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Avengers Infinity War thoughts (SPOILERS to the max)

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by Scalenex, May 10, 2018.

  1. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    Watching Infinity War has me questioning if I have a heart.

    The way I see it every major character in the movie was a villain. All of them. I'm not saying they were all equally bad, but all the informed characters were villains. A villain puts his/her desires about others.

    Thanos was the intended villain. He wanted to kill one half of the population of every sapient race in the universe. He thought that would be merciful in the long run. Questionable logic. Certainly amoral.

    Here's the problem, pretty much everyone knew exactly what Thanos was planning to do. They knew he needed his six mcguffins.

    Gamora knew where one of the mcguffins was. She knew if she died, Thanos couldn't get it. She asked her boyfriend to kill her if and only if she was captured. That is so selfish. We had a nice will he kill her/won't he kill her moment but really if Gamora killed herself as soon as she became the sole person who knew how to find the mcguffin, that would have solved the problem.

    So after her boyfriend failed to kill her, Thanos got her to yield the mcguffin by torturing her sister.


    Scarlet Witch, the only one who could destroy a mcguffin was willing to risk half the universe, and certainly knew a bunch of Wakandans would die for a slim chance to save her boyfriend. She's a villain too.


    Dr. Strange gave up a Mcguffin to save Tony Stark, a guy he pretended to not even like. He's a really petty villain. And stupid. They were on an alien world with no way back home. Even if Thanos spared them technically, they'd die of starvation on their wasteland planet.

    This was a gallows humor joke about "do you like cats or dogs better?" "You need to stop a nuclear reactor from melting down, you can throw in a puppy or a kitten to stop it, which do you choose?" I said I would throw in both if it improve the chances of saving the city. If you think about it, you'll save a lot of puppies and kittens in the process.

    If it would save a billion lives, untold trillions of lives. I would watch everyone I ever cared about plus a hundred puppies tortured to death. I wouldn't be happy about it, but I'd do it.


    If someone I loved sacrificed a million strangers to save me, I would be racked with survivor's guilt forever and I would never forgive the person who made that chose.
     
  2. ravagekitteh
    Troglodon

    ravagekitteh Well-Known Member

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    I get what you're saying in that many of the choices the characters made weren't great, but that doesn't necessarily make them villains. Is it villainous to possess a survival instinct, or to want to save someone you love? I completely understand if you disagree with their choices - you've justified it in a way I think I agree with - but to call them all villains is a bit extreme I'd say. Human beings are naturally selfish, so you're basically calling the whole human race villains. Like you say, the logic of their choices are questionable at best, but none were made in malicious intent. You might say that you would sacrifice yourself if you had to to save millions of lives, but if you were told there was another way to do it that didn't involve you or your loved ones dying, you'd want to try and take it wouldn't you? While you can fault some of the choices made in the film, you can't call them villains for making them. At least, that's my opinion
     
    NIGHTBRINGER likes this.
  3. NIGHTBRINGER
    Slann

    NIGHTBRINGER Second Spawning

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    I couldn't disagree more. As he stated earlier in the film, he would let them (Tony Stark and Peter Parker) die if it meant keeping the Time Stone out of Thanos' hands. Then as you say, we see him do just the opposite. So what happened? There was a key event that took place between him making that statement and eventually relinquishing the stone. There was a moment when we see him using the time stone to scan the possible outcomes of the future. It is revealed that he had seen 14 million possible futures. In response, he is asked in how many of those possible futures are they successful against Thanos. His reply: ONE. I highly suspect that in that one possible future where they succeed, Dr. Strange had to give up the time stone at that moment. The mechanism for this victory won't be known until the second film of course. It could be something as simple as Tony Stark playing a key role in eventually bringing Thanos down or having to lose the battle to win war (at the end of the film we do see that the gauntlet is damaged/drained) or something far more seemingly insignificant (think of the butterfly effect). It is likely that had Dr. Strange sacrificed Tony and Peter, Thanos would still have obtained the Time Stone and subsequent events would unfold in such a way that Thanos could not be beat.

    It is my belief that Dr. Strange was not acting selfishly. He was telling the truth when he said that he would the choose the protection of the stone over the lives of Tony and Peter. His top priority was and remained the protection of the universe. It is simply the case that more information became available to him, and he reacted accordingly. His priorities however never changed.




    @Scalenex :I'm surprised you didn't mention Peter Quill's selfish moment in your write up. The internet is quite worked up over that one.
     
  4. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    Fair enough, Dr. Strange is virtually omniscient, so he could be playing the long game by pure logic.

    Peter Quill was selfish.

    I guess the heroes are not villains, they are anti-heroes.

    But it all gets down to "Oh no, don't hurt my girlfriend/best friend/sister. I want to kill 100 billion people to lose their girlfriend's, sisters, and best friends instead!"


    I do like Thanos as a villain. All the best villains are the hero in their own mind. In a sense he is even scarier than a villain who wants to wipe out the universe entirely. If you wipe out all people, there is no one left to mourn.
     
  5. NIGHTBRINGER
    Slann

    NIGHTBRINGER Second Spawning

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    I'd say they are flawed heroes. Nothing wrong with that... just part of the hero's journey.
     
  6. NIGHTBRINGER
    Slann

    NIGHTBRINGER Second Spawning

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  7. Killer Angel
    Skink Priest

    Killer Angel Prophet of the Stars Staff Member

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    I could say that at this point of their lives, they should already have developed their whole hero-character growth.
    We already witnessed their growth in Thor 1, Iron Man 2... their journey is complete , and they are flawed.
    When your flaws stops you from doing your job... well, it's hardly acceptable even from normal people!

