There are six Infinity Stones in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. These ancient, all-powerful artifacts have been adapted rather faithfully from the pages of Marvel Comics where they were first introduced as “Soul Gems.” It wasn’t until the “Mad Titan” Thanos collected them that he renamed them with better suited individual descriptions of each.
In the MCU, something similar is about to occur next summer in Avengers: Infinity War, the first of two Avengers movies that will bring together nearly all of the main characters in the franchise to close it out. Don’t worry, the MCU isn’t ending. Just the current iteration of it is coming to an end. Sort of. And the conclusion begins with Thanos (Josh Brolin) collecting the Infinity Stones which have been slowly introduced over a decade of films.
For the purposes of the movie franchise crafted by Marvel Studios, these gems are referred to as Infinity Stones and so far, five of the six have been introduced by the end of Thor: Ragnarok. What and where are they currently and where is the last one?
“Before creation itself, there were six singularities. Then the universe exploded into existence, and the remnants of these systems were forged into concentrated ingots… Infinity Stones.”
1. The Space Stone (Tesseract)
“Howard Stark fished that out of the ocean when he was looking for you. He thought what we think; the Tesseract could be the key to unlimited sustainable energy. That’s something the world sorely needs.”
The first Infinity Stone introduced in the MCU was the Space Stone although we didn’t know it at the time. The Tesseract or “Cosmic Cube” was the first of these introduced in 2011’s Captain America: The First Avenger. In an interesting connection to Thor lore (specifically, Yggdrasil and Asgard’s interest in Earth), the Red Skull (Hugo Weaving) and his Hydra forces locate and take for themselves the Tesseract from Tønsberg in German-occupied Norway.
The Red Skull uses the Tesseract to power weapons for Hydra but by the end of the film, it’s lost in the ocean until Howard Stark (father of Tony Stark a.k.a. Iron Man) recovers it. It reappears in 2012’s Avengers as something S.H.I.E.L.D. is experimenting on in present day until Loki (Tom Hiddleston) steals it for Thanos, using it to start an invasion against Earth.
Loki fails and Thor (Chris Hemsworth) takes him and the Tesseract back to Asgard for safekeeping. The Tesseract remains in Odin’s vault and is seen several times in Thor: Ragnarok, most notably at the end when Loki stops to take notice of it before beginning Ragnarok and the destruction of the realm.
We know from the unfinished Avengers: Infinity War teaser footage that Loki has the Tesseract so it’s obvious he takes it for himself in Thor: Ragnarok and has it with him on the starship the survivors of Asgard are on by the end of the film. Of course, the film’s mid-credits sequence depicts their ship confronting a much larger, ominous space vessel that we presume represents the forces of Thanos…
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