Marvel’s Cinematic Universe has become an intimidating endeavour for newcomers. With over 30 films to digest, along with an expanding line-up of TV shows, there’s a whole lot of baggage to consider when catching up with Captain America, Thor or Doctor Strange.
The chronology of events has become murkier thanks to the Multiverse Saga, which gallivants through time and space on the regular. If you’re planning to brave into the unknown through a Marvel marathon, here’s every mainline Marvel film and TV show in chronological order.
1. Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
Marvel’s Cinematic Universe kicks off amid the Second World War in 1942, when Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) is recruited for a super-soldier experiment and becomes Captain America.
2. Captain Marvel (2019)
Set in 1995 as Earth is caught in a conflict between two alien civilisations, Captain Marvel serves as an early origin story for Carol Danvers (Brie Larson).
3. Iron Man (2008)
The film that launched the MCU, the original Iron Man starts the main chronology of events within Phase One with Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) at its centre.
4. Iron Man 2 (2010)
This sequel picks up directly after events in the original Iron Man, as the disclosure of his identity to the world triggers an unlikely foe in Russia. It also serves as the first introduction to Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson).
5. The Incredible Hulk (2008)
While Edward Norton’s turn as Bruce Banner has always been an awkward inclusion in the MCU timeline (he was later recast with Mark Ruffalo taking over), this Hulk outing is connected by a post-credits scene showing Tony Stark recruiting for The Avengers.
6. Thor (2011)
This kickstarted the cosmic angle of the MCU as we’re introduced to Asgard, the Nine Realms and Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) dynamic with Dr. Jane Foster (Natalie Portman).
7. The Avengers (2012)
Marvel’s first superhero team-up brought together Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, the Incredible Hulk (played by Mark Ruffalo), Black Widow and newbie Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) into a grand culmination for Phase One.
8. Thor: The Dark World (2013)
This picks up after Loki (Tom Hiddleston) is imprisoned for his war crimes on Earth in The Avengers, as Thor encounters a new villain in Dark Elf Malekith (Christopher Eccleston).
9. Iron Man 3 (2013)
The final film in the Iron Man trilogy takes place seven months after the Battle Of New York, as Tony Stark suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder.
10. Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
Steve Rogers is given a spy thriller makeover in this outing, which is set two years after the Battle Of New York. This also marks the debut of directing duo Anthony and Joe Russo, who later went onto helm future Avengers outings.
11. Guardians Of The Galaxy (2014)
A new team of heroes make an entrance in this zany galactic adventure from director James Gunn, which introduces Star-Lord (Chris Pratt), Gamora (Zoe Saldana), Drax the Destroyer (Dave Bautista), Groot (Vin Diesel) and Rocket (Bradley Cooper).
12. Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)
Set shortly after the events of the first film in 2014, this sequel digs deeper into Star-Lord’s past and introduces the world to eternally adorable Baby Groot.
13. Avengers: Age Of Ultron (2015)
The second Avengers outing largely reunites the original gang with some new faces, including twins Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen).
14. Ant-Man (2015)
Scott Lang (Paul Rudd) becomes an unlikely vessel for scientist Hank Pym’s (Michael Douglas) shrinking technology, which marks the debut of the Quantum Realm.
15. Captain America: Civil War (2016)
It might be pitched as a Captain America outing, but this is an Avengers film in all but name. Between the Steve Rogers and Tony Stark rivalry, Civil War marks the historic debuts of Tom Holland as Spider-Man and Chadwick Boseman’s Black Panther.
16. Black Widow (2021)
Set in 2016, this solo outing for Black Widow establishes some key future characters, including Yelena Belova (Florence Pugh) and Red Guardian (David Harbour).
17. Black Panther (2018)
Picking up after events in Captain America: Civil War, T’Challa returns to Wakanda to assume the throne, only to be challenged by his cousin N’Jadaka (Michael B. Jordan).
18. Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
Also set after Captain America: Civil War, this solo outing for Tom Holland’s Spider-Man explores his school life and dynamic with mentor Tony Stark.
