The ULTIMATE Marvel Marathon – A Chronological Guide

The ULTIMATE Marvel Marathon – A Chronological Guide

April 24, 2015 1 By Alanna Smith

With Avengers: Age of Ultron fast approaching, many Marvel fans are planning to marathon the 10 preceding films in preparation for the big event. Some Cineplex theatres are even hosting the “Ultimate Marvel Marathon”: 27 hours straight of Marvel movies ending in Age of Ultron.

But I’m here to tell you that is nowhere near the “Ultimate” Marvel Marathon. No my friends, you and I both know there’s more to it than a mere 27 hours. In the words of Director Fury, “you’ve become part of a bigger universe”.

We all know the Marvel Cinematic Universe counts for more than just its feature films, there’s also a collection of short films and television episodes to consider. Oh yes Marvel fans, if you want to relive the full story before Age of Ultron I’m talking about marathoning it all, the whole nine realms. Sticking with just the films? That’s Level 5 stuff at best.

level 7

Now there are two ways you can have a proper Marvel marathon: you can watch everything in the order in which it was released or you can watch it in the chronological order within the universe itself. Don’t worry, whichever way you do it it’ll only take you… oh 68.5 hours.

Most of us have seen the films and shows in the released order, so I think it would be interesting to see everything chronologically. This is a daunting challenge, I know, especially since the MCU spans across about 78 years of story. Well, on Earth; that’s not even counting the Asgardian years (the Battle of Svartalfheim led by Thor’s grandfather happened in 2987 B.C. so…). But hey, I’ve got you covered. Here’s a guide for how to watch the entire MCU in chronological order:

We start of course with Captain America: The First Avenger.

Captain America

Star spangled smackdown.

Followed by all 8 episodes of Agent Carter kicking butt and taking names.

Agent Carter

She’s beauty, she’s grace, she’ll punch you in the face.

And continue to watch Peggy prove she’s not just a love interest in the Agent Carter One-Shot.

Peggy Carter


Fast forward several decades to our favourite genius, billionaire, playboy, philanthropist that started it all in Iron Man.

Iron Man

I am Iron Man.

Then Black Widow and War Machine get their debut in Iron Man 2.

Black Widow

Math question: if Natasha is headed somewhere, and 5 guards stand in her way, how many of them end up hospitalized?

After Coulson left Stark’s mansion, he makes a stop on his drive from Malibu and proves how much of a badass he is in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor’s Hammer.


The one shot that secured Coulson as a fan favourite.

And Ed Norton’s brief but excellent run as Bruce Banner in The Incredible Hulk. (Technically the timeline of this film overlaps with Iron Man 2, A Funny Thing Happened…, and Thor, but we’ll place it here for convenience).

hulk smash


We meet some very important Asgardians in Thor.



After which Coulson and Sitwell make use of The Consultant.

coulson consultant

Our first real glimpse at the glorious job of a SHIELD agent.

And the team is finally assembled in The Avengers.

avengers assemble

Avengers Assemble!

In the aftermath of the battle, Sitwell is sent to retrieve Item 47.

item 47

This is why you don’t do the thing.

Then Tony calls in the iron brigade in Iron Man 3.

iron man 3

Cue all of the suits declaring “I am Iron Man” like in Spartacus.

Followed by an interview with criminal superstar Trevor Slattery in All Hail the King.


Handsome lad, handsome lad…

And then the Marvel deities gifted us with a television series in the form of Agents of SHIELD, so get comfortable as you watch Season 1 Episodes 1-7.


The Marvel TV takeover begins.

A brief pause as we return to Asgard in Thor: The Dark World.

thor dark world

Stop… hammer time.

Then Agents of SHIELD Season 1 Episodes 8-16.

shield skye

You’ll just have to hold it, Skye, we’re not even close to done yet.

We interrupt your regularly scheduled program to bring you Captain America: The Winter Soldier.

winter soldier

Giving new meaning to “ultimate frisbee”.

And we’re back with more Agents of SHIELD, now with 70% more HYDRA! Season 1 Episodes 17-22.



Season 1 ends for AoS, but don’t worry because the Guardians of the Galaxy are here to… guard the galaxy and stuff.

goth dance off

Saving the world just like Kevin Bacon.

Here’s where it gets a bit tricky, since the timeline for Daredevil within the MCU is still a bit unclear. We know Daredevil takes place about 2 years after The Avengers, but it’s still pretty vague. In Episode 8 there is a shot of a newspaper that seems to be dated either 2014 or 2015, and we know it happens before Age of Ultron (as clarified by one of the show runners) but apart from that we can’t know for sure. So you have 2 choices here:

  1. Watch Daredevil before getting into AoS Season 2, which is a good choice if you want to keep the very different tones of the shows separate.
  2. Watch AoS Season 2 Episodes 1-16 before watching Daredevil since that’s the order they were released in.

Avacado by day, vigilante by night.

We don’t know how much time the Daredevil series spans in terms of days, weeks or months, and they have no effect on AoS nor vice verse, so whichever way you watch these will work just fine.

aos cavalry

Can’t get enough of that Agent May.

Finally, you can return to watch Agents of SHIELD Season 2 Episodes 17, 18 and – once it airs next week – 19.

After all nearly 70 hours of Marvel films and shows, you shall truly be prepared to see Age of Ultron when it comes out on May 1st.

I don’t know if anyone’s going to try defeating this marathon, but if you do you may want to start… now, basically.

Good luck, Marvel fans.

hunter advise