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Mythology Gag / Avengers: Infinity War

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  • The shot of Thanos wearing the Infinity Gauntlet in the first teaser is a recreation of the cover of The Infinity Gauntlet #1.
    • The placement of each stone on the Gauntlet matches those of their counterparts in the same comic, the only difference being the colors.
  • The teaser poster released at D23 is an even more direct recreation of Thanos's pose from the first Infinity Gauntlet cover, albeit without Thanos's signature armor.
  • Thanos's unarmored appearance is inspired by his simpler robed costume from his solo series and the Annihilation comic event, as well as the short-lived sleeveless outfit he sported in his very first appearance in Iron Man #55.
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  • Ebony Maw's line when presenting Thanos with the Tesseract in the prologue is partly lifted word-for-word from Mephisto's dialogue with Thanos at the beginning of Infinity Gauntlet.
    Ebony Maw: My humble personage bows before your grandeur.
  • Thor's all-black outfit is based off of his attire from The Ultimates. His second outfit combines aspects of both his Ultimates look and his Heroic Age look.
  • Loki performs a Heroic Sacrifice shortly after holding the Tesseract in his outstretched hand in a manner that is very reminiscent of how his comics version held the Norn Stones (another blue shining object) during the Siege storyline before also sacrificing himself.
  • Wong and Doctor Strange's conversation about their lack of money, Tony's "balloon animals" jab at Strange, and Maw's taunt about Strange being popular with children are all taken from this hilarious Jimmy Kimmel skit to promote Doctor Strange.
  • Hulk crashing through the Sanctum Sanctorum to warn Strange that Thanos is coming mirrors the Silver Surfer's role in the beginning of Infinity Gauntlet. It also alludes to the history between Strange and Banner; the two were originally close friends and founding members of The Defenders.
    • Speaking of the Silver Surfer: much has been made about how Thanos' motivations in this film differ from his comic counterpart, where he erased half the population in the universe to please Mistress Death. However, that action was not of his own initiative: as shown in The Return of Thanos in Silver Surfer No. 34, Mistress Death herself asked Thanos to do something about the imbalance in the universe between the living and the dead, which would lead to overpopulation, scarcity, and the eventual collapse of civilizations. . As Thanos put it, "[His] Mistress likes a steady harvest." So, his motivations in the film are indeed identical to those in the comic, albeit with one player short.
  • Ebony Maw attacking Doctor Strange mentally comes from Infinity.
  • Spider-Man's new suit features elements of both the Iron Spider suit and the Parker Industries suit from Dan Slott's Spider-Man run.
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  • A composite case: the scene when the Guardians of the Galaxy rescue the unconscious Thor from floating in Space and wake him up is similar to the time that Thor met the (original) guardians In Thor annual #6. And that comic book was, in turn, a mythology gag of the time the Avengers rescued the frozen Captain America in Avengers #4.
  • Gamora mentions how Thor's muscles feel like Cotati metal fiber. The Cotati are a race of plant aliens who are integral to Mantis's backstory in the comics.
  • The tentacles/spider legs that come out of the back of the suit at Peter's command are reflective of similar appendages on Superior Spider-Man.
  • Steve abandoning the Captain America identity after becoming an international fugitive is a reference to his occasional Nomad identity from the comics. Further, the square buckles on Steve's shoulder harness have been replaced with circular ones resembling the attach points for Nomad's cape.
  • Quite a few to Steve's time as the Captain from the comics, an identity he took up after the government stripped him of the Captain America identity:
    • His costume in this film having a darker color scheme and lacking all of the Captain Patriotic elements is also a nod to the comics costume.
    • Likewise, T'Challa getting Steve a replacement shield is another nod to the Captain period, as T'Challa was the one to provide Steve with a new vibranium shield after the government confiscated the old one. (The Wakandan shield is also triangular in shape as a nod to Cap's original Golden Age shield.)
    • The prequel comic reveals that in the aftermath of Civil War, Steve, Falcon and Black Widow are now traveling the world as an unsanctioned vigilante team and stopping bad guys while staying under the radar. This too references Steve's time as the Captain, where he led a group of his old allies on a crime-fighting trip across America.
  • Natasha being blonde makes her resemble the second Black Widow Yelena Belova.
  • The way Thanos defeats Drax and Mantis with utter Body Horror resembles what he did to Starfox and Nebula, and the "creative" ways he wiped out Wolverine, Thor, and Nova in the Infinity Gauntlet comic: turned his skeleton to rubber, turn to glass (and shattered), and turned into Lego blocks, respectively.
    • Similarly, suspending a helpless Nebula and tearing her apart to torture her resembles his treatment of her in the comics, where he turned her into a corpse-like shambling wreck.
    • In the comics, he defeats the Vision by reaching into his chest and pulling out a fistful of circuitry and cables (defeating Vision's intangibility). In the film, he does the same to Vision's head in order to retrieve the Mind Stone.
  • In Marvel Super Heroes, Thanos uses a lot of attacks involving bubbles. In this movie, it's his favorite method of altering reality to protect Gamora from committing suicide, either from Quill's gun or her knife.
  • Early depictions of Thanos in the comics had him infatuated with the entity of Death, visualized in the traditional image of a figure in a hooded robe with a skull face. When obtaining the Soul Stone in the film, Thanos interacts with the Red Skull, who's wearing a hooded robe, making him resemble that image.
