Originally Posted by FigsNFilms
Saving grace of the film is humor, even though it at times undercuts meaningful scenes or doesn't allow for actual tension.
Even Coulson's death, apparently the now unifying and important character to bring the heroes together is even shrugged off with a line of humor.
As did Hawkeye, him and his bow and arrow. Multiple scenes dragged between him and Widow. Who IMO again, don't even belong in the concept of the Avengers given how ridiculous they look with these 4 other super powered people and demi-gods.
Can I just take a second to protest these frequently stated idea that Coulson's "so that's what it does" shrugs off or destroys any drama in the situation.
Firstly, the moment where Coulson is stabbed is played absolutely straight, as is Thor's reaction and the conversation Loki has with Coulson before the infamous mood destroying line. Surely, at the very least, any tension or drama that was created before that moment still stands and has dramatic validity.
More importantly, however, the actual moment where Coulson dies is completely devoid of jokes, it also takes place a scene or two after the line itself which presumably creates some tonal separation. Fury goes to help Coulson and their conversation is exactly as 'serious' as you might expect. When Coulson finally dies, Fury's expression surely sells some dramatic impact.
More importantly though, it's from this point that we actually see the impact Coulson's death has had and again, I stress that there is not a single joke. We see Fury openly grieving, not shouting or being calm, just expressing resentment and hopelessness as he talks to Steve and Tony. I think that the return of the trading cards has dramatic weight as does everything that follows. I believe that after another quiet scene between Widow and Hawkeye we see Tony now very openly grieving, cracking exactly zero jokes while Steve talks to him which leads to Tony's declaration that he is not a soldier, another moment I feel has dramatic weight. At this point, Coulson's dry, resigned one liner must have been so long ago that unless you're still laughing then it can't have affected anything.
I'm also curious about your statement regarding Widow and Hawkeye. Why do you think scenes between them dragged? They only have one dialogue scene together which drives home an essential point about Natasha and pays off the companionship that we know they must feel for each other. It also seems odd to me to draw the line in the sand at them being Avengers when they are so obviously skilled beyond normal people and find some completion in their heroism, just like all the other Avengers.