This article contains spoilers for Avengers: Endgame. We have a completely spoiler free review right here.
From Ant-Man to the Wasp, Avengers: Endgame is a veritable who’s who of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Almost every character who has appeared more than once turned up for one last hurrah, whether it was to say goodbye for good or simply close the book on the whole Infinity Stone saga.
But what about the ones who were alive but DIDN’T return? Who are they and where were they?
Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg)
Nick Fury’s one good eye, our favorite member of the Agents of SHIELD cast, the guy the Avengers originally got together to avenge… was nowhere to be seen in Endgame. In fairness, aside from his 1990s appearance in Captain Marvel, Coulson has been absent from the movies ever since his death. In fact, he was secretly brought back to life in the Agents of SHIELD TV show but has since (apparently) died again, so maybe throwing him into the mix at any point would have been confusing for the millions of MCU viewers who aren’t keeping up with a six-year-old TV show.
Everett Ross (Martin Freeman)
Whether or not Everett Ross survived the snap, you can imagine he’s had plenty to get on with that doesn’t involve charging into a battle he’s not really prepared for. Sure, you could have thrown him into that final battle in a Wakandan jet, but more likely he was off somewhere pushing paper and filing documents while waiting to find out how (or indeed if) he fits into Black Panther 2.
Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgård)
Dr. Erik Selvig was shown in a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it headshot appearance at Avengers HQ as one of the missing – from this, we can only infer that he was one of the unlucky 50% who got turned into dust. Or should that be the lucky 50%? Either way, this guy has definitely spent the last five years looking like the contents of a vacuum cleaner. Which is a shame, because had he survived the snap, he would surely have been helping out the Avengers as one of the few scientists on Earth to have dealt with the Infinity Stones in any tangible way. Selvig was also notably absent from the flashback sequences – he was, after all, in New York during the 2012 attack.
Of course Jane IS in the movie, but only in flashback. Where’s the modern-day version? Was she snapped? It’s hard to say. Thor certainly talks about her in the present tense when he tries to explain the Aether to the team, so at the very least he considers her to be alive. Getting the Aether would have been much easier (aeasier?) if Modern Jane could simply explain to Past Jane what was going on, but that wasn’t considered either. Maybe Thor and Jane broke up so hard they can’t bring themselves to ever talk again. Or maybe, without Heimdall’s eyes, she’s just too hard to find.
Darcy Lewis (Kat Dennings)
Let’s face facts: the MCU’s favorite millennial has been sadly absent from the MCU for far too long, and while we’d like to imagine she survived the snap and her personality-free intern/boyfriend Ian didn’t, we only hope that wherever she is, she’s feeling #blessed.
Sif (Jaimie Alexander)
The lady Sif was notably absent from Thor: Ragnarok as well as Infinity War/Endgame, but the universe is vast and she’s not someone who’s going to sit around coddling Thor’s favorite planet when there’s work to be done. Again, if Sif survived the snap it’s likely she got back to Asgard only to find it obliterated and simply had no idea where and how to start looking for the remains of her people.
The Collector (Benicio del Toro)
We don’t really know whether Taneleer Tivan survived Thanos’ attack on his menagerie, much less whether he survived the snap, because the only time we saw him in Infinity War was an illusion. Of course, even if he lived than the lack of any collection – plus his cowardice – means he wouldn’t have been much help in this fight anyway.
Sharon Carter (Emily VanCamp)
In case you’ve forgotten her (because who’s shipping Sharon and ANYONE?), the great-niece of Peggy Carter was presumably too weirded out by that extremely unsexy kiss she shared with Cap at the end of Captain America: Civil War to show her face around the MCU again, not least after ruining her Aunt’s funeral by delivering a poor quality eulogy. We hope for Sharon’s sake that she got snapped away for five years just so she’s not remembered as the woman who made an unsuccessful move on a hundred-year-old.
Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o)
Admittedly she’s only been in one movie, but Nakia’s importance to T’Challa and Wakanda can’t be understated – she was, after all, the closest thing Wakanda had to a Queen at the end of Black Panther. She could have been running Wakanda in his place during the events of Endgame, but it seems more as though Okoye was holding down the that particular fort. More likely is that if Nakia survived the snap, she was off running the outreach program. And in all fairness, the world of Endgame needs a Wakandan outreach program more than ever.
Luis (Michael Peña)
We hope Luis survived just so we can see him give Scott a precis of the five years he missed when Ant-Man 3 finally rolls around. And maybe he did, because clearly someone must have arranged getting that van off the roof and into the storage locker where it was in Endgame. But who knows. Maybe Luis and the other members of the X-CON security firm disappeared. It’s hard to imagine that someone with Luis’s connections, determination and sheer lack of self-awareness would have stayed away from the Avengers if he knew that Scott might be in the Quantum Realm instead of dusted – so he probably did get snapped.
Howard the Duck (Seth Green)
Assuming he survived the snap (and we are), Howard the Duck was probably off somewhere sipping a drink, smoking a cigar and doing his best to continue trying to survive in a world he never made. For Howard, the disappearance of 50% of the hairless apes in the universe is only notable in that it makes life 50% more bearable for him. Wouldn’t say no to a Howard/Rocket team-up sometime in the future, though…