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  1. #1

    Default Best order to watch Marvel Cinematic Universe movies?

    Release/production order vs chronological order vs some sort of thematic order? I haven’t seen most and want to do a marathon, but I’ve read conflicting opinions on the best order to watch them.

  2. #2

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    So should I watch them in the order they were produced/released? O should I go chronologically and start with Captain America and Captain Marvel (at least I'd be getting that one out of the way early)

  3. #3
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    Man, there are like 22 films. Does anyone really want to try to order them for you? Also, Marvel TRIED to build the narrative in terms of how the films were released. So it's not like they jumped all over the map, there were lots of post-credit scenes to set up the next film(s). They did the job for you. It's more a matter of what you can skip.

    For example:

    - You can skip the Ant-Man films; they've got some fun moments but pretty much don't tell you anything you need to know, EXCEPT (1) how Scott gets caught in the quantum dimension (so watch the post-credit for AM2 and (2) one of the biggest emotional payoffs of Endgame, when Scott and Cassie see each other.

    - You could feasibly ignore Dr. Strange, because all you need to know is that the Time Stone is inside the Eye of Agamotto and is responsible for its Time effects (versus the comic book version, which I think was just an artifact?)

    - Captain Marvel can be ignored, unless you just want to understand her powers which aren't really explored deeply anyway. Like, seriously, there's little there that matters aside from "hey, it's Supergirl on a galactic level."

    - The Hulk movies can be ignored, esp because they are almost like separate stories with different actors playing Bannor. Nothing really matters except to explain why he is Calcutta when the Avengers starts.

    - The Spider-Man films again do emotional setup rather than story setup -- I would watch the first one if you want to understand the father/son relationship between Stark and Parker, you could ignore the second since it came out after Endgame anyway I think. So it's a big deal when Spidey gets stuck in space with Iron Man on this one-way mission and he gets "knighted' to be in the Avengers.

    - I don't really enjoy Cap Amer 1 that much, but it's essential to getting the emotional payoff of Endgame + the origin part is pretty great (again, important lines in there for Endgame), and then the whole deal with Bucky. Does Cap Amer 2 actually contribute to the infinity stone sequence? Maybe not -- but it's one of the best films in the sequence and leads right into Cap Amer 3, Civil War -- which you have to watch.

    - All four Avengers are necessary

    - Thor 1 and 2 are kinda meh. I guess it helps to track the tesseract, and if you want to understand what the Reality Stone is (Thor 2), but it's done pretty horribly and is still confusing AF -- it's almost easier just to read the synopsis and not torment yourself, everything you need to know about the Reality stone is that it's one of the 6 and it works how Thanos uses it in Infinity War. Meanwhile, Thor 3 I don't really contributes to much except Thor's relationship to Loki + explain why all the Asgardians are on two large spaceships, opening Infinity War.

    - Black Panther simply explains the whole setting for a portion of Infinity War (so you grasp what a "risk" it is for Wakanda to put itself on the line for the planet and why he's doing it), but a lot of it's just about BP's "origin" story.

    - Guardians of the Galaxy 1 should be watched, it explains the power stone and might be one of the most coherent visualizations of the power of the infinity stones in general. I personally really like GotG2 a LOT, but the most essential thing in it is just to (1) show how Peter and Gamora drew closer and (2) how Gamora and Nebula buried the hatchet, which has a big payoff in Endgame.

    - Iron Man 1, because it was the first, and Endgame ties up the Iron Man arc. I don't remember much of Iron Man 2 or 3, aside from how Pepper and Tony end up together and his ongoing maturation as a human being. I guess Iron Man 2 introduces Natasha?

    What did I miss?


    Anyway, I'd just watch the necessary ones in release order, probably, barring taking another 2 hours to review all the content and post-credit sequencing...
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft
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  4. #4

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    By the sounds of it, these films are just full of maguffin objects. Seems like a lot of doodads and doohickies to keep track of. However, I followed all of ST just fine, and it's loaded with crossovers and maguffins and intersecting arcs. I got this.

  5. #5

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    I will admit when I watched Black Panther, it seemed like a lot of external shit was mentioned to the point I felt I needed a cliffs' notes guide to the MCU in order to know what they were talking about. Otherwise I enjoyed it though and didn't think it was nearly as much political pandering as some of its critics had said it would be. Minus references to the other films, it was a decent standalone, self-contained film.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Officer Ed Powell View Post
    By the sounds of it, these films are just full of maguffin objects. Seems like a lot of doodads and doohickies to keep track of.
    Yeah. It made sense over a ten-year span, they were weaving this narrative web of bits and pieces, so it was all leading to the big end films.
    Also, obviously the better you know backstories, the more emotional payoff you might get because you know the stakes. (Again, the Cassie moment is a tearjerker.)

    For technical aspects, I think the big deal is the Tesseract (which shows up in a few early films) and we realize eventually houses the Space stone.
    And then the Mind stone, which is in the control rod to control the Tesseract in Avengers... and is used in Age of Ultron to trigger The Vision's self-autonomy, which plays into Infinity War.

    The rest of the stones in one film each, to establish they exist.

    Also, the Iron Man and Cap arcs are the biggest and cross the MCU, so the more you track their character development, the more the ending means.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

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