suggests that Fury is just trying to gauge Thor's commitment to actually helping out in the long run. It could even be a Secret Test of Character. If Thor readily agreed to torture Loki, it would more than justify 'Phase 2'. You're going to want god-stopping weapons if even the best of those gods is willing to torture his own brother without hesitation.

     The portal again 
  • The portal is supposed to be a great big door in space, essentially. The bottom side opens to New York, and the top side opens to... Wherever the Chitauri are coming from. So if you were flying around in New York, and you approached the portal from above, what would happen? What would even be up there? It's never elaborated on in the movie, and it was bothering me the whole time I was watching stuff go through it.
    • I figured the top side is just covered by cloud and doesn't lead anywhere if you try to pass through it.
    • It becomes one of those portal physics things. If you can pass through it like that, then if you go halfway through and turn around, part of you will be in New York and part of you will be in Chitauri space. And you'll be cut in half, I guess. That kinda thing.
    • We never see it from the other side, so who is to know, but perhaps the other side is crackling energy of some kind. Think of the Star Gates and how they only are seen from one side. The other side might even be dangerous (or lethal) to try and pass through.
    • Any time you have a portal that is accessible from the "back", the question of what happens when you try to enter from that direction is going to come up. If the work in question uses real-world physics (e.g. realistic wormholes), then you can use real-world physics equations to answer that question. Barring that, however, the only way to answer is through a character telling you, someone who works on the show telling you, or a character actually trying it on screen. Some popular possibilities are:
    • The energy field/gravitational gradient/whatever doesn't let you approach at all. You either get repulsed, or shunted to the side.
    • The energy field/gravitational gradient/whatever reduces you to your component atoms.
    • The back connects to itself, so if you enter from the back, you get turned around and come back out the same way.
    • The "back" of this portal connects to the "back" of the other portal, so which one is the "front" and which the "back" is largely a matter of semantics. note 
    • Actually, they do cover this. It's very easy to miss with all that's going on, but right when Cap, Natasha, and Clint climb out of the crashed Quinjet and stand there looking at the portal, it's viewed from the top, before the camera rotates to show the "underside" where you can see wherever the Chitauri are coming from. It's just clear sky. Goodness only knows what would happen if you tried to fly down through that point, but as mentioned above, magicky science portal.
    • The portal is actually a wormhole which bends conventional, three-dimensional space-time in ways we cannot apprehend, because they happen in higher dimensions. It simply doesn't make sense to ask what the backside looks like or how to approach it from the wrong side, because to us, it appears really just as a hole in the sky. It is actually quite clever to present it as a seemingly two-dimensional disc floating in the sky: We are like flatlanders, who cannot see what it is really like in higher dimensions and stand baffled at the fact that the flip-side of the disc is in another part of the universe. If you approached it from the backside, most likely space-time around it is bent in a way that you can't realize that in theory you should have passed it from the backside. You just go Oops, there's suddenly a hole in the sky right next to me.

     "There are always men like you." 
  • Not a plot thing, but considering the overtones of that old man's response... what are the odds that he's old enough to have eagerly thrown his lot in with guess who, validating Loki's claims to an extent?
    • Fridge Horror, man. Fridge. Horror.
    • All that means is the old man is Older and Wiser, proving that humans are capable of learning and growing, becoming better and greater as individuals and as a people. Besides, all that comparison really proves at worst is that people will bow down when the alternative is death and they have loved ones who would suffer if they don't bow, IE, a proof that extortion and holding loved ones hostage works, rather than that we intrinsically desire it.
    • There is also the entirely likely possibility that he was a victim of the Nazis the first time around. Remember, the first country they invaded was their own. And wasn't there Word of God somewhere that the old man was intended to be a Holocaust survivor?
    • Just throwing this out there: Vincent Price draft-dodged enlisting in WWII by lying about being color-blind. When the Red Scare flared up in the fifties he risked black-listing by refusing to testify against some of his fellow actors since "I was afraid to stand up against injustice abroad, now I must have the courage to stand up against it in my own country!" People can change. Frankly, if anything, it make a more interesting story if the man was a former Nazi.
    • OP again. Remember, the only reason Hitler was made Chancellor was because the Nazis were sweeping elections. And even if Black Shirts for Loki's hypothetical regime are few compared to Germans who eagerly supported fascism, there will always be plenty of opportunists and cowards who won't be making a stink.
    • Word of God is that the man is in fact a Holocaust survivor.

     Stark's Analysis of Loki 
  • When Steve and Tony are trying to figure out where Loki is going to try to open the portal, Tony comes in with the realization that Loki made it personal.
    Steve: That's not the point.
    Tony: That is the point. That's Loki's point. He hit us all right where we live. Why?
    Steve: To tear us apart.
    Tony: Yeah, divide and conquer's... Great, but he knows he has to take us out to win, right? That's what he wants. He wants to beat us, he wants to be seen doing it... He wants an audience.
Is Tony just free-associating here or something? He lands on a critical aspect of Loki's personality, but he started off with the notion that Loki is making the fight personal, which doesn't have anything to do with wanting everyone's attention. His thought process doesn't make any sense. It feels a little contrived.
  • Remember the last villain that Stark had faced at this point was Vanko, who did something very similar. He could have lived a good life selling the technology without Stark ever knowing—but instead, he went after Stark openly, made it personal, and made it public. Tony's seeing the same kind of thing here. Loki could have done things quietly and never got on the Avengers' radar until it was too late—but instead he puts on an act in Germany to get their attention, then makes sure to make it personal. As far as Tony could see, the only reason Loki would do that would be to rile them up for a direct, showy confrontation.
  • It's the connection between making it personal and making it public that confuses me. Do those normally go hand in hand?
  • I think Tony's correlating of Personal to Public comes from Tony's Ego, and aside from his stylish Facial hair His Ego being the first thing people see in him... To hurt Tony publicly IS to hurt him personally.
  • Tony's saying that Loki provoked them personally, so that any confrontation will end up being public. So that they'll go after him no matter where... even if it's downtown Manhattan.
  • He also combines it with what they know about Loki. Loki loves to grandstand, he makes big proclamations, he loves dramatic statements and declarations. He is a diva. Everything about him is a huge, showy ego that is demanding he prove himself to everyone: humanity, his brother, Thanos, etc.
  • It is the way Tony's brain works through a problem. He was just thinking out loud basically. He may have skipped a few steps, and not shown his work, but in the end he came to the correct conclusion. Like any super genius engineer would. Also, I got the impression he was not so much coming to a conclusion as he was bouncing ideas off of the other super genius in the room (Banner). Since no one questioned his conclusion, and in fact agreed with him, it seems he was right, so he went with it.
  • Genius is the ability to go from point A to point D without having to go through B and C.
  • Good theory, but Banner had definitely fallen out of the Helicarrier at this point. Tony was only talking to Rogers here.

