At the heart of the first three phases of the Marvel Cinematic Universe have been the six gems known as Infinity Stones.
Each stone holds a particular power and through the last decade of Marvel movies, various characters have attempted to wield them to enact terrible destruction upon the universe.
As Benicio Del Toro’s character The Collector says:
“Before creation itself, there were six singularities. Then the universe exploded into existence, and the remnants of these systems were forged into concentrated ingots… Infinity Stones.”
MCU big bad Thanos intends on acquiring all six stones in order to assemble his Infinity Gauntlet, which will provide him with the ability to control all reality and finally enact his plan to wipe out half the galaxy.
The stones have appeared multiple times in varying ways throughout the 18 movies in the MCU and it’s easy to lose track of who has them and where they are. So, we thought we’d catch you up with everything you need to know about the Infinity Stones ahead of Thanos’ hunt to control them in Avengers: Infinity War.
The Mind Stone
Name: The Mind Stone
AKA: Loki’s Sceptre
First seen: Avengers Assemble, though not revealed as an Infinity Stone until Avengers: Age of Ultron.
Now: In Vision’s forehead and keeping him alive.
In the MCU: Way back in the original Avengers, Loki came to Earth to try and rule. One of his weapons of choice was a sceptre given to him by Thanos which he used to control the minds of Hawkeye and Erik Selvig. It was later revealed in Avengers: Age of Ultron that the sceptre contained the Mind Stone, which was then used to bring the Vision to life.
What does it do? So far we’ve seen the Mind Stone be used to control minds, create energy blasts and power the Vision. It has also been suggested that Scarlet Witch derived her powers from the Mind Stone back in Age of Ultron, potentially leading to her connection with Vision.
The Space Stone
Name: The Space Stone
AKA: The Tesseract
First seen: Captain America: The First Avenger
Now: Stolen from the Asgardian vaults by Loki at the end of Thor: Ragnarok. Seen in Thanos’ gauntlet in the Avengers: Infinity War trailers.
In the MCU: The Space Stone made its first appearance as the Tesseract, a legendary energy cube of great power stolen by Hydra leader Red Skull. The Tesseract was then used to open the portal to deep space to let in Loki’s invading forces in Avengers Assemble before being taken to the vaults of Asgard. In Thor: Ragnarok Loki spotted the Tesseract in the vaults and it was implied that he might have taken it for himself, a theory backed up by the Infinity War trailers which depict Loki handing the blue cube off to none other than Thanos himself.
What does it do? The Space Stone has the power to create interstellar bridges from one end of space to the other. It is, in effect, a portal to other parts of the universe making it an incredibly useful asset to the invading Thanos. The Space Stone was used by Odin and Heimdall to build the Bifrost on Asgard, the rainbow coloured bridge that allows Asgardians access to the nine realms. It is also a powerful source of energy, used to power Hydra’s weapons in Captain America: The First Avenger.
The Reality Stone
Name: The Reality Stone
AKA: The Aether
First seen: Thor: The Dark World
Now: The Collector’s Museum
In the MCU: The Aether was the object of desire for Malekith, the leader of the Dark Elves in the Thor sequel. During the film, Natalie Portman’s character binds with the Aether making her a target for the evil elf. By the end of the film it was taken by the Lady Sif to the Collector in order to keep distance between the Aether and the Space Stone, which was in Odin’s treasure room on Asgard.
What does it do? The Aether has only been glimpsed once so far in the MCU so its full power set remains unknown, but we do know that it turns matter into dark matter by binding with a host and absorbing their life force. Odin describes the Aether as “an ancient force of infinite destruction,” hinting at its status as an Infinity Stone and suggesting its reality-bending powers.
The Power Stone
Name: The Power Stone
AKA: The Orb
First seen: Guardians of the Galaxy
Now: Xandar’s vaults
In the MCU: In the first Guardians of the Galaxy film, the Orb forms the central focus of the film with pretty much every character seeking it out. It is then revealed that the Orb is home to the Power Stone, a purple ingot of planet-destroying power. In the trailers for Avengers: Infinity War Thanos already has the Power Stone in his Infinity Gauntlet.
What does it do? Among its other uses the Power Stone acts as a mini Death Star, allowing its wielder to destroy planets just by touching the stone to the earth. Ronan, the fanatical Kree villain of the first Guardians film, gains enhanced strength from the stone and intended to use it to destroy all living matter on Xandar, the home of the Nova Corp.
The Time Stone
Name: The Time Stone
AKA: The Eye of Agamotto
First seen: Doctor Strange
Now: In the possession of Doctor Strange
In the MCU: Doctor Strange introduced the idea of ancient relics of great power chosing a sorcerer to wield them, and the famed Eye of Agamotto apparently chose Strange himself as its master. In the film we see the stone, housed inside a pendant, being protected by the sorcerers in the New York Sanctum.
What does it do? The Time Stone, when properly used, can reverse or accelerate time. In Doctor Strange it is used as a means of reversing the destruction of the Dark Dimension and Dormammu. The pendant itself, created by the first Sorcerer Supreme, was a means of housing and controlling the power of the stone for use by its owner.
The Soul Stone
Name: The Soul Stone
First seen: Unknown
In the MCU: The location or identity of the Soul Stone remains unknown within the MCU although there are many theories as to where and what it might be. One such theory revolves around the heart-shaped herb used by Black Panther in Wakanda, suggesting it could be linked to the Soul Stone as it allows T’Challa to communicate with his ancestors. We know that a battle is set to take place in Wakanda during Infinity War, so could this be during the search for the Soul Stone?
What does it do? Very little is known about the Soul Stone but according to the recently released comic book tie-in Avengers: Infinity War Prelude, the stone could be the greatest threat out of all six Infinity Stones. Could it have the ability to bring back characters from the dead?
Avengers: Infinity War will herald the first time that all six of the stones are seen on screen together and could lead to an all-powerful, Infinity Gauntlet-wielding Thanos ruling over the universe. Whatever happens in Infinity War, we know we’re in for an epic battle during which reality will be bent, minds altered, space warped, planets destroyed and time shifted.
And who knows? Maybe a few souls will be lost too…
Avengers: Infinity War is released in UK cinemas on Thursday 26th April