The Second Age Of Ultron

Yesterday saw the release of the second official trailer for Age of Ultron. And while I'm disappointed that this is essentially just another "explosions and CGI" trailer rather than one that attempts to explain the plot, it is still more successful at being an engaging trailer than the Ant-man one we saw last week. But is really bothers me that Marvel is essentially banking on the inertia of the name "Avengers" (and how insane is it that the name "Avengers" has isn't own inertia?) rather than using some of that good will and marketing prowess in producing a two minute set-up trailer, that is a little more than James Spader's really effective voice over being menacing.

None-the-less, while watching this trailer, I took away several things, and accordingly, have placed my analysis after the jump.

First, while Marvel is all about setting things up for further down the line, Joss Whedon is very much more concerned with what is at hand. Which is why lines like Tony's "the world needs something more powerful than us" line works so well. Within the context of the film, it likely relates to his creating Ultron as a full time security mechanism. While in the grander scheme, is foreshadows the coming arrival of the Inhumans, which have crazy superpowers rather than just gadgets and being bulky. In fact, two of them show up in this very film, since the MCU (thanks to Agents of SHIELD) is clearly using Inhumans as a substitute for mutants, and this film introduces Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch (neither of whom get a lot of screen time in these trailers).

Second, Ultron's joke line "in the flesh" really has we wondering about how advanced he'll be pushing his evolution in this film. In the comics, he is always improving himself between confrontations with the Avengers, and within these trailers we've already seen at least three different forms of his main body. Desiring to become flesh and bone has never been part of his agenda - he's more a "kill, crush, destroy" sort of robot - but between his increasing advances, is it likely that he'll reach a point where he considers his artificial body inferior? Or seek to merge the two (the previous trailer saw Scarlet Witch standing by his side at one point, and her powers would surely be capable of altering reality to such an extent)? It would also make all the more poignant the use of the Pinocchio song from the first trailer.

Third, if this trailer has any stars besides Ultron, it is Hulk and Black Widow. First, the Hulk. the trailer goes to great pains to show us two very different shots of the Hulk's eyes. In the first, as Bruce is transforming, and we see the trademark green eyes. The second, towards the end, in among the Hulkbuster footage, is a shot of him completely transformed, and his eyes are red. The easy answer is that, when the Hulk goes on his rampage, necessitating Tony breaking out the Hulkbuster, that Bruce is under the influence of Ultron in some way. Considering that red is closely associated with Scarlet Witch in this trailer, I would expect that she is the culprit, with some brain washing (we already have this set up, with Loki identifying Hulk as the team's weak spot in the first film). The touching moment between the Hulk and Widow in the trailer is likely her bringing him back to reality. And even money says the shaking, self-clutched Banner from the first film is the aftermath of his violation. My guess: rather than be the big movie closer, the Hulkbuster scene will happen at the end of the second act, providing time for the team to react and rally against their automated foe.

Fourth, Widow. I've long argued against a Black Widow solo film if only because, as one might expect with Whedon at the writing desk, Widow was pretty much the lead character of the first Avengers. Expect this not to change in the sequel (my guess is that Scarlet Witch is going to be a pretty central character too). In fact, from the look of this footage, we'll be getting some Widow flashbacks to her younger, less tortured by Russian spies days, backing up the backstory already touched upon in the first film. But more than a flashback, I expect. We've already heard the rumours that Cap and the recently and successfully televised Agent Carter filmed a forties-set scene. This trailer includes Ultron's promise to tear them apart "from the inside." Which brings us to the one character not yet seen, yet will likely play a sizable role, The Vision, as performed by Paul Bettany. I expect Ultron's method to be to use the Vision to psychically attack the team, trapping them in their minds to relive old terrors or experience lost dreams. His greatest weapon will be their own weaknesses.

Fifth and finally, in the trailer there are two shots of women. First, one disrobing in a cavern, and second, slightly obscured by Thor absorbing and redirecting a lightening blast. The first shot I expect to be from the portion of the film that takes place in Wakanda, home to future Avenger Black Panther. I do so for the worst and most basically racist of reasons: the woman appears to have a darker skin colour than any of the core team. And since it is established that the film is set partly in Africa, I am a terrible person. A coldly logical, terrible person. The second shot, with Thor, has the internet guessing that it might be Moondragon or one of a number of magic characters associated with Doctor Strange. But based on the architecture behind Thor, my guess is that she's an Asgardian priestess or servant of some kind. The room they are in certainly has the Game of Thrones vibe that Asgard gives off, and if rumours are true, Thor won't be the only Asgardian in the film. So maybe the god of Thunder pops home for a bit.

This trailer, ultimately, did what it was designed to do: provide just enough footage to get us even more excited about the film.

Screenshots from /Film.
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About MR. Clark

Adopting the descriptor of "successfully unpublished author", MR. Clark began writing things on the internet in 2012, which he believed to be an entirely reputable and civilized place to find and deliver information. He regrets much.


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