Marvel’s Infinity Stones: the list of where they are in the MCU

Posted on 26 October 2017
By Andrew Siddall
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With Black Panther still creating box office gold, Marvel fans have been left wondering when and where the final infinity stone will be discovered. But while we wait, lets break down how far Thanos has to venture to make his golden gauntlet shine with godlike power.

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has made a storm at the box office, with both critical and financial success across eighteen movies, dating back to 2008 with Iron Man and most recently Black Panther.

The MCU broke the mould in terms of superhero movies, featuring multiple film franchises that fit and work together within a gigantic shared universe, spanning three ‘phases’ as well as allowing the characters space to have their own adventures.

With Avengers: Infinity War looming on the horizon, the question on everyone’s mind was what could tie all of these films together in the finale of their third phase.

The plan was ultimately unveiled when The Avengers hit cinemas in 2012, and audiences saw the mad titan Thanos gearing up to conquer the universe with the help of the Infinity Gauntlet.

The Infinity Gauntlet is a golden glove which grants the wearer control; over time, space, minds, souls, reality and power, through the use of the gems, or stones, placed on the gauntlet’s knuckles. Thus making the wearer the most powerful being in the universe.

Although referred to as ‘infinity gems’ in the Marvel comics, the infinity stones have been appearing throughout the expansion of the MCU, giving the franchise time to display what each stone is capable of before bringing them together for mother of all showdowns – Avengers: Infinity War.

Given that the MCU is reaching its 10th anniversary next year, it can be difficult to keep up with everything that has happened so far. Here is a spoiler-filled breakdown of where each of the infinity stones are being kept and what they are capable of…

Space Stone

Cinematic appearance: Thor (post credit scene) (2011)

The space stone was the first infinity stone to appear in the MCU. It allows the user to exist in any and all locations, can move any object anywhere throughout reality and it can warp or arrange space. It can also allow a user to teleport to anywhere they can imagine with no restrictions or preventions and can bend the laws of physics to give the user greater speed and alter the distance between objects.

The space stone was first introduced in the post credit scene from Thor, directed by Joss Whedon. At first it was unclear what it was; a blue cube that was referred to as “Unlimited Power” by Nick Fury.

It was properly introduced as the Tesseract in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), when the Red Skull invades Tǿnsberg in Norway to find it. The Red Skull was able to use its powers to create a multitude of weapons to enhance the Nazi deep science division: Hydra, only to lose it during a confrontation with Cap himself.

Before the Tesseract disappeared into the sea, it either killed the Red Skull or teleported him across the cosmos, with the latter being the more likely, given the quick glimpse of the cosmos before he evaporates.

It was picked up by Howard Stark and remained at S.H.I.E.L.D. until the events of The Avengers (2012), when Loki steals it and opens a portal to the other side of the universe, allowing the Chitauri army to invade Earth. When the army and Loki are defeated, the Tesseract is given to Thor and returned to Asgard, where it has stayed until Loki steals it in Thor: Ragnarok.

Current whereabouts: Asgard.

Mind Stone

Cinematic appearance: The Avengers/Avengers Assemble (2012)

The mind stone was the second stone to appear in the MCU. It allows the user to strengthen both their mental and psionic power greatly and access the thoughts and the dreams of other beings. It can also allow simultaneous access to all minds in existence, when combined with the power stone (see below).

The mind stone has been causing havoc for the Avengers since they first met and is the only stone to appear in over four films. It came to Earth with Loki, attached to his Scepter. It became quickly apparent what it could do, when Loki uses it to control Hawkeye, Eric Selvig and multiple S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. By the end of the film, it was collected by Black Widow and transported to S.H.I.E.L.D.

It resurfaced in the aftermath – it was revealed that Hydra were alive and well and had been infesting S.H.I.E.L.D. which lead to the scepter being taken and experimented with by Baron von Strucker.

In the mid-credit scene from Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), it was used to give powers to Wanda and Pietro Maximoff; Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, leading into Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015), where the team reclaim it and Tony Stark unwittingly uses it to give birth to Ultron.

During the events of the movie, Ultron breaks the scepter to reveal the yellow mind stone and attempted to use it to make an upgraded version of himself. After a clash, the Avengers retrieve it and create Ultron’s opposite: the Vision, who is able to erase Ultron from existence. Since then, it has remained safe with the Vision in the Avengers Facility in New York.

Current whereabouts: Avengers HQ with Vision – it’s in his head (should be safe)

Reality Stone

Cinematic appearance: Thor: The Dark World (2013)

As the MCU entered its second phase, the reality stone was introduced, but not as a stone.

