This weekend people were surprised to learn that Idris Elba and Tom Hiddleston have cameos in Avengers: Age of Ultron. Even more surprising is that the scene the two are in also features Thor. If you follow the Marvel Cinematic Universe, you’d know that at the end of Thor: The Dark World the Odinson once again believes Loki to be dead.
Does this mean he’ll find out the truth in Age of Ultron? Not exactly. The revelation to Thor that Loki is again among the living is likely being saved for Thor: Ragnarok where it’s possible the god of mischief will release all of the prisoners in the dungeons and cause all hell to break loose. No, the scene in Age of Ultron is set in the past.
But exactly how is still up for debate. There are two big rumors that could explain how this, and the Captain America scene set in the 40s, happen.
- The first is the use of the Time Gem (or Stone as the Infinity Gems are called in the MCU). There’s an old rumor that the MacGuffin of Age of Ultron (whatever it is) turns out to be the Infinity Stone of Time. The rumor says Ultron uses this to create a time-loop in which he has Tony make his vibranium army of drones. If the Time Stone is in play in Age of Ultron, then time travel isn’t out of the question.
- The second option has some truth to it. We know, from the scene Marvel showed at their Phase 3 event, that Scarlet Witch messes with the minds of the team. She gives them visions that affect them, and each person doesn’t know what the other person saw. It’s a bit like what happened with the “Truth Bomb” in the recent Original Sin event, Wanda reveals some kind of truth to the Avengers that really messes them up. It’s possible the Thor/Loki/Heimdall scene is a Scarlet Witch illusion meant to mess with Thor’s mind.
Or, it could be a combination of both. We know that there is more than one scene featuring Steve Rogers in the 40s. There’s the ballroom scene in the trailer, and in interviews Evans talked about how they recreated his WWII leather jacket for the movie. It’s been reported that Paul Bettany (The Vision) was present in one of the 40s scenes, so it’s definitely possible that time travel is involved in addition to Scarlet Witch’s mind games.