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What If All Of "Avengers: Infinity War" Was A Time Loop Started By Doctor Strange?

Basically, I think it's possible Doctor Strange was Groundhog Day–ing the whole movie and didn't tell anyone.

Posted on April 22, 2019, at 2:16 p.m. ET

We're less than a week away from Avengers: Endgame, and what's wild is we really don't know anything about the movie.

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There is apparently a bunch of leaked footage floating around the internet, but I refuse to watch it. Endgame is one of those wild, once-in-a-generation cultural things, and spoiling this movie for myself by watching 40 minutes of shitty cam footage would be completely awful.

So for the purposes of this post, we are going to pretend like that leak hasn't happened!

I am a very big Marvel movie fan. I've marathoned the whole MCU series twice now! Once for Civil War and again for Infinity War. I am also obsessed with fan theories about these movies.

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That said, as you can probably see in that second screenshot there, it doesn't mean I'm always right about fan theories. It turns out the Soul Stone was not in Wakanda. So, uh, my bad on that one. But I did call Loki dying, so...

Anyways! Something has been bothering me about Infinity War since I first saw it (after I stopped crying about Spider-Man, of course).

I've become convinced that Doctor Strange was lying to us for the entirety of Infinity War. I think he was Groundhog Day–ing the whole movie and didn't tell anyone.

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There have been all kinds of rumors, involving set photos, and leaked toy manuals, and all kinds of other nonsense over the last year that have led fans to expect time travel to happen in Endgame in some form. It's become the predominant Endgame fan theory.

After spending almost every waking moment obsessing over these movies, here's how I think Doctor Strange could have pulled a fast one on everyone.

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On Titan, toward the end of Infinity War, Doctor Strange tells Tony Stark that he used the Time Stone to look into the future, and he viewed 14 million possible outcomes. Only in one of those did the Avengers win.

Then Strange gives the Time Stone to Thanos and gets dusted. LOL whoops. See ya later.

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The whole sequence is supposed to lead us to believe that somehow Strange giving Thanos the Time Stone will lead to the 1 in 14,000,605 chance that Thanos could be defeated. The assumption is that Endgame will follow the remaining Avengers as they figure out how to reverse the effects of the Snap.

The first reason why this makes no sense is because the Ancient One makes an extremely huge deal in the Doctor Strange solo film about the limitations of the Time Stone.

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The Ancient One explains that the ability to peer into one's future using the Time Stone is limited by the lifespan of the user. Basically, you can only look in the future as far as your own death.

"I spent so many years peering through time...looking at this exact moment. But I can't see past it," the Ancient One tells Strange.

Which would mean that Doctor Strange could look into the future as much as he goddamn pleased, but he would be unable to look past the moment he was dusted on Titan.

But but but but but! Doctor Strange does figure out a way to maneuver around the Time Stone's death limitations: time loops.

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At the end of Doctor Strange, Strange uses a Time Stone–powered time loop to defeat Dormammu, the interdimensional entity trying to eat the universe or whatever. Strange traps himself and Dormammu in a loop where Strange gets killed over and over again, only for the Time Stone to reset him.

Which means if Doctor Strange is really able to see into a future where the Avengers successfully defeat Thanos, then he would probably would have had to start a time loop before Titan.

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So πŸ‘πŸ» when πŸ‘πŸ» did πŸ‘πŸ» the πŸ‘πŸ» time πŸ‘πŸ» loop πŸ‘πŸ» start πŸ‘πŸ»?

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I'd argue the loop starts before we meet him in Infinity War. Based on what we learn in Thor: Ragnarok, there's a very good chance Doctor Strange knew Thanos was coming.

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In Ragnarok, we find out that Strange has basically set up an interstellar Google alert for dangerous space lunatics.

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β€œSo I keep a watch list of individuals and beings from other realms that may be a threat to this world. Your adopted brother Loki is one of those beings," Strange says.

Strange also knew where Odin was on Earth. Basically, Strange, by the time we meet him in Ragnarok, has become like the MCU's space CIA. He's keeping tabs on everybody.

So you're telling me a dude who is so paranoid that he throws Loki in an endless pit after less than 10 minutes on Earth is going to be caught off guard by Thanos's murder donut? Nope!

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I think the Doctor Strange we see in Infinity War has actually lived the events of Infinity War 14,000,604 times already. We're seeing the end of the loop.

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Which would explain a lot of weird behavior, like, for instance, when Doctor Strange finds Tony and Pepper in the park, he says, "Congratulations on the wedding, by the way."

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Only problem is, of course, Tony and Pepper only got engaged at the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming.

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And we know Pepper and Tony haven't gotten married yet because later Tony says, "Wong, you are invited to my wedding."

