The Infinity Stones were the MacGuffins behind the entirety of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Infinity Saga, and even had a key bearing on movies where they weren’t mentioned or featured at all. Captain America had no idea what powered the Tesseract when he set out to stop Red Skull in The First Avenger, and Doctor Strange was completely unaware when he inherited the Eye of Agamotto that in the near future an intergalactic genocidal maniac would come looking for it.
It wasn’t until The Avengers that the Stones became a focal point of the mythology, with Loki doing the bidding of Thanos in an attempt to orchestrate the Mad Titan’s master plan. At that stage, audiences only knew of the Tesseract, but by the time Age of Ultron rolled around, the franchise had introduced the Reality Stone in Thor: The Dark World, the Power Stone was central to the plot of Guardians of the Galaxy and the Mind Stone became integral to the creation of Vision.
If you’ll recall, though, in one of Age of Ultron‘s final scenes, Thor briefly explains to Tony Stark and Steve Rogers what the Stones are and how their power is harnessed before he flies off into the distance, and the new book The Wakanda Files now confirms via a journal entry from Tony that this was the first time that Iron Man had heard of the six shiny trinkets with the potential to destroy the universe.
“Hold up. I’m really burying the lead here. Thor mentioned six ‘Infinity Stones’ at the center of a whirlpool that was the destruction of Earth. And one of them is apparently bedazzling the forehead of Vision. Can we talk about that for a second? Infinity Stones?”
The Wakanda Files is told from Shuri’s perspective and is regarded as official canon, so any new information contained in the pages should be taken as MCU gospel. Of course, it wasn’t until Infinity War that Stark took the Stones seriously, but at least we now know that Iron Man was doing his best to try and find out more in the interim.
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