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Marvel Cinematic Universe

Marvel Cinematic Universe logo
Information-silk Official Reality Number
Information-silk Aliases
The Avengers Universe, Marvel Media Universe, Earth-I, Earth-20080502, MCU, Marvel Universe
Information-silk Status
First appearance

Iron Man
(April 30, 2008)



Earth-199999 has all the features of our reality: the same countries, same personalities, and many of the same historical events. However, it also contains many fictional additions that have reshaped the world historically and developmentally. Super-advanced technology, and the interference of non-human races, sets the stage for a science fiction environment. A multinational policing agency in the form of S.H.I.E.L.D. has been created as a result of these things. A select few people have also appeared who are more than human, setting the stage for a world with superheroes and villains.

Super Heroes and Villains

The tradition of using costumed identities to fight (or commit) evil had long existed in this world, first by Captain America in the 1940s and then by Iron Man in the modern times. Earth-199999's major heroes (the ones who get involved in most of the important events) are Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk, S.H.I.E.L.D.'s director Nick Fury, Black Widow and Captain America. The Avengers are major players. Although they are a recent addition to this universe, they have so far included most of Earth-199999's major heroes as members.

Of course, as one would expect in a universe with superheroes, there would inevitably have to be crime and evil, and this universe is by far no exception. Loki, the Abomination, A.I.M, Hydra and Thanos are among them.


The Distant Past

Before creation itself, there were six singularities. These opened up and the Big Bang created the universe. These were known as Infinity Stones [1] Some time later, the universe was ruled by the Dark Elves. Their leader, Malekith wished to send the universe back into darkness by way of the Aether, an energy that could plunge the universe into darkness as it was before life was breathed into it. A war would rage between the army of the Dark Elves and the Asgardians, protectors of the Nine Realms. Lead by King Bor, the Asgardians battled Malekith's forces. Driven to the point of desperation, Malekith sacrificed his own men to procure the Aether. He was unsuccessful as Bor's army defeated the Elves and hid the Aether away from the universe. [2]

The Dark Ages

Asgardians came to Earth, visiting the peoples of Northern Europe and teaching them language and culture, and protecting them from Frost Giants. Early Norse cultures learned much from these visits, although in time the Asgardians would withdraw and their memory would fall into legend.[3]

20th Century

The 1940's were a tumultuous time. Depression years and racial disharmony in Europe sparked a Second World War that pressed various factions into a technology race. While Nazi forces occupied much of Central Europe, a detachment calling themselves Hydra were making gains in unconventional warfare. Their leader Johann Schmidt actually managed to procure a Tesseract, and in studying this device Hydra scientists were able to devise new and deadly weapons for their war effort.

In America, Abraham Erskine and Howard Stark were poised on verge breakthroughs that would set the stage for the world of the modern "superhero". Erskine had developed a "Super-Soldier" serum that was to transform a soldier from an ordinary man into something altogether stronger, faster, and more resilient. As a result of this experimental process, Steven Rogers became the world's first superhero, "Captain America", but not without cost. Erskine was assassinated and most of the remaining samples of the serum were destroyed before the project could be pushed into widespread use. [4] The war was won, not with super soldiers, but with many countless lives and simple, bloody warfare.[5]

Howard Stark, who had assisted with Erskine's program went on to develop numerous advances in technology. Learning from the recovered Tesseract, he went on to develop prototype arc reactors, powerful sources of energy in their own right. He eventually died in a car accident, leaving his business empire to his young son, Tony, and Stark Industries grew into a world renowned supplier of weapons technology.[6]

In 1988, a young Peter Quill listens to his Walkman in a hospital, as his grandfather comes up to him and removes the headphones from the young boy's head. He tells him his mother wishes to see him. He enters the room and sees his mother lying on the hospital bed. His grandfather puts a gift from Peter's mother into his backpack. In her final moments she asks her son to take her hand, the young boy is too scared to do it. As she passes away he begins to cry and runs out of the hospital. As he runs into a field a giant space ship hovers over him. A bright light shines down on him and the young boy is abducted by the aliens. [1]

21st Century

The dawn of the superhero age might have looked like a brief spark to those who grew up reading the exploits of Captain America, but it was soon to flare into a far brighter flame. The secrets of Erskine's formula had baffled scientists for decades until Dr. Bruce Banner explored a new direction and bombarded himself with gamma radiation to prove his theories. His experiment was successful in augmenting the human form, but the extent of the mutation was far beyond anything anyone could have anticipated. Banner was transformed into a raging green beast that was later dubbed the "Hulk".[7]

In response to threats posed by such things as the Hulk and the Tesseract, governments of the world formed the World Security Council, which in turn channeled resources into a world-spanning security agency they named, Strategic Homeland Intervention Enforcement Logistics Division (S.H.I.E.L.D.).

