We live in a world where even advertisements are advertised. During the commercial breaks of Tuesday night’s Agent’s of SHIELD, ABC repeatedly announced a new trailer for Avengers: Age of Ultron was coming. While many people probably take issue with this Russian nesting doll approach to advertising, we can take solace in the fact that we also live in a world of leaked and early access footage thanks to the internet. Early Wednesday afternoon, a third trailer for Marvel Studio’s Avengers: Age of Ultron (presumably the same one ABC was advertising for) was released online and it seems to be one of the final pieces of the puzzle for nearly every question fans have regarding the upcoming movie. Continue with caution, the rest of this article is going to be rife with spoilers.
(Correction 3/5/15: Agents of SHIELD’s air time corrected to Tuesday night.)
With every additional trailer, it has become more and more apparent that Tony Stark, played by Robert Downey Jr., is the one responsible for the creation of Ultron. This most recent trailer permanently cements that theory with Tony plainly explaining not only his responsibility for Ultron, but also the reasoning behind it. “I tried to create a suit of armor around the world,” he says, as we’re given an overhead view of an Ultron-bot being assembled in Stark’s lab. Once again, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is taking bold steps away from the traditional comic book source material, having Tony Stark create Ultron rather than Hank Pym. This is something that should be accepted positively, as it means comic book aficionados can be surprised just as much as non-comic readers, rather than sit around as omniscient observers that know everything that is going to happen before it happens. Staying faithful to the source material while still being innovative and inventive with the story is a good thing!
Ultron was made by Stark with good intentions but turned on everything he was intended for. Just how badly he has been corrupted though wasn’t fully known until this trailer. It has become abundantly clear that there will be no redemption for Ultron, the destruction of the human race is literally written in his programming. The Avengers have faced villains in the past (both solo and together) but none of them come close to Ultron’s cruelty. He isn’t trying to rule humanity, like Loki; he is trying to destroy it.
According to Ultron, before killing off humanity, he wants to take hope away from them first. In the trailer, he is presumably telling this to Scarlet Witch, played by Elisabeth Olson, and Quicksilver, played by Aaron Taylor-Johnson (who starred as Kick-Ass in the Kick-Ass franchise), as they look at the android sitting in a medieval throne. The superpowered siblings are unquestionably on Ultron’s side for a portion of the movie as they are repeatedly shown standing with Ultron willingly and purposefully. The trailer even gives us glimpses of direct conflict between the twins and the Avengers. Quicksilver is seen using his super speed to land a blow directly to Captain America’s face, and Scarlet Witch is seen using her loosely defined hex powers on Scarlet Johansson’s character, Black Widow.
Scarlet Witch’s powers have been the center of some debate regarding previous trailers for Age of Ultron in regard to the highly anticipated battle between Hulk and Iron Man (the highlight for many fans in every trailer so far). In said battle, the Hulk’s eyes are lacking their signature green, replaced with a reddish (scarlet) tint. This had led some to believe that the Scarlet Witch has the power to control people and is thus one of the main causes of strife among the Avengers. That theory can now also be lumped into the “confirmed” category as this most recent trailer shows a clear scene of Scarlet Witch using her abilities on Black Widow, changing her eye color to red in the process. Does this also explain the incredibly intimate moments shared between Black Widow and Bruce Banner/Hulk later on in the trailer?
In one of the more surprising reveals of the trailer, Black Widow and Bruce Banner, played by Mark Ruffalo, are shown getting extremely close, taking their relationship from the last Avengers movie and evolving into something entirely more intimate. The likelihood that this is Black Widow acting under Scarlet Witch’s influence is low considering her eye color is scarlet-free during this scene. On top of that, the feelings shared between the two characters seem to be much more genuine in nature, as previous trailers have shown Black Widow seemingly calming down the Hulk, perhaps as the final resolution in the Hulk versus Iron Man brawl.
It seems more and more likely that the battle between Hulk and Iron Man is caused by Scarlet Witch, but it doesn’t look like we can blame her for the remaining conflicts between Tony and the Avengers. Previous trailers have shown Thor grabbing Stark by the throat, and footage from a Marvel Event last October depicted Captain America and Tony vehemently arguing (while Captain America split logs with his bare hands). The root cause for these arguments seems clear since Tony is responsible for Ultron and all the destruction it brings. Captain America is going to be particularly cross with Stark considering the trailer shows him failing to save two cars (in which you can just spot the outline of people) from falling off a crumbling bridge. Something like that, having the blood of innocents on his hands, won’t be taken lightly by Cap’.
The trailer isn’t all doom and gloom for the Avengers, though. There are several beautiful shots of the team working together. One of which might be the most comic book-ish scene ever to hit cinema as the Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America, Hawkeye, Black Widow, and Thor leap through a snow covered forest into the frontlines of enemy (most likely Hydra) soldiers. Another scene comes at the end of the trailer, and most likely toward the end of the movie itself, where the team is circled up, fighting Ultron’s minions on all sides. Interestingly enough, the team has an additional member in this last scene: Scarlet Witch. She is shown fighting the Ultron bots in what looks to be her official induction into the Avengers. Where her brother, Quicksilver, is remains to be seen. His absence from that scene could be explained by grim tidings for Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s character, or it could just be that standing around in a circle isn’t really pragmatic for someone with super speed, no matter how heroic it may look. Whatever the fate of both characters, their allegiance to UItron is unquestionably temporary as they are Avengers at heart.
Other noteworthy scenes in this trailer include Tony Stark grabbing the Chitauri Sceptor (wielded by Loki in the last Avengers film) with an armored hand, Thor roaring shirtless while emerging from a pool of water (I’m willing to accept anyone’s theories on this), a new type of weapon for Black Widow that looks to involve electrified defense batons, Iron Man in updated armor toward the end of the trailer (little surprise there), and one short shot of the hero known as Vision at the very end of the trailer.
This is the first time Vision has been shown or even referenced in an Age of Ultron trailer. The character’s comic book origins stem from Ultron himself, but whether or not the movie will keep with the idea of Ultron creating the key to his own destruction in the form of Vision is still up for debate. Even though the trailers have shown fans a lot of what is to come, plenty of questions remain that can only be answered with seeing the movie when it is released May 1.