The audience response to Infinity War has been staggering as it reached Billion dollar box-office collections within a week and has grossed over $2 Billion in total earnings worldwide. The ending left us stunned as Thanos fulfilled his purpose in life as he snapped his fingers leading to the extermination of half of the universe.
The biggest question we had going into this movie was the location of the Soul Stone. Out of the many theories going around the net, probably the best one was actually true. It was revealed that the Soul Stone was at Vormir. This was predicted by no one but the way it could be retrieved was another theory going around the internet.
As it turned out, Thanos had previously sent Gamora on a mission to find the Soul Stone and she did, but she lied to Thanos about it. Here, to save Nebula, she had to reveal the location to Thanos, and hence she took him there.
The trailers for Infinity War teased the relationship between Thanos and his favorite daughter. So, this gave rise to a particular theory suggesting the reason why the Soul Stone has not appeared till now, is because it requires a big sacrifice of the soul of a loved one, a soul for a soul. This is what happened in Infinity War as Thanos and Gamora met with the Red Skull at Vormir, who was transferred there by the Space Stone a lifetime ago in Captain America: The First Avenger.
He told Thanos that he also once tried to wield a ‘Cosmic Cube’ but he got banished to the place where Soul stone is buried. He said that the only way he could have the Stone for himself is if he sacrifices a soul. He told him that there had to be a sacrifice of a loved one.
Listening to this, Gamora thought that this was never possible as Thanos does not love anyone in the entire Universe. As it turned out he sacrificed his favorite daughter Gamora, the only person he loved in this universe to get the Soul Stone. He literally threw her off the cliff and she died. This scene was really important to build the character of Thanos as the Mad Titan did have the intensity to love, and the tears in his eyes proved that.
However, we never explicitly get to see Thanos use the Soul Stone. He used all other stones except the Mind Stone and the Soul Stone. He didn’t use the Mind Stone because he retrieved it in the end and did not need to use it anywhere, but he did not even use the Soul Stone as well. These two stones work best with each other.
It is believed that that the Orange tint dream sequence that Thanos had with baby Gamora was the doing of the Soul Stone. Well, since we can’t be sure of how the stone works in the MCU, we will have to dive into the comics.
The Soul Stone was a pivotal part of the comics as it played a huge role in defeating Thanos over there. The Soul Stone here can affect the Souls of the beings living and dead. It can steal them, change them and manipulate them. It has the ability to control every soul in this Universe by tapping into the very essence of life. But even more than that, the Soul Stone is a gateway to a different Universe within the Stone called the Soul World, where it traps souls.
In the comics, the very strong cosmic hero Adam Warlock used his bond with the Soul Stone to override the other Stones, snatch the Gauntlet from Thanos and restore peace into the Universe again. Well, we won’t be seeing Adam Warlock in the MCU until Guardians Vol. 3, but we can expect to see the powers of the Soul Stone and even the Soul World show up in Avengers 4.
Red Skull mentioned to Thanos that the Soul Stone has a certain kind of Wisdom, and holds a special place among the other Infinity Stones, so he may be hinting towards the fact that the Soul Stone does have a sort of dominion over the Stones like in the comics. It is the only Infinity stone which has achieved Sentience i.e it has a spirit and will of its own that can dominate its wielder. Soul stone even has parents – Mother is one of the first stars and Father is Destruction itself.
This brings me to my theory that the Avengers and half the population of the Universe that turned to ash, in the end, did not actually die, but their souls were being transferred to the Soul World. This would actually give the rest of the Avengers a chance to have their friends and all other beings be brought back to the living world, and restore peace in this Universe once again. Well, let’s see what happens in Avengers 4.