There are many character pairings that fans are excited to see in Avengers: Endgame, but few have sparked as much curiosity as the relationship between Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark and Karen Gillan’s Nebula. They were both stranded on Titan following The Decimation at the end of Avengers: Infinity War, and many have wondered exactly how the two will co-exist while in such dire straits. Obviously all of our questions won’t be answered until the 22nd Marvel Studios blockbuster arrives in theaters later this month, but this evening we got an interesting preview, and it included a surprising and fun game of paper football.
Walt Disney Pictures hosted a special Avengers: Endgame event on their studio lot in Burbank, California today – which I had the pleasure of attending – and it included a special sneak peek at what we can expect from the Tony Stark/Nebula relationship early in the film. As the various previously released marketing materials have shown us, the two will be working together on board the Benatar (the Guardians of the Galaxy’s ship), and apparently one way in which they will start to bond is by playing the aforementioned classic table-top game.
Based on the evidence presented by the footage, it seems that this will actually be how Avengers: Endgame begins its epic three hour runtime, with Tony trying to teach his new blue friend the rules of the game so that they can pass the time while stranded out in space – the song “Dear Mr. Fantasy” by Traffic bringing us into the action. It takes a minute for Nebula to fully grasp the rules, at first aggressively coming at the hero also known as Iron Man when he flicks a silver paper football at her – but she eventually starts to get a handle on it, and how the fingers-as-goalposts thing works.
It’s a nice, comical little moment that provides a taste of the dynamic between the two characters, and also sets up interesting tonal expectations for the film. After all, it’s no big surprise that Tony is still trying to have some fun, and keep things light, but at the same time they are trapped together in a very scary situation. One can arguably expect that this will be a reflection of Avengers: Endgame as a whole, as Marvel Studios features have always featured a fair share of wit, but there is also obviously going to be a lot of darkness and devastation to behold.
Followed up by Tony recording his message to Pepper via his Iron Man helmet (as seen in the movie’s first trailer), the scene was additionally interesting to watch in comparison to the footage that was shown earlier this week at CinemaCon, which primarily centered on the lightly hostile meeting between the surviving Avengers and Carol Danvers. It’s interesting to think that there will not only be weird new relationships that are formed through the events of Avengers: Endgame, but also still all of the issues that remain from the ending of Captain America: Civil War – as there are still a fair number of conflicts from the outcome of that movie that still need to be settled.
Obviously there are still a lot of questions for which fans are eagerly awaiting answers, but the wait is almost over. Avengers: Endgame will be hitting theaters worldwide later this month on April 26th, and we’ll have plenty more coverage coming your way here on CinemaBlend, so be sure to stay tuned.