Black Panther is the best MCU movie
Marvel Movies and Series: That's the Right Order
"Spider-Man: Far From Home" is already the 23rd film from the so-called Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). With this crowd, even fans can lose track of things: Which films belong to the MCU? In what chronological order should you watch the Marvel movies? And which Marvel titles can currently be found on the flat-rate streaming services Disney + or Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Joyn and Sky Ticket?
We answer these questions for you in this guide. We'll show you first two lists on how to watch the Marvel movies in the correct order. Then we expand this list to include the Marvel TV series with all the episodes in the correct order (on the next article page). Afterwards we explain to newcomers what the MCU is all about.
Marvel films in chronological order: order until 2022
If you want to watch all the films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe again - or even for the first time - after "Avengers: Endgame" or "Spider-Man: Far From Home", you basically have two options in the order: according to the date of publication or according to the chronology of the content. In the following we list both variants of the MCU timeline, the decision is entirely up to you - although we make a clear recommendation.
Note: In brackets you will find the link to the film in the flat-rate package after each title that is available from one of the streaming services Joyn, Netflix, Sky Ticket and / or Amazon Prime Video as well as the new Disney + offer.
MCU films after their release [List 1]
Option 1: You watch all Marvel films in chronological order according to the original theatrical release. Since this is the order in which the stories were conceived by the authors and staged by the directors, we recommend this variant. Millions of cinema viewers have seen the films, followed the development of the story and eagerly awaited the sequel - why should that no longer work today?
We believe this order is the best choice.
What is the correct order of the Marvel movies?
- MCU phase 1
- MCU phase 2
- MCU phase 3
- The First Avenger: Civil War (2016 / Disney +)
- Doctor Strange (2016 / Disney +)
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017 / Disney +)
- Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017 / Netflix)
- Thor: Decision day (2017 / Disney +)
- Black panther (2018 / Disney +)
- Avengers: Infinity War (2018 / Disney +)
- Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018 / Disney +)
- Captain Marvel (2019 / Disney +)
- Avengers: Endgame (2019 / Disney +)
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)
- MCU phase 4
- Black Widow (Theatrical release: July 8th, 2021)
- Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (Theatrical release: September 3rd, 2021)
- Eternals (Theatrical release: November 4th, 2021)
- Spider-Man:No way home (US theatrical release: December 16, 2021)
- Morbius (Theatrical release: January 28, 2022; MCU membership not confirmed)
- Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (US theatrical release: March 25, 2022)
- Thor: Love and Thunder (Theatrical release: May 6th 2022)
- MCU phase 5
- Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Theatrical release: July 7th, 2022)
- Blade (Cinema release: 2022 at the earliest)
- Black Widow 2 (Theatrical release: 2022 at the earliest)
- The Marvels (Theatrical release: November 10, 2022)
- Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (Release date: February 17, 2023)
- Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 3 (Theatrical release: May 5th, 2023)
- The Mutants (In theaters: November 03, 2023)
- after MCU phase 5
- Deadpool 3 (Theatrical release: 2024 at the earliest)
- Captain America 4 (Theatrical release: previously unknown)
- Fantastic Four (Theatrical release: previously unknown)
And so it is likely to continue: These upcoming Marvel films are already planned for 2021 and later.
Note: We regularly check the availability of the Marvel films listed on Netflix, Maxdome (soon to be Joyn) and Amazon Prime Video, as well as on the new streaming service Disney +. Nevertheless, it can happen that linked titles are no longer available through streaming subscriptions at no extra charge due to expiring license agreements. Current and upcoming film releases for both platforms can be found in our articles "New on Netflix" and "New on Amazon Prime Video".
Why "New Mutants" doesn't belong in the MCU
On the following pages you will learn, among other things, why the films "Spider-Man: A New Universe" and the Fox X-Men series are not MCU films.
Subscribe to Disney + now!
Disney + is a family-friendly streaming service that offers films and series from popular brands such as Star Wars, Marvel and Pixar as well as numerous Disney film classics and current blockbusters from Walt Disney Studios in a flat-rate package. The Disney + program also includes exclusive in-house productions as well as shows, series and films on the Disney Channel. For 69.99 euros per year, customers can receive the content, if available, in 4K resolution with Dolby Atmos, Dolby Vision and HDR, with streaming being possible on up to four devices at the same time. Unfortunately, a free Disney Plus trial subscription was only available at the start.
Podcast listening tip: You can find out more background information on the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the private podcast project of our former editor Steve Buchta, which we would like to recommend to you at this point. We have built in all three episodes of the Marvel special as audio players in this article.
Marvel Podcast, Part 1
MCU films according to chronology of content [List 2]
The second possibility is the viewing order based on "told time". Much of the plot of "The First Avenger: Captain America" takes place before the events of "Iron Man", although the film did not appear until three years later.
The difficulty in determining this order is that the times within the Marvel films, if a date is given in any form, can sometimes be very contradictory.
Reading tip:Avengers: Endgame - this is what fans need to know about the credits scene
For example, at the beginning of "Spider-Man: Homecoming", the main plot takes place 8 years after the events of "Marvel's The Avengers", that is, in 2020. Elsewhere in the film, however, the events of "The First Avengers: Civil War ", which was previously dated 2016, can be seen as the present.