The young Tony Stark had spent the years since his father's death learning the role of businessman and further developing his father's company. An inventive genius himself, he was personally responsible for many of the innovations that made Stark Industries a world leader in weapons technology. On a trip to Afghanistan his convoy was ambushed, and he was held captive and forced to develop weapons for terrorists. He escaped from his captors by building a battlesuit for himself rather than the missile they wanted, but the whole incident had a profound effect on him. He turned his company away from the path of violence, while constructing a series of high-tech battlesuits that he wore into battle himself. Tony's vigilante actions had the effect of ushering in a new superhero age, and taking a leaf from the press he began publicly referring to his heroic persona as "Iron Man".[6]

S.H.I.E.L.D. soon took an interest in Iron Man's activities. They approached Stark on several occasions and reviewed him for potential inclusion into a select group of individuals, but ultimately withdrew from seeking his personal involvement due to his erratic nature. Instead they turned their attentions to exploring weapons technologies. Their mandate was to protect the world from such powerful threats as the Hulk and to this end they began to grow from a clandestine police agency into a powerful military force.[8]

S.H.I.E.L.D. kept a close eye on multiple threats at once, Tony Stark's adventures as Iron Man, atmospheric disturbances in New Mexico, and Banner's return to the United States.[9] Soon, the Hulk was made known to the public due to brief battles with the military and another huge monster. Banner wasn't hailed as a hero like Tony Stark was, instead Banner was forced to go into hiding again, learning how to control the Hulk rather than cure it.

The Asgardians, thought to be nothing more than a myth after centuries of absence, returned once again to the world when the heir to the throne of Asgard found himself banished until he could prove himself worthy to rule Asgard. While his initial appearance went unnoticed to all but a few scientists, his hammer Mjolnir caused quite a stir after it impacted in Puente Antiguo, New Mexico, and also drew the attention of S.H.I.E.L.D. Thor did eventually reclaim his birthright and announced that S.H.I.E.L.D. could thereafter count him as an ally.[3]

Alliances would be needed again soon enough. Thor's brother, Loki, made a surprise appearance and stole the Tesseract away from S.H.I.E.L.D., threatening to bring an army to conquer the Earth. In a desperate bid to counter this threat, S.H.I.E.L.D. reactivated an old plan to assemble a group of extraordinary individuals. They called on Tony Stark and Bruce Banner for their scientific expertise. Captain America, reawakened after decades of being frozen in Arctic ice, was called upon to be a super soldier once more. Thor, and S.H.I.E.L.D. agents Romanoff and Barton stepped in to round out the new team. Calling themselves the Avengers, they were able to defeat Loki and repel the Chitauri invasion.[5]

In the wake of the Battle of New York, the world had become a changed place. Some feared the prospect of threats from beyond the known world, but the next threat of significance was a series of terrorist bombings around the globe, supposedly perpetrated by a villain known as the Mandarin. Authorities searched in vain for the culprit behind it, and were confounded by the series of hijacked television broadcasts that followed. In the end it was Iron Man, and his ally the Iron Patriot, who put a stop to the terrorist attacks.[10]

Soon after, the emergence of Extremis would cause quite a problem for the world, as terrorist organizations would use it to fuel their own super-soldier armies. In response to this, Agent Phil Coulson of S.H.I.E.L.D. formed a team of specialized S.H.I.E.L.D agents that would tackle this threat head on. The team consisted of Agents Melinda May, Leo Fitz, Jemma Simmons and Grant Ward. While seeking out the Rising Tide they recruited Skye to their team as well. Travelling across the world, the team tracked down lost weapons from World War II, took down terrorists, super powered beings, and many other different forms of threats to peace.[11]

Contact with worlds beyond Earth was renewed when the Nine Realms of Asgardian cosmology came into alignment. A threat known as the Aether from a dark time before the Asgardians' protection of the known worlds was reawakened at this Convergence, and with it came the dark elves. It took the combined efforts of Thor and many of his friends to prevent reality itself from being plunged back into darkness.[2]

In response to these numerous threats, S.H.I.E.L.D. commissioned a powerful new protection measure in the form of three new helicarriers. Suspicions surrounding the purpose of these new warships soon saw rogue elements within the agency turn from it and expose a deeper threat behind the new construction effort: Hydra had been infiltrating S.H.I.E.L.D. from within, swelling its ranks and influencing its actions, since the end of the Second World War. Hydra's plans for the new helicarriers were finally dashed through the efforts of Captain America and a few of his trusted allies.[12]

After this S.H.I.E.L.D. would disband. Turncoats were everywhere and Agent Coulson and his team had to face this threat head on. As they closed in on who the real enemies were, Nick Fury appointed Phil Coulson the new director of S.H.I.E.L.D. and S.H.I.E.L.D. was reformed. Fury would leave Coulson with instructions on what to do next as he left on a secret mission of his own. [13]

