The Stones of Space, Time, Reality, Mind, Power and Soul are collectively called the Infinity Stones, six stones of creation that grant their wielders complete control of every aspect of the universe corresponding to their namesake. The user can literally wipe out half the humanity at the snap of his fingers.
When put together, they complete the Infinity Gauntlet where they complement each other’ abilities and amplify them, giving the power of ruling the entire universe to whoever puts on the Gauntlet. The MCU started with Iron Man but it has grown into a multi-headed beast.
Throughout its 18 movies long history, the Infinity Stones have been mentioned and even made appearances ever since this decade came to pass. Thanos comes to Earth looking for these stones. The Stones have had a tendency to hop from one place to another as Marvel movies release one after the other. Russos have called ‘Avengers Infinity War’ as the heist movie where Thanos will indeed move from place to place, person to person, to steal cosmic singularities and literally become the most powerful cosmic creature alive. They said:
“With “Infinity War,” the biggest new element to the movie is Thanos and the fact that he’s entering the storytelling in a very bold, strong way, to the degree that he’s almost one of the leads. We’ve shaped an interesting narrative around him that in some ways leans heavily on a heist film in the fact that he’s going after the infinity stones in a much bolder, successful way than he has in the past. The entire movie has that energy of the bad guy being one step ahead of the heroes. We looked at a lot of movies that had that heist-style energy to them, and that brought some inspiration”.
But, Where are all the Infinity Stones before the movie begins???
Loki has the Space Stone for now. The Space Stone appeared in the form of the Tesseract in Thor’s Post credits scene. Nick Fury asked Dr. Erik Selvig to study the Tesseract and its properties. It made its next appearance in The First Avenger where Red Skull tried to use its powers to conquer the World. After that, the Tesseract was the reason that led to the events of The Avengers (2012). The God of Mischief was defeated and Thor took the Tesseract to Asgard.
The Space Stone was later secured in Odin’s vault in Asgard until Ragnarok happened. As Surtur was laying waste to Asgard, Loki stole the Space Stone and is now a passenger of the Asgardian refugee ship steered by Thor. At the end of Thor: Ragnarok, we saw Thanos and his Black Order in their Sanctuary ship stopped their journey. Thanos would later take away the Space Stone from Loki and add to his Gauntlet. It is possible that at this moment, Loki dies a painful death.
For now, the Mind Stone is stuck to the forehead of Vision, the android Avenger. The Mind Stone made its official MCU debut in The Avengers, where it was used by Loki to mind control several allies of the good guys to work for him. Hawkeye and Selvig were both turned into turncoats. After Loki was defeated, the Scepter fell into the hands of Baron Von Strucker who used it to create Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch.
The Avengers managed to retrieve the Stone from Strucker and accidentally created the Sinister Ultron A.I. The Mind Stone would later be placed on the Android body of Vision after Jarvis; Tony’s A.I was uploaded into its mainframe. Vision will be captured and tortured by Corvus Glaive (member of Black Order) who is sent by Thanos to retrieve Mind stone, but Vision will be rescued. He will then taken to Wakanda to protect him from Thanos in Infinity War. The Secret Avengers in alliance with Black Panther’s forces would try to hold off an army of ruthless alien invaders aka ‘Outriders’ led by Proxima Midnight (wife of Glaive) as the city is under seige.
The Reality Stone
The Collector possesses the Reality Stone. After the Dark Elf Malekith tried to grab hold of the Reality Stone (the Aether) and turn back the universe into a mesh of primordial darkness in Thor 2, the Stone was retrieved back and given to the Collector since Odin’s Vault already had an Infinity Stone at that time.
The Collector had the Reality Stone until a new TV Spot showed that Thanos already has the Reality Stone in his possession. If Collector is alive or has died when visited by Thanos or the Black Order is yet to be seen.
The Power Stone
Nova Corps possesses the Power Stone. GOTG Vol. 1 saw the Power Stone come into play. After the Collector tells them the story of the Power Stone, the Guardians realize that Ronan should not be trusted with this much power. Ronan attacks Xandar, home to the Nova Corps, using the Power Stone but is stopped by the Guardians. Xandar later takes possession of the Stone until Infinity War happens which would mean Xandar is probably decimated after Thanos comes knocking in Infinity War.
He must have attacked Xandar and retrieved the Infinity stone which has powers to annihilate entire planets. It is speculated that the first Infinity stone that Thanos will grab is the Power stone and then he has gone after Space stone.
The Time Stone
Doctor Strange now has the Time Stone. The Eye of Agamotto (the Time Stone) was created by the Earth’s first sorcerer supreme who used Magic to place the Time Stone within a necklace and harnessed its powers. Earth’s current Sorcerer Supreme, Doctor Strange, now wears the Time Stone around his neck. Strange used it to defeat Dormammu and prevent the Earth from being engulfed by the Lord of Chaos. The Infinity War trailer shows Strange is captured by Ebony Maw, one of the Black Order members. Maw comes looking for the Time Stone.
The Soul Stone
No one knows where the Soul Stone is. It was thought to be there in Thor: Ragnarok and Black Panther but both movies did not feature the Soul Stone. Some say Thanos will travel back in time to realize the Soul Stone’s location while some say The Soul Stone is in Heimdall’s eyes. A new TV Spot shows Thanos already in possession of the Soul Stone which could also be a trick of light. All in all, the location of the Soul Stone is the MCU’ greatest mystery.
All the six Infinity stones will be featured in the upcoming ‘Avengers Infinity War’. The movie is directed by Russo brothers and produced by Marvel President Kevin Feige. The screenplay is written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely. Here is the official synopsis released by Marvel studios:
“Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk and the rest of the Avengers unite to battle their most powerful enemy yet — the evil Thanos. On a mission to collect all six Infinity Stones, Thanos plans to use the artifacts to inflict his twisted will on reality. The fate of the planet and existence itself has never been more uncertain as everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment”.
“As the Avengers and their allies have continued to protect the world from threats too large for any one hero to handle, a new danger has emerged from the cosmic shadows: Thanos. A despot of intergalactic infamy, his goal is to collect all six Infinity Stones, artifacts of unimaginable power, and use them to inflict his twisted will on all of reality. Everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment – the fate of Earth and existence itself has never been more uncertain”.
“An unprecedented cinematic journey ten years in the making and spanning the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Infinity War” brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time. The Avengers and their Super Hero allies must be willing to sacrifice all in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe”.