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Sure, Avengers: Infinity War Is Overstuffed, but Still a Missed Opportunity for a Netflix Crossover

avengers netflix marvel infinity war crossover

**Spoiler warning: Details of Infinity War are touched on here. Significant spoilers are marked. Stay away if you don’t want to know any more than you already do.**

Given the extreme popularity of Marvel’s Netflix shows, a lot of fans have been wondering if Infinity War would finally let those shows’ characters move up to the big-screen big leagues. Would the Defenders get to meet the Avengers? Would they get to help the Avengers? Well, the answer, as it turns out, is no.

I get the reasons for not wanting to mix the two MCU worlds of film and Netflix. There are already a bajillion characters in Infinity War, so adding more probably doesn’t seem like a great idea. (The Russo brothers have been saying as much in interviews for a while now.) Plus, there are the showrunners of all those Netflix properties wanting to keep their characters and story arcs intact, and various studio logistics that I’m sure make it incredibly difficult to put TV characters into the movies.

But we know it’s not impossible. The successful and mostly seamless inclusion of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. characters in the Avengers movies proves that. Clearly, it can be done.

As for not wanting to add more characters to the superhero clown car that is Infinity War, again, I get it. But I don’t agree with it. I’m not saying Luke Cage should be out there fighting with the Avengers (although I would be super down with that), but so much of this movie, like Civil War and, in a different but incredibly significant way, Black Panther, is about how superheroes’ actions affect regular people. Well, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and the rest–they’re the ones on the ground, fighting and protecting “regular people” every day. So while it would make sense for them to be involved in the fight against Thanos, their absence in any form has become glaring.

Their absence makes even less sense when you consider Marvel’s love of Easter eggs and cameos. Given that much of Infinity War takes place in New York, it makes even less sense for the Netflix heroes to be invisible. Minor spoiler: When Thanos’ ship first appears in New York towards the beginning of the movie, crowds of pedestrians are running from it. Tony Stark reaches down to help up a woman who has fallen. What a cool moment it could have been if that woman were, say, Claire Temple. The audience would have cheered and everyone who doesn’t watch the show wouldn’t have missed a whiff of a plot point.

I know that these fan-demand diatribes of What Could Have Been and How I Would Have Done It are as pointless as they are annoying. I only mean to use that moment as an example of how cool and how satisfying the briefest of cameos or references could have been, and how strange it’s becoming to ignore the existence of these now very popular superheroes when fighting in their own city.

Now we get to the MAJOR SPOILERS.

If you haven’t seen the movie yet, and you plan to, turn back now, because we’re heading to the end of the movie.

No, really. SPOILERS.

Given that Thanos succeeds in eliminating half of Earth’s population, we have to assume that the characters of the Netflix shows will be affected. The shows make references to the Avengers’ film exploits (even if they only use vague terms like “The Incident” to describe the Battle of New York), so they do share that much canon.

Presumably, the shows will have to acknowledge the events of Infinity War. It will be interesting to see how that plays out. (I nominate Trish Walker and Danny Rand if we’re thinning the herd, here.) I do wish, though, that the collision of those worlds had begun in this movie.

(image: Marvel + super impressive Photoshop skills)

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Vivian Kane (she/her) has a lot of opinions about a lot of things. Born in San Francisco and radicalized in Los Angeles, she now lives in Kansas City, Missouri with her husband Brock Wilbur and too many cats.