A simplified summary of the phases of the Marvel Universe

If you’re an expert, this post won’t add much. Here I share with “lay people” the order of Marvel films, to map out what needs to be seen (or reviewed) so as not to float in the films and series on the way. We’re talking about 15 years of content and what’s yet to come. That’s why a recap, in chronological order, is needed to help adjust our GPS.

The complete plan is:

Phase 1: Assembly (2008-2012)
Phase 2: Age of Ultron (2013-2015)
Phase 3: Endgame (2016-2019)
Phase 4: Legacy (2020-2021)
Phase 5: Secret Invasion (2022-2024)
Phase 6: Secret Wars (2025-2028)
Phase 7: Reborn (2029-2030)
Phase 8: Dismantled (2031-2033)

So, in periods 1 to 3 we know what they call The Infinity Saga, and the current one, which covers from 4 to 6, is The Multiverse Saga. Infinity Saga brought us the original Avengers, who they were, how they met and fought together, had Thanos as an arch-rival, and left us with losses and new beginnings. Multiverse reflects the proposal, multiplying characters and content, distributed between cinema and platform, with series, specials, and films.

Phase 1, spread over just over 4 years, includes 6 films (we are not talking about previous series shown on TV) – Iron Man 1 and 2, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America 1, and The Avengers – with Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) and Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) as their leaders, following SHIELD boss Nicky Fury (Samuel L. Jackson). We know Dr. Bruce Banner (who, after changing actors twice, stabilized with Mark Ruffalo in the role), Natasha Romanoff, the Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Thor (Chris Hemsworth) (and his brother, Loki (Tom Hiddleston)) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner). We’ve already heard about the Infinity Stones, Thanos’ name and etc, but the villain himself seems to be Loki.

Phase 2 was faster, just 2 years, but with seven more movies: Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America and the Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy 1, Avengers: Age of Ultron and The Man -Ant. In this part, our heroes deal with new personal problems, from the present and the past, we also meet the Guardians of the Galaxy (Chris Pratt and others) and Scott Lang (Paul Rudd), the Ant-Man. Somehow we understand Tony’s resentment of Steve (jealousy, basically) and we also understand each other’s moral compasses. Captain America even rebelled when he meets his childhood friend, Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) transformed into a killing weapon.

The Guardians and Scott are not yet on the Avengers team, but they already deal directly with Thanos. With a crisis provoked by Ultron’s cybernetic consciousness, the Avengers destroy the country of Sokovia in the process, precisely where the brothers Pietro and Wanda Maximoff (Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen) and Baron Zemo (Daniel Brühl) lived. We also see that Jarvis transforms into Vision (Paul Bettany).

Phase 3 increased the number of films in 3 years, but was also super rich in storytelling, storytelling innovation, and engagement. There are no less than 11 films, characters like Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch), Spider-Man (Tom Holland), Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), and Captain Marvel (Brie Larson), among others.

Movies are Captain America Civil War, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Captain Marvel, Avengers Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home.

Dramatic and iconic, this is the golden phase of all phases. All Avengers, in crisis and in opposition to each other, must overcome the problems to work together again and deal with the frightening threat of the power of Thanos (Josh Brolin). Our heroes lose, and with that, they also lose hope. That’s when we meet Carol Danvers (Captain Marvel), Scott Lang returns by chance from the quantum universe, and, little by little, the remaining Avengers unite to try to reverse History. Victory comes with felt casualties: Tony Stark and Natasha Romanoff sacrifice themselves.

We entered phase 4, which ended in 2022, where the content multiplied alarmingly because, with the digital platform, we have films, series, and specials connecting the stories. The list is in chronological order.

Featured movies and TV shows:

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier
Black Widow
And if…?
Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings
Archer hawk
Spider-Man: No Way Home
moon knight
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
Mrs. Marvel
Thor: Love and Thunder
She-Hulk: Lawyer
werewolf at night
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Guardians of the Galaxy Christmas Special

So it is. Now all of this listed above (17 contents) is essential to watch and understand the next steps. Simplifying the proposal, Phase 4 served to introduce, explain and show the drama of the Multiverse and, as a consequence, introduce many new characters. Hard to follow them all, but the main ones, if we can call them that, are Yelena Boleva (Florence Pugh), from Black Widow, Shang-Chi (Simu Liu), from Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, the Eternals ( Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, and others, including Eros (Harry Styles), Moon Knight (Oscar Isaac), America Chavez (Xochitl Gomez), from Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness. We also have the great rival, Kang (Jonathan Majors) who appeared in Loki.

The problem posed here is that our heroes are still dealing with their personal traumas (Wanda is now the vengeful Scarlet Witch, and Suri has turned contrary to Black Panther) and everyone is working separately. We already know some young people who will have a leading role, but, naturally, no one will trust the variant of Loki who survived and will be trying to help fight Kang. So far, the stories are running parallel, without much crossover. With the start of Phase 5, launched with Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania, we need to start sewing the connections. Herculean task!

Save the order of releases:

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania
And if…? Part 2
Secret Invasion
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 3
Loki 2
The Marvels
Iron heart
Agatha: Coven of Chaos
Daredevil: Born Again
Captain America: New World Order

Phase 6, scheduled for 2024 and 2026 will have the second most epic phase, so 2023 is the growing construction of problems.

Deadpool 3
The Fantastic Four
Avengers: The Kang Dynasty
Avengers: Secret Wars

It hasn’t been announced how the X-Men will enter the medium, but there have been quotes in WandaVision and Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) is expected to be in Deadpool 3, but could still enter phase 5.

With this ultra-simplified base, we’re going to try to help little by little with what we’ll have to know to appreciate the news. We will be heroes!


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