It would also explain why Doctor Strange doesn't do much fighting in Infinity War. He throws some magic circles at Ebony Maw, but then basically gives up and gets himself get kidnapped.

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*Wizard screaming intensifies*

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Of course, everything leading up to Titan makes more sense if Doctor Strange was actually trying to get captured.

Also, Strange doesn't really seem to care much that Star-Lord acts like a complete asshole and screws up the only real plan the Avengers come up with to defeat Thanos.

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So, you're probably wondering what Strange is actually trying to accomplish then. If we're dealing with a Strange who has lived the events of Infinity War 14,000,604 times already, what is he actually up to?

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Glad you asked! Luckily, everything we need to know about Strange's actual plan could have been revealed by Heimdall in the first 10 minutes of the movie!

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Heimdall's a fascinating character. The Asgardian guard (Asguardian?) of the Bifrost has a unique ability: He's both all-seeing and all-hearing.

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The reason Heimdall can protect Asgard so well is because he can see and hear everything that happens in the Nine Realms. Which means that if Doctor Strange activated the Time Stone, Heimdall would know. He knows everything that's happening at any given moment.

Which means that in the scene where Loki is killed by Thanos, Heimdall makes a very conscious choice.

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He leaves Thor in space to meet the Guardians of the Galaxy and sends Banner to Earth β€” literally throwing Banner into Strange's Sanctum!

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Thor, staying in space, meets Rocket and Groot, and they go off and build their Thanos-killing ax.

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And Banner meets Doctor Strange and learns how the Infinity Stones work.

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It's almost as if β€” hear me out here β€” there was a not random reason why the two dudes who previously used an Infinity Stone to create Vision end up getting a cosmic PowerPoint presentation from Doctor Strange.

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What if all of Infinity War β€” not just the ending β€” was actually Doctor Strange just trying to buy enough time to make sure the right people were in the right place.

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Thor needed to get to the forge on Nidavellir and build Stormbreaker.

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Tony Stark needed to be spared by Thanos.

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Bruce Banner needed to get Vision to Shuri, who was possibly able to download Vision's consciousness.

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(Fans are pretty convinced Shuri was successful.)

Ant-Man needed to get into the Quantum Realm, where he was most likely protected from the Snap.

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(While it has yet to be confirmed in the movies, in the comics the "Infinity Gems" only work inside the dimension they're activated in. So Ant-Man, being in a different realm, was most likely protected from the Snap.)

And Nick Fury needed to call Captain Marvel.

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Also, further adding to the idea that all of Infinity War could be inside of a time loop, the Time Stone is glowing when Strange finally gives it to Thanos.

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Compare this to how it looks when Thanos uses it during the Snap πŸ€”πŸ€”πŸ€”

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So what do we see Doctor Strange doing on Titan? I think he's actually messing with the timeline in more interesting ways, like possibly sending a message to Wong in the past because...

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...I think the Avengers are going to head back in time to get ahold of the Infinity Stones before Thanos does.

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In the Endgame trailer, we see the remaining Avengers going into space. They're dressed like this.

Later in the trailer, they're all wearing their spiffy new suits.

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But because Marvel fans are desperately starved for any and all details about the actual plot of Endgame, many of them have built Endgame timelines based on Black Widow's hair in various shots from the trailer.

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And based on the Black Widow hair timeline, we're talking at least a span of six months or more between these two shots.

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So if the Avengers aren't wearing those suits to go into space, where could they be headed? The Quantum Realm, that's where!

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Both times we've seen the Quantum Realm, it's involved some kind of timey-wimey nonsense. Many fans are speculating that it could be used to break through space and time and travel into the past.

In Ant-Man and the Wasp, we learn that Janet Van Dyne, the original Wasp, gained the ability to appear in dreams and break through dimensional barriers after spending time in the Quantum Realm.

And if you were going to travel into the past to steal Infinity Stones, well, at the Battle of New York, three were present: Loki had the Space Stone and the Mind Stone, and the Time Stone was chilling at the Sanctum Sanctorum on Bleecker Street.

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Also, the only two stones not present at the Battle of New York are the Power Stone and the Reality Stone. Rocket would know where the Power Stone is. Thor would know where the Reality Stone is. And Nebula knows where the Soul Stone is. Who gets sacrificed to get it, though, is a question for a whole other post.

OK, so, TL;DR: Doctor Strange possibly peered into the future before Thanos's Black Order came to New York, started a time loop, Groundhog Day'd the events of Infinity War 14 million times without us knowing, and made sure that Bruce Banner and Tony Stark knew how Infinity Stones worked and that Thor had enough time to build a big ax.

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Or all of this is wrong and the plot of Endgame will be super straightforward and there's no time travel. The hype for this movie has ruined my brain. Anyways, please yell at me in the comments.

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