This interpretation comes in the form of writhing red liquid. It is thought to be the most powerful stone of the six, allowing the user’s wishes to be fulfilled, even if those wishes are impossible or contradict scientific law. It can create any kind of alternate reality, and when combined with the other stones, can change reality on a universal scale.

Years before Odin was born, the reality stone was used by the Dark Elf known as Malekith to bring darkness to the nine realms, before being stopped by Odin’s father, Bor, and the rest of Asgard’s forces. The stone, referred to as the Aether (Ether), was sealed away where no one could find it.

Years later, Jane Foster stumbles across it during the event known as The Convergence, where all of the planets in the nine realms align and the boarders between them blur until they pass. The Aether infects Jane, prompting Thor to take her to Asgard, where they are attacked by a recently reawakened Malekith, who steals it from Jane and attempts to finish what he started.

Thor was able to best Malekith and stopped him from ever using the Aether again. But,since Malekith says that ‘the Aether cannot be destroyed’, they decide to place it in a location where it would be protected and kept away from the other stone already on Asgard.

Thor: The Dark World was the first movie to acknowledge the existence of all six stones and officially referred to them as ‘Infinity Stones’ during the mid-credit scene in The Collector’s “Collection” by Volstagg, when he and the Lady Sif deliver the Aether to him.

Current whereabouts: The Collector’s Museum in Knowhere

Power Stone

Cinematic appearance: Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

The MCU expanded with phase two, with more of the films taking place off-world. The power stone is one of the only stones to not appear on Earth. It can access all the power and energy that ever has or will exist and allows the user to duplicate almost any physical superhuman ability and grants the possessor the potential to manipulate all forms of energy to virtually any effect.

Even though the infinity stones had been mentioned in Thor: The Dark World, Guardians of the Galaxy was the movie that properly explained what they were to both fans and casual moviegoers, and even gave a real introduction to Thanos.

The power stone was discovered in an ancient tomb by Peter Quill/Star-Lord on the planet Morag, where it was being kept hidden in an Orb, but it quickly became apparent that there were more forces after it. Star-Lord and the rest of the Guardians are pursued across the galaxy by Ronan the Accuser, an ally of Thanos who decides to fulfil his own purpose of destroying the peacekeeping Nova Corp and their planet Xandar.

During a trip to the Collector’s Museum in Knowhere, the Collector shows the Guardians the power and history of the stones. After this, the Guardians are forced into a desperate battle with Ronan and his forces above Xandar, when Ronan steals the orb from them. When the battle ends, Star-Lord hands the orb over to the Nova Corp for safe keeping.

Current whereabouts: Nova Corps Vault on Xandar

Time Stone

Cinematic appearance: Doctor Strange (2016)

The time stone was the first infinity stone to be introduced in phase three of the MCU. It allows control over the past, present and the future and allows the user to see into both the past and the future. It also has the ability to stop, slow, quicken or reverse the flow of time. The user can time travel, change the past and future. It can age and de-age any being and can trap people and entire universes in unending time loops.

Placed in Kamar-Taj, the time stone was concealed within the Eye of Agamotto under the watchful guard of the Ancient One from the forces of darkness. During his time there, Dr. Stephen Strange picked it up and was able to use it to manipulate time on objects, locations and events to his will.

Though it wasn’t the main plot point of Doctor Strange, it did come in useful during the climactic battle between Dr. Strange and Kaecilius, where Strange was able to reverse time to undo the damage Kaecilius had done by opening the Dark Dimension. Strange was also able to outsmart the ruler of the Dark Dimension: Dormammu, by sealing both himself and Dormammu in a continuous time loop, where they relived the same moment over and over again until Dormammu finally gave in and left Earth.

After fixing the damage caused by Kaecilius and his zealots, Strange returned the stone to its place in the library at Kamar-Taj, where it stays under the protection by its new guard Wong.

Current whereabouts: Kamar-Taj

Soul Stone

Cinematic appearance: Avengers: Infinity War

The soul stone, the sixth and final stone has been the most mysterious to date, with many fans theorising about its whereabouts and when it would appear. The soul stone gifts the power to steal, control, manipulate and alter souls, whether they are living or dead. If its full power is unleashed, it grants control over all life in the universe and provides a gateway to an idyllic pocket universe that is similar to heaven.

The majority of fans had speculated that it would feature in Thor: Ragnarok (2017) with Heimdall as its keeper, but unfortunately, this was not the case. It is revealed in Infinity War to be kept on a planet called Vormir, which was discovered by Gamora, under the protection of none other than the Red Skull!

Its powers are not actually on display during the movie, meaning its secrets are still yet to be revealed.

Nothing is quite certain yet for the future of the soul stone, but it does deserve the same devotion and screen time that the previous five received.

Current whereabouts: Vormir.