Good morning, NBC News readers.
Have you bought your tickets yet? "Avengers: Endgame," the big-budget Marvel epic that opened nationwide last night, is expected to smash box office records this weekend.
But, back to the reality you may be trying to escape at the movies, here's what else we're watching today.
Biden bets big on Democrats' fear of re-electing Trump
Jumping into the race, the former vice president reflected the anxieties of a Democratic Party eager to stop President Donald Trump from winning another term.
Biden is pitching himself primarily as a return to normalcy — a candidate who can reset the American calendar to 2016 and continue the work of President Barack Obama as if the Trump era never happened.
But Biden has a long way to go toward winning his party's nomination.
One thorny issue from his past that he will have to reconcile with progressive 2020 voters was his behavior when he presided over the Senate Judiciary Committee, when Anita Hill accused future Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment.
Biden's campaign confirmed that he recently called Hill and expressed "regret for what she endured" during those contentious hearings.
However, Hill told The New York Times that she was "not satisfied" with the conversation and that he needs to apologize to other women and the American public.
Meantime, Trump welcomed the latest contender to enter the 2020 Democratic primary race by giving the former six-term senator from Delaware a new nickname: "Sleepy Joe."
From "Crazy Bernie" to "Pocahontas," check out the list of derogatory monikers Trump has already coined for his 2020 Democratic rivals.
'We want you here': These red-state towns are seeking LGBTQ tourists
With as many as 3.8 million LGBTQ people living in rural America, they are increasingly finding that they don’t need to travel to a big city or the coasts to find a place to be themselves and unwind on vacation.
They are going to places like Eureka Springs, Arkansas. It's a rural, hilly town of about 2,000 people where locals say over 30 percent of residents are LGBTQ and playfully remark that it has "no straight streets."
Amber Clark, 36, recently visited from Carthage, Missouri, with friends who she characterized as "a group of loud, out, queer women."
"We’re here to be normal for a weekend," she said, "and to kiss in the park."
‘Avengers’ is endgame Marvel and Hollywood have been building toward for years
"Avengers" is the pinnacle of one of the most popular and lucrative movie franchises on the planet.
But the movie is also the culmination of real-world storylines that have dramatically transformed Hollywood over the last decade, reshaping business strategies and redefining commercial filmmaking as we know it.
Here’s a look at the financial forces — hint: China — and cultural trends like superhero fever that have been steadily building to "Endgame."
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- The Arizona Cardinals chose Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray with the first pick in the NFL Draft. The New York Giants also made headlines with a QB surprise.
- The national measles scare has spread to two Los Angeles universities where nearly 300 students and employees have been quarantined.
- A doctor described the "ecstatic" moment when a coma patient woke up after 27 years.
THINK about it
Mark Zuckerberg is a robber baron, writes cultural historian Lynn Stuart Parramore in an opinion piece. Washington should treat him like one and use antitrust laws to break up his monopoly.
Science + Tech = MACH
Scientists have turned brain signals into speech with help from artificial intelligence. The technology could lead to devices that restore speaking ability to people who have lost it as a result of brain injury or neurological disorders.
Here's what successful couples know about money that you don't.
One fun thing
Otis Williams, the last living original member of The Temptations, sits down with NBC News’ Lester Holt, to discuss “Ain’t Too Proud.”
The new Broadway show chronicles the group’s highs and lows, including 14 No. 1 singles.
Williams still can’t believe the band’s tremendous success.
"You could have tipped me over with a feather before I would believe that the wonderful ride that I'm still having 59 years later," he says. "I never would have imagined it."
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And if get to the "Avengers" this weekend, let me know what you think of it. Is it worth getting a babysitter to see on the big screen?