    Iron Man counterpart to Loki 
  • Iron Man is Loki's Good Counterpart. Very clever, but has little idea of how to fight beyond Attack! Attack! Attack!? Deadpan Snarker? Narcissistic? A total diva who's all about presentation and self-aggrandization? Prone to equally spectacular self-destructive behavior? Bitterly jealous of the blond, nobler teammate who his father liked better? A big difference, of course, is Tony's experience in Afghanistan, which drastically changed his worldview. Loki is very close to a version of pre-Afghanistan Tony Stark Gone Horribly Wrong, albeit with far more jealousy and Sibling Rivalry.
    • Losing the battle at the end of the Thor movie, falling into the portal, and being spat out into space and entering into the service of Thanos is pretty much Loki's Afghanistan.
    • Hoo boy. First off, Tony even in his selfish phase didn't go around trying to kill his father in his sleep, or his "perfect brother" Steve, or millions of innocents. Although he was a manufacturer of weapons, he honestly believed he was contributing to his country's self-defense. He remained best friends with the genuinely straight-laced Rhodey from high school/college, and he cared enough about other human beings to pick up enough redeeming traits to win the heart of the very smart and unique Pepper Potts. Tony was an immature and irresponsible extrovert who still gave a damn about strangers, not a psycho-in-the-making.
    • Point of fact; Loki didn't really try to kill Odin. He set the "assassination" up so he could save Odin and be the hero. He also didn't see the Frost Giants as innocents. The Warriors Three and Sif apparently considered Loki a friend. Loki considered himself more responsible than Thor, not less. He was also content to leave Thor be until Heimdall let the 3 and Sif through, forcing his hand.
    • Loki clearly intended to kill Odin, and possibly Frigga, in that bedroom if Thor hadn't interrupted. Loki was immediately certain that Odin had mercilessly killed his innocent Frost Giant parents the moment he realized he was of their blood, and from then on his adopted family and Asgard—the place he had grown up in—were no longer worthy of his love or protection. The Warriors Three may have considered Loki a friend, but they did not seem to be particularly close to him, and vice versa; in fact, did not seem to have that much trouble turning on him when he became the enemy, and Loki in turn saw no qualms in trying to kill his former "friends" immediately after his Face–Heel Turn. Yes, Loki thought himself more responsible than Thor, and also better than him, and also everyone else. This arrogance facilitated his descent. His hand was never really "forced" throughout the movie; he plotted and planned most of what he reaped. To wit, Tony Stark never does anything as heartless as the things Loki does in "Thor"; Tony Stark, remember, has a heart.
    • Eh... I'm not sure I agree there. Loki knows his father is Laufey (the Frost Giant who was straddled over Odin poised to kill him) and I took it as a way for Loki to be able to get Laufey alone so he could kill him himself. Loki clearly loves Frigga, embracing her and protecting her, and at the end of the movie Loki is still seeking out Odin's affection, or at the very least his approval, made clear by the "I could have done it, Father! For you!" It's only when Odin replies with a "No, Loki", a clear sign of disapproval and, to Loki, anything but love and acceptance, is what breaks his heart and turns the mischief god against his adopted father, ultimately, in the end.
    • Agreed: It's clear that Loki's motivations (however twisted his methods) are to prove that he's a true son of Asgard and Odin, just as much as Thor is: by saving Odin's life, killing Laufey, and protecting Asgard from the frost giants once and for all.
    • And the movie makes it appallingly clear that Loki does /not/ think that he is better than Thor; he's extremely jealous of all the love and attention his older brother gets, which gives the impression that being treated worse is not anything new to him, even before he finds out his origins. And Loki genuinely thought he was doing the right thing, from his perspective; kill the race that his realm is constantly under fire from. Thor wanted to go to war with the Jotun, and Loki is following in his footsteps. Sure, the dude is definitely misguided but I think 'heartless' and 'evil' are getting a little out of hand... in the Thor movie, anyway.
    • This reminds me of a post where people were woobifying Hitler because of a short gif of him acting nice. All his evil is justified because of this and that. The entire point of this is: Tony is not Loki pre-Iron Man in any way, shape, or form. Tony is flawed, yes, but not to the point to that he, for example, thought genocide was a good solution to anything. One was a formerly selfish rich brat, and the other a murderer-in-the-making.
    • Not justifying his actions; just saying that it's almost like Tony is what Loki could be if he hadn't become a Smug Super, Obliviously Evil Manipulative Bastard.
    • No, not even remotely alike. Tony is damaged, but not to the extent Loki is. Two completely different people, even pre-Afghanistan. Would Loki have had a guy like Rhodey as his best friend, or a girl like Pepper who admired him? No, because his personality, already dark at the beginning of Thor, would not have precluded it. He has very little in lieu of a conscience. And Tony Stark has always, always—both in the movies and the comics, even in his darkest hours—had one.
    • Would he have had a guy like Rhodey as his best friend? You mean kinda like how he and Thor were very affectionate and loving toward one another? A girl like Pepper who admired him? You mean kind of like how he was as friendly with Sif as with everyone else? Loki was one of the guys at the start of Thor. He was a trickster, yes, but everyone seemed to like him and enjoy his company.
    • Even at the beginning, in order to frame Loki's Start of Darkness, he's shown to be standoffish even with the Warriors Three; in an early scene they're sitting together trading jibes, and he's brooding by himself. He doesn't even talk until Thor tries to convince him to join them. The Sif-Pepper and Rhodey-Warriors Three comparisons in regards to their respective narratives and their relationships don't hold water. Rhodey and Pepper would've fought like hell to get through to Tony if he ever decided for some reason that genocide was a great idea to make Daddy Stark happy. The Warriors Three take Loki's transformation into an enemy without blinking; they barely bother to reach him using their alleged bond of friendship. The only one who bothers is Thor, who Loki stabs and nearly kills—multiple times!—for his efforts. I frankly cannot see Tony heartlessly stabbing Rhodey or Pepper—multiple times—while they pleaded for him to see reason. I realize this is all very subjective, but from a mainstream, non-fangirl perspective, Loki =/= Tony Stark.
    • The mainstream, non fan-girl perspective jab is completely unnecessary (and untrue, since there's clear support of Iron Man going on in the "arguments"). And the movie makes the parallels between Stark and Loki so blatant that, at the end, Stark figures out where Loki is by realizing that Loki would do what he (Stark) did in the first place (that is, a gigantic monument to himself).
    • I think that at the core of their personality, Tony and Loki are actually very much alike. The way they reacted to a troubling realization is actually very similar. They both just found out that they are, to the world at large, very bad people. In Tony's case it was because of his weapons being in enemy hands and in Loki's case it was being a Frost Giant. And they reacted the same way, to do EVERYTHING in their power to erase the source of that problem, wipe the slate clean and start anew. They both went at it with a single-minded focus. But what people seem to be forgetting is that to Loki the Frost Giants were not just a enemy race. As far as Asgard (or at least the stories they told to their children) was concerned, they were MONSTERS rather than people and that killing them was a GOOD thing without question. [Don't forget that Thor had the very same idea of going to war and killing them all as well, Loki's plan was just more "efficient" about it. Killing the FG was considered no more worse for them as killing the Chitauri were for the human Avengers later.] So Loki, after having heard stories for centuries about these creatures (not really people, remember), finds out that he's one of them. He's not just a bad person, but a monster, a boogyman, and perhaps that's the reason why his father has always favored Thor, who is an actual Asgardian. But wait, Loki is a Son Of The Allfather, even if by adoption! If he can forsake his blood ties to the FG and tear them down as Odin himself had done long ago, perhaps he will see and understand that Loki is an exception and not at all like the other FG and see that he is just as valuable as Thor. And a major, MAJOR part in how they reacted to these situations were the people they had around him. Tony was lucky to have people near him that could take his hand and pull him out of the abyss. He had Yinsen to build him back up when he'd broken and Pepper and Rhodey to keep him up when it looked like he was falling again. Loki on the other hand had no one. It didn't help that he was a magic using male in a predominately warrior-type society. It didn't help that his father was pretty freaking standoffish towards him at the best of times. Or that his brother had just been banished after trying to kill other F Gs, and even if he hadn't been how would he react? Or that his friends were mostly Thor (the great and wonderful)'s friends. That's a lot of crap to deal with alone. Tony would not have faired better TBH. His reactions would likely have been similar.

    Expert on the Tesseract? 

  • So, after one night's study Stark becomes an expert on the Tesseract? How? Simple, it's made of the same new element that he re-created in Iron Man 2 that he carries a chunk of in his chest. The new element that he made with instructions from his father. Who, along with being a founding SHIELD member, also studied the Tesseract. Which is what gave him the knowledge to pass on to Tony for how to make the new element.
    • Or, alternatively, Tony didn't become an expert in the Tesseract, he became an expert in thermonuclear astrophysics. That's what Maria Hill observes, and Tony's response is that he did the reading. He's also, as he reminds us many times, a genius, so doing the reading over the course of one night was enough. For the record, Bruce contributes ably to his conversation, and all efforts afterwards to find the Tesseract, and he has no reason to be up on Howard Stark's supposedly Tesseract-related new element.
    • In that conversation, Tony mentions that a copy of Dr. Selvig's paper on the Tesseract and his theories on how to extract energy from it was in the briefing packet that Coulson gave him. Bruce presumably got his own briefing after arriving on the Helicarrier. So both scientists on the Avengers have every reason to be as familiar with Dr. Selvig's research on the Tesseract as Dr. Selvig is — SHIELD, and therefore they, have copies of all of Selvig's notes right up to the day Loki abducted him.
    • Or, more simple, Tony Stark understood all the info available about the Tesseract in just one night simply because he's that intelligent.
    • This is part of the most likely answer. It's also a reasonable assumption that there isn't a ton of material on the subject for Tony to familiarize himself with.

    Containment Cell 
  • The containment cell for Hulk (and later Loki) on the flying fortress is set to drop from the ship to the Earth on the press of a button. This is seen as a threat, but it's clear that none of the characters intended for this dome are in much jeopardy from such a fall which wouldn't be much different from falling from a very tall building thanks to terminal velocity.
    • Additionally, this has the added effect of possibly freeing the trapped individual and dropping the entire contraption (including frenzied captive) onto a civilian area.
    • It's not the fall that kills you. It's the steel and glass on all sides of you suddenly shrapnelizing upon impact with the ground, turning into a spiky deathtrap of twisted metal and powdered glass on all sides of you that impales, rips, and shreds your body to pieces. Given that it was built for the Hulk, if it was just the fall alone, the cage would simply open the floor and ventilate the Hulk into the air; much cheaper to build for something that can't fly. That was the entire suspense with Thor's descent: it wasn't that he needed to get out before he hit the ground, it was that he needed to get out of the cage before what we explicitly watched happen to the cage, happened with him inside of it.
    • Why is anyone assuming that the fall was intended to kill the Hulk or an Asgardian? The dropping-cage trick is clearly a failsafe in case the cage isn't strong enough to actually hold the captive in question, as evidenced by the fact that hitting the walls causing it to start dropping. Its there to make sure that if the cage can't hold them, it can at least dump them out of the Helicarrier well before they break free and begin tearing the place apart.
  • The ejectable cage on the helicarrier is useless for its intended purpose, when you think about it. It's designed to contain the Hulk. Obviously it's occupied by Loki, but even without Loki on board they'd have to keep Bruce in it 24/7 for it to be effective - they'd never herd him in there after he transformed. And if Bruce was in the small, bare-bones cell full-time, he wouldn't be much help as a scientist.
    • That's because the cage had nothing whatsoever to do with them needing or wanting Bruce's help as a scientist. The cage is just to contain the Hulk, and was built well before they ever considered bringing Bruce in for his mind.
    • Don't forget that the carrier was originally intended to be flying over water, not land. The only reason it was close to solid ground was because of the engine explosion throwing it off course. If the Hulk were dropped out of the carrier into the depths of the ocean, he wouldn't have been slammed into the rocks and shoals at terminal velocity; he would have ended up dealing with the lack of oxygen and drastically increased psi's of pressure at the ocean floor. Even the Hulk needs to breath, after all.