Ignoring any inconsistencies, the list of Marvel films in the order of their plot looks like this, with some events happening in parallel.
Attention spoilers! This timeline contains slight spoilers for all films of the MCU, as it is revealed when the events should take place, which in some cases allows conclusions to be drawn about the plot of the films.
What is the chronological order of the Marvel movies?
- 1943-1945: Captain America: The First Avenger (Disney +)
- 1995: Captain Marvel (Disney +)
- 2010: Iron man (Netflix, Disney +)
- 2011: Iron man 2 (Netflix, Disney +)
- 2011: The incredible Hulk (Netflix, Joyn PLUS +)
- 2011: Thor (Disney +)
- 2012: Marvel’s The Avengers (Disney +)
- 2012: Iron man 3 (Netflix, Disney +)
- 2013: Thor: The Dark Kingdom (Disney +)
- 2014: The Return of the First Avenger (Disney +)
- 2014: Guardians of the Galaxy (Disney +)
- 2014: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (Disney +)
- 2015: Avengers: Age of Ultron (Disney +)
- 2015: Ant-Man (Disney +)
- 2016: The First Avenger: Civil War (Disney +)
- 2016: Spider-Man: Homecoming
- 2016-2017: Doctor Strange (Disney +)
- 2017: Black panther (Disney +)
- 2017: Thor: Decision day (Disney +)
- 2018: Ant-Man and the Wasp (Disney +)
- 2018: Avengers: Infinity War (Disney +)
- 2018-2023: Avengers: Endgame (Disney +)
- 2023: Spider-Man: Far From Home
The exact timing of these upcoming films is not yet known:
- "Black Widow" (July 09, 2021)
- "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings" (September 03, 2021)
- "Eternals" (November 04, 2021)
- "Morbius" (October 08, 2021)
- "Spider-Man: No Way Home" (December 16, 2021)
- "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" (March 25, 2022)
- "Thor: Love and Thunder" (May 06, 2022)
- "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" (July 08, 2022)
- "Blade" (2022 at the earliest)
- "Black Widow 2" (2022 at the earliest)
- "The Marvels" (November 11, 2022)
- "Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania" (2023 at the earliest)
- "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3" (May 05, 2023)
- "The Mutants" (November 03, 2023)
- "Deadpool 3" (2024 at the earliest)
- "Captain America 4"
- "Fantastic Four"
At "Black Widow" it is clear after the first teaser trailer that it will be a prequel, although the exact period is not yet clear. In all likelihood, however, the film is set to a large extent between "The First Avenger: Civil War" and "Avengers: Infinity War".
It will also be exciting with the Sony title "Morbius" (German theatrical release: March 18, 2021). Judging by the first trailer for the film, the plot could belong in the MCU, although previous announcements suggested a story in the Sony "Venom" universe. Another trailer released for Japan further confirms this suspicion.
As soon as more detailed information is available, we will update the chronological list accordingly.
Individual scenes with flashbacks that take place in the past were not taken into account, as it seems impractical to interrupt the respective films in order to jump back and forth between the narrated times.
The many post-credits, which have now become a trademark of the Marvel films, are ignored in this list, as otherwise it would not be possible to determine a meaningful order. These short clips also take place at different times.
"Spider-Man: Far From Home" still belongs to phase 3 of the MCU (now officially called "Infinity Saga") and takes place after the events of "Avengers: Endgame". If you haven't seen "Endgame" yet, you have to watch out for spoilers in the trailers for the Spider-Man film!
SPOILER WARNING:The following paragraph contains spoilers for "Avengers: Endgame". We recommend that you read this part only after you've seen the movie!
The fact that time travel is an important element of "Avengers: Endgame" supports our thesis that the reputation in order of appearance is the best solution for an MCU marathon. The characters relive decisive moments from the history of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and jump into different times, which is why the plot of "Endgame" cannot be assigned a single year.
But nobody would have the idea to interrupt the viewing of "Avengers: Endgame" again and again in order to bring all events into a supposed chronology. It is precisely the game with the knowledge of what has already happened, what could happen differently and what must never happen differently, from which the story draws its entertainment value.
And this is also true within the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe: The fact that "Captain Marvel" plays as a prequel before almost all other films, but was only seen shortly before "Endgame", is half the fun of it. If you watch this film first, you will miss allusions, reinterpretations and references that were deliberately incorporated by the directors.
There is also another point that speaks in favor of the publication order: the content brackets, which we explain to you in a separate article.
So we speak out once again out of deep conviction against viewing the Marvel films in a timeline chronology.
// End of the spoiler risk
Marvel Podcast, Part 2
The official MCU timeline, according to Marvel
The book "Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years" has been published in the USA and will be published in a German version at some point. This contains an official timeline, at least for the first MCU films.
For each film, a year was given when the action should take place. Although this information sometimes contradicts the facts that are expressly mentioned in the film or otherwise displayed, we have nevertheless added this data to the list above.
Marvel Podcast, Part 3
You can read more about why the chronological classification is so difficult, especially in connection with the numerous Marvel TV series, on the next page of the article!
And the Marvel TV series?
On the next page we are expanding the list of all Marvel films to include the US TV series and the productions of the streaming provider Netflix, whose episodes are supposed to take place in the same film universe.
On page 3 we explain what this film universe, the so-called Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is all about.
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