So, a while ago I posted this theory on Reddit and I wanted to share it here and add more detail to the theory.
For those of you, who haven't watched all the Marvel films and [Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.](tag:722469), there are spoilers ahead.
So, as we saw in The Avengers, Couslon was killed by Loki, literally back stabbed. But in Agents of SHIELD, he was revived by Project Tahiti (it's a magical place), a program that uses Kree DNA to revive the dead and was meant to be used in case one of the Avengers died.
But, the big question has remained since Coulson's revival, do the Avengers know he is alive?
The answer is yes, they do know.
So, my theory begins in the very first episode of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, when Grant Ward is selected to be apart of Coulson's team, he says this:
"Welcome to Level Seven." - Phil Couslon, Episode 1 - Pilot, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D
To me, this implies that you need to have Level 7 clearance to know about Phil Coulson's revival. No, I am not saying everyone knows about Project Tahiti but everyone who sees him doesn't seem to be surprised and probably actually believe the story about him going to Tahiti.
Now, onto the first Avenger who would know about Coulson's revival which is none other then Captain America himself.
According to the Marvel Cinematic Universe Wiki, while Steve was still apart of S.H.I.E.L.D, he had Level 8 clearance. It's not too far fetched to believe he didn't come across Coulson at some point between The Avengers and Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
Next up is Hawkeye and Black Widow, who according to the Marvel Cinematic Universe Wiki, had Level 7 clearance while S.H.I.E.L.D was still running and like Steve, would have run into Coulson at some point.
Another way that Clint and Natasha would know is with Clint's connection to Bobbi Morse/Mockingbird in AoS, while her clearance level is unknown, she has some sort of relationship with Clint and would have most likely told him about Coulson and he would have told Natasha.
Plus, if Clint didn't tell Natasha, I'm sure Fury would have told her anyway.
As for the great Iron Man, in the Avengers, he planted a bug to collect all of S.H.I.E.L.D's "dirty little secrets" and send it back to his own system as well as view the data, so it wouldn't surprise me if he found something to do with Project Tahiti.
Even if Tony didn't find anything to do with Project Tahiti, for all we know they never removed the bug and he ended up getting more information after The Avengers took place and would have seen something there.
As for Bruce, I imagine that Tony would have told him as it seems Bruce has been living with Tony since The Avengers.
Now, last but certainly not least is Thor.
Thor definitely would have known. When I posted my theory on Reddit, somebody commented on how Thor would have been at the funeral so I'll be working that into here.
Now, Thor would have known through Sif, even though Coulson asked her not to tell him, I doubt she could have kept that promise for long and eventually would have confessed to him.
But if Sif had kept her word, then Thor would have found out by Heimdall. I believe the funeral was held after Thor left because Thor would probably have wanted to return Loki to Asgard as soon as possible in case he found a way to escape.
So Thor would have asked him about the events (like how he asks about Jane in Thor: The Dark World) and since Heimdall sees all, he would have informed him that Coulson was actually alive.
But if Thor had attended the funeral like someone commented on, I'm sure Heimdall still would have informed him that Coulson is alive.
We all know that Nick Fury and Maria Hill know, due to their many appearances in the show so that's a no brainer.
Lastly, for those of you who don't think this is plausible, I'm just going to remind you of something.
Councilman Rockwell: What are you doing?
Alexander Pierce: She's disabling security protocols and dumping all the secrets onto the Internet.
Natasha Romanoff: Including HYDRA's.
Alexander Pierce: And SHIELD's. If you do this, non of your past is gonna remain hidden.
[Natasha continues typing into the computer]
Alexander Pierce: Are you sure you're ready for the world to see you as you really are?
Natasha Romanoff: Are you?
- Councilman Rockwell, Natasha Romanoff and Alexander Pierce, Captain America: The Winter Soldier
In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Natasha dumps all of S.H.I.E.L.D's files onto the Internet for the entire world to see. Everything out there on the Internet.
Even if Project Tahiti was somehow not leaked onto the Internet, there definitely would have been reports that Coulson would have written or signed off on that were recent or videos of interrogations that Coulson was involved in or security footage that Coulson was in.
Plus for those of you, who are skeptical about the videos of interrogations or security footage, like you might be saying it would be blurry or difficult to make out but that isn't the case at all. SHIELD's cameras are like Blu Ray quality recording like seriously.
So there is my theory, there might be a couple of minor holes in it (not sure) but overall, I believe it's quite plausible.
Love to hear what you think on this theory of mine!
- It's Just Woody