    Loki in post-credits Thor 
  • So, if Loki took control of people with his scepter, what was he doing in the post-credits scene of Thor?
    • He didn't have control of Selvig at the time; he was just psychically "hitching a ride" and seeing through Selvig's eyes.
    • I took it as that he "planted an idea" inside him, save technique he later used to set everyone against each other on the Helicarrier.
    • Whose to say Loki only has one form of mind control available?
    • Way I see it, Loki was Possessing Selvig, but the scepter let him brainwash him instead, the difference being that you can only possess one person, the scepter let him control masses and let them keep their skills. That or just hitching a ride.

    Mind Control failed, why don't you just shoot him? 

  • When Tony's arc reactor prevented Loki from brainwashing him, why didn't Loki just blast him or use the staff to stab him in the throat?
    • Tony mentions just a few minutes earlier that Loki's plan is to take them all down in the public eye. Having Iron Man in his control would allow Loki to grandstand a little more and get more attention, but leaving Tony's dead, armorless body on the floor of his own tower just doesn't have the same affect. Especially since Tony is the most widely known Avenger in-universe. Steve hasn't been in the public eye for 70 years, Hawkeye and Widow are part of a government organization and not bound to be known by many people, Thor is a god whose only other activity on earth has been in a very small town, and Hulk is considered a villainous monster by everyone. Tony has had the most time in the spotlight, has political ties and is considered to be pretty much the people Champion. Taking him out in public would have been much more satisfying for Loki long term than just shooting him.
    • Because he threw Tony out the window. When Loki realized his staff wasn't working, he decided to go for the tried and true method of "throw the prick off a very high object and let gravity do the work." Since his staff had already failed against Stark, he just cut out the whole thing and used gravity as his weapon of choice.
    • What the OP is referring to is after the scepter failed to take over Tony, why did Loki toss him out the window instead of just blasting or stabbing him with the same scepter? Basically, because he's enraged. Being humiliated like that probably robbed him of his more rational thoughts and he went for a personal physical assault, and he wanted to get Tony out of his sight as soon as possible.
    • Loki has never seen his scepter fail. By his own admission, "This usually works." Stark had the upper hand over him in a way he didn't really understand; the scepter being a weapon given to him by the Chitauri, it's likely that he didn't really understand anything more about it than the basic "point and shoot" and "tap the heart, take over a person" bits. When the scepter tinked harmlessly against Stark's arc reactor, Loki was taken aback. By his reasoning, he was standing in a room with an enemy combatant who, just a few minutes ago, had been threatening him and now, when the time had come to put his abilities where his mouth was, had actually managed to strip Loki of one of his strongest weapons. He was enraged by Stark's snarky dismissal of his failure, while at the same time panicked over finding himself at a disadvantage and not knowing why. So why throw Stark out the window? Because at this point, for all he knows, Stark has out and out beaten him. Not knowing why his weapon failed means that starting a prolonged fight with Stark in the middle of his tower where he holds all of the cards and could have a million hidden weapons that Loki would never know about would be a terrible idea. Throwing Stark out the window was his way of Cutting the Knot, removing a dangerous situation he knew absolutely nothing about long enough to find the time to gather his thoughts. He exited the room shortly thereafter, and did not return inside until the Hulk smashed him into it.
    • Not to mention when Loki starts throwing him around, Tony's (strangled) response is to tell Jarvis to "deploy" the suit. Never mind traps. Loki was quite familiar with Iron Man's ability to go toe-to-toe with a god, and he had just witnessed Tony casually walk out of a suit after landing on his tower. It's Tony's home turf, and a toss in the wrong direction could have put Tony in range of another suit. Since the glow stick failed, he didn't want to risk a stab or neck snap not working. Cue window toss. Of course, the suit Tony was looking for is able to follow him down, and the rest is history.
    • Maybe he mistakenly assumed Tony was some kind of robot. He is called "Iron Man", after all.
    • more likely he wanted to give Tony some time to think about why he was going to die.
    • Shooting may be a bit complicated if the target is right next to you, and your weapon is so large. As for stabbing, is the staff sharp? It looks like a scythe, but it may be just appearance.
    • Ask Coulson if the staff is sharp.
    • It could be as simple as Loki not having had the staff all that long, so it's not necessarily the first mode of attack that springs to his mind when he loses his temper. His frost-giant strength, he's had since childhood, so his natural reflexive impulse is to toss his opponent somewhere fatal.

    Gravity in a wormhole 

  • If Stark was in space after directing the nuke, how was he dropping back into the wormhole back to Earth? There were no indications of him using any type of reverse thrusters and the push off from the nuke didn't seem to have any force to it.
    • Gravitational pull from the portal? It's open in Earth's atmosphere, not too far up from the tallest skyscraper in the area, and unlike most "explosive decompression" situations, Earth is a celestial body with a very strong gravitational pull compared to, say, a spacecraft. Being as close to the portal as he was, Stark might as well have just been in Earth's stratosphere.
    • He was, at most, a kilometer or two off the top of Stark Tower, lower even than cruising altitude for commercial aircraft. Earth's gravity definitely had a hand in it.
    • Consider we do not know how the portal works. Perhaps it has some kind of inherent pull of it's own and Tony was not that far from the opening. My own observation was that he looked to be pulled much slower on the "space" side of the portal and once on the Earth side, he started falling faster.
    • Actually just after he loses all power in his Suit, parts of his shoulder armor are ejected and it pushes him back. It was probably the recoil of that ejection which pushed him back into the portal. In space, where Gravity doesn't interfere, Newton's third law really shines.
    • He may also have caught some of the backwash from the nuclear missile itself. His body slips behind it as the suit lets go, and the vapors from its rocket may have given him a push.

    Custodian and Banner 

  • The custodian who found Banner said that "you came down big, green and buck-ass nude" and "I didn't think they'd (the old clothes) fit you until you shrunk back to normal size". How does he know that the Hulk can turn back to human?
    • This is well after the Hulk was a known phenomenon, you know. Remember all the news reports and stuff from his own movie?
    • None of them ever caught Hulk reverting to Bruce though, or his secret would long be blown.
    • ...what secret? Banner hides in third world countries from United States Army pursuit that has, at one point, engaged him in the middle of a university in broad daylight. There are detailed S.H.I.E.L.D. reports on his whereabouts, news reports of his battles, he broke Harlem, and even a random janitor in the asscrack of nowhere knows that he's an ordinary man who transforms into a giant green rage monster. At what point is it even hinted that Banner's identity is a secret by the time Avengers rolls around?
    • And even if people don't know specifically that it's Bruce Banner the scientist that morphs into the giant green rage monster, they know that it is a person that does, so it makes sense that the janitor would expect him to return to human form once he calms down/passes out.
    • Or he just really didn't want to see a naked Hulk.
    • This is just a misinterpretation. He wasn't aware that the Hulk was going to shrink. What he was saying was, he didn't think the old clothes would fit him, until suddenly, Hulk turned back into Banner. "until you shrunk back to normal size" isn't what the man was waiting for, it was what actually happened.

    War Machine? 

  • Where the hell was War Machine when the army of aliens were invading?
    • Not in New York. The final battle takes place over, what, 30 minutes or so? That's really not a lot of time to mobilize someone that previous films have established as being based primarily on the other side of the country. Plus, War Machine is military, and military means bureaucracy. When they launch War Machine, they'd want it to be with a flight of fighter jets and support, all of which takes time to assemble and launch.

      And that's presuming the military keeps War Machine as an option, considering what happened in Iron Man 2, with it being hacked and all.
    • Assuming that both the War Machine armor and Colonel Rhodes are still a part of the military, he probably got orders from his CO to stay away from New York, since the World Security Council had orders to nuke Manhattan.
    • Coupling that with the Real World reason why the Pentagon didn't provide support for the film, it could be that the military chafed against an organization that is outside of the chain of command giving orders that a walking WMD controlled by a U.S. Air Force officer be used on American soil without government authorization, and Rhodey wasn't given permission to participate due to a jurisdictional pissing contest.
    • Rhodes seems to be stationed in California, which is several thousand miles from New York. If anything, he was probably getting suited up for an all-out armed forces strike should the Avengers (and nuke) have failed. We can already see the National Guard rolling in towards the end of the battle, so the rest of the military wouldn't have been far behind.
    • The Prelude to Iron Man 3 comic tie-ins reveal that Rhodey was on a mission in China during the Chitauri attack. Tony did call for his assistance but he couldn't arrive in time. He did, however, arrive during their shawarma excursion.

