Leading up to the release of Avengers: Infinity War, I decided it was the perfect time for a rewatch of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe. It’s been 10 years and with each of these movies there are a ton of memorable moments. The internet is rife with lists ranking the movies, the superheroes, and the villains. But I decided to go a different direction while binging. I have assembled a list of each MCU film’s most memorable, ridiculous, or awesome moment for your reading enjoyment. The action scenes are always fun to watch, but here are the moments that stand out when you rewatch 19 Marvel movies in one month. You likely forgot about some of these and others are hard to get out of your head. We begin with the six films from Marvel’s phase one.
Iron Man (2008)
“Box of Scraps”
With Iron Man kicking off the ambitious experiment of the MCU, there are a number of moments pivotal to the future of the franchise. But beyond Robert Downey Jr.’s spot on portrayal of Tony Stark or the completely made up (but believable) science, there is one moment that stands out amongst the rest. Jeff Bridges’ fairly forgettable and somewhat cliché mentor with an agenda character, Obadiah Stane, spends the latter portions of the film trying to recreate Stark’s technology. When a scientist tells him that it can’t be done, Stane leans in with a hand on his hip and shouts, “Tony Stark was able to build this in a cave… with a box of scraps!” It’s over the top, jarring, intimidating, and comical all at the same time. Was this Oscar winner Jeff Bridges being awesome or terrible? I’m not sure and I don’t even care.
The Incredible Hulk (2008)
He ate it?
You would be forgiven if you forgot that the second attempt at bringing the Hulk to the big screen was actually part of the MCU. Edward Norton was switched out for Mark Ruffalo in the subsequent Hulk appearances. But alas, this one still counts and we feature it alongside all the others. As Bruce Banner is attempting to escape General Ross’ forces on the campus of Culver University, he decides on a drastic way to secure the thumbnail drive containing his important research. He swallows it. The dude swallows the flash drive! In a movie where a six-foot tall mumble talker turns into a humongous green rage monster, this is the part where I fail to suspend my disbelief. My mouth hurts for a week after eating Cap’n Crunch. That is going to hurt all. the. way. down.
Iron Man 2 (2010)
“…Just like that.”
Definitely not my favorite MCU film, but Iron Man 2 has plenty of redeeming qualities. It’s the main instance where we get to witness Tony Stark’s troubles with alcohol that fans of the comics know all about. This comes to a head at a Stark house party where the self-proclaimed playboy puts on the Iron Man suit while drunk and shows it off like a party trick. Stark has never shown much care with his absurdly expensive technology, but he takes it a step further with this moment. “The question I get asked most often is, ‘Tony, how do you go to the bathroom in the suit?’ …Just like that.” Maybe it was just a joke. But if he really did relieve himself, that means he has a big brawl with War Machine minutes later while wearing those wet undies. How uncomfortable. Who knew Tony Stark had so much in common with Texas Ranger from Talladega Nights. “I’m still sitting in my dirty pee pants.”
Small Town Life
When watching the original Thor, the character is incredibly different from the comedic take we saw in last year’s Ragnarok. But that doesn’t mean the 2011 film is devoid of humor. After crash landing on Earth, Thor has quite a few interesting brushes with small town life. But there are two standout moments. The first is set in a diner where he’s introduced to coffee. “This drink, I like it. Another!” He then smashes the cup on the ground like he’s in an Asgardian dive bar. Later while preparing to leave town, he visits the pet store looking for a ride. “I need a horse.” The pet store worker informs him that they only have dogs, cats, etc. “Then give me one of those large enough to ride.” After rewatching this scene, I spent the next several minutes picturing Thor riding into battle on a Great Dane.
Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
Familiar Faces Not Yet Familiar
Since Captain America: The First Avenger takes place during World War II and the other films are present day, the movie is in the unique scenario where the characters have little chance to return for future films. Even Cap’s iconic nemesis, the Red Skull, is a one and done villain. Sure, there are some exceptions with Bucky, flashback cameos, and old age prosthetics. However, thanks to the television tie-in, Agent Carter, Peggy Carter and Howard Stark went from secondary film characters to fan favorites with full storylines developed over two seasons. So now when looking back on The First Avenger, I can’t help but be excited to see our old pals Peggy and Howard before the events of the show.
The Avengers (2012)
Agents of SHIELD
Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the Agents of SHIELD TV show. But The Avengers demonstrates what it would look like as a big budget movie. And it would be awesome. Avengers writer/ director Joss Whedon definitely succeeded in the difficult task of reminding the audience about all of the phase one heroes, giving them their own storylines and bringing them together to save the day. Yet, as this all goes down there is a secondary group of characters, the Agents of SHIELD, who are doing all the less glamorous work. Consider a SHIELD movie at this point in the MCU. Nick Fury leading a team consisting of Black Widow, Hawkeye, Phil Coulson, Maria Hill, and Jasper Sitwell. Maybe even the guy playing Galaga when he’s supposed to be working makes an appearance. They’re all pretty awesome as they are in The Avengers, which is saying something since they get limited screen time behind the big guns. The figurative big guns I mean. We know Coulson wields the literal big gun in the movie. Just look at the opening scene where Loki shows up for the Tesseract. No Cap, no Iron Man, yet that’s a movie I would definitely watch.
So that brings us to the end of phase one. Stay tuned to Geek Insider as we move onto phase two, which is equally as awesome and occasionally ridiculous.