With 23 films under its belt (and many more coming), the MCU is one of the most complex cinematic creations in history. There are now hundreds of characters across the movies and TV shows and keeping track of them all must be headache-inducing. That’s made just a little harder by the films’ release order not being the order they take place in. This has thrown up some confusion over the years, but now Disney and Marvel have given us an official list of the chronological order that fixes a few long-standing mistakes.
The list appears on Disney+, where they’ve recently reworked the MCU section, and it now features separate categories for each phase of the story as well as a new one that orders the movies chronologically. Here’s how it goes down:
Captain America: The First Avenger
Iron Man 2
Thor: The Dark World
Iron Man 3
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Guardians of the Galaxy
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Avengers: Age of Ultron
Captain America: Civil War
Ant-Man & the Wasp
Avengers: Infinity War
At first glance, there aren’t many surprises here, with this running order taking us from the World War II action of The First Avenger right up to the post-Thanos new MCU after Endgame. But there are actually a few changes. For one, Thor: The Dark World has been moved to before Iron Man 3 and Black Panther is now placed immediately after Captain America: Civil War.
These both fit better chronologically, as we open The Dark World with the trial of Loki for his crimes in The Avengers and Black Panther sees the T’Challa assuming the Wakandan throne after his father was killed in Civil War.
Eagle-eyed fans will have noticed that there are a few films still missing from this lineup as well: The Incredible Hulk, Spider-Man: Homecoming and Spider-Man: Far From Home. That’s because Disney+ doesn’t have the distribution rights to them, so if you want the full story, you should watch The Incredible Hulk after Iron Man, Homecoming after Black Panther and Far From Home after Avengers: Endgame.
The list is set to become more complicated in future, too, with Black Widow apparently set sometime after Civil War and parts of Eternals taking place in the MCU‘s distant past. Throw in the parallel universes coming in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness as well, and you’ve got a recipe for one confusing diagram.