Over the years, Marvel has made a name for itself in several ways. Contrasting the teen angst and melodrama that is DC, Marvel has established itself as the jovial and more adventurous of the two. They’re known for their loveable heroes and inferior villains, a reciprocal of DC’s model. They’ve accumulated merit for their illustrious franchise system and inspired many to emulate. But one other aspect that defines the Marvel persona is the short and sweet 2 minute segments that follow the credits.
Ranking The Latest Entry
Guardians of the Galaxy has just erupted across cinema land and is fountaining money as the new Marvel Franchise. While the film has caused crowds to flock to theatres and united critics have glorified the fresh faces of the summer, there is a major complaint from my end. I enjoyed all the colorful characters, even the flat villainous Ronan, and marveled at the grand splendor that is James Gunn’s wild imagination, but I was left disappointed as the final credits descended to reveal none other than, spoiler alert, Howard the Duck.
The segment was cute and fun and all too reminiscent of Iron Man 3’s end credits cut scene, where all it offered was another shot at humor and did not allude to anything yet to come in the MCU. But that is not to say that all other end credit scenes are much like dry humping, needless enduring in which there is no gain.
The first time I saw the movie I didn’t sit through the credits as I had no idea that there was going to be this elaborate spectacle to unfold. It wasn’t until I was told in a bar that some black guy in an eye patch and trench coat was at the end. Later that night, a very buzzed and younger version of myself waited for that last shot, and there it was. Samuel L. Jackson as Fury himself with a very cryptic and foreshadowing line, “…You’ve become a part of a bigger universe, you just don’t know it yet.”
Of course, Director Fury was aimed at Stark, but he was telling us all something that was about to unfold.
Captain America: The First Avenger
For all the good things Cap’s first solo adventure had going for itself, the real treat followed the hour and a half foreplay that was The First Avenger. After sitting through what is mainly referred to as a “good but not great” Marvel addition, alas we saw a first glimpse of the Avengers. How could we forget that first minute that displayed more of Steve Rogers’ strength and character than the entire Joe Johnston directed movie. Then it followed through with each of the previous players all united under one roof. The feeling was surreal because nothing like that had been achieved before and May 2012 would’ve been a great ‘final’ summer had the Mayan apocalypse actually happened.
Thor: The Dark World
Before Guardians, Thor was that character that Marvel gambled with. He was a space Viking keeping Earth and the rest of the nine realms safe with his mighty hammer. Who would’ve guessed by the second installment that Thor would’ve been a platform for all that is weird in the MCU. The scene that followed the mid credits was not only a first peek at the Marvel cosmic realm but the known establishment of the Infinity Stones.
Guest starring Benicio Del Toro as the Collector, the scene fed us a visual obscure setting and characters. Even Sif and Volstagg’s uncomfortable appearance supported the vibe as they handed over the Macguffin from the film. Then as Volstagg said aloud, “…infinity stones…” we all knew what was tying all films of the MCU together, even the impending Guardians of the Galaxy.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
For me, the end scene that followed was much like a cherry on top a fat piece of ice cream cake. The Winter Soldier was a fun and exciting movie that delivered on many subcategories of film. Then as the credits rolled, midway we see Von Strucker. Juxtaposing Jackson’s Nick Fury scene from the original Iron Man film, the end to Winter Soldier was about as closest as you can get to the second Avengers movie and the end of phase two of the MCU.
Completely undermining the half a century long struggle between S.H.I.E.L.D. and HYDRA, Strucker calls them both, “two sides of a coin that’s no longer currency.” The words came out sharp and sinister and the anticipation didn’t stop there. While making it apparent that he has Loki’s staff and is up to no good with it, he further alludes to what is now the age of miracles. And then finally we get our first glance of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, again cementing the long overdue anticipation for Marvel’s next successful franchise.
Honorable mention: The Avengers
Though Avengers was first to employ a certain amount insignificant camp to their end credit scenes, the short clip that followed the initial credits is as important as the others. First looking into the throne, we see that the alien lifes form are discussing the tenacity of people on Earth. Then as the Other says, “To challenge them is to court death,” Thanos appears from behind the throne and smiles. While much of the movie going crowd would not get the reference, the fact is that everyone now expects a big baddie sometime in the near future. What were your favorite end credit scenes?