Nobody panic... but I’m about to suggest we rewatch all of the MCU before Avengers: Infinity War comes out later this year...
Hey everyone, why don’t we rewatch all of the MCU before Avengers: Infinity War comes out later this year?
(See what I did there?)
Ok, I know it sounds like a mammoth task but, and as one very clever fan points out on Imgur, if you watch an MCU movie a week from the start of January 2018, you’ll be done in time for the release of Infinity War in April/May.
We love a good recap here at GR - how else do you prepare for a new season of Game of Thrones? - and if we’re being honest, we can’t remember everything that’s happened in the MCU so far anyway (no one can! Not even Marvel Studios… they have a robot that remembers it all for them... seriously).
Add to that, the fact that Infinity War (and it’s sequel Avengers 4) is apparently the culmination and finale of the entire MCU to date and you really need to know what’s going on.
Don’t worry though, we’re not expecting you to go it alone. We’re going to be rewatching every Marvel movie too, so whether you’ve never seen them before, or you’re looking to recap everything before the Infinity War’s release, join us every Sunday at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), or 3pm (ET) from now until the end of time (aka, when Infinity War comes out) for our weekly watch-a-long!
Below you’ll find a breakdown of which movies we’ll be watching each week (and when) so you can watch with us and join in the discussion on Twitter. We’ll be live tweeting each rewatch from the GR account using the hashtag #MCUrecap so feel free to reply, ask questions, etc. Alternatively, just make sure you catch the appropriate movie at some point that week, and after each rewatch we'll recap what happened below so you can catch up/refresh if you need to.
Last week we started with a double bill of Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk which means this Sunday we're watching Iron Man 2. Whether you joined us last week or you're just starting now, read on for our MCU recap schedule and tune in this Sunday at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), or 3pm (ET) for the Iron Man sequel.
Full breakdown of our ultimate MCU recap below:
Week: January 8-14
Watch-a-long: January 14 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
As we’re a bit behind schedule we’re going to start with a double bill and watch Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk one after another in Week 1. They both came out in the same year anyway so it makes sense.
Iron Man (2008)
Tony Stark is a super suave, super rich, genius womaniser who runs weapons manufacturing company, Stark Industries, along with his Dad’s old partner Obadiah Stane. He has an invaluable PA called Pepper Potts, a chauffeur/friend called Hogan, an AI assistant called Jarvis, and a military friend called Rhodey.
While in Afghanistan, Stark is ambushed by a group of terrorists and suffers serious injuries thanks to one of his own grenades. He wakes up in captivity, full of tiny fragments of sharpel travelling towards his heart, but fellow captive, Yinsen, fits him with an electromagnet to stop the sharpel from killing him. The terrorists want him to build one of his "Jericho" missiles for them, so Stark pretends to agree and then he and Yinsen create a small, but powerful electric generator called an arc reactor to power Stark's electromagnet and a suit of powered armor to help them escape.
Yinsen dies during the escape, but Stark eventually makes it home where he announces to the world that his company will stop making weapons having seen the damage they can do. Stane isn’t happy and tells him to take some time off, which Stark uses to design a more advanced version of his arc reactor and suit. He uses it to save some people, but finds out that Stane has been double dealing under the table and selling Stark weapons to terrorists as well as ‘the good guys’. When he confronts him, Stane gets him kicked off the board.
Meanwhile, the terrorists who captured him find the remains of his original suit and try to put it back together. Stane kills them all and takes the suit for himself, then he tries to kill Stark by taking his arc reactor and using both to create an even bigger and more powerful suit. He intents to create an army of super soldiers to sell to the highest bidder, but Pepper finds out what he’s up to and rushes to stop him with the help of Agent Coulson from the Strategic Homeland Intervention, Enforcement and Logistics Division. Stane tries to kill them using his Iron Monger suit, but Stark turns up with his old arc reactor (which Pepper kept as a keepsake) and (eventually) defeats and kills Stane.
Rumours abound in the press about the super suits, and Agent Coulson helps cover up what happened, giving Stark an alibi and telling him to keep to the official version of events. During a press conference, Stark promptly proclaims: “I am Iron Man.” Once back at home, Stark is met by Nick Fury who tells him he’s putting a team together...
Things you need to remember:
- Tony Stark is Iron Man
- The arc reactor in his chest doesn’t just power his suit - it’s keeping him alive
- Agent Coulson and S.H.I.E.L.D.
- Nick Fury and that team he was talking about
The Incredible Hulk (2008)
Scientist Bruce Banner is on the run after a failed experiment which turned him into a huge, green monster (for short periods of time), who smashed up the lab where he and his girlfriend Betty worked killing some and injuring others. He’s hiding out in Brazil, working on a potential cure, and practicing meditation to keep his heart rate below 200 as he only changes into ‘the Hulk’ when he gets angry. Betty’s Dad, General “Thunderbolt” Ross is trying to find him so he can weaponize the Hulk for the US army.
While working in a factory, some of Banner’s blood accidentally gets into a bottle which eventually gives an elderly gentleman in Wisconsin gamma sickness. This tips Ross off to Banner’s whereabouts and he sends in a team, led by British Royal Marine Emil Blonsky, to capture him, but Banner turns into the Hulk and escapes. After Ross reveals to Blonsky how Banner became the Hulk, he agrees to be injected with a small amount of a similar serum, which gives him enhanced abilities, but also starts to impair his judgement.
Banner reunites with Betty, but is attacked by Ross and his forces again causing him to transform into the Hulk. He escapes for a second time, seemingly killing Blonsky in the process, and he and Betty go on the run. They make contact with Dr. Samuel Sterns - the person Banner has been communicating with online about a potential cure - and conduct a seemingly successful experiment which turns the Hulk back into Banner. Sterns warns though, that the cure might only work for each individual transformation and then reveals that he’s synthesized Banner’s blood with the intention of using it for good. Knowing what it can do Banner wishes to destroy it all, but is captured by Ross and Blonsky who has made a remarkably quick recovery from his injuries.
