In Marvel's The Avengers (2012), Loki is attempting to leave S.H.I.E.L.D.'s P.E.G.A.S.U.S. base, but Nick Fury is trying to stall him. Clint Barton (under Loki's control) informs Loki of this during the following exchange:

LOKI: "I come with glad tidings of a world made free."

FURY: "Free from what?"

LOKI: "Freedom. Freedom is life's great lie. Once you accept that, in your heart...you will know peace."

FURY: "Yeah, you say "peace," I kind of think you mean the other thing."

BARTON: "Sir, Director Fury is stalling. This place is about to blow and drop a hundred feet of rock on us. He means to bury us."

FURY: "Like the pharaohs of old."

Why doesn't Fury deny that he plans to bury them and himself in the collapse? Why not continue stalling them or even engage them in a firefight in order to keep them there until the collapse instead of confirming that he is indeed stalling?

  • 6
    What would be the point of lying? Nobody's going to believe him.
    – Valorum
    Dec 23, 2021 at 22:58
  • No, but he could have continued to stall as much as possible. Why didn't he? He was obviously willing to die to keep the world safe. Dec 23, 2021 at 23:31
  • He appears to be more interested in gloating than trying to trick Loki
    – Valorum
    Dec 23, 2021 at 23:37
  • Off-topic, but I can't be the only one who read Fury's line as meaning that "the pharaohs of old" were superhuman menaces that the pyramids were built to contain. Somebody ought to get Brendan Fraser on that.
    – Cadence
    Dec 23, 2021 at 23:44
  • 1
    @Cadence, possibly, but "under a thousand tons of stone" is a more direct analogy.
    – Separatrix
    Dec 24, 2021 at 8:34

1 Answer 1


Fury is still stalling

Nick Fury is an excellent manipulator. He knows how to push buttons to get what he wants.

As soon as his plan to stall is revealed, rather than continuing that deceit he's trying to goad Loki into boasting and use that arrogance against him.

The reason he's bringing up the 'Pharaohs of old' is becuse they too considered themselves 'gods' much like how Loki claims to be

I am Loki, of Asgard and I am burdened with glorious purpose.

Especially after seeing him in the self-titled series Loki, he really does see himself as destined to become a kind of god-king.

If Fury's baiting of Loki had worked, he could have started Loki arguing that he was better than the Pharaohs or that he wouldn't meet the same fate, etc.

Instead, Barton and Selvig help Loki escape:

Nick Fury : Like the pharaohs of old.

Selvig : He's right. The portal is collapsing in on itself. We've got maybe two minutes before this goes critical.

Loki : Well, then...

[Barton shoots Fury, they leave]

It doesn't work out for Fury, but he made sure to change tact when his plan was revealed.

Quotes from IMDb

  • This is a good point. Probably wouldn't have worked if he said “No of course Im not stalling. Now tell me more about this evil plan of yours.” Jan 22 at 13:36

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