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When Captain America finally gets his hands on Mjolnir during the climactic battle against Thanos in Avengers: Endgame, fans of Marvel Comics wouldn’t have been faulted for saying “I knew it” alongside Thor himself when it happened. Teased earlier in Avengers: Age of Ultron, the moment that had happened already in comic history was a fait accompli, just waiting for the right moment. And according to two of the men who know Cap the best, it was a moment that couldn’t happen until Steve Rogers atoned for knowing how Tony Stark’s parents died.
During a gigantic tweet-along commentary on ComicBook.com’s Twitter feed, Avengers: Endgame writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, the folks who also co-wrote the Captain America trilogy together, revealed why that Star Spangled Man with the plan couldn’t hoist the hammer in that earlier scene:
While the world would learn in Captain America: Civil War that Bucky Barnes, aka “The Winter Soldier”, was responsible for the deaths of Howard and Maria Stark back on December 16, 1991, Chris Evans’ superpowered do-gooder already knew that fact long before that pivotal film. That secret apparently weighed on Captain Rogers’ mind, and ultimately was the only thing that stopped him from truly being worthy of Thor’s Hammer.
Though it wasn’t a total deal breaker, as Avengers: Age of Ultron had Captain America as the only Avenger in the lot, besides Thor, who could make Mjolnir budge even just a little bit. And as you’ll see in that particular clip below, even the son of Asgard was a little worried that he’d have a little competition with the hammer.
As the Marvel Cinematic Universe has been known to plan out its world building a couple of moves ahead, it now makes absolute sense that Captain America couldn’t move the hammer more than he was shown to on camera. Rather than just being a moment of the writers’ not being ready to give up the goods just yet, there was a logical reason as to why Avengers: Age of Ultron didn’t include a shredding hammer solo between Cap and a ton of Ultron drones.
In the end Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, along with the Russo Brothers, delivered the fateful moment where Captain America got to drop the hammer on Thanos in Avengers: Endgame, and the world was all the better for it. With the right timing, and a hell of a story behind just why it took so long, it’s another detail that just highlights how much the MCU was hiding from us all in plain sight. Who knows what else we’ll discover as time goes on, but you can bet with Q&A sessions such as the one accompanying last night’s viewing of Avengers: Endgame, there’s bound to be more insightful facts and easter eggs to be unveiled in time.
Avengers: Endgame, and the rest of the MCU (sans both Spider-Man films) is available for streaming on Disney+. Should you not already be a subscriber, check out the 7-day free trial that’ll let you relive The Infinity Arc in its near entirety.