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The Definitive Beginner’s Guide to Every Current and Future Marvel Movie or Show

The Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) was a mind-boggling 20+ movies strong When Phase 3 wrapped with Spider-Man: Far From Home, cementing itself as the GOAT. But even though COVID wrecked release schedules, Kevin Feige and company have announced an even more ambitious slate for Phase 4 of the MCU.

But Phase 4 of the MCU was a lot to keep track of with just movie releases, and that was before we had to factor in Disney+ releases! Then it gets even more difficult if you mistakenly import old non-Marvel properties like the Fantastic Four, Deadpool, and the X-Men into Marvel’s timeline and universe because Marvel has re-acquired and will now be working those properties into the MCU proper in the future.

Whew.

So, we thought we’d lay every movie and Disney+ show of the MCU all out for you quick and easy-like. Plus, we’ll be adding in helpful context and character introductions to help you follow it all.

If you missed it, here is the guide to the first 3 phases.

Phase Four

WandaVision (Streaming: January 2021)

WandaVision was the first Disney+ show in Marvel’s new formula: The Disney+ shows will tie into the movies and vice versa. A strength of the MCU is its connective tissue, in that the storylines and characters persist from film to film. Now they will persist from show to film.

Marvel works hard to make it accessible to casual fans who aren’t deeply familiar with the content, but there is definitely something a little more there for the long-time ravenous fans. Never has this been better illustrated than with WandaVision. My entire family adored the show, from my two daughters to my wife, and we’d watch it as a family each Friday.

Yet I was the only one in the family who knew that the Darkhold appeared in 70s Doctor Strange comics! The rest of my family just enjoyed the heck out of WandaVision because it was incredibly well done, with both heart and humor. Indeed, WandaVision became a cultural phenomenon.

Wanda will next make an appearance in Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, a movie title is a delight to type.

92% Fresh Tomatoes
434 million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: Scarlet Witch, Vision
Support Characters: Jimmy Woo, Darcy Lewis, Billy & Tommy
Marvel Heroes Introduced: Monica Rambeau
Villain: Agatha Harkness, Ghost Vision, Tyler Hayward

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (Streaming: March 2021)

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier promised the same pound-the-ground military sci-fi action the MCU excels out in movies like Captain America: Winter Soldier.

While the core of the show focused on Sam Wilson and his indecision in taking up Captain America’s shield, the show also featured Bucky heavily and his work to right the wrongs he perpetrated as the Winter Soldier.

It also featured great supporting work from Zemo and Sharon Carter (Agent 13), but those storylines may have generated more questions than answers, so expect these characters to show up in future Disney+ shows and likely movies as well.

The Flagsmashers and John Walker were also key players, so it was a packed story that mostly delivered, despite the sky high expectations.

89% Fresh Tomatoes
495 million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: Falcon, Winter Soldier
Support Characters: Sharon Carter, Zemo, Joaquin Torres, Isaiah Bradley
Marvel Heroes Introduced: We’ll have to see.
Villains: Flagsmashers, Power Broker, John Walker

Loki (Streaming: June 2021)

That mischievous trickster Loki has futzed up the time stream and there is an entire Disney+ dedicated to him being press-ganged into fixing it.

It will once again star fan-favorite Tom Hiddleson and even the teasers suggest we are in for a real treat because it introduces an obscure Marvel Comics creation, the TVA or Time Variance Authority. Time cops, if you will.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: Loki
Support Characters: Mobius
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: Loki?

Black Widow (Theaters and Streaming: July 2021)

Black Widow is a movie that has been long delayed due to COVID but is now scheduled to debut simultaneously in the theaters as well as a premium release on Disney+.

Scarlett Johansson will reprise her role as Natasha Romanoff aka Black Widow in a prequel movie set in the time before Avengers: Endgame. Fans will get a deeper look into Natasha’s family as well as the mysterious Red Room where says like Black Widow were trained.

Again, the movie promises military sci-fi action and adventure, while also introducing villains and supporting characters that have an opportunity to appear in future MCU properties.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX million at the Box Office plus streaming

Featured: Black Widow
Support Characters: Red Guardian
Marvel Heroes Introduced: Yelena
Villain: Taskmaster

What if…? (Streaming: Summer 2021)

What if…? was a popular Marvel comic book series back in the day that looked at major storylines from an alternative point of view. Like, what if I’d pick the winning lotto numbers?