    Thor to Earth? 
  • How did Thor get to Earth? He smashed the Bifrost to smithereens in Thor.
    • Loki asks the same question, and implies that Odin used dark energy to conjure a means of transport for Thor. As the next Thor film is entitled, "Thor: The Dark World", this question will likely be addressed more fully there, with Loki's line being foreshadowing.
    • The whole thing is actually a nod to contemporary cosmology and astrophysics. A passage between worlds/dimensions would be a wormhole. You need negative energy density to stabilize a wormhole. Dark energy is the force that (hypothetically) accelerates the expansion of the universe, i.e., creates negative energy density. Thus, lacking the Bifrost, Odin had to muster up large amounts of dark energy to force open another passage.
    • The Thor: The Dark World Prelude comic tie-in reveals that when Thor and Odin found out Loki was alive and planning to attack the Earth, Odin used a secret dark energy generator to send Thor to stop him, weakening himself and Thor in the process.

    Where's Darcy? 
  • Here's a question (that may even lead to a little fridge horror), Coulson assured Thor that Jane Foster had been moved to a safe place after what happened to Selvig. So why did he not mention Thor's third human friend Darcy Lewis? Is she being looked after by S.H.I.E.L.D. agents as well? If so, why wasn't she mentioned?
    • She was Jane's assistant, in Thor. It could very easily be assumed that she still is, given that only a year has passed. Hence, where Jane goes, Darcy goes. Doesn't explain why Coulson didn't specifically mention her, because Thor would have no way of knowing that, however.
    • Why would he mention her? Why would she even be in danger? Does Loki even know who she is?
    • Loki would know about Darcy if he asked Selvig who else on Earth his brother knows and cares about, the better to mess with Thor, same as he learned about Natasha by questioning Hawkeye about SHIELD.
    • Darcy mentioned in Thor that she was only working for Jane to earn college credit. Presumably, she's finished that portion of her studies by now and has either earned her degree or moved on to other courses.
    • Coulson's met Darcy, he therefore knows that in the event of an alien invasion the proper course of action is to toss her at the aliens and run away so she annoys them to death.

    Point-Blank Archery 
  • There were a couple of times where Hawkeye chose to fire an arrow at point-blank range. Two times in his fight against Black Widow (she dodged both), and once during The Oner at a Chitauri that was climbing up the wall (he didn't dodge). But why bother to fire them? Getting an arrow out of the quiver and pulling back on the bow costs time and gives your opponent a warning. In the first two times, Black Widow saw both coming and dodged. In the last instance, it cost him an arrow that fell down the building with the alien, which he meant he had to physically hit another alien who almost nabbed him when Clint reached for his empty quiver. For Black Widow, wouldn't it have been better just grab an arrow and try to stab her with it, and for the climbing Chitauri trooper, to kick him off the wall?
    • Yep, it would have been easier. But he is emphatically not a melee fighter; Black Widow usually handles the close-range stuff. He screwed up, that's all.
    • Despite what Legolas may have taught you, arrows are really bad melee weapons. They don't have much weight to them, the shaft is relatively fragile, and the overall design is really not that great for thrusting in general with your hand. They're only really effective as an extreme emergency weapon when you're grappling (where any sharp thing that can be stuck in a person will suffice) or fired from a bow. Stabbing someone with an arrow is not going to do anything close to the tissue damage as shooting them with that arrow, which is why Barton switches to a knife when fighting Natasha as the fight wears on.
    • Oh I know it wouldn't have killed her, as I work on an archery range and handle arrows on a regular basis. But it would have at least pierced her skin if he stabbed at her face, allowing him to follow up with his knife as she reels back from pain. There might also be more damage if he had equipped it with one of the trick arrowheads, such as the superheating one he used on the Chitauri flier.
    • Well, I meant "Yep, he should have just kicked the bad guys off the roof," but that too.
    • Joss actually mentions in the film's commentary that he found it hilarious for Hawkeye to shoot a guy at such close range.
    • Given that Natasha kicks his ass rather handily, he could simply be too bruised up for any sort of fisticuffs. Either that, or he still has a bit of a concussion from all the times she cracked him in the noggin to knock him out.
    • Because his name is Hawkeye, he has a bow, and this is a superhero movie. It was awesome, that's why. Not to mention, he's just so damn used to doing it it's literally his first response, like a soldier or police officer drawing a gun on someone 2 feet in front of them, rather than "I should kick that guy."
    • Alternatively, with the fight with Black Widow, it is mentioned earlier in Awesome page about the scientist who built the portal building in a backdoor, even when under mind control, as a display of his force of will. Hawkeye could be doing something similar: the mind control won't let him not fight, so in stead of struggling against the mind control directly, he is using suboptimal tactics; Drawing a bow is kind of telegraphing, so it lets her know what he's doing.
    • To be fair, Hawkeye kind of lives up to his reputation and nocks an arrow faster than most people can pull back for a punch. To any other opponent, that arrow would find it's mark. (Un)fortunately for him, it just happens to be Black Widow.

    "Our biggest guns couldn't touch it...." 
  • During the Battle of New York, an exhausted Black Widow points out that closing the portal ASAP is their best plan. Cap notes that "our biggest guns couldn't touch it." At this point, the only ones who've tried to breach the portal device's energy shield, or attack Chitauri coming through the portal itself are Iron Man and Thor. By now, Cap has studied SHIELD's files and has personally witnessed the three big guns of the Avengers in action. Where does the Hulk fit in Cap's estimation? I can understand Thor being considered the biggest gun overall, but surely the physically strongest member of the team should be above Iron Man on Cap's "list".
    • Easiest answer is simply that Cap made a generalization without much thought behind it. Generalizations happen.
    • This also presumes that you could tell the Hulk to stop fighting the alien army and start punching a piece of the scenery instead.
    • The Hulk is ground bound. The portal is probably not above his maximum jumping range (assuming there is such a maximum), but then you run into the second issue: the Hulk's power is punching, and while that works dandy against a wide array of other problems, you just can't punch a hole no matter how strong you are.
    • No, but he could punch the portal generator, which is what both Cap and the OP are referring to.
    • I'm picturing the Hulk hitting something 'invulnerable' hard enough to vulner it anyway, and it sounds like the sort of thing that - in a comic-book world - would be kind of explodey. Further damage to New York would be kind of counterproductive.
    • Who ever said Cap was talking about the biggest Avengers when he said it, and not about literal guns? The guy's a WWII hero, and just a few months ago (from his POV) he was blowing up gigantic Nazi artillery pieces; he's used to conventional battlefield conflicts, not brawls with lightning-throwing demigods and green guys who can juggle SUVs. Most likely he just meant that no ordinary artillery could shoot high enough to force the incoming Chitauri back through the portal.

    "Escort six-zero, proceed to 'Wishbone' and engage hostile. Don't get too close!" 
  • This has bugged me since I first saw the movie on opening day. Hill orders one of the F-35's flying alongside the helicarrier to fire at the Hulk to get his attention, and she specifically says "Don't get too close!" The gun on an F-35 is a GAU-22/A, a four barrel version of the GAU-12/U Equalizer. The GAU-12's effective range is 12,000 feet - just over 2.2 miles. The GAU-22/A is supposed to have a longer effective range than that. So, why did that pilot fly about 50 feet away from the window, right where the Hulk could reach him? He could have been at least mile away from the Helicarrier and STILL hit the Hulk!
    • You're ignoring the first half of the order. "Proceed to 'Wishbone'". Watch the scene again and note the physical layout of the area where the F-35 parks itself. It's a y-shaped gap in the Helicarrier superstructure, what one might refer to as a 'wishbone' structure. The F-35 didn't engage from optimal firing range because his orders were to engage from the 'Wishbone'. "Don't get too close" is relative within the assigned engagement area.
    • Maybe you need to be point blank to hurt the Hulk.
    • Considering that even at point-blank range, it only pissed him off, I think that might be right. Besides, it was an emergency situation. The jet didn't have time to fly too far away.
    • That's probably the effective range for strafing a stationary target on the ground, something like a tank or a bunker. Not the range for hitting a moving, agile, man-sized target within another target. He only wants to hit the Hulk, not the rest of the Helicarrier and the people inside it.
    • The order was not to Hurt the Hulk but to Get His Attention. Imagine what would happen if said pilot was shooting from a mile away? The Hulk would feel something hitting it's skin, would look around and wouldn't find anything he could punch in the face. So pissed off by the bullets he'd start tearing the place up. With the plane so close Hulk had a target to focus on, target which got him Out of the Helicarrier so he wouldn't be able to destroy anything more. Remember that hurting or killing the Hulk is never an option because he is just too damn tough. The best you can hope for is to get him somewhere remote where he won't have anything to destroy, will calm down and revert into Banner.
    • "Don't get too close" was probably a warning not to get close enough to collide with the Helicarrier, which wasn't very stable. The whole idea was to get the Hulk to jump at the plane and thus, get him off the carrier. Presumably the pilot and his superiors were hoping the Hulk would leap and miss, but even with the big guy taking the fighter out, it's better to lose one plane than have Hulk demolish the whole carrier.

