The theatrical release of Avengers: Infinity War is creeping ever closer with just over three months to go. In what is sure to be one of the biggest — if not the biggest — blockbuster in the MCU, every Marvel hero introduced since the first Iron Man in 2008 will be joining forces to defeat Thanos (Josh Brolin) before he completes his quest to subjugate the universe with all six Infinity Stones. This is a movie 10 years and 18 films in the making, with a lot of moving parts in place, not just in terms of coordinating A-list actors' schedules, but interlocking the Marvel Universe characters as well.
So much has been established leading up to Infinity War that it might be hard to keep track of it all or even actually depict everything that's going down. That's where the comics come in — to fill in the gaps. As part of the marketing campaigns for each movie, Marvel has released tie-in comic books in the run-up to each one since Iron Man 2. The Prelude title began for the first Avengers (Fury's Big Week) with the latest one tackling the events preceding Infinity War, mainly those following Civil War.
Marvel's Avengers: Infinity War Prelude is a two-part comic from writer Will Corona Pilgrim (a Marvel Studios Development executive who did the Doctor Strange and Black Panther Preludes) and artist Tigh Walker. Part One dropped Wednesday and it tells us a lot about the splintered state of the Avengers before Thanos's arrival. The first few pages are dedicated to a recap of the fight between Tony, Cap, and Bucky at the Siberian Hydra facility and Cap subsequently springing Hawkeye, Ant-Man, Falcon, and Scarlet Witch from their government prison out at sea. They all return to their families with Wanda taking an evening stroll with Vision in human form.
We then segue to Wakanda, where Bucky is being placed into cryo-sleep so the Wakandans can figure out a way to erase his Hydra programming. The big reveal is that T'Challa's sister, Shuri, is the scientist in charge of the project! Luckily, she'll be able to "reboot" the Winter Soldier while advancing her country's AI technology even further. She can't help but throw some shade on Tony and his mishap with Ultron, saying, "Of course, that's cause I'm smarter than him."
Cap, Sam, and Natasha are working abroad as a sort of paramilitary Avengers group, keeping terrorists from using alien (Chitauri) technology for their goals. With his scraggly beard and plain clothes, Captain America is certainly channeling the spirit of Nomad here. Meanwhile Tony is tinkering around in his workshop at the Avengers compound, thinking of better times and brooding about how he got distracted from the "real threat." The Prelude ends with him wondering how he can handle this danger alone, which is probably not a good idea as Part Two deals with "THE COSMIC THREAT FROM ABOVE!"
The second issue of Marvel's Avengers: Infinity War Prelude will be available on Feb. 28 and brings Doctor Strange and Wong into the mix.