Ross takes Banner and Betty into custody on a helicopter, but Blonsky stays behind and forces Sterns to inject him with Banner’s blood, which transforms him into an even bigger monster than the Hulk. Driven mad by the combination of the serum and Banner’s blood, he rampages through Harlem putting everyone in danger. Realising Banner is the only one who can stop him, Ross releases him and he transforms into the Hulk and fights and finally defeats Blonsky. Betty stops the Hulk from turning on anyone else and he eventually flees.
A month later and Banner is hiding out in British Columbia and rather than trying to supress the Hulk, he manages to transform in a safe and controlled way. In the final scene, Tony Stark approaches Ross in a bar to talk about the team which is being put together.
Things you need to remember:
- Bruce Banner only transforms into the Hulk when he’s angry
- He’s on the run/in hiding
- General Thunderbolt Ross
- That team everyone keeps mentioning...
Week 2 - Iron Man 2 (2010)
Week: January 15-21
Watch-a-long: January 21 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Next up is Iron Man 2 which, lest we forget, features Black Widow’s cinematic debut!
Week 3 - Thor (2011)
Week: January 22-28
Watch-a-long: January 28 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Enter the God of Thunder! Week 3 sees Thor join the MCU.
Week 4 - Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
Week: January 29-4
Watch-a-long: February 4 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
In the same year that the first Thor movie hit cinemas, Captain America also made his debut with Captain America: The First Avenger.
Week 5 - The Avengers (2012)
Week: February 5-11
Watch-a-long: February 11 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
The very first Avengers movie saw Iron Man, the Hulk, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, and Hawkeye team-up to take on Loki. Infinity War will be the three-quel to this film so you definitely don’t want to miss this rewatch.
Week 6 - Iron Man 3 (2013) and Thor: The Dark World (2013)
Week: February 12-18
Watch-a-long: February 18 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
As we head into Phase 2, let’s have another double bill (there’s not much time left)! Iron Man 3 and Thor: The Dark World - Thor 2 is terrible anyway (don’t believe us? Here’s the best Marvel movies) so we can definitely get through both in one sitting.
Week 7 - Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
Week: February 19-25
Watch-a-long: February 25 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Cap returned for his solo sequel in 2014 and boy was it goooooood! I don’t know if you remember, but The Winter Soldier appears later in the MCU so we better rewatch this one.
Week 8 - Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
Week: February 26-4
Watch-a-long: March 4 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Marvel Studios first foray into space (sort of) saw the Guardians of the Galaxy’s rock our world with this standalone film.
Week 9 - Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)
Week: March 5-11
Watch-a-long: March 11 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Avengers 2 got a lot of stick from fans - mainly for its villain - but as the sequel to The Avengers, it’s a must-watch.
Week 10 - Ant-Man (2015)
Week: March 12-18
Watch-a-long: March 18 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Just when you thought the MCU couldn’t hold anymore superheroes, Marvel Studios introduced Ant-Man.
Week 11 - Captain America: Civil War (2016)
Week: March 19-25
Watch-a-long: March 25 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Phase 3 kicked off with the epic Captain America: Civil War (aka, Avengers 2.5) which saw the Avengers come to blows over the Sokovia Accords. Given the consequences of this movie, you don’t want to miss recapping it. Plus, it includes Spider-Man’s MCU debut!
Week 12 - Doctor Strange (2016)
Week: March 26-1
Watch-a-long: April 1 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Marvel went all mysterious on us with Doctor Strange and while it’s not the best MCU movie, it does introduce a new superhero who will no doubt be a big part of Infinity War.
Week 13 - Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)
Week: April 2-8
Watch-a-long: April 8 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
The Guardians returned with their sequel, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, which saw them take on Ego the Living Planet and while they still haven’t crossed paths with the Avengers, we know it’s happening soon.
Week 14 - Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
Week: April 9-15
Watch-a-long: April 15 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
After many, many years in exile, one of Marvel comics’ most iconic characters returned to the fold with Spider-Man: Homecoming after Sony and Marvel Studios made a deal for the web-slinger to join the MCU.
Week 15 - Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
Week: April 16-22
Watch-a-long: April 22 at 8pm (GMT), 12pm (PT), and 3pm (ET)
Thor: Ragnarok upped the God of Thunder’s game after the disappointing Dark World and don’t worry, you’ll be able to rewatch it during Week 16 as it’s out on Blu-ray on February 26 in the UK and March 6 in the US.
Week 16 - Avengers: Infinity War! (UK)
Watch: April 27
Week 16 would normally be when we rewatch Black Panther, but as it will no longer be in the cinema at the time or out on home release (yet), there’s no *cough* legal *cough* way for you to do that. Don’t worry though, we’ll recap all the important bits you need to remember when the time comes, but what this does mean is that… this is Avengers: Infinity War week!
That’s right, if you’re in the UK, Avengers 3 hits cinemas on Friday April 27 so all you need to do is come back here to quickly refresh your memories of Black Panther, and then run to the cinema to watch Avengers: Infinity War.
Week 17 - Avengers: Infinity War! (US)
Watch: May 4
If you’re in the US, Week 17 is your Avengers: Infinity War week as the movie is released on Friday, May 4 in the states. The bad news is that the UK will have seen it before you and you’ll have to avoid spoilers online, but the good news is that you have a bit more time to recap any of the MCU movie you missed if you got a bit behind in the watch-a-long.
Congratulations! You recapped the entire MCU in time for Avengers: Infinity War. Now we just need to do it again for Avengers 4...