Spoiler Central: Infinity Stones in the Marvel Movies


If you’ve seen Guardians of the Galaxy, this is your one-stop-shop for nerdy geek-outs.  Packed full of spoilers, of course.

In an effort to distance themselves from films such as Batman & Robin and the original Superman, comic book movies have as of late softened up details of the more “out there” comic book elements to keep the genre mainstream.  That means no kryptonite for Superman, and it also means shying away from characters such as Galactus . . . or so we thought.  There’s no Galactus yet, but Marvel is, it seems, taking something head-on that they’ve avoided so far – the infinity stones.

These stones together, each holding a different type of power, allow the wielder to essentially be a god, having both omniscience (all-knowing) and omnipotence (all-powerful).  There are six of them, and they are power, reality, space, time, mind and soul.  Sounds pretty geeky, I know (but also awesome, right?).  But here’s the thing.

Marvel has already introduced these stones.

They just aren’t calling them the infinity stones.  Or not yet.  I suspect that may change in the near future.  Here’s what we have so far.


Space stone (blue): Also known as the Tesseract, which allowed Loki to create a portal for his alien army to flood into New York.


Mind stone (also, inexplicably, blue): This is theoretically what gives Loki’s staff the mind control abilities that he displays in The Avengers.


Reality stone: Not seen in the form of a stone and referred to as the aether, the reality stone (ish) made an appearance in Thor: The Dark World, and gave Malekith all sorts of reality-altering abilities.  If you have any doubt about this one, remember that Malekith was in Guardians of the Galaxy (he was in one of the displays in the possession of The Collector), so there’s likely a connection there.  I imagine we might see this one in a more explicit form sometime in the future.


Power stone: This is the orb of Guardians of the Galaxy.  Guardians is a very important movie in the Marvel universe, because even though it is almost utterly lacking in tie-ins to other Marvel movies, it was the first to explicitly say “Yes, we’re going for the infinity stones.”

This leaves the Soul and Time infinity stones.  I imagine that we may see one of those in Avengers: Age of Ultron, and one in another upcoming Marvel film.  I have a theory about this that is admittedly quite popular and obvious, but it’s a theory nonetheless.  I believe that this is pushing for the infinity gauntlet as a major Marvel movie event.  The infinity gauntlet is basically a glove that Thanos uses in the comics to gather all six of the infinity stones.  This gauntlet, shockingly enough, was seen in the first Thor movie, in Odin’s vault.  That, most likely, will be the plot of Avengers 3, and further supports the suspicion I’ve had that Marvel is setting up their films so that Thanos, not Loki, will be the primary villain of the entire universe.


Look at that face.  Look at it.  Creepy, right?  This will totally work.  It’s a phenomenal way for Marvel to keep from becoming dry and predictable, and if they have the guts to end one movie with a loss instead of a win, leading up for an epic battle in the next film, Empire Strikes Back kind-of-way, that’ll be even better.

Logan Judy
Logan Judy is a Christian blogger and science fiction author with a Batman complex. At Cross Culture, Logan writes about film, comics, cultural analysis, and whatever else strikes his fancy. In addition to his work at Cross Culture, Logan also blogs and podcasts at A Clear Lens. You can find him tweeting about Batman, apologetics, and why llamas will one day rule the world, @loganrjudy.
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4 thoughts on “Spoiler Central: Infinity Stones in the Marvel Movies

  1. I hadn’t even connected Loki’s staff as being powered by a stone. So Thanos had that in his possession and gave it to Loki. Who has it now? I would say SHIELD, but they’re done after Cap 2. So does Hydra have the mind stone? I’m pretty sure they gave the aether to the Collector at the end credit scenes in Thor 2. So does he still have that or did something happen to it when the orb exploded at his place in Guardians? I believe Asgard has the Tesseract, correct?

    • Well I think that the events of Guardians were supposed to take place prior to The Avengers. That would mean that the Collector still has the aether, and we saw Loki’s staff, I’m pretty sure, in another post-credits scene, though what one escapes my memory. And yes, the Tesseract was sent back to Asgard at the end of Avengers. However, we know from the end of Thor 2 that Loki is sitting on the throne posing as Odin, which means he has the Tesseract again. I’m still blanking on where we’ve seen Loki’s staff again. von Strucker maybe has it?

      To clarify, I’m not sure that the mind stone has ever been affirmed by Marvel, and it is odd that it and the space stone (the Tesseract) would be the same color. But I still think that’s the best explanation, and his staff does clearly have a stone in it.

      • I think you’re right about von Strucker. I think that’s one of the post credit scenes in Cap 2, which confirms that Hydra has it, correct?

        I don’t think Guardians takes place prior to Avengers for two reasons. 1) Star Lord (as a child) is kidnapped in 1988 and when it flashes forward I believe it says on screen something like “current day”, or at least there is a reference somewhere in the film to that happening 25 years or so prior. 2) More definitively, Ronan kills Thanos’ hench-man speaker, the same guy who Loki interacted with on Thanos’ behalf in Avengers. So the question remains, who has the aether? Maybe the collector had that in a more secure location. I guess that’s the most likely answer.

        BUT, if you think that is Malekith in one of the collectors displays then that does raise the possibility that Guardians takes place prior to Thor 2, and the explosion of the orb-stone sets Malekith free. I don’t think that is Malekith though. I think it’s just a random dark elf. Also, one of the Collector’s servants is in the end credits of Thor 2 when they deliver the aether to him. Then she dies in Guardians. So seems to me Guardians has to take place after all other Marvel/Avenger films thus far.

        All that to basically say that I don’t think they’re doing anything confusing with the time-sequences. I think all this is happening in the MCU in the order in which the films are released.

        • Yeah, I guess that makes more sense. Someone had told me that Marvel said it took place six months before, but I’m not finding a statement to that effect, so I guess whoever told me that was mistaken. I conveniently have no recollection of who it was.

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