Twenty-Six years after his mother's death and his alien abduction Peter Quill is working for his abductors, the Ravagers a gang of space pirates as a junker. On the planet Morag Peter while listening to the tape his mother gave him, he discovers the Orb that his boss wants in an ancient temple. Some Kree Soilders, including Korath. A fight ensues. After a brief chase Peter escapes. He flees to Xandar to sell the orb. Also on Xandar are Groot amd Rocket. While scoping the place they discover Quill fleeing from Gamora who is after the orb as well. [1]

After a chase through the city Quill, Gamora, Rocket and Groot are arrested by Nova Corps. They are tried and taken to Kyln Prison to serve their sentence. There they meet Drax who is bent on vengeance for the murders of his family by the evil Ronan. They devise a plan to escape and work together to set out to stop Ronan and keep the orb away from him. [1]

After their escape they set out for Knowhere to give the Orb to the Collector. Once there the group finds trouble after Gamora, Groot, Rocket and Quill meet with the Collector. Drax had called Ronan to their location. A battle ensues and Gamora winds up on the verge of death when Nebula destroys her pod in space. Quill sacrifices his own safety to save her. He calls Yondu to come for them. [1]

After convincing the Ravagers to help them and reuniting with Rocket, Drax and Groot, they make their plan to stop Ronan, who now has the Orb and has absorbed the energy it contains. Quill sends a message to Nova Corps to trust them to help save Xandar from Ronan. After a lengthy and costly battle, Nebula escapes, Groot sacrifices himself to save his friends and the remaining Guardians defeat Ronan by coming toegether to absorb the Orb's energy. Yondu asks Quill for the Orb so he can sell it. Quill switches the orb with a fake one. Quill learns what it means to be a leader. After the battle the Guardians are made a part of Nova Corps and Rocket recovers a stem from Groot. As they leave Xandar the stem begins to grow and Groot lives again. [1]


The Avengers


S.H.I.E.L.D. Academy

Stark Industries

U.S. Military


Howling Commandos

The Ten Rings

Culver University

Hammer Advanced Weapons Systems


Warriors Three



Project Centipede


World Security Council



Dark Elves

Norse Paganist Hate Group

The Collector's Museum

Seagate Prison

Guardians of the Galaxy


Nova Corps

Kree Empire

Other Characters


The following characters only appear in tie-in materials, making their existence semi-canonical


Extra-dimensional Locations

Nine Realms

Other extra-dimensional locations


The Marvel Cinematic Universe contains a wide array of material in a number of formats, including:

Official designation revealed in Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A-Z Volume 5 hardcover.


  • Earth-199999 reality seems to be more scientifically oriented than Earth-616. For example, Whereas the gods from the original comics have genuinely supernatural powers, in Earth-199999, the Asgardians' powers seems to be from exotic and advanced alien technology. Numerous "magical" artifacts have technological aspects and functions, Yggdrasil is a cosmical nimbus, and both Thor and Jane claim that to be "science" (Jane even cites Clarke's third law: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic"). However, the nature of the Asgardians' power and magic in general on Earth-199999 is not fully explored nor truly discards the possibility of supernatural. For example, Asgard is shown as a flat world, which clearly contradicts laws of physics, and it's also revealed that Asgardian "technology" is powered by the "Odin Force", which seems to be a sort of supernatural energy used by the Asgardians. Thor's own affirmation over this - "Your ancestors called it magic, but you call it science. I come from a land where they are one and the same." - is rather ambiguous, since while Thor is apparently agreeing with Jane's affirmation that the gods are aliens with advanced technology, this may also be interpreted that Asgardians have genuine magical powers, but that they see and use it like a alternative kind of science. If this latter is correct, then Asgardians' magic follows Niven's law: "Any sufficiently rigorously defined magic is indistinguishable from technology".
  • This universe was visited off-screen by the Young Avengers when they traveled the Multiverse looking for Speed.[16]
  • Marvel Television has allied with Netflix to create four 13-episode series focused on "Daredevil," followed by "Jessica Jones," "Iron Fist" and "Luke Cage," which would culminate in a "Defenders" mini-series.[17] These series will take place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as stated by MCU writer Drew Pearce[18]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Guardians of the Galaxy (film)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Thor: The Dark World
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 Thor (film)
  4. Captain America: The First Avenger
  5. 5.0 5.1 Marvel's The Avengers
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Iron Man (film)
  7. The Incredible Hulk (2008 film)
  8. Iron Man 2 (film)
  9. Fury's Big Week #
  10. Iron Man 3 (film)
  11. Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
  12. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  13. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1 22
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 14.3 Thor: God of Thunder (video game)
  15. Marvel: The Avengers: The Avengers Initiative #1
  16. Young Avengers Vol 2 #8
  17. Disney's Marvel and Netflix Join Forces to Develop Historic Four Series Epic plus a Mini-Series Event. Marvel (7 November 2013). Retrieved on 23 February 2013.
  18. Jamie, Lovell (6 February 2013). Marvel's Netflix Shows To Exist In Marvel Cinematic Universe. Retrieved on 23 February 2013.

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