Avengers: Endgame is here. As a result, we have much to discuss. Major character moments. Little things fans may have missed. Things we just need to talk about in order to clarify our own thoughts about them, and everything in between. This particular moment, one of the best jokes in the movie, is a little bit of all of those things, as it's surely something everyone noticed. Though, everything behind the two-fold inside joke may not be quite as clear.

Warning: major spoilers ahead for Avengers: Endgame. Those who have yet to see the movie for themselves would do well to turn away. With that having been cleared up, let's dive right in, shall we? The moment in question comes during the "time heist," as Ant-Man branded it. Captain America is tasked with getting hold of the Mind Stone, which is placed securely in Loki's scepter, as seen originally in 2012's The Avengers. This leads Steve Rogers to a packed elevator, full of characters such as Brock Rumlow, aka Crossbones, and Jasper Sitwell, individuals we come to know as agents of Hydra in Captain America: The Winter Soldier. Yet, here, they're tasked with transporting the scepter.

So, Cap is locked in an elevator with a bunch of Hydra agents and it looks suspiciously like that amazing elevator scene from Captain America: The Winter Soldier. We expect this moment to climax with our man using his shield to give the whole Hydra gang a beating. Instead, Steve Rogers brilliantly leans into Jasper Sitwell's ear to utter a simple phrase that allows him to walk away clean with the case containing the Mind Stone safely in hand.

"Hail Hydra."

Our man Steve struts away, grin on his face and the audience gets a great laugh out of it. It's a brilliant moment that elicits a huge reaction, cleverly accomplishes something that needed to happen in order to drive the plot forward and, as directors Joe and Anthony Russo were surely aware, carries with it some real-world commentary. Captain America saying the phrase "Hail Hydra" means one thing in the context of this scene, yet it means something entirely different for people in real life who read the comics.

Related: How Old Was Captain America at the End of Avengers: Endgame?

Let's take a trip back to 2016 for a moment. There's a very famous moment that takes place in the pages of Captain America: Steve Rogers #1, as written by Nick Spencer. In the final page of that book, we see Marvel's do-gooder golden boy utter those very same, famous words. And it's not in a tongue-in-cheek sort of fashion. Cap was really on Hydra's side. We've included the panel in question below for those who may not be familiar. The reveal sent Marvel Comics readers into a frenzy. They were legit freaking out. Spencer even received death threats, for his troubles. It was an ugly moment within the so-called fandom. Yet, Marvel didn't relent and they moved forward with the storyline, which eventually led to the Secret Empire crossover event.

Without question, the Russo brothers were well aware of this moment in the comics and this moment in Avengers: Endgame is their way of having a little bit of fun with it. It simultaneously accomplishes the narrative goal, while also making some commentary on the silliness of people taking something such as that moment in the comics so very seriously. The moment in the movie, on its own, goes over like gangbusters. Yet, when adding in the real-world stuff behind it, we get to see the clever scene in a whole new light. Well played, Marvel.

Ryan Scott