The Avengers is a team of superheroes, appearing in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The team made its debut in The Avengers #1 (Sept. 1963), created by writer-editor Stan Lee and artist/co-plotter Jack Kirby, following the trend of super-hero teams after the success of DC Comics' Justice League of America.
Labeled Earth's Mightiest Heroes, the Avengers originally consisted of Iron Man, Ant-Man, the Wasp, Thor, and the Hulk. The original Captain America was discovered, trapped in ice (issue #4), and joined the group after they revived him. A rotating roster became a hallmark, although one theme remained consistent: the Avengers fight "the foes no single superhero can withstand." The team, famous for its battle cry of "Avengers Assemble!", has featured humans, mutants, robots, aliens, supernatural beings, and even former villains.
Some of the media based off the team include an animated television series titled The Avengers: Earth's Mightiest Heroes, which ran for 2 seasons and received positive acclaim from critics and fans alike.
The Avengers (2012)
Marvel's The Avengers (classified under the name Marvel Avengers Assemble in the United Kingdom and Ireland), or simply The Avengers, is a 2012 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team of the same name, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the 6th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The film was written and directed by Joss Whedon and features an ensemble cast that includes Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Tom Hiddleston, Clark Gregg, Cobie Smulders, Stellan Skarsgård, and Samuel L. Jackson. In the film, Nick Fury, director of the peacekeeping organization S.H.I.E.L.D., recruits Iron Man, Captain America, the Hulk, and Thor to form a team that must stop Thor's brother Loki from subjugating Earth.
The Avengers premiered on April 11, 2012, at Hollywood's El Capitan Theatre and was released theatrically in the United States on May 4, 2012. The film received positive reviews from critics, as well as numerous awards and nominations including Academy Award and BAFTA nominations for achievements in visual effects. It has set or tied numerous box office records, including the biggest opening weekend in North America. The Avengers grossed over $1.5 billion worldwide, and became the third-highest-grossing film during its theatrical run — as well as the first Marvel production to generate $1 billion in ticket sales. The film was released on Blu-ray Disc and DVD on September 25, 2012.
Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)
Avengers: Age of Ultron is a 2015 American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is the sequel to 2012's The Avengers and the eleventh installment in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film was written and directed by Joss Whedon and features an ensemble cast that includes Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Cobie Smulders, Anthony Mackie, Hayley Atwell, Idris Elba, Stellan Skarsgård, James Spader, and Samuel L. Jackson. In Avengers: Age of Ultron, the Avengers must work together to defeat Ultron, a robotic artificial intelligence bent on human extinction.
Avengers: Age of Ultron premiered in Los Angeles on April 13, 2015, and was released on May 1, 2015 in North America, in 3D and IMAX 3D. It received positive reviews and has grossed over $875 million worldwide, making it the second highest-grossing film of 2015 and the thirty-eighth highest-grossing film of all time worldwide. Two sequels, Avengers: Infinity War – Part 1 and Avengers: Infinity War – Part 2, are scheduled to be released on May 4, 2018, and May 3, 2019, respectively.
Avengers: Infinity War (May 4, 2018)
4 years after the events of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, the Avengers, torn apart after the events of Captain America: Civil War, join forces with the Guardians of the Galaxy to battle Thanos, who is trying to amass the Infinity Stones for a gauntlet that will allow him to inflict his will on all reality.
Avengers: Infinity War is an upcoming American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is intended to be the sequel to 2012's Marvel's The Avengers and 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron and the 19th film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, with a screenplay by Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely, and features an ensemble cast that includes Robert Downey Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Bettany, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Bradley Cooper, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Benicio del Toro, Tom Holland, Anthony Mackie, Chadwick Boseman, Danai Gurira, Paul Rudd, Don Cheadle, and Letitia Wright. In Avengers: Infinity War, the Avengers join forces with the Guardians of the Galaxy to confront Thanos, who is trying to amass the Infinity Stones.
