With Infinity War headed to theaters, it’s time to catch up on everything you need to know about Infinity Stones in the MCU!
Infinity Stone Basics
First things first: we’re addressing Infinity Stones as they are introduced in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. (So we’re not going over any of the differences between the MCU Infinity Stones and the Infinity or Soul Gems found in Marvel Comics.) Infinity Stones appear in the MCU as early as Phase One’s Thor, but a true explanation of their importance doesn’t appear until Phase Two.
In Thor: The Dark World, Odin describes them as relics that pre-date the universe. Dark Elves tried to use their power to harness the Aether, one of the relics, to destroy the nine realms.
In Guardians of the Galaxy, The Collector describes them as concentrated remnants of what existed before the universe was created.
The stones can only be handled by those of extraordinary strength and they’re capable of destroying entire civilizations. Because of this, each stone is contained in some way as a form of protection.
At the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron, after the failures of those he has sent to obtain the Stones, Thanos dons the Infinity Gauntlet and says, “Fine, I’ll do it myself.”
The Infinity Gauntlet will allow Thanos to harness the powers of the Infinity Stones, and if complete, will give him unlimited power. In the trailer for Infinity War, Thanos is already in possession of two stones, the Power Stone and the Space Stone.
Moving into Avengers: Infinity War (assuming this doesn’t change with the release of Black Panther), only five of the Infinity Stones have been revealed. The current location of the Soul Stone is unknown.
The Space Stone is blue and can be used to move through space. It is contained inside of the Tesseract.
We get our first look at the Tesseract in Thor‘s post-credit scene, where Nick Fury shows it to Dr. Selvig (and Loki).
In Captain America: The First Avenger, Johann Schmidt (Red Skull) finds the Tesseract and uses it to build weapons during World War II. He vanishes while handling the Tesseract and is presumed dead.
The Tesseract appears again in The Avengers when it becomes the portal for Loki to enter a S.H.I.E.L.D. research facility.
At the end of The Avengers, Thor takes the Tesseract back to Asgard to be secured in Odin’s vault.
In Thor: Ragnarok, it was hinted that Loki might have taken the Tesseract from the vault. The trailer for Infinity War appears to confirm this.
The Mind Stone is yellow (although while in the scepter it is encased in blue) and can be used for psychic powers and mind control. It was originally in Loki’s scepter, but now resides in Vision’s forehead.
The Mind Stone shows up for the first time in The Avengers, located inside the scepter. It was given to Loki by the Other, the leader of the Chitauri, to assist in Loki’s mission to retrieve the Tesseract. Since the Other refers to Thanos as “master”, it can be assumed that Thanos was originally in possession of the Mind Stone.
The scepter is seen again in Avengers: Age of Ultron where it was stolen from S.H.I.E.L.D. by Hydra, retrieved by the Avengers, taken by Ultron, then used to create Vision.
Going into Infinity War, Vision is still in possession of the Mind Stone. The trailer makes it clear that might change.
The Reality Stone is red and it is contained in the form of the Aether. Unlike other stones, the Aether is a liquid that uses and draws energy from a host body. It has the power to warp reality.
The Reality Stone makes its first appearance in Thor: The Dark World when Jane Foster was in contact with the Aether and became infected.
The Aether is delivered to The Collector at the end of The Dark World because the Tesseract is already in Odin’s vault and “it’s not wise to keep two Infinity Stones so close together.”
The Power Stone is purple and increases the user’s power and allows them to manipulate energy.
In Guardians of the Galaxy, the Power Stone is contained in an orb.
The orb is secured in Nova Corps Headquarters leading into Infinity War, but as the Power Stone is shown in the trailer, already in the Infinity Gauntlet, we can assume that it is the first Infinity Stone Thanos is able to collect.
The Time Stone is green and can speed up, slow down, reverse and loop time.
The Time Stone makes its first appearance in Doctor Strange, inside of the Eye of Agamotto. It is still in Stephen Strange’s possession leading into Infinity War.
The Soul Stone is orange and has not yet been revealed in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
If you’re looking for a quick overview of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, head to my MCU crash course. Looking for a refresher on all of the films before Infinity War hits theaters? Join in on our Countdown to Infinity War. We’re watching one movie a week and chatting about them live on Twitter. Infinity War enters theaters on May 4, 2018.
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