With Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol.2 a runaway success, and both Spider-Man: Homecoming and Thor: Ragnarok to come before the year is out, some Marvel fans are already looking ahead to the next big team-up: Avengers: Infinity War, set to hit theaters in 2018. Aside from being the point that all three phases of the #Marvel Cinematic Universe have been heading towards, #InfinityWar will also be the first time we get to see Marvel's two major superhero teams — The Avengers and the Guardians Of The Galaxy — side by side for the first time on screen.
While we know that ultimately, everyone will team up to defeat Thanos, it has been revealed that the two teams will likely clash a bit before they come to the decision that working together is mutually beneficial. What we do not yet know is exactly how or why these clashes will occur. Here are some possible scenarios.
1. A Wacky Misunderstanding
Season 2 of the animated series Marvel's Guardians Of The Galaxy opens with a battle between the Guardians Of The Galaxy and The Avengers over possession of Sanctuary, Thanos's personal asteroid, with both sides assuming the other wants it for nefarious reasons. Only upon learning that they are all acquainted with #Thor does the fighting stop.
A similar scenario could work for Infinity War, probably with an Infinity Stone in place of Sanctuary. However, the outcome of this hinges on the two teams finding common ground, which may be difficult when none of them have ever met. As in the animated series, Thor is the most likely character to remedy this, with some fans expecting a Guardians cameo in Thor: Ragnarok to help bridge the gap. If not, as the Avengers' main link to off-world events, Thor could still easily become aware of the Guardians actions and allegiance sometime between the events of #GuardiansOfTheGalaxy2 and Infinity War.
2. Daughters Of Thanos
On the opposite side of the coin, Thor's knowledge of wider galactic goings-on could cause trouble for the Guardians. In the closing scenes of Age Of Ultron, Thor briefly mentions Thanos and his possible goal of gathering the #InfinityStones. If Thor is aware of Thanos, then he may also be aware of his assassin daughters, Gamora and Nebula.
This is where trouble may arise. Knowing that Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol.2 is set just a few months after the first Guardians film, we can estimate that the events of Age Of Ultron, set in 2015, take place around six months after Vol.2. Having resided on Earth for awhile at this point, Thor's knowledge on non-Earth issues may be a little dated.
Thor returns to Asgard at the conclusion of Age Of Ultron, presumably to launch into the events of Ragnarok. Spread across Asgard, Earth and outer space, this adventure likely takes up a lot of his time. By the time he returns to Earth and encounters the Guardians Of The Galaxy during Infinity War, Thor may only recognize Gamora and Nebula as daughters of #Thanos, not knowing they have changed allegiance. This would likely result in an Avengers vs. Guardians brawl that would only end when Thanos or his followers attack them all, showing the teams that they are on the same side.
3. Someone (Probably Tony) Insults Rocket Raccoon
Even after discovering that they are working towards the same goal, things may not be smooth sailing. The Guardians Of The Galaxy are a very unusual group, none more so than the genetically engineered Rocket Raccoon. Someone (probably Iron Man) will send an ill-advised quip his way, therefore causing more friction. Interestingly though, it could be more of an issue for the individual characters than the teams as a whole. Considering the love-hate relationship that certain members of the Guardians share, any insult directed at Rocket could inadvertently become a bonding moment for the Avengers and the Guardians.
While a clash between Tony Stark and Rocket Raccoon seems almost certain, expect them to come to some sort of mutual understanding before the film is over. As the tech whizzes of their respective teams, it is in everyone's best interests that they learn to get along. It is also in everyone's best interests that The Avengers and the Guardians Of The Galaxy learn to cooperate, preferably sooner rather than later.