The Avengers 4 (May 3, 2019)
The untitled Avengers film is an upcoming American superhero film based on the Marvel Comics superhero team the Avengers, produced by Marvel Studios and distributed by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures. It is intended to be the direct sequel to 2018's Avengers: Infinity War, as well as the sequel to 2012's Marvel's The Avengers and 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron and the 22nd film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). The film is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, with a screenplay by Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely, and features an ensemble cast that includes Robert Downey, Jr., Josh Brolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Cumberbatch, Evangeline Lilly, Karen Gillan, Anthony Mackie, Tom Holland, Zoe Saldana, Dave Bautista, Paul Bettany, Scarlett Johansson, Jon Favreau, Gwyneth Paltrow, Sebastian Stan, Don Cheadle, Pom Klementieff, and Paul Rudd.
The Infinity Stones
The Infinity Stones are significant in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, playing important roles in several films. Director James Gunn created the backstory for the Stones in the film Guardians of the Galaxy, where the Collector explains they are 6 singularities that existed before the Big Bang, that were compressed into the Stones after the universe began. In order of introduction, they are:
- A Right-Handed Gauntlet appears in the film Thor, where it is stored in Odin's vault. This gauntlet was later confirmed by Hela to be fake in Thor: Ragnarok. In the mid-credits scene of Avengers: Age of Ultron, Thanos is seen wearing a Left-Handed Gauntlet, now revealed to be the only one.
- Space Stone (Blue): Housed in the Tesseract, it first appears briefly in the Thor post-credits scene. In Captain America: The First Avenger, it is used by the Red Skull to power weaponry developed by Hydra, and in The Avengers it is shown to be capable of generating wormholes, which Loki uses to transport the Chitauri to New York City in an attempt to conquer Earth. After the Avengers repel the invasion, it is returned to Asgard for safekeeping. In November 2013, producer Kevin Feige confirmed that the Tesseract was the Space Stone.
- Mind Stone (Yellow): In The Avengers, Thanos gives Loki a scepter that allows him to control people's minds and to project energy. The scepter falls into the hands of Hydra leader Baron Wolfgang von Strucker, who is shown in the mid-credits scene of Captain America: The Winter Soldier to have been using it to experiment on humans. The only surviving subjects of those experiments are Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch, in whom superhuman abilities were unlocked. In Avengers: Age of Ultron, the scepter is revealed to contain the Mind Stone, and has an artificial intelligence that grants sentience to the computer program Ultron, who then incorporates the stone into his "Vision", an android. The Mind Stone can also enhance the user's intelligence.
- Reality Stone (Red): Formed by the Dark Elf Malekith into a fluid-like weapon called the Aether, it is said to be able to destroy the Nine Realms and return the universe to its pre-Big Bang state. The Asgardians entrust the Aether to the Collector at the end of Thor: The Dark World, to separate it from the Tesseract, as they consider it unwise to have multiple Stones close together.
- Power Stone (Purple): In Guardians of the Galaxy, the Power Stone is contained within an orb that Ronan the Accuser sought for Thanos. It is capable of destroying entire civilizations, and Ronan tries to use it to destroy the planet Xandar. The Guardians of the Galaxy stop him and entrust the stone to the Nova Corps for safekeeping.
- Time Stone (Green): The Time Stone was encased in the Eye of Agamotto by Earth's first sorcerer, Agamotto. A Master of the Mystic Arts can use the Stone to alter and manipulate time. Thousands of years later, in Doctor Strange, Dr. Stephen Strange learns to use the Eye and uses it to save the Earth from Dormammu by threatening to trap the demon in a time loop until he abandons his plans for Earth. The Masters of the Mystic Arts retain possession of the Eye in their secret compound Kamar-Taj in Kathmandu, Nepal.
- Soul Stone (Orange): The Soul Stone is shown in Guardians of the Galaxy to be orange. Feige stated that it would be seen "sometime in Phase Three, for sure. There's a gauntlet that needs to be filled."