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Avengers Trailer Reminds Us How Much Pepper/Tony Matters

Tony Stark Suffering in Space

**Spoilers for Avengers: Endgame trailer.**

“When I drift off, I’ll dream about you. It’s always you.”

That is what Tony Stark says in what he believes to be his last message to Pepper Potts, his fiancée and love throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Yeah, I’m crying, because in this opening to the next Avengers movie, we see the character who brought this universe together, Tony Stark, as played by the always fantastic Robert Downey Jr., at what he thinks to be the end, embracing it softly.

While we know there’s no way this is Tony’s end, it matters that he thinks it is and how he handles it.

We know that Tony has not been able to say goodbye to many people. From his own parents to having just watched the traumatic “death” of Peter Parker and other allies, Tony wants to be able to say goodbye as he drifts into space, and the only person he wants to say goodbye to is Pepper.

On this site, we talk a lot about how Marvel has some great romances and some real busts, but I think Tony and Pepper have one of the best love stories in Marvel movies, because they have survived so much together and keep being rocks for each other as the world literally crumbles around them.

Also, I’m just going to say it, because I know it’s the minority opinion these days, but I LOVE TONY STARK! Is he perfect? Absolutely not. He’s a messy person and has a lot of baggage, but what has always been compelling about his character arc is that he wants to redeem himself and help people with the privilege and genius he once used to get rich.

In the fandom stan wars we often get caught up in, it’s easy to just write Tony off as just an asshole, while ignoring that, since Iron Man, Tony has been on his own Epic of Gilgamesh-style development from despot to hero.

But what is often refreshing and taken for granted is that Tony is on his hero’s journey while still retaining his ego and smarminess. Being a good person isn’t always separate from being an asshole. Tony means well and does carry an enormous amount of guilt, but carrying that around all the time and being detached from life as a result wouldn’t make him who he is. It would make him Batman.

I love the idea that, as Tony faces what has been his greatest nightmare since Avengers one—where the characters are very OOC—dying alone in space, he is thinking about Pepper and their love, and it makes going into the end just a little bit easier, because her love has always made him feel complete.

No, I’m not crying; you’re crying.

Of course, most likely, Tony will not die—at least at that point—and everything will be fine, but this quiet moment is a sign of how much Tony has grown, and even though she doesn’t show up, that maturity and growth is because of Pepper. Now, we just have to make Pepper the one to use her smarts to save Tony, and it’ll be really something to celebrate.

(image: Screengrab)

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Princess (she/her-bisexual) is a Brooklyn born Megan Fox truther, who loves Sailor Moon, mythology, and diversity within sci-fi/fantasy. Still lives in Brooklyn with her over 500 Pokémon that she has Eevee trained into a mighty army. Team Zutara forever.