We’ve seen dozens of stories in the Marvel Cinematic Universe so far, but it’s all been leading towards one thing: Infinity War. It’s the end-game that Marvel has been teasing since Phase One, where we’ll finally see why Thanos is the most feared being in the galaxy.
Infinity War itself revolves around the Infinity Stones, objects of immense power that have provided a handy MacGuffin for a number of MCU installments so far. While fans picked up on the idea that they were the movie equivalent of the Infinity Gems from the comics pretty quickly, it took until Avengers: Age of Ultron for them to be formally introduced as such.
Now, in a teaser for the Age of Ultron Blu-ray, we’ve finally gotten official names for each of the stones. Fans have been speculating on which stone is which for a while now (and for the most part, been completely on the money), but to my knowledge, this is the first time they’ve all been officially and individually identified by name.
The Infinity Stone stuff begins at around the 30 second mark:
Here’s what we learned, along with a bit of history on how each of the stones fits into the current state of the MCU.
The Mind Stone
The stone originally housed in Loki’s Scepter is the Mind Stone. A gift from Thanos, the Scepter gave Loki mind control powers, allowing him to recruit a small army of operatives (including Hawkeye and Erik Selvig) to prepare for his invasion of Earth.
After Loki’s plans fell apart, the Scepter was recovered by HYDRA agents, and was used as part of Wolfgang von Strucker’s experiments to create enhanced humans (resulting in the twins, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch). It was eventually broken open by Ultron, revealing the yellow gem inside, and used to bring the Vision to life. It is currently socketed into the Vision’s forehead, after he was decreed a worthy guardian by Thor.
The Space Stone
The blue stone housed within the Tesseract is the Space Stone. The device allows for instaneous teleportation throughout the universe, and was how Thor traveled about while the Bifrost Bridge was being repaired.
The Tesseract was also used in the creation of advanced weaponry by HYDRA during World War II, research that was picked up and continued by SHIELD after the war ended. It is currently being held and protected by Heimdall in Asgard.
The Reality Stone
The stone apparently contained within the Aether is the Reality Stone. Unlike the others, the Aether takes a liquid-like form, and is capable of absorbing itself into a living host, granting them superhuman abilities.
The Aether was hidden away by Thor’s grandfather Bor, after the Dark Elves attempted to use it as a universe-ending weapon. It was inadvertently discovered thousands of years later by Jane Foster during the Convergence, and was used in a second attempt by the Dark Elves to destroy all of existence.
After their defeat, the Aether was recovered by the Asgardians, and given to the Collector for safekeeping. Whether or not he still has it following the destruction of his facility on Knowhere is currently unknown.
The Power Stone
The purple stone contained inside the Orb is the Power Stone. It’s likely the most outright destructive stone we’ve seen so far, capable of leveling an entire planet in an instant.
The stone had been lost for some time on the dead planet of Morag, but was recovered by Peter Quill after its location was discovered by the Collector. After a massive battle between the forces of Ronan the Accuser (who had previously been working alongside Thanos), the Nova Corps, and the Guardians of the Galaxy, the Orb was recovered, and is currently locked away in a vault on Xandar.
That’s four stones discovered and identified so far, leaving just two to go. When will we see the next one?
Doctor Strange next year is a strong contender, as are Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2 and Thor: Ragnarok in 2017. The latter will also be the final film released before Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 hits theaters on May 4, 2018.