    Who does SHIELD answer to? 
  • Fury is the director of SHIELD, and he appears to answer to a mysterious Council of shadowy people. But who exactly is in charge of SHIELD? In Iron Man, it seems that it's a department of the US Government, but if that were the case then it would answer to the President. Where does it get the funding for its own military hardware, research facilities, and access to a nuclear (or nuclear-type) weapon? I don't think any government would be happy about an organization with the apparent authority to carry out military operations and deploy weapons of mass destruction on its own territory.
    • If the Pentagon couldn't figure it out, then likely neither can we.
    • The shadowy people are the World Security Council. Despite them being shadowy, their names and which countries they represent are clear on the screen, so they've got some kind of official sanction.
    • Considering the multinational nature and reach of the organization, it's probably a division of the UN, possibly originally started by the US government (which would explain why they provide so much money and materiel).
    • Can't possibly be connected to the UN. They actually succeeded in fulfilling their goals (I'm only half joking). It could be multi-national due to the World Security Council or a domestic US agency due to what S.H.I.E.L.D. stands for. I still highly doubt it would have anything to do with the UN, though. Too many countries involved for things to go well in that case.
    • Definitely multi-national. In Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. they are shown to have jurisdiction and agents operating in China.
    • Haven't seen anything involving "Agents of SHIELD" but the way you phrased that doesn't technically mean they're multinational. The CIA, for example, technically has jurisdiction to operate anywhere in the world except the United States itself; that's where other agencies take over. Whether other countries want CIA operatives in their country is irrelevant. They're there to do a job regardless of what the local government's opinion is. SHIELD gives me a headache.
    • In this case he is working openly, with the Chinese local police, in his capacity as a SHIELD agent. The show also makes it clear that SHIELD can legally operate in some countries and have legal authority to conduct their work but is barred by others. In those instances it's made clear that SHIELD has to care what the local government's opinion is, but can ignore that if the stakes are high enough.
    • Explained in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

    Peter and Ned? 
  • At the end of the film, there are two young boys and one of them is telling the news about the Hulk.
  • The boys look like a young version of Peter Parker and his friend Ned Leeds.
  • There is also a bit where a man is lifting a boy above his shoulders whilst wearing an iron man mask. The mask looks like the same one that Peter Parker (confirmed by Tom Holland) wore when he was saved by Tony Stark two years earlier in Iron Man 2. Does this mean that Uncle Ben was lifting Peter over his head? Definetly looked like it as both young boys were wearing the same shirt.

    Guess what, New York was about to be nuked 
  • I understand that an alien invasion would be a news topic for months, a new group of superheroes would be so as well, and an event that combines both should be "the bomb" in all the media. But, once things settle up a bit, there's a more mundane thing that had happened and the media would surely discuss: that, in the middle of the fight, someone fired a nuclear missile to New York. Sounds like a source of much political controversy: who fired that missile? With which authority? I'm sure that if the people of New York realize that, if not for Iron Man, they were going to be atomic dust, they would go after someone's throat. And it's unlikely that such detail would be easily kept as classified information, because it was Tony Stark the one who was involved in this. First, he's a public figure and journalists know where to find him, he won't "disappear in the night" as the others. Second, he has a monumental ego, and "I saved everybody by taking an atomic bomb in the air, changing its course, and leading it to the alien starship at the other side of the portal" is too much to resist (he could not resist to say that he was Iron Man, after all). And third, he's not a military man and he's not in good terms with those guys: if they beg him to keep the secret to save their asses, it would be perfectly expectable from him to say it out loud and let them face the consequences of their actions. They tried to nuke New York and failed, now taste the wrath of New Yorkers...
    • Your question isn't very clear. What are you asking?
    • In short, how will the people react to the detail that someone (and not the aliens) would have nuked them, and they were saved just by a contrived circumstance?
    • They weren't told. SHIELD is keeping it secret, so that they can blackmail the WSC to make sure they don't do that again.
      Agent Hill: Oh, and as for the matter that's... not "in question?" Where you morons tried to nuke New York? Well that's on the record. As in we recorded it. We do that; we’re S.H.I.E.L.D. So if you’re thinking about coming after Nick Fury, ever? Think really, really hard.
    • The only thing in the Marvel Cinematic Universe that indicates the public is aware of the nuke would be the crayon drawing of Iron Man in Iron Man 3, which appears to show him flying the nuke into the portal. Presumably, that's an oversight.
    • Some guy with a cellphone might have gotten a picture of it, and the WSC had to make up an excuse of: "Umm, we gave it to Tony Stark so he could hurl it at the big bad aliens."
    • Is there any reason for the general public to doubt that Iron Man doesn't have access to nukes if he wanted them? We're talking about a man who despite however much time has passed between Iron Man and Iron Man 3 was up until then the world's greatest weapons manufacturer and the designer of one of Earth's deadliest weapons. (No amount of calling the Iron Man armor a shield makes it a shield unless we're arguing the best defense is a good offense) It doesn't seem unbelievable that the general public thinks Stark summoned up one of his nukes (or on of America's with or without permission) and used it against the alien invasion sweeping through New York.
    • Most likely, the US government will claim that it fired the nuke (what other government could do so without starting a war?) and Iron Man got the assist by flying it into the wormhole (either that was the plan all along or there was a malfunction and Iron Man saved the day) then tell Tony that if he dares to breathe a word otherwise, they'll do things like audit Stark Enterprises (or at least investigate its past terrorist ties) or make life hell for his friends.
    • Alternatively, Tony's not worried about audits and the like, but doesn't want to compromise the advantage SHIELD has over the government per Hill's speech above.
    • Who says it's public knowledge that the missile was a nuke? Its detonation and fallout took place in some distant corner of the universe; for all the public needs to know, it was a conventional weapon left over from Stark Industries' bad old days, that Tony called up to blast the aliens where they lived. The EMP that took out the Chitauri was due to their own ship's reactors going critical when the missile scored a direct hit ... right? Trust us, we're the World Security Council!
    • You could say there was a reaction to this if you look between the lines, although I might have preferred more. In Iron Man 3 the US government and military are making a big show of keeping SHIELD and the Avengers out of the Mandarin investigation. You could claim this is in response to the decision. And the Winter Solider Gideon Malick is notably missing from the WSC. It wouldn't be a stretch to say the US booted him off specifically for pulling a stunt like that.

  • "It's like Budapest all over again." "You and I remember Budapest very differently." And later, she mentions that the Chitauri invasion is not a problem, that she has seen worse things in Budapest. Really? Worse than a full alien invasion, in a world that has barely seen super-human activity at all? What the hell has happened in Budapest?
    • She doesn't say she saw worse in Budapest. She says she's seen worse, while she's looking at Banner, then she says they could use a little "worse." She's referring to when Banner hulked out on the Helicarrier.
    • She references Budapest as an allusion to her and Clint pinned down and taking fire (which, as an assassin/spy and an archer/sniper, likely doesn't happen to them often). Clint seems to be Comically Missing the Point and taking her at face value concerning the comparison.
    • One of the video clips that plays when the Avengers are being mustered actually shows the two of them similarly pinned down behind rubble and returning fire at their (presumably human) enemies.

    Origin of the Scepter? 
  • How was Thanos able to gift Loki with a scepter powered by the Tesseract if it wasn't even in his possession yet?
    • Who said it was powered by the Tesseract? They only said the power source appeared similar.
    • I'm pretty sure that was Nick Fury, when he was talking to Cap about the scepter's nature. Cap thought it was a lot like a HYDRA weapon. Fury disagreed about the similarity of the design, but acknowledged that the scepter was powered by the cube.
    • Double checking, yeah, you're right. However, remember that the Tesseract can empower tools, like HYDRA weapons. Presumably, it was powered by the Tesseract before it was lost or misplaced and hidden on Earth.
    • Perhaps it was the act of opening the portal at the very beginning of the movie that charged the scepter. Loki does look down at it wonderingly for a moment before he starts blasting people. That could easily be read as a "Huh, it worked" sort of expression.
    • It's been Jossed now - apparently there will be more about the Scepter's power source in one of the Avengers sequels. All that's relevant here is that it isn't powered by the Tesseract.

