Time to dig through the new Age of Ultron trailer to pick apart everything new and interesting.
So yes, it’s time to pick through the leavings of yet another Marvel trailer, and in doing so play directly into the hands of a Hollywood studio marketing department that deliberately cuts “Easter Eggs” into its trailers (no, friends, that quick “OMG is that ____!!!???” glimpse didn’t slip in there by accident) precisely to generate articles like this which serve as free, ancillary marketing. Welcome to the machine.
In any case, I’m thinking it’s best to cut to the chase this time – in lieu of going through the whole trailer minute-by-minute, I’ll be highlighting things that A) stand out in general or B) were not part of the first trailer. That way, we can dispense with the clutter and concentrate on what I think are the more interesting aspects of this exercise.
One caveat: I’m trying to approach this, as best I’m able, from the perspective of a fan who only knows from the trailers themselves. However, as happens in this field, I’ve been privy to some side chatter among other film journos closer to the “scene” on this one and as such believe that I’ve pieced together some aspects of the film and its story that aren’t immediately apparent to the public. I’m angling to avoid letting this conjecture influence my “read” of things, but as ever people who don’t want to be “pseudo-spoiled” by a lucky guess may want to skip this one.
00:03 – 00:10
Hawkeye is rescuing survivors of some disaster, helping them into a rescue (?) vehicle. The trailers so far seem to mainly lean on three large-scale action scenes: One taking place in a fortress/castle of some sort, seemingly in Eastern Europe, one in what is all-but certainly urban South Africa and another in New York again. I can’t tell where this is taking place, but it’s the first we’ve seen of it.
“This vulnerable world needs something more powerful than us.” Alright, that seems to make it clear that whatever becomes Ultron begins as Stark trying to build either a backup-team or a substitute for The Avengers. Remember: S.H.I.E.L.D. is (officially, anyway) gone now – so this is now basically a 7 or 8 superhero operation backed/armed by Stark and led by Captain America. “Stretched thin” is probably putting it mildly. Cue the “drone warfare metaphor” thinkpieces. Joy.
Ultron tells Stark (at least that’s what the editing wants us to think) that “We always create the things we dread.” So, did Iron Man create Ultron? Sure seems to be the case, but I wonder…
Hm. Apparently, the busted/refurbished ‘bot that interrupts The Avengers’ party isn’t the first time they’ve met Ultron, but it IS the first time he’s been seen “in the flesh.” That’s interesting. Something to ponder: Ultron first appeared in the comics in 1968. Y’know what a few technologies now commonly associated with stories about Artificial Intelligence gone awry did not exist back then? Virtual reality and the graphical-interface. Just saying.
Think it means anything that Banner’s “Imma be Hulk now” eyes are red here instead of green, and that he seems to be building to a smile even though this looks like an involuntary change. Is this how we’re meant to tell the difference now?
And here’s the big “huh?” from this trailer: What appears to be a black woman with her head shaved disrobing in front of a pool in a cavern. Who is this? No idea, but I don’t think it’s Jocasta or Drax the Destroyer’s daughter Moondragon, two immediately popular but unlikely fan theories.
It’s been known/clear for awhile that some preliminary world-building for Black Panther is going to be done in this film and Civil War, so I’m going to go with the consensus on this one and speculate that this woman is part of the Dora Milaje – Black Panther’s all-female personal bodyguard team.
Thor tells Stark that he has been meddling with “Things you don’t understand.” It’s been widely speculated that whatever goes haywire with the film’s version of Ultron involves Stark trying to incorporate otherworldly technology into their makeup. If so, what kind? Chitauri leftovers? Loki’s scepter? Another Infinity Stone? Something from the now-emptied S.H.I.E.L.D. weapons vaults?
00:38 – 00:41
“We have no place in the world.” The editing here is tricksy-looking enough that we could be seeing three different things happening to three different women in three different contexts, but the implication we’re meant to draw is that Black Widow is being subjected to some kind of medical torment by an unseen woman.
I’ll be digging into this more in depth in the near future, but it looks apparent that we’re going to get some backstory on Black Widow in this – the question is how much. In the comics, Widow’s origin is INSANELY complicated – she’s much older than she appears, has been brainwashed and psychologically-rewired dozens of times, etc. It’s only been alluded to so far, but it seems like we’ll be finding out she has more in common with the likes of The Winter Soldier sooner or later.
Andy Serkis, who thus far has had an unexplained/unidentified but very conspicuous cameo in both trailers. In case you’d forgotten, it seems all but certain that he is playing the (still human) arch-enemy of Black Panther, Ulysseys Klaw. So, yeah. If we don’t outright visit Wakanda in this movie, we’ll certainly be hearing about it.
00:56 – 00:58
Captain America vs. Ultron, hand to hand. This doesn’t really “mean” anything, I’m just glad to see it.
00:59 – 01:01
Hulk and Widow having a “moment,” and it doesn’t look like a happy one.
Just going to throw this out there: I know that everyone just sort of assumes that Hawkeye and Black Widow are more than friends (yes, I saw the necklace in Winter Soldier) but if you look at the first Avengers and the trailers for this sequel, the Avenger she has the most back-and-forth time with is… The Hulk. That’s… interesting, is all I’m gonna say for now.
I wonder if it means anything that “final” Ultron’s energy-signature here is red whereas the earlier versions are blue?
What’s happening to Thor here? If there’s one thing he shouldn’t be vulnerable to, it’s lightning. Also: Where is this taking place? Looks Asgardian, or at least medieval – as does the woman in the skimpy Slave Leia-esque getup in the background…
Alright. That’s the new trailer business. Fans looking for a deeper (and even more potentially-spoilery) dig into this should keep an eye out for this coming Friday’s MovieBob: Intermission, wherein I’ll be pooling into some crazy theories of my own.