19. Doctor Strange (2016)
While the placement of Doctor Strange’s (Benedict Cumberbatch) first solo outing in the MCU timeline is confusing, aside from it being set after Captain America: Civil War, it seems Spider-Man: Homecoming ends before this film’s closing act. Its position was later confirmed by Marvel on their timeline page.
20. Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
Set two years after events in Avengers: Age Of Ultron, this largely catches up with Thor and Loki who were absent from events in Captain America: Civil War.
21. Ant-Man And The Wasp (2017)
Picking up two years after Scott Lang was placed under house arrest for his involvement with the Avengers in Captain America: Civil War, this outing elevates the hero status of Hank Pym’s daughter Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly).
22. Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
The third Avengers film is a blockbuster amalgamation of everything so far, which ends on a huge time-altering event in the Thanos’ (Josh Brolin) snap.
23. Avengers: Endgame (2019)
Picking up in 2023, five years after events in Avengers: Infinity War, this follow-up is a time-hopping adventure through past MCU events. This marks the end of the Infinity Saga.
24. Loki (2021)
After stealing the Tesseract during events in Avengers: Endgame, an alternate version of Loki is brought to the Time Variance Authority which monitors the timeline of the universe. This six-part series sets up the Multiverse Saga.
25. WandaVision (2021)
Taking place roughly three weeks after Avengers: Endgame, Wanda Maximoff and Vision (Paul Bettany) are living an isolated existence in the town of Westview, New Jersey in this nine-part series.
26. The Falcon And The Winter Soldier (2021)
Six months after Avengers: Endgame, Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) teams-up with Bucky Barnes (Sebastian Stan) to take on the Flag Smashers. A six-part series which forms Wilson’s transformation as the new Captain America.
27. Shang-Chi And The Legend Of The Ten Rings (2021)
The timeline around Shang-Chi’s (Simu Liu) arrival and the Spider-Man sequels is murky, but this outing is believed to be set in April 2024, a few months before Spider-Man: Far From Home.
28. Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)
Taking place in the summer of 2024, this outing sees Spider-Man dealing with the aftermath of the snap with a new foe in Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal).
29. Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)
Picking up directly after Spider-Man is unmasked, this multiverse-hopping adventure is a nostalgic trip for the webslinger’s movie past.
30. Eternals (2021)
It might span thousands of years, but the main crux of the Eternals‘ story takes place after events in Spider-Man’s summer outings – hence why there’s no mention of a giant Celestial head popping out of the ocean.
31. Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness (2022)
Taking place after events in Spider-Man: No Way Home and Eternals, according to Marvel’s own listing, this twisted dalliance with the multiverse seriously muddles the timeline.
32. Hawkeye (2021)
This six-part series takes place during the Christmas of 2024, which raises the question of why no one’s acknowledged the giant Celestial head from Eternals? This also features the debut of Kate Bishop (Hailee Steinfeld).
33. Moon Knight (2022)
Marc Spector and Steven Grant (Oscar Isaac) enter the MCU in a six-part series which combines superheroes with Egyptian mythology.
34. She-Hulk: Attorney At Law (2022)
Bruce Banner’s cousin Jessica Walters (Tatiana Maslany) is given the spotlight in this legal comedy series inspired by Fleabag, with callbacks to 2008’s The Incredible Hulk.
35. Ms. Marvel (2022)
Kamala Khan (Iman Vellani) is introduced in this six-part series, who aspires to be the next Captain Marvel.
36. Thor: Love And Thunder (2022)
Taking place around 2026, or more specifically, eight years since Thor last encountered Jane Foster prior to Thor: Ragnarok, this outing reunites the pair for a godly mash-up.
37. Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (2022)
During an interview with CinemaBlend, executive producer Nate Moore confirmed the events of this sequel are “potentially concurrent” with Thor: Love And Thunder due to the presence of New Asgard.
38. Werewolf By Night (2022)
An anomaly on the timeline as there’s no indication of when this Halloween special is set, but Marvel confirmed in their Disney+ chronological order that this sits after Thor’s latest outing.