Maybe, but the comics suggest someone else might be waiting in the wings for Part 2.
Thanos is going to be a major pain for the Avengers, not to mention the rest of the MCU, in Avengers: Infinity War. But there’s good reason to believe an even bigger threat is being held in the shadows for Part 2 while Thanos steals the spotlight for now.
“The Infinity Gauntlet” and “The Infinity War”
Although Marvel’s next Avengers movie is being subtitled Infinity War, it actually seems like it’ll be relying more on the comics series that led up to “Infinity War,” called “Infinity Gauntlet” (an admittedly less snappy title).
The “Infinity Gauntlet” series more or less begins with Thanos mounting the Infinity Stones – there are six, and we’ve seen four in the MCU so far – into his gauntlet to make the Infinity Gauntlet, an object that gives the wielder near infinity power over time and space. He then goes on a killing spree to prove his love to the cosmic entity Death before eventually being defeated more due to his own hubris than any actions the Avengers, or anyone else, takes.
So why is this important for the movie?
IF the movie, in either Part 1 or Part 2, really does include the storyline from “Infinity War,” Thanos won’t be the only serious pain-in-the-a** coming Earth’s way. In fact, in “Infinity War” Thanos is kinda-sorta one of the good guys, although it doesn’t always appear that way.
If we’re really getting an adaptation of “Infinity War” in addition to “Infinity Gauntlet,” there’s a good chance we’re going to meet Adam Warlock and the Magus.
Who Are Adam Warlock and the Magus?
Adam Warlock might be the one great big character addition (outside a real appearance by Thanos) that Avengers: Infinity War makes to the MCU. Adam Warlock is kind of a weird and hard to explain character, but the short version is that he’s a relatively powerful player on Marvel’s cosmic stage, and he’s in possession of the Soul Stone, one of the two Infinity Stones that have yet to be seen in the MCU (along with the Time Stone; popular theory is that one of these will show up in Doctor Strange).
Adam is a key figure in both the “Infinity Gauntlet” and “Infinity War” storylines, more or less that “good side” leader against Thanos and later the Magus.
So who is the Magus?
Well, that’s where things get even weirder. The Magus is basically the embodiment of all the evil parts of Adam Warlock who can time travel and shows up at several spots to oppose Adam Warlock.
The end of “Infinity Gauntlet” sees Thanos defeated, and Adam Warlock takes possession of the Infinity Gauntlet, more or less ascending into “godhood.” (Yes, that’s a very dicey and inspecific word when you’re talking about Marvel, where Thor comes to play. Suffice it to say that “godhood” mean “powerful on a cosmic scale,” and not merely an Asgardian.) But this ascension caused the good and evil parts of Adam Warlock to be cast out of him, and voila, the Magus is back to cause trouble.
“Infinity War” is then concerned mostly with a faceoff against the Magus, where Adam Warlock and Earth’s heroes ally with Thanos against the Magus. There’s a lot more business, too, about cosmic entities like Eternity and Infinity, but chances are that gets too heady for the MCU, so we’ll stick with “lots of heroes and Thanos vs. the Magus” for now.
How Will This Play Out in the Movie?
This is the million (or billion) dollar question. A lot of people suspect that Infinity War will really just cover the events of the “Infinity Gauntlet” series and leave the real “Infinity War” alone. Thanos probably isn’t going to have all the Infinity Stones at the beginning of Avengers: Infinity War after all, so a lot of Part 1 could be him tracking the stones down, to set up a massive series of battles in Part 2. There are a few movies left before Infinity War, so it’s easy to imagine some of this ground could be covered in post-credits scenes, but that might feel a little cheap.
But if Marvel decides to really go for the entire “Infinity Gauntlet/War” story, expect them to make the adaptation minus several cosmic entities that would make the film feel bloated and well outside the scope of people like Black Widow or even Captain America. Thanos would provide a primary antagonist for the first film, with the heroes forced to forge an unlikely alliance with him in order to bring down the cosmic Magus in the second.
What We Want to See
As cool as it would be to see the Magus, one of the MCU’s major problems has been developing compelling villains. They’ve been teasing Thanos for literally years now, and a two-part movie seems like the perfect opportunity to afford Thanos the character development that, say, Ultron never got. Plus, it keeps everything simplified, which in a movie that might feature as many as 67 plot-important characters can only be a good thing. There’s more than enough to explain and develop with the an adaptation of the “Infinity Gauntlet” storyline alone.
We do think, though, that Adam Warlock will still be an important character joining the group for Infinity War as a sort of captain of the resistance against Thanos, not to mention a great method of exposition for the audience.