If you’re a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), you’ve likely heard of the “Marvel Legacy” movies. These films are part of a larger narrative that spans several years and multiple franchises, including the Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, and more. In this article, we’ll explore the order in which these films were released and how they fit into the overall story.
Phase One: The Beginning
The Marvel Legacy movies began with the release of Iron Man in 2008. This film introduced audiences to Tony Stark (played by Robert Downey Jr.), a billionaire industrialist who becomes a superhero after building a high-tech suit of armor. Later that same year, The Incredible Hulk was released, which starred Edward Norton as Bruce Banner (aka the Hulk).
These two films set the stage for what would become known as “Phase One” of the MCU. In 2010, Iron Man 2 was released, followed by Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger in 2011.
The culmination of Phase One came with The Avengers in 2012. This film brought together many of the characters introduced in previous movies – including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, and Hulk – to form a team that fights evil on a global scale.
Phase Two: Expanding the Universe
Following the success of The Avengers, Marvel Studios kicked off “Phase Two” with Iron Man 3 in 2013. This film saw Tony Stark face off against his greatest enemy yet – an international terrorist known as The Mandarin.
Later that same year, Thor: The Dark World was released. In this film, Thor (played by Chris Hemsworth) must stop an ancient race from using a powerful weapon to destroy all of reality.
In 2014, Captain America: The Winter Soldier hit theaters. This film saw Steve Rogers (played by Chris Evans) team up with Black Widow and new hero Falcon to take down a rogue faction within the government.
Guardians of the Galaxy was also released in 2014. This film introduced audiences to a group of misfit heroes – including Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax, Rocket, and Groot – as they band together to save the galaxy from a powerful villain.
Avengers: Age of Ultron rounded out Phase Two in 2015. In this film, the Avengers must stop an AI program created by Tony Stark from destroying humanity.
Phase Three: The Endgame
Marvel Legacy movies continued with “Phase Three,” which began with Captain America: Civil War in 2016. In this film, the Avengers are split over whether or not to sign an international accord that would place them under government oversight.
Later that same year, Doctor Strange was released. This film introduced audiences to Stephen Strange (played by Benedict Cumberbatch), a brilliant but arrogant surgeon who becomes a sorcerer after a life-changing accident.
In 2017, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 hit theaters. This film saw the Guardians reunite and face off against a new threat while also exploring Peter Quill’s relationship with his father.
Spider-Man: Homecoming was also released in 2017. This film marked Spider-Man’s first solo adventure in the MCU and saw Peter Parker (played by Tom Holland) balancing his school life with his superhero duties.
Thor: Ragnarok followed later that year and saw Thor team up with Hulk and new hero Valkyrie to save Asgard from destruction.
In 2018, Black Panther hit theaters and became one of Marvel’s most successful films ever. The movie introduced audiences to T’Challa (played by Chadwick Boseman), king of Wakanda and superhero known as Black Panther.
Avengers: Infinity War also came out in 2018 and saw the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy team up to stop the mad titan Thanos from collecting all six Infinity Stones.
Finally, Phase Three concluded with Avengers: Endgame in 2019. In this film, the Avengers must travel back in time to collect the Infinity Stones and undo the damage caused by Thanos.
The Marvel Legacy movies are a complex but rewarding series of films that tell an overarching story spanning multiple franchises. By watching these films in order, you can fully appreciate the characters, themes, and epic scale of this cinematic universe. So grab some popcorn and start your journey with Iron Man – you won’t be disappointed!