    Hulk's Origin 
  • According to Fury, Banner believed that Gamma radiation might be the key to creating a new super-soldier. But according to The Incredible Hulk, Banner didn't even know he was working on the super-soldier program, he thought he was developing a defense against radiation.
    • Coulson was explaining things concisely. Both in-universe and out, it was to not waste much time on too many complicated details.
    • And a defense against radiation wouldn't be useful in a super-soldier?
    • Alternatively, he was trying to use a portion of the super soldier serum as a base of his defense against radiation. As stated above on this page, part of the super-solider ability set is an enhanced immune system. The main issue with radiation is that it causes cancerous mutations that stop cells from functioning properly. An enhanced immune system could repair or remove and replace, the mutated cells, as a reactive defense mechanism to radiation.
    • For all we know, Fury just claimed that Banner's research had something to do with the super-serum, purely to give Rogers a basis to empathize with Banner. He knew Cap needed to become emotionally engaged with his new comrades, and that everyone needs to be accommodating to Banner to keep from triggering the "other guy". Making Rogers feel "there but for the grace of God..." about Banner's 'condition' serves both purposes.

    How did Tony get revived at the end? 
  • It seemed like Hulk's roar had a lot to do with it, but why/how did that work?
    • Rule of Funny
      • This, but I think part of it was the idea that it was such a loud and sudden shock that it worked sort of like a defibrillator.
    • Hulk's roar may have snapped him back to consciousness, but I'd guess Tony's lungs had not yet stopped trying to draw in air. His lungs weren't full of water, just air with no oxygen.
    • Fun fact: Veterinarians revive mice and hamsters that aren't breathing by gently blowing in their faces, because breathing directly into their mouths and noses would explode their tiny lungs. Maybe, if the Hulk can extinguish a flaming helicopter with gale-force winds just by clapping his hands, his roar alone can re-inflate the lungs of an unconscious human he's roaring at?
    • Hulk isn't in a position to do that and isn't even directly facing Tony's mouth or nose.
  • Tony was just unconscious and Hulk scared him awake.

    Thor's Spare Time 
  • So Thor had enough spare time on his hands to have victory shawarma with his fellow Avengers before taking Loki and the Tesseract back to Asgard, but not enough time to give Jane so much as a courtesy phone call?
    • She was being sequestered in a remote location, likely with limited contact. Also keep in mind that, well, it really is part of Thor's personality to live in the moment like that and forget seemingly important things in favor of immediate needs like eating with his companions after a massive battle.
    • And completely forget about the little promise he made about "return[ing] for [her]" in his first movie? Even if her contact with the outside world was limited, there's nothing to stop him from seeing her in person. Even if SHIELD didn't tell him where Jane was, it's not like they know how to hide anything from Heimdall, and if he really wanted to see her, it's not like they could do anything to stop him.
    • Heimdall? Sure, I can picture the scene
    Odin: Thor, there is a very grave threat for Asgard you must take care for. It seems that Loki is alive in Midgard, he has allied himself with a cosmic villain named Thanos, and he has the Tesseract in his control. The tesseract is one of the six Infinity Gems, and whoever holds the six will have the unlimited power of a god. Thanos seeks to achieve that level of power. It is imperative that you find Loki, retrieve the Tesseract and return it to Asgard, to prevent it from falling into Thanos's hand. As the Bifrost is broken, I will have to summon a lot of Dark Energy to send you to the battle.
    Thor: That's great! That means I can go after my girlfriend Jane as well, as I had promised! Heimdall, where do I find her?
    Odin: <Death Glare>
    Thor: Eh, yes, Loki, Tesseract, get back, I get it. As you order, sir.
    • Thor knows he has to leave again to bring Loki and the Tesseract back to Asgard, and that any lasting reunion between Jane and himself will have wait. Leaving Loki on Earth for even a day runs the risk that he'll escape, and bugging out with the Tesseract ASAP is the best way to ensure the Council won't order SHIELD to try to take possession of it again. What's Thor supposed to do, call Jane merely to tell her "Hi, miss you, can't stay, bye"? (Yeah, like that's gonna score him a lot of boyfriend points...) But perhaps if he brings the cube home promptly, he can talk his father into using it to rebuild Bifrost or otherwise establish a lasting means of travel between Asgard and Earth.
    • And as Thor: The Dark World shows, the Bifrost being broken sent the Nine Realms into chaos, without the Asgardians there to maintain order. Heimdall has likely been watching the universe go to pot, helpless to do anything about it. Once the Tesseract is discovered, Odin knows it can be used to rebuild the Bifrost, and Thor knows he needs to get it back as soon as possible, so the bridge can be rebuilt as soon as possible, and the death toll of all the chaos can be curbed as soon as possible. Taking thirty minutes out to have lunch with his new companions is an entirely different matter than taking a day to fly off to some remote location and tell Jane "Hello, I must be going."

    Cap "tipping" Fury 
  • Was there any justifiable in-universe reason for Steve to tip Fury, or was that just a very bad attempt to get a laugh? Because Steve had already met Fury at least twice at this point, at the end of CATFA, and at the beginning of the Avengers. In both cases Fury was clearly an authority figure and Steve treated him as such, not as a servant or bell-boy or whatever that would be tipped. It just seems a little ridiculous to assume that Cap forgot who he was (especially considering that Fury is very recognizable and Captain America has a demonstrably exceptional memory). And on top of that TFA characterizes Steve as someone who doesn't judge people based on externals, given the make-up of the Howling Commandos, and his own past. Despite the time period he comes from it seems unlikely that he would automatically assume that the black guy is a servant, even if they hadn't already met.
    • I think you missed the first half of the joke. The reason why Steve gave Fury ten dollars on the bridge of the Helicarrier is because in an earlier scene Steve claimed he'd seen enough that nothing would surprise him. Fury then said "Ten bucks says you're wrong." Then Steve saw an entire aircraft carrier sprout propellors, take to the skies, and turn invisible. He admitted that was pretty amazing even for him, and gave Fury ten dollars to admit Fury won the bet. It had nothing to do with racism or thinking Fury was a servant.
    • And was totally in-character for Cap, which makes it so damn funny. Honoring his debt, silently, immediately.

     How did Loki get behind Coulson? 
  • Before stabbing Coulson, Loki is standing at a control panel, preparing to drop the Hulk containment cell into the water with Thor inside. Then Coulson appears with the Destroyer gun and it turns out that the Loki at the control panel was just an illusion. Loki suddenly appears behind Coulson and stabs him. This looked really cool, but the thing is, Loki was standing with his back to a solid wall and Coulson was in front of him. There was really no way for him to move around Coulson without being seen (barring teleportation, but there's nothing I've seen that suggests Loki can do that). Did he just create an illusion of himself at the control panel just in case someone walked in with a BFG pointed at him? How did he know that was going to happen?
    • Invisibility perhaps? When he creates his illusions, maybe he can temporarily turn himself invisible, but only for as long as the illusion lasts. Or maybe it has something to do with the scepter, since Loki didn't have it with him in his cell, and yet has it when he stabs Coulson in the back, so maybe the scepter has limited teleportation powers. Actually that would make sense, as Stark mentions that Loki got to Stark Tower using the "glow stick of destiny" so maybe it has teleportation abilities that drains his energy somewhat and therefore can't be activated in the heat of combat.
    • Or maybe both the first and second Lokis were illusions, and the real one was off collecting his scepter while his images kept Thor distracted. It's safer for Loki that way, and plays off his quip about whether Thor ever won't be taken in by his doubles: had Mjolnir proven strong enough to smash the plexiglass, Loki's second illusion could've just disappeared with a parting "Apparently not".
    • Just watched it again last night, and this had bugged me too, but I think I figured it out. First, Loki's illusions have never been known to have physical substance, so as he's flipping controls on the panel, that's him. Then he sees Coulson. At which point Loki freezes, and immediately pops an illusion of him still at the console, while he walks around Coulson (if he can create illusions of things that aren't there, certainly he can conceal things that are, as possibly implied by his full Asgard regalia seemingly appearing out of nowhere twice in the film. . . he was wearing it the whole time, just making it look like he wasn't.) While Coulson talks about how awesome the gun is, Loki gets in position, then stabs him in the back, dismissing the illusion of him still frozen at the controls.

     Banner at the end 
  • Banner has officially been considered a fugitive wanted for murder and mass property damage for years (Ross' justification for tracking the Hulk). How is he able to drive off with Tony at the end of the film without Stark Tower being besieged by an army of FBI agents and government lawyers?
    • Ross turned out to be full of shit. Presumably after Ross went rogue and ended up with one of his own soldiers trashing Harlem, the warrants out on Banner were quietly cancelled in favor of Fury's more hands-off approach. Saving a city from a rogue general and then saving the planet tend to make that happen.
    • Natasha outright says in the beginning that S.H.I.E.L.D. has been keeping a lot of heat off of Banner. Presumably they're still doing that.
    • The Council does express quite a bit of incredulity that Fury simply allowed the Avengers to walk, so it's quite clear that S.H.I.E.L.D. was covering their asses.
    • Also, now Bruce has Tony looking out for him. You know, the guy with the Army of Lawyers and more suits of Powered Armor than you can shake a scepter at. You wanna arrest Bruce and bring him up on charges? Good luck with that.

