30/11/2021

Hawkeye: Was Thanos Right? An Investigation Into the Controversial Avengers Mug

WARNING: Spoilers for Hawkeye’s first two episodes are below. With the premiere of Hawkeye taking place two years after the events of Avengers: Endgame, it allows the creators behind the new Disney+ series to reference the epic final showdown between Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and Thanos. One unforeseen Easter egg placed in Hawkeye‘s first two episodes was a “Thanos Was Right” mug held by Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner). Fans were shocked to see the mug, considering the Mad Titan was responsible for eradicating half of all sentient life in the universe. Obviously, the first response would be declaring how Thanos was not right. On the other hand, there must be a segment of the population that is in favor of Thanos’ genocidal tactics, or else the mug wouldn’t even exist.

Was Thanos actually right? The real answer is more complicated than a simple yes or no. Hawkeye‘s flashback to 2012’s Battle of New York demonstrates the signature connective tissue of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Even though Loki was leading the Chitauri charge, the post-credits scene of 2012’s Avengers revealed Thanos was secretly pulling the strings from the background. Marvel Studios slowly built up to the Mad Titan’s first confrontation with Earth’s heroes in Avengers: Infinity War, and he was also successful in gathering the Infinity Stones to complete his evil plan of balancing the universe.

Depending on what side you fell on in The Blip, a case can be made that you lived a better life post-Snap than before. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier touched on this with the Flag Smashers terrorist group. Karli Morgenthau and her Flag Smashers built new lives for themselves in the aftermath of The Blip. Once everyone that was Snapped returned, the GRC allowed the resurrected to return back to their land, property, and jobs, which left the Flag Smashers displaced without a home. Not content to sit on the sidelines, the Flag Smashers fought for refugees, but they might as well have been fighting on the side of Thanos.

Because America is filled with opportunistic people looking to make money off any situation, it’s not too surprising to find someone marketing products promoting Thanos. What makes it more ironic is seeing Clint Barton holding the controversial mug, especially when you consider how Hawkeye lost his entire family because of the Mad Titan.

This isn’t even the only time Marvel has dropped MCU product placement in one of its projects. When Bruce Banner, Wong, Tony Stark, and Doctor Strange were together in the Sanctum Santorum in Endgame, Bruce was surprised to find out that Iron Man and his alter ego Hulk had ice creams named after them. The Avengers are adored worldwide as celebrities, so companies would be foolish not to have an Avenger sponsor their merchandise. But a company looking to exploit Thanos for a quick buck would have a harder time running commercials using his likeness.

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If you’re Kate Bishop’s aunt, then apparently Thanos was indeed right, since it’s one of her cups that Clint is seen drinking out of. Or, you could be one of the bathroom patrons that left “Thanos Was Right” graffiti in a theater bathroom stall. For everyone else, it depends on how much they favor genocidal maniacs.

The first two episodes of Hawkeye are now streaming on Disney+

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