It’s an animated series on Disney+ and rather than be a direct tie-in to those storylines, the animated show will look at the characters and storylines differently, sometimes substituting heroes or identities. Fun, but not core to the MCU.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million
minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (Theaters: Sept 2021)

Inspired by D&D’s Oriental Adventures books and Larry Hama’s storylines in 80s GI Joe comics that features Snake Eyes and Storm Shadow, I loved kung-fu as a kid. I crafted by own nunchucks, drew ninja comics, and spent hours trying to sling throwing stars hard enough to get them to stick into trees. So, I’m stoked for the Shang-Chi movie.

Of course, although I was doing the best my foolish heart understood, I got everything mixed up as a kid in the 80s. But Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings promises to present things accurately, as well as anyone can consider a comic book movie to be “accurate.” As such, it’s a movie created specifically to appeal to an Asian audience first and features Asian actors and production staff.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Shang-Chi
Support Characters: Mandarin
Marvel Heroes Introduced: Shang-Chi
Villain: Death Dealer

Eternals (Theaters: November 2021)

Much like Guardians of the Galaxy did years ago, Eternals will introduce a whole new cast in a whole new context. Marvel Comics lore is that the Celestials created two races, the Eternals and the Deviants. (More here.)

So we don’t know much more than that, other than the movie sports an All-Star cast and there are a few comic book runs that can provide clues toward plot beats. Let’s just enjoy the movie and marvel at how Marvel will dovetail these new characters into the greater storyline of the MCU.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Sersi, Black Knight
Support Characters: Many
Marvel Heroes Introduced: Many
Villain: Unknown

Hawkeye (Streaming: Late 2021)

From this point on, we will be intentionally scant with details. Unless Marvel has released something official, we won’t share it. Instead, we will update this post as official trailers or marketings materials give us confirmed details, or if we see it with our eyeballs.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: Hawkeye, Kate Bishop
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Ms. Marvel (Streaming: Late 2021)

Featuring Ms. Marvel, this show finished principal filming and is now in post.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: Ms Marvel
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Spider-Man: No Way Home (Theaters: December 2021)

Again starring Tom Holland and rumored to feature the Multiverse, Spider-Man: No Way Home will complete Jon Watts’ trilogy.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Spider-Man
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness (Theaters: March 2022)

It is confirmed that Scarlet Witch will appear alongside Doctor Strange after the events in WandaVision.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Doctor Strange, Scarlet Witch
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

Thor: Love and Thunder (Theaters: May 2022)

Thor is the first Marvel superhero to get a 4th solo movie after Thor: Ragnarok revitalized interest. This one will feature the return of Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Thor, Jane Foster
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

Black Panther: Wakanda Forever (Theaters: July 2022)

The tragic passing of Chadwick Boseman casts a cloud of mystery over this movie. Who – if anyone – will take up the mantle of Black Panther?

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: ????
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

The Marvels (Theaters: November 2022)

Marvel has officially released the title of Captain Marvel 2.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Captain Marvel, Monica Rambeau, Ms Marvel
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

She-Hulk (Steaming: 2022)

The role has been cast but there are scant details beyond that.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: She-Hulk
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Moon Knight (Streaming: 2022)

Starring Oscar Issac as Moon Knight and Ethan Hawke, in an unknown role.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: Moon Knight
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania (Theaters: February 2023)

The 3rd Ant-Man movie.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Ant-Man, Wasp
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special (Streaming: Late 2022)

Very little is known about this project other than it is a delight that it was even considered for existence.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: ????
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 3 (Theaters: May 2023)

With James Gunn back in the fold at Marvel, GotG vol. 3 is again on the slate and more anticipated than ever.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: ???
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

Secret Invasion (Streaming: TBD)

Scant is known about this project other than speculation stemming from Nick Fury being in space, having swapped positions with a Skrull.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: ????
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Ironheart (Streaming: TBD)

Scant is known about this project.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: ????
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Armor Wars (Streaming: TBD)

Scant is known about this project.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: ????
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

4 (Theaters: TBD)

Because it is perhaps the most anticipated movie in the Marvel slate, so much has been speculated, but the truth is that we have next to nothing confirmed about this project.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Fantastic Four
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

Blade (Theaters: TBD)

We have no confirmed details about this project other than the casting of Mahershala Ali.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Blade
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown

I Am Groot (Streaming: TBD)

Scant is known about this project.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
XXX million minutes-watched during premiere week via Nielson

Featured: ????
Support Characters: ???
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ??
Villain: ???

Deadpool 3 (Theaters: TBD)

It is confirmed that the 3rd Deadpool movie will be a part of the MCU, despite a likely R rating.

XX% Fresh Tomatoes
$XXX Million at the Box Office

Featured: Deadpool
Support Characters: ????
Marvel Heroes Introduced: ???
Villain: Unknown