Possible 'Avengers: Endgame' Captain America Plothole Has MCU Fans Confused

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is one of filmmaking’s greatest all-time achievements. It was a singular franchise with multiple sub-franchises feeding into it.

All of these components were coordinated perfectly, culminating in Avengers: Endgame. It was truly an impressive feat for cinematic storytelling the likes of which has never been accomplished. 

That doesn’t mean the filmmakers didn’t make some mistakes, however. There’s one Captain America plot hole in Endgame that a fan on Reddit caught. It involves elements of that film as well as 2012’s The Avengers. Let’s take a closer look at Cap’s role in both films and how it led to an interesting error.

What was Captain America doing during ‘The Avengers’?

During the first Avengers film, Captain America leads the Avengers into battle against the Chitauri. In the MCU, the Chitauri are the alien army of Thanos. Thanos allows Loki to use them to help attack Earth and enslave its inhabitants.

The movie follows the separate Avengers — Captain America, Hawkeye, Iron Man, Hulk, Black Widow, and Thor — as they team up to stop Loki and the Chitauri. 

The film culminates in The Battle of New York. The film’s entire third act is essentially an all-out war between our superheroes and the Chitauri. In the end, the efforts of Captain America and the team are enough to thwart the villains, capture Loki, and save the day. Captain America very much serves as the team’s leader throughout the skirmish, much as he did in the comics. 

Captain America’s role in Avengers: Endgame

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Avengers: Endgame serves as a sequel to The Avengers, but as a more direct sequel to Avengers: Infinity War. The film chronicles the events following Thanos’ “snap” that kills half the universe. After tracking Thanos down, the Avengers realize he has destroyed the Infinity stones, rendering a reversal of his feat impossible. 

The Avengers eventually figure out a way to go back in time to collect the Infinity stones and create their own Infinity gauntlet. Captain America is one of the team members who travel through time. He goes with Tony Stark and Scott Lang to the Battle of New York. It’s their goal to retrieve the tesseract — also known as the Space Stone. 

This sequence in the film allows the characters to interact with characters from the first Avengers film. It even includes a Captain America vs. Captain America fight. This fight, along with being tremendously entertaining, contained a plot hole one fan noticed. 

The Captain America plot hole featured in Avengers: Endgame

When Captain America from the Endgame timeline fights Captain America from the Battle of New York timeline, the latter is wearing his Captain America mask. An MCU fan on Reddit pointed out that this should have been impossible. A scene in The Avengers depicted one of the Chitauri ripping Captain America’s mask off. 

There are a couple of explanations for why this happened: 

  • It’s possible that Cap retrieved his mask in between having his old one stolen and when the Endgame Cap runs into him. 
  • Perhaps the heroes traveling through time did something to upset the time-space continuum, fundamentally changing the reality they were entering.
  • It was simply a mistake on the part of the filmmakers. 

The last item is probably the truth. What’s even more likely is that the filmmakers realized they needed to give the fans a fighting chance to tell which Cap was which. If the two were identical but were going to be fighting while wearing the same costume, one needed to have a mask while the other needed to be without it. 

Ultimately, it was a minor plot hole (if one could even call it that) that did little to detract from the film’s quality. More importantly, having two identical Captain Americas fighting would have been very confusing. Whether it was an intentional oversight or not, it was the right storytelling choice. 

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