Spoilers ahead for Avengers: Endgame
Avengers: Endgame debuted in theaters over a month ago, and has amassed a giant sum of money in the process. The Russo Brothers crafted a complicated narrative that was built on the previous 21 movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Plenty of major payoffs were included, especially in the epic final battle sequence in the ruins of the Avengers facility.
The final battle allowed Gwyneth Paltrow's Pepper Potts to become a bonafide superhero, taking on the mantle of Rescue after suiting up in armor that Tony custom made for her. It was an epic moment, and she even personally blasted Thanos alongside Wasp and Shuri. And now an unused promotional image has surfaced, which puts Rescue and Iron Man together. Check it out below.
I'm not crying, you're crying. Pepper Potts and Tony Stark are one of the true love stories of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which made the ending of Endgame all the more tragic. Gwyneth Paltrow's character encouraged her husband's superheroic ventures throughout the blockbuster, and was left mourning after the battle against Thanos was finally won.
This image comes to us from Marvel Studios artist Liz Georgoff, who stepped into Rescue's armor for a promo shot. Gwyneth Paltrow was presumably only on set for a limited time, so she wasn't going to be available for images that might have never seen the light of day. Georgoff has been involved in the MCU since Iron Man 3, so this moment must have been an exciting one.
Marvel fans had been waiting for Pepper to suit up as Rescue since the Marvel Cinematic Universe's inception. She's become the heroic superhero a few times throughout her tenure on the page, so it seemed like only a matter of time before Rescue finally took flight. But the wait ultimately lasted a decade, as she didn't get the iconic blue armor until Endgame arrived in theaters.
Those eagle-eyed fans might have seen this coming during Avengers: Endgame, as Morgan Stark made her debut wearing the helmet Tony created for her mother. And while Pepper stayed out of the Time Heist sequence, she joined the battlefield alongside most of the MCU's characters after Hulk snapped everyone back to life.
Rescue and Iron Man never met on the battlefield in an embrace like the above image, but they had some seriously epic shots together during Avengers: Endgame's epic last battle. They fought Thanos' forces back to back, and Pepper Potts used the suit's abilities in a variety of ways throughout that epic sequence.
Pepper was still in the Rescue armor when Tony managed to swipe the Infinity Stones from Thanos, and snap the Mad Titan and his forces out of existence. Iron Man saved the entire galaxy in that moment, and sacrificed his life for the one chance to defeat Thanos once and for all. Her armored hand was over his heart as the light on the Iron Man suit went out, signaling that Tony's body had succumbed to the radiation and trauma of the stones.
Gwyneth Paltrow's Pepper Potts has the distinction of being one of the very first characters in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. She was a love interest and business associate of Tony's in the original Iron Man, and moviegoers were able to watch as their relationship developed over the years. Although after starring in the Iron Man trilogy and the first Avengers movie, Paltrow started stepping back from her signature Marvel role.
That eventually changed as we got deeper into Phase Three, with Gwyneth Paltrow returning for some cameos in the final installments of the current slate of films. Pepper made a brief role in Spider-Man: Homecoming, revealing that she and Tony had patched things up and were back together following an unseen breakup prior to Captain America: Civil War.
Pepper also had a brief scene in Avengers: Infinity War, shown jogging with Tony in Central Park before Doctor Strange appeared to whisk of the hero to the Sanctum Sanctorum. It was unclear if Ms. Potts had survived Thanos' snap, until character posters for Endgame confirmed she had made it out without being dusted.
Her role was eventually expanded in Avengers: Endgame, first popping up at the Avengers facility when Captain Marvel towed The Benatar (complete with Tony and Nebula) to Earth. And when the time jump happened, it was revealed that the couple got married and had a daughter named Morgan.
It should be interesting to see how the legacy of Pepper Potts continues on through Phase Four, and if there's any possibility for Gwyneth Paltrow to return to her role in the future. The 46 year-old actress has stated that she'd be open to more small roles in the future if the studio needed it. And although Tony Stark's fate is sealed, the fandom will no doubt be curious to how she and Morgan are getting on in the wake of his death.
It's currently unclear if the Iron Man franchise would continue. While Steve Rogers passed on the mantle of Captain America to Sam Wilson in Avengers: Endgame, no one has take on the role of Iron Man. Spider-Man: Far From Home looks like it'll address that issue, as Peter Parker is rocking the Iron Spider suit during its first trailer.
Morgan also seems like a prime candidate to be the next Iron Man, especially if there's another time jump that can move her aging process forward. If Morgan ever ends up returning to the MCU, it would be logical that her mother might as well. But as of now, there's no telling what Marvel Studios is planning for the shared universe beyond Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Regardless, fans will be happy to have seen Tony and Pepper get their happy ending. They were extremely lucky in the wake of Thanos' snap, and lived a happy life in their lake house with their daughter. And while that makes Tony's death all the more tragic, Pepper seemed to understand that her husband needed to do the right thing in hopes of bringing back the dusted denizens of the galaxy.
You can watch Rescue's long awaited MCU debut in Avengers: Endgame, in theaters now. Be sure to check out our 2019 release list to plan our next trip to the movies.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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