The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is a superhero media franchise of different types of media such as movies, television series, digital series among various others, produced and managed by Marvel Studios. They are based on the superhero comics produced by Marvel Comics. The MCU is a shared universe, i.e., all the superhero series take place in the same universe. This leads to different characters from different series crossing paths with each other, and different storylines affecting each other. Currently, the MCU has three complete phases: MCU Phase One, MCU Phase Two and MCU Phase Three. Each phase has its own set of movies. The current order of watching MCU Phase One movies are:
- Iron Man (2008)
- The Incredible Hulk (2008)
- Iron Man 2 (2010)
- Thor (2011)
- Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
- Marvel’s The Avengers (2012)
Without further ado, here is MCU’s Phase One’s top three movies:
Marvel’s The Avengers
First in ranking is The Avengers; the culmination of MCU Phase One. It features a dream team of super heroes comprising of Iron Man, the Hulk, Thor, Captain America, Black Widow and Hawkeye, as they work to prevent Thor’s younger brother Loki, along with an alien race known as the Chitauri from taking control over the Earth. The cast comprises of Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man, Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk, Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Chris Evans as Captain America, Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye and Tom Hiddleston as Loki. It is directed by Joss Whedon.
Released in 2011, Thor follows the story of Asgardian prince Thor, who after an unsuccessful and arrogant attack on the neighboring realm of Jotunheim, gets stripped of his powers and banished from his home realm of Asgard to the realm of Midgard, otherwise known as Earth. He meets and befriends humans, and learns how to act with humility and re-discover himself, all the while as a sinister plot enacted by his younger brother Loki involving Jotunheim looms in the background. The movie stars Chris Hemsworth as Thor, Tom Hiddleston as Loki and Natalie Portman as Jane Foster, a scientist and Thor’s potential love interest. It is directed by Kenneth Branagh.
Captain America: The First Avenger
Captain America: The First Avenger is set during the Second World War. The movie follows the journey of a young, weak man named Steve Rogers. He, along with his childhood friend James ‘Bucky’ Barnes decides to enlist in the American military. His weak physiology and health however ends up being a reason for him to be rejected. His unwavering resolve to serve his country during the wartime sees him becoming a volunteer to become an enhanced ‘super-soldier’. He then finds himself in conflict with Hydra, a Nazi science division and their leader, Red Skull. The movie stars Chris Evans as Captain America-Steve Rogers, Sebastian Stan as his childhood friend and later fellow comrade-in-arms James ‘Bucky’ Barnes and Hayley Atwell as Peggy Carter, an officer attached to the Strategic Scientific Reserve and Hugo Weaving as Red Skull.