Warning: spoilers ahead for the ending of Avengers: Infinity War. Proceed with caution.
Speaking with Buzzfeed News about the ending of Infinity War -- in which Thanos (Josh Brolin) wipes out trillions of living beings, including many a Marvel superhero, with one snap of his fingers while wearing the Infinity Gauntlet -- Markus and McFeely addressed some of the speculation regarding that climactic moment and how it plays into Avengers 4.
While many fans assume that the deaths in Infinity War -- both those induced by the Gauntlet and earlier ones of characters like Loki, Gamora, and Vision -- are not permanent, or at least not "real," Markus had some words of advice:
"(The deaths are) real. I just want to tell you it’s real, and the sooner you accept that, the sooner you will be able to move on to the next stage of grief.”
But surely all will be restored in Avengers 4, right? When the surviving heroes find a way to reverse Thanos' horrifying action and bring everyone back to life? Not necessarily. According to Markus:
"(Avengers 4) doesn’t do what you think it does. It is a different movie than you think it is."
That sounds ominous. McFeely added his thoughts, while of course being deliberately vague:
"Put it this way...I think (Infinity War) is a fairly mature movie for a blockbuster. It’s got a lot of fun in it, obviously, but boy, it gets very mature. The second one is also mature. We’re going to own these choices, and hopefully surprise and delight you and get you invested."
Look, we all know that Markus and McFeely are yanking our chains to some degree: movies starring Infinity War casualties Spider-Man, Black Panther, and the Guardians of the Galaxy (of whom only Rocket is left at the moment) are all on the launching pad for Marvel starting in 2019. Are the writers just trying to deflect our attention from the way they're actually going to get those and other characters back on the playing field, or have they come up with all-new rules and an entirely different game going forward?
No one is saying for now, and we have a long wait until Avengers 4 opens next May. But Markus promised one thing: "We broke your heart...now we're going to blow your mind!”