"What the hell is The Avengers: Age Of Ultron going to be about?"
That's one of the top questions we've got going right now at Moviepilot headquarters. I've had a lot of time to think this through, seeing as I write about the Marvel Cinematic Universe on a regular basis. With Thor: The Dark World, Iron Man 3, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 all hitting theaters before The Avengers 2, that means there's plenty of time and opportunity to construct some pretty elaborate set-ups to ease us into the grand-scale explosion of awesomesauce that fans are expecting for it.
The question remains: Where is it all going to go?
My answer: [Civil War](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CivilWar(comics), my friends. Civil War.
I can hear the wheels already starting to shift into gear and the questions starting to form on your lips, so before you do anything else, hear me out. Here's why I think that The Avengers 2 could be pitting hero against hero with one of the MCU's most polarizing and, to some, commercially shaky story-line ever. If you're not up to speed on your Civil War knowledge, you might want to refresh your memory a little first. Go ahead. I'll grab a [malta India](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Malta(softdrink).
All caught up? OK. So here goes... How we could get Civil War out of The Avengers 2.
Captain America already mistrusts the government
Cap was always a kind of a loose cannon, if you think about it. They experimented on him, then made him into an all-singing-all-dancing propaganda puppet who was a laughingstock. He gets his self-respect together and starts disregarding orders, going it on his own to save lives. Wait, there's more.
Remember the credits sequence in Captain America? The one where he busted himself out of the fake 1940s "recovery room in New York City" and runs out into the street? The one where Nick Fury shows up and says it was the only way? The one where Steve says, "I had a date..."? That would be some major seed planting for some nascent resentment and trust issues between Cap and the government and even S.H.I.E.L.D., for that matter. We know that Fury and Black Widow are in on it all together, so that could lead to more truth-bending and manipulation.
From there it's only a hop, skip and a jump for The First Avenger to be on the opposing side of a superhero registration movement like the one in the Civil War arc.
Tony Stark could come around to siding with the government
Think about it. Tony Stark's dad was, circa Captain America: The First Avenger, the military's biggest weapons contractor. Hand in hand with the government. Fast forward to the Iron Man franchise and Stark still has a big government connection: Rhodey.
Then, there's the not-so-small matter of The Mandarin. He's a pretty nasty character as far as villains go, and though we're still not sure on what he might be up to in Iron Man 3, he could a be a cog in this Civil War machine. What if The Mandarin f*%d up Iron Man so badly that he needs to seek help? Lt. Colonel James Rhodes is his best friend after all.
Or, it could come from an even more personal source: Gal Friday and Stark's ostensible better half, Pepper Potts. It's likely that we'll see Pepper suit-up as Rescue. I love this idea because I like Pepper as a character in general and as Rescue even more. However, while making her an active agent of action it also opens her up to even more life-threatening danger. Imagine Pepper mortally wounded in battle, Stark in the depths of despair begins to question the fundamental nature of superherohood, a superherohood that operates off the record in a rogue state. Perhaps rules, regulations and official support could have saved Pepper? This very well could be what brings Shellhead over to the side of the Feds.
A Guardian could become the catalyst for the Registration Movement
In the Civil War story-line, a group of superheroes misguidedly cause some heavy destruction and civilian casualties, which led to the increase in support of the Superhuman Registration Act. OK, so this might require so finagling of canon and some people might object to it, but hey... it would totally work. The Guardians of the Galaxy are a relatively unknown quantity (and potentially volatile variable) when it comes to the MCU as we know it. It's out that Iron Man might be appearing in GotG, so it's conceivable that he could bring someone back with him to NYC. It could be, say, Groot having a freak out and leveling part of Manhattan.
This is my potpourri section where I throw out all those other little morsels that add some flavor to this jambalaya of theories. There's the prospect of Wasp (Janet van Dyne) in Iron Man 3, Falcon and Maria Hill in Captain America 2, all the potential goodies that this story-line would put into motion for the upcoming Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. television series. I'd also like to give a shout-out to the Runaways, who show up later on in the Civil War continuum and have their own project that's been whispered about and would fit perfectly with Marvel's long-term plans for Phase 3. Just sayin'.
So there you have it. Do you think The Avengers 2 is headed for Civil War? Let me know in the comments.