Thank You, Avengers—A Tribute to the Marvel Cinematic Universe

My first dream was to be a superhero, and I haven’t given up yet.

When Iron Man, the first installment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, released in 2008, I was seven years old, and I wholeheartedly dived deep into this complex, intertwined world of superheroes, villains, and everything in-between. And I have my dad to thank as he chose this film, and every Marvel film thereon, for family movie night.

Photo Credit: Hollywood Reporter

For weeks, my best friend and I had tickets prepped for the Thursday night showing of Avengers: Endgame. But because of a final project, she had to sell her ticket. And after some debate, I decided to sell mine, too. Even though I desperately needed to see how this chapter of the MCU, and my life, would unravel, I wanted her next to me. Someone to grab onto after every surprise, someone to cry with after the inevitable death(s?), and someone to silently sit in shock with after the grueling 181 minutes.

Avengers: Endgame isn’t the end of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but it is the end of Phase Three and the Avengers franchise. I don’t know how the film ends, but I have a pretty good feeling that we won’t be seeing any of the original six reprising their roles any time soon (except maybe for Scarlett Johansson, who is rumored to be getting a solo Black Widow movie).

Photo Credit: QuirkyByte

Here we are, eleven years later. I’m now nineteen years old, about to finish my freshman year of college. I can barely remember what I was like at age seven, but I can distinctly remember watching Iron Man for the first time in the comforts of my living room and thinking, “What’s an Avenger?” after viewing the post-credits scene. And, I would’ve skipped right over those crucial 45 seconds of information if my dad hadn’t heard about it beforehand.

So, crazy enough, in the past eleven years, I’ve grown up. I’ve gone through different friends, styles, passions. I’ve learned a lot about myself and the world. And especially after this past year of leaving home, I’ve realized the way things change. But, the Avengers have been a constant in my life. I always knew that after every film, they would return in some capacity. But this time, I’m not so sure. And that’s okay because they’ve given us so much already.

They’re not just characters. They’re not just superheroes. They’re a family, and they’ve made us feel a tiny part of that.

In the words of the legendary Stan Lee, “Marvel has always been, and always will be, a reflection of the world right outside our window. That world may change and evolve but the one thing that will never change is the way we tell our stories of heroism…We’re all part of one big family: the human family. And we all come together in the body of Marvel. And you, you’re part of that family. You’re part of the Marvel universe that moves ever upward and onward to greater glory.”

Thank you, Avengers, for growing up with me and letting me believe in the impossible. To Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and the Hulk: Excelsior!

Catch Avengers: Endgame in theaters now to see the Avengers assemble … one last time.


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