Avengers: Infinity War is going to be perhaps the most important installment in the #Marvel Cinematic Universe ever since 2008's Iron Man. And failing that, it's certainly the most ambitious.
With a cast list full to bursting, there's much speculation about how directors Anthony and Joe Russo are going to juggle the ensemble piece after their success with Captain America: Civil War. To compensate, a few characters will likely stand out above the rest when the major conflict comes between the Avengers and the biggest of Big Bads in the MCU — #Thanos the Titan (Josh Brolin).
The Russo brothers have long claimed that the android Vision — first introduced in Avengers: Age of Ultron and portrayed by Paul Bettany — will have an important role in Infinity War. In many ways the sum total of both Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and Ultron (James Spader), Vision returned for Captain America: Civil War as a member of Team Stark, and his interactions with Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) teased the beginnings of their famous comic book relationship.
Indeed their relationship is one that the Russo brothers are intending to explore in Infinity War, as they told /Film. But beyond the two becoming the new power couple of the #MCU, Vision himself is set to have a pretty key role.
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There's already been much speculation that Vision will take on the role of Adam Warlock — one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel comic canon and chief antagonist to Thanos — who has thus far been missing from the MCU. Adam Warlock is a very, very important character in all three central Infinity arcs in the Marvel comics, and his very existence is all tied up with that of the Infinity Gems.
Warlock is a central force during the Infinity Gauntlet crisis, and his evil alternate self the Magus is the main villain in Infinity War. He functions as an arch-nemesis to Thanos in Infinity Gauntlet, so it's been a bit of a surprise to see him not being introduced, given that Thanos has been lurking in the background ever since The Avengers.
While there have been little hints dropped along the way regarding Warlock's existence, it is getting a bit late in the game to introduce him. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 is introducing new antagonist Ayesha — who in the comics is the female counterpart of Adam Warlock — but it seems unlikely that she could replace him at this juncture.
But one of Warlock's early defining features is the Soul Gem, embedded in his forehead (however, later versions of the character no longer feature this). In the MCU, this draws an obvious allusion to Vision, who carries the Mind Stone in his head. The nature of Vision's genesis in Age of Ultron carries similarities to Warlock's too: He was created by a "Beehive" of scientists to be the perfect end point of humanity.
The Soul Stone is the only #InfinityStone yet to be revealed in the MCU, but it's a little late to introduce Warlock before Infinity War (besides, we think Heimdall has it). Vision's design and time of entry do suggest that, rather than Warlock, we'll be having Vision as one of the primary opposing forces to Thanos. And this wouldn't be entirely nonsensical:
- Vision has one of the Stones that Thanos needs, so the Mad Titan will have to come after him at some point.
- He's very powerful. It's likely we haven't seen the full extent of his abilities yet given that he's the only other member of the team shown to be able to lift Mjölnir.
- He's also one of the few Avengers who'd be able to survive easily in outer space, given that he has a synthetic android body.
- Personality-wise, Vision and Warlock are pretty similar, both a step removed from humanity but yearning to understand them and be "normal."
And, of course, you can add to this what the Russo brothers have said so far regarding Vision's role in Infinity War, and then the fact that Civil War showed us that he is learning to control the Mind Stone (but then, so is Scarlet Witch.)
The mere fact that Vision has an Infinity Stone on his person means that Thanos will inevitably have to come after him, and likely rip the stone from his forehead, probably during the first Infinity War movie. The big question is, can Vision survive without it? Probably not, as Age of Ultron established that the Stone is the source that gives him life, and we can't really see him getting outfitted with a miniature Arc Reactor in his forehead.
But whatever way it shakes out, you should definitely keep an eye on the android when he returns in Avengers: Infinity War on May 4, 2018.
What do you think will happen to Vision in Avengers: Infinity War? Have your say in the comments below!