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We Don’t Know More About 'Avengers: Endgame' Than You Do - Be Careful What You Read on the Internet Lesson #246,745

By Seth Freilich | Film | March 18, 2019 |

By Seth Freilich | Film | March 18, 2019 |


My day job is at Atom Tickets, where I do two-thirds lawyer mumbo jumbo and one-third other stuff. One of those other-stuffs is helping to oversee a number of SEO and website-related projects (thanks to all the things I’ve half-assedly learned in over a decade of this here Pajiba business). One of those projects is working with our editorial team to provide our own little synopses for the various movies we sell tickets to (in fact, most of the movie blurbs for last year’s movies were written by one of our beloved Overlords).

Which brings us to Avengers: Endgame. God bless the internet. About a week ago, someone read our synopsis and then to read more into it. Our synopsis reads:

Thanos snapped his fingers in Avengers: Infinity War, and half the life in the universe instantly dissolved. Now a ragged group of surviving warriors, including Captain America, Black Widow, Iron Man, Thor, and the Hulk works to counteract the Mad Titan’s genocidal action.

Since our heroes couldn’t stop Thanos the first time, what makes them think they can win in a rematch? The answer may be in overwhelming power, thanks to Captain Marvel, or in the tiniest spaces between atoms accessible to Ant-Man. Avengers: Endgame will rewrite the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it. When it’s all over, nothing will be the same.

Did you catch it? Did you catch the part that set a rumor ablaze?

Avengers: Endgame will rewrite the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we know it.

There it was. And with that, wrote a piece asking if this was evidence that one of the many fan theories, the one suggesting a time reboot, was confirmed. However, writer Adam Barnhardt was appropriately skeptical about the source of this blurb (knowing that many such blurbs, but not all, come directly from the studios), noting: “The synopsis was first posted to Atom Tickets, so it’s yet unclear whether or not the synopsis was actually written by Disney or if it was marketing copy drafted by the ticket-selling site.”

With that disclaimer, this was a valid piece. If the blurb was written by the studio, this is a fantastic nugget of a find. So run with it, but lead with skepticism. And then do your follow-up homework. Because they didn’t stop there. They reached out to Disney and added an update to the story a day later:

UPDATE: Disney has confirmed the synopsis was written by Atom. The article as it initially appeared is below….

This is exactly how things like this should work. Find something cool and run with it, but be skeptical. And then run it down and follow-up as appropriate. Lovely.

In the week since, however, I’ve seen dozens more pieces all citing the Atom movie summary and this same theory. Some note skepticism, some don’t. Few cite Barnhardt and none cite his update. Because then there’d be no piece for them to post at all, no clicks for them to get. Because it’s now a disproven theory, a nothing story. I’m not linking to any of them because they’re trash pieces seeking trash clicks.

We all know that we’ve got to be ever skeptical when it comes to reading shit online. But it’s rare to be able to see the true origins of a stupid internet rumor, so I thought I’d pull back the curtain. As always, trust no one.

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Seth is a Senior Editor and sometime critic. You may email him here or follow him on Twitter.

Header Image Source: The Latest Official Marvel Poster