We’re in the Endgame now. And as we move ever closer to the release of the 22nd MCU movie and what’s shaping up to be the end of the current Marvel Cinematic Universe continuity as we know it, we’re getting hints from the unlikeliest places about the future of our beloved heroes. An image currently floating around the internet seems to imply that the Avengers may build their own Infinity Gauntlet in the upcoming sequel to Infinity War, so we thought it would be the perfect time to look back on all the characters who have wielded the Gauntlet and how that went for them.
A good place to start is with the current roster of the Avengers, and the one we’d want to hold the Gauntlet the most! During the Secret Wars arc, Stephen Strange gave T’Challa the very powerful glove, making him the most powerful hero on Earth. That is, as long as he stayed in a very specific location, Doomstadt. Luckily, that’s where he faces down Doom and plays a large part in beating him, which would literally be the coolest thing to ever see on screen.
This one is particularly painful for fans who found Peter’s death on Titan hard to stomach. In the all-ages retelling of the tale of the Infinity Gauntlet, readers saw Spidey get his hands on the Gauntlet–like he almost did in Infinity War. He used the gems to change the past so that Thanos never got them in the first place.
During the classic Infinity Gauntlet storyline, Nebula (who in the comics is Thanos’ granddaughter) stole the gold fist of doom in a villainous rage. This led the purple-faced Titan to team up with the Avengers to beat the empowered alien badass. Eventually, Adam Warlock gained the Gauntlet and reversed Thanos’ devastating actions.
It seems like it might be Tony who wields a new Gauntlet in Endgame, and that does have some comic book precedent. In 2011’s Avengers #12, Tony managed to take charge of Thanos’ dangerous weapon after the Hood attempts to reassemble it. Though Tony pretends to write the Gauntlet out of existence, he actually gives it to the superhero supergroup, the Illuminati.
Bruce Banner is one of the smartest Avengers. In Ultimate Comics Ultimates he got not one but TWO gauntlets, which he used to try and battle his ex-teammates. And, of course, he did beat them… it’s the Hulk with TWO gauntlets. Duh.
As the all-American golden boy, Cap was the number one choice to wield the Gauntlet when the Illuminati needed someone to channel the power to push away a planet in New Avengers #3. Alas, whilst he donned the omnipotent accessory, it shattered and demolished all of the gems except for the Time Gem, which mysteriously vanished.
Marvel has had a lot of fun with their What If? series, which features out of continuity stories that imagine wild situations. In issue #49, readers got to see the Silver Surfer don the gauntlet and attempt to fix the universe’s struggles. Sadly, the power gets to be too much for him and it’s only when his love Shalla-Bal appears that he manages to give up the cosmic chaos maker.
Spider-Man’s most famous foe gained the power of infinity in the snappily titled What If? Infinity – Dark Reign. The issue imagines that Osborn and his inexplicable hair waves stole the weapon and used it to be very, very evil. At one point, he even makes Spidey relive Gwen Stacy’s death… forever! He also manages to kill Thanos before getting dispatched in a very Back to the Future-esque way.
Did you know that there was once an intergalactic council of Reed Richardses? Well, you do now! Marvel introduced the council in Fantastic Four #605.1. It turns out it was founded by three different alt-versions of Reed, each of which had obtained their universe’s Infinity Gauntlet.
What a good, omnipotent boy! Yep, in the Lockjaw and the Pet Avengers Unleashed miniseries, Lockjaw used his telepathy to read Reed Richards’ mind and manages to collect all of the gems. Though he didn’t technically wield the Gauntlet, he did put together the gems with the help of his animal buds. Because he is a good doggo, he handed them back to Mr. Fantastic.
What If? Secret Wars Vol 1 1, saw Victor Von Doom take on the power of the Beyonder and become a living god. In a smart and humorous twist he doesn’t end up picking up the Gauntlet til he is already almost completely omnipotent and regards it as little more than a trinket, despite it growing his powers even more. As this is an out of continuity story the wider Marvel world didn’t feel the impact of Victor’s discovery.
Images: Marvel Comics, Disney