Much of MCU’s Infinity Saga was focused on Thanos‘ hunt for Infinity Stones and the Avengers trying to stop him. This is why Thanos will be remembered as one of the greatest villains in cinematic history since he truly believed he was justified in his goal to cull half of the Universe’s population. To do that quickly and efficiently, Thanos had to collect all Infinity Stones, and this article will focus on that part of his journey. Let’s see how and where Thanos got his hands on Reality Stone in MCU.
Thanos acquired Reality Stone in 2018 from the Collector in his Museum on Knowhere. After successfully retrieving Aether, Sif and Volstagg brought the Aether to the Collector in his museum on Knowhere for safekeeping. Several years later, Thanos invaded Knowhere and solidified the Aaether into its true Infinity Stone form. He used the Stone to ambush Guardians of the Galaxy and later to imprison Natasha Romanoff in a rock chamber and to initiate the Snap.
Now that we’ve given you a brief overview of how Thanos got his purple hands on Reality Stone, it’s time to analyze it in more detail. If you’re interested in more, stay with us and keep reading!
Reality Stone was at first known as Aether
The first time we saw Reality Stone in the MCU was in ‘Thor: The Dark World.‘ We learned that many thousands of years ago, Malekith, the king of the Dark Elves, found the Reality Stone. He transformed it into the “Aether,” capable of converting matter into dark matter and draining life force. Malekith aimed to plunge the Universe into darkness and restore the Dark Elves’ dominance.
This plan coincided with Convergence, aligning the Nine Realms through wormholes in 2988 B.C. The Asgardians, led by King Bor, opposed the Dark Elves in a prolonged war. As the battle neared its end, Malekith attempted to use the Aether’s power, but the Asgardians seized it using the Bifrost Bridge, securing victory.
Bor buried the Aether on a distant planet to prevent its misuse. For 5,000 years, the Aether remained forgotten. In 2013 during Convergence, Jane Foster unknowingly encountered the Aether and became its host. The Dark Elves awakened, searching for the Aether. Foster displayed immense power and worrying symptoms and was taken to Asgard, where the Aether’s origins were revealed as an Infinity Stone once used by the Dark Elves.
This put Foster’s life in great danger, and the Stone had to be extracted as soon as possible.
Alarmed by the Aether’s presence in Asgard, Algrim, Malekith’s lieutenant, transformed into the Kurse and prepared for chaos in the Asgardian Dungeons. The Dark Elves attacked the city while Algrim released prisoners. Frigga defended Jane Foster but was ultimately killed by Algrim.
Unable to get his hands on the Aether, Malekith and his army retreated. With restricted access to the Bifrost Bridge, Thor, accompanied by a Foster in a severe state, asked for Loki’s help to reach Svartalfheim. They fought with Malekith there, and he absorbed the Aether from Foster before leaving the planet.
Foster’s life was saved after Aether was extracted from her body and, in liquified form, brought to the Collector for safekeeping.
Thanos acquired Reality Stone during the events of ‘Avengers: Infinity War’
Avengers: Infinity War focused in great part on Thanos’ hunt for the Infinity Stones. He got most of them on-screen, with the exception of Power Stone, which he acquired off-screen while he destroyed Xandar.
Once Thanos figured out that Reality Stone was on Knowhere with the Collector, he promptly made his way to Collector’s museum. Once there, he solidified the Reality Stone and added it to his Infinity Gauntlet, unlocking its true potential.
He proceeded to use the Reality Stone to stage an ambush for the Guardians of the Galaxy. Thanos used Reality Stone to create the illusion of him and Collector talking. Guardians quickly fell from the illusion, and Gamora proceeded to attack Thanos, ultimately killing the illusion. After seeing Gamora crying for him, Thanos blew his cover and commented how he knew he still cared for him.
He proceeded to turn Mantis and Drax into pieces of matter, and later, when Gamora asked Peter Quill to kill her, Thanos used the Stone to render Star-Lord’s blaster shot harmless by turning the discharge into bubbles.
Following the Snap, the Reality Stone of this timeline was destroyed
After Gamora revealed the location of the Soul Stone on Vormir, the Reality Stone saw use again. This time Thanos used the Stone to turn Gamora’s dagger into bubbles when she made an attempt on Thanos’ life, figuring out that she is about to be sacrificed in order for Thanos to obtain the Soul Stone.
Thanos used the Stone again to create the elaborate illusion when he showed Doctor Strange how Titan used to look before the planet was starved of its resources, doomed to be destroyed, and its population went extinct.
Reality Stone was also important during the final battle when Thanos used it to imprison Black Widow in a rock chamber. He then used the Infinity Stone to cull half of the population of the Universe in an incident known as Snap.
After Thanos fulfilled his purpose, he retired to a distant planet in order to roleplay as a farmer, living a quiet life. Thanos never intended to use the Stones to gain more power. He was already extremely powerful as it is. In order to avoid being corrupted by the Infinity Stones, Thanos planned to destroy them.
He succeeded in destroying the Stones, but the sheer power output that was needed to achieve that triggered the Avengers’ alarms, and they knew exactly when & where the Infinity Stones were last activated. Thanos was executed on the spot by the Avengers.
An alternative version of Reality Stone was acquired during the Time Heist. Thor and Rocket Raccoon traveled to Asgard, where they were tasked with extracting the Aether from an alternate Jane Foster during her brief stay at the Royal Palace of Valaskjalf. After Rocket successfully extracted the Aether, he and Thor used the Quantum Realm to return to their timeline.
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