A group picture of the Avengers: Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Black Widow, Thor, and Hawkeye
(Marvel Studios)

Here’s An Official Guide to Watching The Avengers Movies in Chronological Order

Avengers, assemble for movie night!

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is still one of the most popular franchises in the world, and there are a lot more superheroes we have yet to meet. But, sometimes we just want to get back to basics and watch the team-ups that made us fall in love with these iconic heroes and the potential of the Marvel universe. The Avengers movies are intricately tied in with the rest of the MCU’s storytelling and watching them in order is important for understanding the growth of the team as a whole.

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So, here’s a guide to watching all of the Avengers movies released so far in chronological order.

The Avengers (2012)

Iron Man, Hulk. Captain America, Hawkeye, Thor and Black Widow all looking down at Loki in the first Avenger movie
(Marvel Studios)

The Avengers was the culmination of Phase 1 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. A phase made up primarily of origin stories and one slightly lackluster sequel (sorry, Iron Man 2), The Avengers did what no one thought possible. It brought together an unlikely group of heroes, all with vastly different backstories and motivations, and managed to make them feel like a team. Tom Hiddleston’s Loki proved, once again, to be one of the MCU’s most memorable villains, but it’s the relationship between Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) and Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), especially, that sets the tone for much of the rest of the MCU.

If you want the full The Avengers experience, consider watching Iron Man, The Incredible Hulk, Iron Man 2, Thor, and Captain America: The First Avenger beforehand.

Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

James Spader's Ultron in Avengers: Age of Ultron
(Marvel Studios)

Though Avengers: Age of Ultron ultimately proved divisive as it’s the only team-up movie in Phase 2, there’s no denying its impact on the storytelling of the MCU as a whole. Not only did it introduce Vision and Wanda Maximoff a.k.a the Scarlet Witch, but it also included a direct link to Black Panther with Andy Serkis’ Ulysses Klaue. Though I’m unlikely to forgive Marvel for what they did to Aaron Taylor-Johnson’s Pietro Maximoff in this movie, it does make for an enjoyable rewatch. James Spader really does put his own intriguing spin on Ultron and makes the villain so fun to watch.

If you want to watch everything that leads up to Age of Ultron, make sure to watch Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and Guardians of the Galaxy beforehand. The first Ant-Man movie takes place after Age of Ultron, but it’s also part of Phase 2.

Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Chadwick Boseman as T'Challa, Chris Evans as Steve Rogers, Scarlett Johansson as Natasha Romanoff and Sebastian Stan as Bucky Barnes, stood in front of an army of Wakanda's warriors in Avengers: Infinity War
(Marvel Studios)

Considered by many (if not most) to be the best Avengers movie of the lot, Avengers: Infinity War finally showed Thanos’ true threat and power after almost a decade of teasing. Avengers: Infinity War is a gritty, well-crafted film that manages to find a good balance between characters, a difficult feat for a movie that features all of the MCU’s key players. This isn’t just about the original Avengers anymore; nearly every superhero in the MCU was affected by the fight against Thanos. But, perhaps Infinity War‘s biggest strength is its ending—it’s a superhero movie that proved that sometimes even superheroes lose, too. I’ll never forget the eerie silence in the cinema when the credits started to roll.

Infinity War is probably the most reliant on the events that happened in other MCU movies, so if you want to make sure that you’re getting the full picture, be sure to watch Captain America: Civil War, Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther, too. Ant-Man and the Wasp was released after Infinity War and, while its story is much more lighthearted, its post-credits scene shouldn’t be missed.

Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Josh Brolin's Thanos in Avengers: Endgame, pointing with his weapon to command his army
(Marvel Studios)

The direct sequel to Avengers: Infinity War, Avengers: Endgame had the difficult task of dealing with the infamous Blip as well as the events of every other MCU movie that had come before. Endgame was the culmination of a decade of interconnected storytelling. Its time-travel hijinks and final battle might be considered by some to be fanservice of the highest order but, considering what the MCU had achieved up until this point, I’d say it was warranted. Endgame provided closure for some of the MCU’s most beloved heroes, a clean slate for a new generation, and a turning point for those characters who hadn’t reached their full potential just yet.

Between Infinity War and Endgame, only Captain Marvel was released—if you want to know more about Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers before her magnificent entrance in the final Endgame battle, be sure to watch it!

Will there be more Avengers movies?

Of course! The MCU is showing no signs of slowing down any time soon. Avengers: The Kang Dynasty is currently set for release in 2025. However, certain behind-the-scenes shakeups and the ongoing issues surrounding Jonathan Majors, who portrayed the titular Kang in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania and will presumably still be involved in Loki season 2, might affect the next Avengers‘ movie release date. Shang-Chi‘s Destin Daniel Cretton is set to direct the film, with Quantumania‘s Jeff Loveness penning the script.

Additionally, Avengers: Secret Wars has been slated for release in 2026. Though the plot is currently tightly under wraps, most of the MCU’s current headliners are expected to return, as well as the cast of the upcoming Fantastic Four movie (even Deadpool could be involved!). The only certain thing, at this moment, is that Michael Waldron is the movie’s head writer, whose previous Marvel experience include Loki and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.

In any case, there are plenty of superhero team-ups still to come, so watch these classic movies while you watch for the next generation of Avengers to rise!

(featured image: Marvel Studios)

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El Kuiper
El (she/her) is The Mary Sue's U.K. editor and has been working as a freelance entertainment journalist for over two years, ever since she completed her Ph.D. in Creative Writing. El's primary focus is television and movie coverage for The Mary Sue, including British TV (she's seen every episode of Midsomer Murders ever made) and franchises like Marvel and Pokémon. As much as she enjoys analyzing other people's stories, her biggest dream is to one day publish an original fantasy novel of her own.