    Understandable? Yes. But far from heroic.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2018
  8. NIGHTBRINGER
    Slann

    NIGHTBRINGER Second Spawning

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    The journey is never complete. To live is to learn. If you aren't learning than you aren't really living. And just because you are a hero, doesn't mean that you are without flaws.

    Most of their flaws are quite explainable too.
    • Peter Quill - moment of rage, and it is in line with his personality (how would any of us react under those circumstances?)
    • Gamora - she has no way of knowing that if she were to kill herself that Thanos wouldn't get the stone anyways... maybe it would just take a bit longer
    • Scarlet Witch - she didn't want to kill Vision... who she loves. I wouldn't take out @Mrs. NIGHTBRINGER to save have of you guys either. Sorry!
    • Dr. Strange - I've already written a detailed rational in the third post of this thread

    The only guy who looks to be at tremendous fault (if the following article is to be believed: https://movieweb.com/avengers-infinity-war-why-fans-mad-at-thor/ ) is Thor. When watching the film I figured he just gave it his best throw and it just turned out not to be perfect. If he indeed deliberately avoided landing the perfect killing blow then all the blame falls on him. That will make for an interesting story arc in the next film.
     
  9. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    Thinking of the other Marvel prequels. Pretty much every time some one puts the needs of the many above the needs of the one they are almost always wrong.

    Black Panther, the old king puts the needs of his country above his brother and nephew. Accidentally created a vengeful villain that devastated his country.

    Iron Man 3, Tony blew off a guy so he could focus on his revolutionary work. Accidentally created a vengeful villain who nearly destroyed his legacy. Iron Man 2, he accidentally created a villain by ignoring his collateral damage. Iron Man he had a very utilitarian view of warfare, accidentally created the villain there and armed a bunch of terrorists.

    Avengers 1, Tony Stark's + Thor's mercy to his treacherous brother attempt to create a better world attracts an alien invasion.

    Avengers 2, Tony Stark's desire for a better world creates Ultron who tries to destroy the world. On one level you could say Bannon's reluctance to unleash the Hulk was in defense of the greater good, or maybe he just was afraid to help the greater good in a way that makes him feel sad personal, a supreme act of selfishness. The problem is since the Hulk only has one solo movie, we get the Hulk's characterization in tiny pieces and his character growth seems sporadic. In Avengers 2 and Thor 3 his ark is based on repressing the Hulk. In the Infinity War it's based on not being able to summon the Hulk. In Avengers 1 he's pretty good at getting the Hulk when he wants it and not when he doesn't, barring the little bit of Loki mischief.

    Captain America Civil War Tony Stark's desire to regulate heroes for the greater good, weakens the Avengers and the defense of the world. His best friend his paralyzed for life.

    Spiderman Homecoming Tony believes Peter Parker is endangering people with his sloppy use of his suit and takes his super toys away then cuts him off. Almost lets a C-list super villain grab a bunch of super tech in the process as a result. Notice how everything Tony Stark touches gets worse then he sort of patches things up at the last minute? As How It Should have Ended pointed out for Civil War, Tony Stark is the only super that the Wakovia Accords should have covered, everyone else is fine.

    Thor 3, Odin put the needs of Asgard above his daughter. Accidentally created a vengeful villain who devastated his world.

    Thor 1 The mercy Odin showed the orphaned giant's son nearly destroys Asgard

    Antman Dr. Whatshisface is unwilling to risk his daughter's safety so he gets a bumbling excon to put on his super shrinking suit to stop the badguys. Logically his daughter who was training on that tech her whole life, and had an improved suit, and was more level headed and had more combat training would have thrashed the bad guys a lot easier. But on the whole greater good versus the needs of the individual wasn't really a factor in this one. In this case the villains were bumblers too so it balances out. That said I enjoyed Antman, but I enjoyed it in the way I enjoy a slapstick B-movie.

    Captain America 2 didn't really have major issues with the greater good versus the individual but the villain was literally trying to kill individualism itself and every institution was corrupted by Hydra, so it indirectly drove the point home.

    Exceptions that prove the rule

    Captain America 1 Steve Rogers "kills" himself essentially in front of his sobbing girlfriend to save Western civilization.

    Thor 2 The Dark Elves are so pissed about their personal losses they want to destroy the universe. Greatest good for the greatest number, they should have just sucked it up and created a little refugee colony for the survivors and left everyone else alone. The good guys are fairly balanced towards the needs of the few and the many.

    Hulk, Bannon is okay risking his soul and alienating himself from his true love in order to save a bunch of civilians from the Abomination. Of course they replace the actor and we never see any of the Hulk's supporting cast in future movies and his subplot narratives are changed.


    Maybe writing Lizardmen fluff for so long has inured me to this kind of thing.

    It wasn't conscious on my part but in my fluff pieces, my protagonists will usually put the needs of the many above the one, and this is usually the right thing to do.

    The Slann sometimes had something come back to bite them when they had their head in the clouds pondering the Great Plan and ignored the wants and needs of lesser mortals. But my stories are generally about the actions of Skinks and Sauri and they pretty much always put the needs of the many above the needs of the few though the relatively small cast of characters I have that are still alive are beginning to show some strain at this.

    I never was trying to teach any lessons about the greater good. I am a fictional sadist. I like to inflict horrible things on my characters just to see what they can take, but they have to have some victories or I'm just indulging in nihilism. I'll dip my toe in the waters of nihilism, especially in short story contest, but I like sacrifices to be meaningful and for hope to exist in my longer pieces at least.

    The two hundred page fluff novel I've been working on for years (never straying from writing) involves my human protagonist having inner conflicts on personal connections versus the greater good.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2018

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