The audio commentary that came with the Digital HD of Avengers: Endgame has given us quite a lot from the writers – Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and the directors – Joe & Anthony Russo. They’ve solved the Time Travel conundrum for us, explained how Tony managed to sneak the Infinity Stones from Thanos, and many other things.
Captain America was supposed to go back in time and return the Infinity Stones from exactly the moment that they were taken from. That would have prevented the nasty bunch of alternate realities that the Avengers must have created when they took the Infinity Stones away. An episode of Hishe dealt with how Cap would have returned all the Infinity Stones. Take a look at it:
As this episode reveals, returning the Infinity Stones would only have become tougher and tougher for Cap. Giving back the time stone would have been easier. The Power and the mind stone were easier too. Sneaking the Space Stone back in would be kinda tough, but Steve could actually accomplish it in easily by putting it in Howard Stark’s bag or what not. But the real task at Steve’s hand would be to return the Soul Stone. He wouldn’t really know what to do and the reunion with Red Skull would have him baffled even further.
But as it turns out, returning the stone won’t be as difficult. Avengers: Endgame screenwriters Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely did clarify how Steve would have returned the stone while speaking to CinemaBlend. Markus said: “you put it back, but you don’t get anything in return. It’s not like a pawn shop.”
So, returning the Soul Stone obviously won’t bring back Black Widow. Steve Rogers did go back to live with Peggy Carter, and that created an alternate reality altogether. So, when he already knew that he’d be creating one, they why would he not go and save Natasha from ever dying? He could easily go to the time when Clint and Nat go to Vormir in order to get the Soul Stone. Instead of letting Nat take the fall, Cap could handover the stone to the two assassins in the team so they could go back home and bring the snap victims back. All this is just a theory.
Another theory that people believe in is that removing the Infinity Stones from the natural flow of time would create alternate realities. But, what would happen if the stones aren’t removed. What if Cap didn’t create an alternate reality by living with Peggy Carter? The Ancient One just warned Bruce about the importance of the Infinity Stones, but no one ever said that alternate realities could be created if you alter things in the past. Yes, logically they would be, but people believe that Cap actually lived his life in the same prime MCU timeline when he went back to the past.
After he returned the Infinity Stones, he existed in the prime timeline itself. He was always behind the scenes, letting the events happen in the way that did earlier. That’s why old Captain America was present during Peggy Carter’s funeral along with the younger one. This is another theory which may or may not be true. Honestly, thinking about Endgame’s Time Travel for too long does give me a headache.
Directed by Joe & Anthony Russo, Avengers: Endgame stars Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Chris Evans as Captain America, Mark Ruffalo as Bruce Banner, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye, Brie Larson as Captain Marvel, Paul Rudd as Ant-Man, Don Cheadle as War Machine, Karen Gillan as Nebula, Danai Gurira as Okoye, Chris Pratt as Star-Lord, Zoe Saldana as Gamora, Vin Diesel as Groot, Dave Bautista as Drax, Bradley Cooper as Rocket, Gwyneth Paltrow Pepper Potts, Jon Favreau as Happy Hogan, Benedict Wong as Wong, Tessa Thompson as Valkyrie, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Cobie Smulders as Maria Hill, William Hurt as General Ross, Tilda Swinton as Ancient One and Josh Brolin as Thanos.