     Banner's suicide attempt 
  • According to Bruce, when he tried to shoot himself in the mouth he transformed into Hulk and then he spitted the bullet, the problem is that a bullet takes like 0.001 seconds to be shot and Banner takes like 3 seconds to transform into Hulk, how is that possible?
    • Killing yourself is not as easy as one would think. Prior to trying it Bruce would've been under a lot of stress and fear about whether he wanted to actually end everything, and those emotions would have made him susceptible to hulking out. Additionally, the shot might have not been immediately fatal; he could've missed and had plenty of time to bleed out and therefore transform. Worth noting is that in the non-canon alternate opening of The Incredible Hulk, Bruce tries to kill himself but transforms before he even gets a shot off or points the gun at himself. All the fear of the act and anger at himself would be plenty to getting him 80 percent of the way to hulking out before the bodily panic from being shot finishes the last 20.
    • Depending on the Writer, Hulk in the comics actively tries to keep Bruce alive, since they're one and the same. With Bruce under imminent threat of death (even at his own hand), Hulk is likely already transforming while Bruce tries to pull the trigger. Even partway through, Hulk may be durable enough to No-Sell a gunshot wound to the mouth. Or heal up from it afterwards.
    • Banner may not remember the exact details of the incident, considering he doesn't remember whatever he does as the Hulk. Alternately, he may have been being facetious - far from the only time he does that - or simply exaggerating just how Immune to Bullets the Hulk is, because he'd rather Fury think the "other guy" is indestructible rather than test whether he is. Banner's been suicidal before, but he's not necessarily eager to get sniped if Fury decides he's too dangerous, either. And he just learned that Captain America is on SHIELD's potential-threat list; no way he'd assume Fury wouldn't do it if the super spy thought it necessary.
    • Or, and both The Incredible Hulk and Thor: Ragnarok seem to back this up, the shot was fatal, but the Hulk grants him Resurrective Immortality.

     Helicarrier Security 
  • We see that SHIELD has its SWAT team onboard the Helicarrier escorting Loki to his cell, possibly an early cameo by STRIKE. But when the Helicarrier is under attack by Hawkeye and the mercenaries, where did they go despite needed? They aren't seen defending the bridge or guarding Loki's cell, not even impeding the enemy's movement through the Helicarrier. Were they on break?
    • No, no... they were... uh... give me a second... Ah, I have it! They were taking an elevator near Rotor 3 and the power blew out.
    • We do get a shot of the tactical guys gearing up with their rifles after the engine goes down. As for where they were, well, the mercenaries were spread out throughout the helicarrier, so it's possible the SWAT team was as well. In a blink and you miss it moment, when Thor gets to Loki's cell, you can see the body of one of the agents, killed by the merc who set Loki free, and you can see another moving in to secure the detonation cell right after Loki has fled the helicarrier.

     Military Response 
  • This is ostensibly post-9/11 New York, where there are fighter jets nearby on standby to scramble at a moment's notice. How is it that an obviously-hostile force shows up in Midtown, and the only military response is the National Guard who won't be there for an hour?
    • The only answer I can think of is Doyalist, but that way it's the Avengers that actually save the day. Same reason why the helicarrier is damaged and can't respond, and why the NYPD has to be told by Cap to set up a perimeter and evacuate civilians. Superheroes movies really work when any legitimate military or police force can't handle the threat. So SHIELD gets disabled, the police are incompetent, and the military is slow. Now it's solely up to the Avengers to save the day.
    • Now here's a Watsonian answer: it's also an invasion that New York has zero time to prepare for. A hijacked plane or an ICBM is one thing, but a magc portal that suddenly appears and starts spitting out an invading alien army in the middle of the city is another. I'm not an expert on homeland security but it seems unlikely that there would be a response that could be effective before the Chitauri had gained a foothold. By then the Avengers were on the scene and the military might have elected to respect their perimeter and intervene only when a stray slipped through the cracks. I remember that a supplememtal comic established that the Avengers had contacted James Rhodes (on the other side of the world at the time) so its not inconceivable that they had coordinated with the local response to some extent.
      • Also, we briefly do see the National Guard engaging the Chitauri during the final battle-though they only consist of a few Humvees and infantry. It possible that, had the WSC not jumped the gun and launched the nuke, heavier firepower would've been brought in. As for where these troops came from, I suspect it was Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn-the only permeant military instillation in New York proper. It's garrison consists of a few companies of Army Reserve and National Guard, and would be the likeliest first military response.

     The Chitauri "Army" 
  • I get that Loki has apparently sold Thanos a bill of goods about how weak humans are, and that needing the Tesseract to open the portal means there's only going to be one doorway to Earth, but the Chitauri still demonstrate an appalling lack of tactical ability when they arrive over Manhattan. There's no attempt to defend the portal that brought them there, no attempt at coordination, no marshaling of units to begin creating a beachhead or begin a proper invasion. They seemed to be following an "Every Chitauri for themselves" plan of just flying around shooting randomly. Had they met any kind of coordinated military resistance, even after flying around Manhattan for an hour, they were likely to be mopped up pretty quick.
  • Where did Loki get the idea that the Chitauri were any kind of force to be reckoned with? It's pretty obvious that they were getting chewed up by just the Avengers. They would have had next to no defense against ordinary military weapons. Iron Man might not have been able to make much of a dent in the flying creature's armor, but it's slow and can't shoot back; the heavier missiles on an attack helicopter or fighter jet would have made short work of it.
    • Considering how hard Hulk hits it's unlikely anything shy of a nuke would actually stop a Leviathan.
    • The Chitauri seem to operate on the principle of Zerg Rush. They seem to literally come off an assembly line, constantly replacing fallen soldiers until all resistance is worn down. Even the Avengers were starting to feel the stain as the battle wears on, with even the Hulk being effectively pinned down. Assuming they can resupply soldiers without limits they could theoretically take over a planet through sheer attrition.
  • It's entirely possible that the Chitauri only received notice that the gateway was going to be directly on top of a major city a very short time before the attack was launched. Loki seems to have been the only conduit of communication they'd had with Earth, and we only see him contact the Other once, with no exchange of tactical information between them. Possibly the forces we saw were a scout detachment, intended to survey the area and park enough leviathans around the portal to guard it while the commanders on the other side of the gateway selected the first heavy detachments to deploy. When they found themselves being attacked by a bunch of guerrilla supers in the middle of downtown Manhattan, the scouts started kicking off as much chaos as possible to distract the Avengers from the portal ... which actually worked, given that it drew Thor away from his assigned task to bottle up the incoming reinforcements. Eventually their superiors on the other side worked out an urban-combat-with-supers tactical model, after which they quickly took out Hawkeye and pinned down the Hulk.
  • Also we definitely see both tactics and an officer class when the Chitauri coordinate their fire onto the Hulk and take hostages in the Bank. I think this was just a D-Day situation for them, attacking a very small beachhead and being massacred as soon as they go out so it was every alien for himself for a bit until they could get organized.
  • One other possible explanation for the slapdash Chitauri tactics comes to mind, in the wake of subsequent movies in general and of Doctor Strange (2016) in particular: they could have been secretly ordered by Thanos to simply spread out and go on a rampage, causing as much chaos and danger to civilians as possible - never mind establishing a proper beachhead - in the hope of drawing out a response from the Ancient One and her wizards. If they'd done enough damage to spur her to break out the Eye to try to forestall or reverse the harm they'd inflicted, the Chitauri could've quit toying with the Avengers and humoring Loki's megalomania, and called in the Black Order to dogpile her and snag possession of the other Infinity Stone hidden on Earth.

     Fall preparation 
  • One of the soldiers assaulting the Helicarrier is thrown from it "outside", falling to his death... did they not think to bring parachutes / jetpacks / grapplers while preparing to assault a high-altitude airborne craft? Or were they simply considered too expendable for the equipment?
    • Loki probably considered them expendable, and they may not have had that equipment available to bring on their own.
    • If he knows a solid hit can disrupt his Mind Control, Loki may prefer to have such followers plummet to their deaths than be picked up by S.H.I.E.L.D. and interrogated.

     invisible Helicarrier 
  • Who thought it was a good idea to have the Helicarrier turn invisible? OK, it's for security, but what if a civilian plane or bird crashes into it?
    • The helicarrier can probably create a no fly zone around itself and divert other aircraft. Or it flies at an altitude where civilian aircraft wouldn't fly. A bird would probably do little damage, but SHIELD probably has a device that causes birds to keep away.
    • The fact that those giant rotors that keep it airborne are bound to be really loud when you get close to it probably helps keep birds away.