  • Iron Man teaming up with the Guardians on Titan recalls the time he was an actual member of the Guardians of the Galaxy with a sophisticated space armor, much like his Mark 50.
  • A reference to actual mythology. In Norse myth, Eitri (or Sindri in some accounts) is indeed the dwarf who forges Mjolnir. And in that myth, just as in the film, the most crucial part of its forging is making sure the fires burn hot enough for exactly the right amount of time. But in the myth, Mjolnir is actually flawed — the short handle is a defect as a result of Loki messing with Eitri's brother Brokk as he worked the bellows. That's referenced in Infinity War when Eitri can't find the handle once the new hammer is made.
  • A burned and dying Thor is fully rejuvenated by receiving Stormbreaker mirrors the scene from the comics where a depowered Eric Masterson was suffocating in space, wherein he retrieves Mjolnir to transform back into Thor and return to battle.
  • Thor's new weapon is an axe/hammer hybrid, making it resemble both Ultimate Mjölnir and Jarnbjorn, the axe Thor wielded in the comics. It's also called Stormbreaker, which was the name of Beta Ray Bill's weapon, and its head resembles that weapon as well.
    • The fact that it can summon the Bifrost is also reminiscent of the comic book versions Mjölnir, with which Thor could teleport himself and others.
  • This isn't the first time that Bruce Banner has told someone that they're screwed. Bonus points for both stories featuring the Infinity Stones.
  • There are several nods to the big superhero battle from Infinity Gauntlet #4. Spider-Man webs Thanos's face, then swings in to kick him in the face the same as in the comic. While Thor descending and stabbing deeply into Thanos's body recalls a similar Hope Spot where Wolverine pounces onto Thanos and stabs him in the chest with both claws. It also emulates a later moment in the battle in which Thor (Eric Masterson) stuns Thanos with his hammer, but Doctor Doom gets in his way, allowing Thanos to quickly recover.
  • Although Spidey had some help from Doctor Strange's sling ring, the way he moves around hitting Thanos is essentially the same as his Maximum Spider hyper combo. The use of portals can also be seen as a sidelong reference to The Spot from Spider-Man's rogues gallery, a Lethal Joke Character capable of Portal Combat.
  • During the fight on Titan, Thanos is seen hurling chunks of the moon at the heroes. Hurling chunks of rocks/asteroids from Space (albeit through a portal) was essentially one of his hyper combos throughout the Marvel vs. Capcom series (sans Infinite).
  • Also (possibly unintentional) another reference to Infinite, at one point, Thanos is seen using the Space Stone to pull Iron Man closer to him, which is essentially what the Space Stone does in gameplay.
  • While not spoken, Doctor Strange uses red magic bands to restrain Thanos, a nod to the Crimson Bands of Cyttorak spell.
  • Speaking of Cyttorak, the whole ganging up on Thanos to restrain him and pull off the Gauntlet does remind one of the teamwork commonly required to pull the helmet off of Juggernaut.
  • Dr. Strange doesn't disclose his plan to Stark regarding their only possible victory is a reference on Adam Warlock preventing Silver Surfer from joining in battle until his role becomes critical to Adam's attack strategy.
  • Black Panther leading the Wakandan army against Thanos's forces is taken from Infinity, as well as a similar storyline where the Wakandans fought off the Skrulls during Secret Invasion.
  • A Single Tear is running down Vision's face when Wanda has to destroy the Mind Stone in his forehead to prevent Thanos from getting it. This is a homage to a panel from Avengers #58 that shows Vision shedding a tear with the caption "...Even an android can...cry".
  • In both Capcom-produced game adaptations of the Infinity Gauntlet arc, Marvel Super Heroes and War of the Gems, the player's character battles the other heroes and villains to accumulate the other Infinity Gems to fight Thanos, who's appropriately the Final Boss. While the Gems have no specific order and are acquired randomly per playthrough, the Mind Gem is always the last one; it's in the possession of Thanos, who proceeds to steal the other gems for the final battle. This is directly lifted from Thanos Quest, where the Mind Gem is the last one Thanos acquires to complete the Gauntlet, much like in the movie.
    • Speaking of Thanos Quest, the Collector is also the holder of the Reality Stone. Vision's Mind Stone also parallels the fact that most wielders of Infinity Stones have the gem embedded in their foreheads.
  • Another (perhaps unintentional) allusion to a Marvel fighting game: both Infinity War and Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite (which is heavily based on the MCU) feature a scene with Thanos assaulting the forehead of a robot containing an Infinity Stone. In the former, Thanos rips Vision's forehead to obtain the Mind Gem, whereas in the latter Thanos delivers a beating to Ultron-Sigma, causing the Reality Stone in his forehead to crack.
  • After Thanos acquires the Mind Stone from him, Vision's color drains away. This is a reference to the period in West Coast Avengers in which Vision lost all of his emotions and was colored entirely white. It's alluded to earlier when it's said that removing the Mind Stone might make Vision a somewhat different person. Also notice how he has Blank White Eyes once he's killed; even though it's a particularly horrifying sight, it does make him resemble his white-eyed comic book counterpart.
  • The final shot of Thanos sitting watching the sunset mimics the final pages of The Infinity Gauntlet, complete with his armor sitting on a post like a scarecrow.
  • Since he can't transform into the Hulk for this movie, Bruce puts on the Hulkbuster armor to compensate. The licensed game The Incredible Hulk (based on the '08 film) had the actual Hulk wear Hulkbuster armor as an alternate skin.


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