Avengers: Endgame will be a movie about the remaining heroes trying to undo the snap and restore order to the universe. We already know as much, although we don’t know exactly how it’ll happen. We also know that they will win no matter how much it hurts us to witness their sacrifices — there’s no question about it, considering that we’re looking at the one future Doctor Strange saw where Thanos loses the fight. I mean, think about it: Marvel won’t make a movie about any of the other 14 million fights where they lose again. But there may be a character who’s been waiting for the snap to occur all along. And if that’s the case, then it means this character also knows what needs to be done in order to defeat Thanos.

The moment I walked out of the theater after Infinity War last April, I kept thinking that the dead heroes would obviously be resurrected, as the entire future of the MCU depends on them being alive. Disney would never shoot itself in the foot like that. But one of my biggest questions about the film relates to the post-credits scenes from the movie. I wondered back then about Nick Fury’s decision to carry an old pager with him at all times. I asked myself why Fury never paged Captain Marvel about other huge threats that the Avengers had to deal with. Why did he wait for the snap to happen before he acted?

The simplest explanation is that Fury has been preparing for this moment all along. He may not have the gift of time travel like Doctor Strange and Captain Marvel, but it’s likely that one of them told him about the snap. Doctor Strange is the likeliest suspect, given that he may have messed with past events to ensure they have a chance to beat Thanos. In the process, he may have informed Fury about the snap.

A fan theory now tells us the same thing, that Fury wasn’t surprised by the snap. It’s the kind of cataclysmic event he was briefed on at some point in the past, and that’s the very reason he carried that pager with him at all times. Reddit user Jlefrench1990’s theory makes perfect sense. Not only Fury not really alarmed by the snap, but he knew exactly what to do and he wasted no time trying to call for backup once Maria Hill turned to dust:

Look at Nick’s face [when Hill dies]. He doesn’t look surprised, he looks down like he is thinking for a second, then immediately turns heads straight for the pager. He actually looks less alarmed then he does when the crash first happens. His eyes aren’t as wide, he is thinking not looking for threats. He just saw his right-hand woman turn to dust and he doesn’t even blink, look scared, or upset. He never even tries to help her, the most basic of human instinct. She is one of his closest agents, and when she crumbles to dust he does even reach out a hand. He simply spins around, rushing to the pager, pushing people out of the way as they are turning to dust. If he had never seen this phenomenon before would he just brush past? It goes against any instinct, what if it was a disease that was contagious? What if it is a weapon, why not take cover?

Every other person who encountered the dusting was confused and scared: Hill, Spiderman, Bucky, and Groot. But Fury, the least involved character on screen just pushes by someone as they literally fall apart?? He reaches right into his bag and pulls out the pager. Isn’t it weird that this pager that someone gave him 30 years before is right at the top of the bag? He doesn’t rummage around, or open the back for a storage compartment, it’s just sitting right on top. He brought it with him that day, why? He lost his helicopter in Avengers, his super armored truck in CAWS, and yet somehow he never lost this pager even though he carries it in his man bag?

Who might have given Fury a heads up about the snap? As I said, Doctor Strange is a possibility. We do know for sure that his pager in Infinity War looks like a modified version of the pager that appeared in a Captain Marvel trailer. In that brief clip, we see Fury explaining to Captain Marvel what the pager is and we then see her asking for a pager. That said, the pager mystery will definitely be explained in Captain Marvel scenes or early in Endgame.

But if Fury knew about the snap and didn’t tell anyone, it also means that he knew this was the only way the Avengers would win. He has enough experience with supernatural events, superheroes, and aliens to accept the burden of keeping the snap a secret from the Avengers. If someone told him this is the only way for them to win, then Fury has a lot of faith that he alone has to play his part, which involves pushing a button on a pager at a specific moment in time. He may not have known he was about to get dusted too, but that’s not something he should have been briefed on.

Captain Marvel premiers on March 8th and it’ll deliver the final pieces of the Avengers: Endgame puzzle ahead of Avengers 4’s April 26th premiere. While you wait, check out this brand new Fury theory in full below:

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