After you see Avengers: Age of Ultron this weekend, you might have many questions, such as what's up with Vision? How did Chris Evans's shoulders get that big? And, as is often the case with a Marvel movie, what exactly is going on in that end credits scene? If you wait until after the main credits, the sequel has a brief scene featuring a character we've seen before, so we're laying out who it is and what it all means . . . or could mean. Obviously, Age of Ultron spoilers are ahead, so don't read this unless you've seen the movie or don't care.
What You See:
Right after the main credits, we go inside a vault, and then a big, hulking character we've seen before reaches into a glove, and says "Fine, I'll do it myself."
Who He Is:
That character you see in the postcredits scene is supervillain Thanos (voiced by Josh Brolin), last seen in Guardians of the Galaxy. And yes, if you'll also remember, he's also in the end credits scene of the first Avengers movie.
What He's Grabbing:
Thanos is reaching for the Infinity Gauntlet, a golden glove we've seen before in Thor (it's in Odin's vault). If you can unite all the Infinity Stones in the Infinity Gauntlet, you get the power of time, space, oh, everything — it makes one all powerful. The Infinity Stones have popped up in multiple films in the Marvel universe and in Age of Ultron, of course — there's one in the middle of Vision's head. The stones have been sought after by the other main villains in the Marvel franchise, most notably, both Loki and Ronan in Guardians of the Galaxy — and in that film, The Collector possesses one and explains that there are six Infinity Stones out there.
What It Means:
Obviously it means that the Infinity Stones will continue to be woven through the next films, but we already know that Thanos is the villain in the next Avengers movie, Infinity War Part 1 and 2. Those movies aren't coming out until 2018 and 2019, respectively, though, but this thread will probably be continued through the Marvel movies on the roster coming out between now and then. Next up are Ant-Man, coming in July, and then a few of the next ones include Captain America: Civil War (May 2016), Doctor Strange (November 2016), Guardians of the Galaxy 2 (May 2017), and Thor 3: Ragnarok (July 2017).