    "You think this madness will end with your rule?" 
  • I was wondering because I've heard two different interpretations: When Thor calls out Loki during the end fight, and says the above line while making Loki look at the destruction that the Chitauri are making, what does he mean: Is he referring to Loki's previous words on the mountain, when Loki was talking about how the humans "slaughter each other," but he would put an end to that by ruling them (so is Thor calling out Loki's hypocrisy)? Or is he telling Loki that it's unlikely that Loki will even have the chance to rule Earth like he was promised because the Chitauri just savagely destroy the city and Thor believes that they won't even listen to Loki anymore if he should tell them to stop (so Thor is trying to make Loki aware that he's possibly being ripped off)?
    Related to this; somewhere on the main page someone wrote that Tony's "there's no version of this where you come out on the top"-speech implies that Tony knows that Loki has a backer and is informing him that they will probably not let him keep Earth. I took the scene as Tony badass-boasting Loki and telling him that Earth will never stop fighting against him if even if he should manage to take over.
    • Thor is basically saying, “You really want to be king of a smoking pile of ash? Because that’s the only way this is going to play out if the Chitauri have their way.” There will be no coronation or parades or flowers, or anything Loki’s ego needs to be satisfied, there won’t even be any subjects to subjugate. Tony does not know about any backer, he means that either the Avengers will beat the invasion, or they’ll take Loki out as recompense, or they’ll just regroup and defeat the Chitauri on their second try. Or others will do the job, i.e. SHIELD, or the myriad of superpowered individuals that are coming/will come out if the woodwork, or even a civilian resistance force! It’s basically a jab at Loki’s claim that subjugation is mankind’s natural state.
    • As for Tony's little lecture, he's not implying anything about Loki having a backer, or about Earth never yielding to Loki's rule. He's outright warning Loki that, even if the Chitauri should rampage unchecked over the planet, Tony's team will make sure that Loki himself ends up buried under the resulting ruins rather than reigning over them.
    • Yeah, it sounds like a warning that Taking You with Me is going to be their last option if they can't stop the invasion. As in "Even if we all die unsuccessfully defending Earth, we'll make sure that you'll be dead too."

    What the heck is Tony's apartment floor made of? 
  • We all know the scene: Hawkeye fires a grenade arrow at Loki, Loki goes flying into Tony's apartment, and Hulk turns Loki into an Asgardian metronome. My question is, what the hell is that floor made out of? Not only does it withstand the Hulk's pounding Loki into the floor for the most part, it also ends up doing enough damage to Loki to leave him motionless for the remainder of the battle. Is the building frame made from adamantium or something?
    • Remember in Iron Man when Tony tries to land on the roof of his house but it breaks under the weight of his suit? Well, ever since that, he builds all his floors and ceilings extra durable.

    Loki and shawarma 
  • Where exactly is Loki during the shawarma scene? It's clearly just after the fight, since they're all wearing battle armour and the staff seems to be stil cleaning part of the debris... But Loki is nowhere to be found. So, did the avengers tie him up and leave him outside the restaurant? Or did they actually went to have a shawarma right after Stark suggested it, and then they climbed up the tower just in time to stand all menacing while Loki woke up?
    • Some have suggested that Loki is out on the sidewalk with Mjolnir on his chest holding him down. Or under the table with Mjolnir and everybody's feet holding him down.
    • Or, more likely, they gave Loki to SHIELD, took care of the immediate post-battle clean-up, then headed out for a meal.

    How about a nuclear payload to the chest this time? 
  • Amazingly, I've never seen anybody even ask this question - if the missile at the end of the film truly is a nuclear strike, shouldn't Tony have been drenched with a huge wave of radiation the instant the nuke went off? From that distance, there's no way he would have walked away from that even if he made it through the portal.
    • You're assuming the suit wouldn't protect him from that.
    • I'm assuming because I'm neither an expert on metals nor radiation, so I have no idea if it'd be enough. Would it be?
    • Considering Tony's suit was designed to operate in pretty much any environment and is made out comic book materials, it's pretty safe to assume that he added radiation proofing to it.
    • From what distance? It's not super clear how far away he is from the ship since we don't really know the size of the ship.

    "You and I remember Budapest very differently." 
  • Okay, I can't be the only one wondering what the heck happened at Budapest. I know it's supposed to be a sort of funny throw away Noodle Incident but I still want to know.
    • The large number of angry things trying to kill them in Budapest was not as large and was not a bunch of shrieking aliens. That's it.
    • It's touched upon in Black Widow. Nat explains that she helped Hawkeye take out the director of the Red Room as the final step in her defection. The process involved rigging a building with explosives, blowing it up, a shootout with the Hungarian special forces, and hiding out in an air vent until they could get out of the country.

    Thor's hammer 
  • Why couldn't Thor pick up his hammer? It wasn't explained.
    • In Thor, he couldn't lift Mjölnir due to Odin stripping him of his power and enchanting Mjölnir so that it could only be lifted by someone worthy. Which was amply explained in that film, so I assume you mean instead The Avengers, but Thor's never shown unable to lift Mjölnir during that movie. After his fall from the helicarrier he seems to take a moment to psych himself up before trying to pick it up, as though afraid he's somehow become unworthy again; then he picks it up with no difficulty.
    • Exactly. He allowed himself to fall for Loki's trick again, and Coulson paid the price for it. He wasn't sure if he was still worthy.
    • They probably did mean Thor even though it was amply explained. Sigh. He couldn't pick it up because he wasn't worthy until he was willing to sacrifice his own life for those of the innocent people that Loki was using the Destroyer to attack. He was still too arrogant to be worthy in the scene where he tried to lift it from the crater while under the S.H.I.E.L.D. tents.
    • The OP was very likely meaning the Avengers and not Thor since he/she posted here. It was explained by a poster above but the scene is pretty odd since it appears as though Thor tries to summon it to his hand but fails at first.
    • Thor never fails to lift Mjolnir in Avengers. It's just an artsy shot of him being upset over the events of the past few hours. There's no straining or confusion present. He stretches out his hand, then looks at his hand as though seeing it for the first time. It's a common sort of contemplative gesture in movies ("They look like good, strong hands, don't they?"). If falling for Loki's tricks was enough to make him unworthy, he'd never be able to lift the damn thing.

    Flying the Helicarrier over ocean 
I can see the value of flying to access landlocked areas ships otherwise can't, but why fly over oceans? Isn't this just going to cost far more fuel for no benefit? And it makes them way more vulnerable to attack, since losing a single propeller means they're going down. A hundred thousand ton ship crashing into the sea is going to be obliterated just as well as if it hit solid rock. Cloaking should be just as effective in water as in air, too.
  • A. Losing one single propeller does not mean they're going down. The whole sequence shows that it can stay in the air with two propellers down; Hill even says they'll only go down if the lose one more. B. You're a lot less vulnerable to attack if the only thing that can get to you must also fly. That's going to eliminate attack by, for instance, every pirate on the planet. C. There is absolutely no basis for the idea that cloaking would be "just as effective in water" considering the only cloaking we see is on the bottom, with the top remaining obviously an aircraft carrier. D. It's not about whether the Helicarrier is destroyed; it's about whether whatever is under it is destroyed. If it's over ocean, it's not threatening, for instance, a major city if it goes down. E. They're going to fly over ocean because 70% of the planet is ocean. They couldn't possibly avoid it.
  • If it's on the ocean instead of above it, that also doesn't threaten a major city. And pirates aren't much threat to an Aircraft Carrier today, much less a futuristic uber-carrier. About the only thing it would save them from is submarines. And there doesn't seem to be any reason they couldn't have cloaked the top.
  • And flying is probably lots faster than floating, when traversing the ocean. It's lots easier to push aside millions of square feet of air than thousands of tons of water. As for the cloaking, even a ship with a camouflage screen is going to leave an obvious wake behind it if it's moving, and ripples all around it even if stationary. Tough luck coating those with a mimetic grid.

     Tony's never had shawarma 
  • Tony is from Queens. He has a house in Los Angeles. He's spent time in the Middle East. He's never had shawarma before?
    • That time spent in the middle east was hardly a food tour. Tony hadn't even been there more than a day before being kidnapped.

     How does Tony's armour... 
  • Absorb lightning and redirect it, and even have its power charged up to "400%" without it being completely fried? I can accept this being the case as in most superhero-fiction, Lightning Can Do Anything. And also I probably shouldn't be thinking about this since it's also a sci-fi story, but I'd still like an explanation.
    • It might be that the arc reactor can absorb that much power, but not generate it. Notice that Tony fires a big blast seconds after learning this, probably to avoid damage holding that big a charge would do. (Also it sets up team up attacks between Thor and Iron Man in later movies).

     A question I just thought of... 
  • Does the MCU also share the same canon with the Marvel comics universe, or is it in its own separate continuity?
    • Yes and no? Long version: The Marvel comics multiverse technically makes it so that every iteration and incarnation of the characters and stories are one of their shared reality. The Earth in the MCU is called Earth-199999, but I would not expect to ever see the Tony Stark or Steve Rogers from the Stan Lee comics to make a universe hopping trip in future movies. Short version: MCU is standalone unless distinctly mentioned otherwise.
    • For an illustration of this response in action, watch Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. It explores what happens when mutually-exclusive yet equally canon parallel worlds collide. We might even get something similar in the next Doctor Strange movie, given that it has "multiverse" in the title.