Today's premiere of Doctor Strange has brought all sorts of new developments for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, from the Dark Dimension to Dormammu — and it also partially answers one of the biggest questions that Marvel fans have: where are the remaining Infinity Stones? But in doing so, it also seemingly confirms a longtime fan theory that may point to the final stone's location.
Doctor Strange Reveals the Eye of Agamotto to Be the Time Stone
One of the Infinity Stones was revealed by Wong towards the conclusion of the film when he described the Eye Of Agamotto, which Strange had been unknowingly wearing as a necklace for much of the movie. Now that we've seen the Time Stone, there's only one remaining Infinity Stone to be discovered before all are ready to be assembled in the Infinity Gauntlet: the Soul Stone.
The wielder of the completed Infinity Gauntlet has almost godlike power, with the ability to alter reality however they see fit. So, where is the Soul Stone?
The T.H.A.N.O.S. Theory
In the infographic, the Infinity Stones match up to their corresponding Marvel artifacts, all of which spell out T.H.A.N.O.S. A year ago, the "N" was still a mystery — but now we know that it stands for "necklace," as Movie Pilot creator Michael Eldred predicted more than a year ago:
Who's the "H" In the T.H.A.N.O.S. Theory if It Makes Sense?
Most have predicted that Heimdall would be the bearer of the Soul Stone since he can see all of the souls in the Nine Realms, but that's not how the Soul Stone functions. The Soul Stone functions by affecting the souls of others, bending them at its will. Heimdall may be able to see the souls of all those who reside within the Nine Realms, but he has no effect on them.
However, someone else could claim the "H" in the T.H.A.N.O.S. theory: Hela.
Cate Blanchett will be introduced as Hela in the upcoming Thor: Ragnarok. Being one of the main villains of Thor: Ragnarok, Hela is expected to have a pivotal role in the MCU overall. Considering that Marvel Comics has depicted Hela as the goddess of the spirits of the dead, it probably means her role in Thor: Ragnarok has something to do with spirits and souls.
In the comics, Hela can even manipulate souls by wagering her release of a particular individual for another, giving her quite a manipulative advantage over anyone she comes into contact with. With that in mind, Hela's dominion over spirits/souls in Thor: Ragnarok could very well be due to her manipulation of the Soul Stone, even serving as its "container" until someone removes it from her.
That aspect hasn't been touched on by any of the directors of previous MCU films, but several villains have possessed various Infinity Stones in past Marvel movies, so it wouldn't come as too much of a surprise to find out that Hela has been in possession of the Soul Stone the entire time. If so, Hela would be the final piece in proving the T.H.A.N.O.S. theory to be correct.
If that revelation is confirmed, the more interesting aspect will be around how Hela loses the Soul Stone to Thanos
Does Thor: Ragnarok Lead Directly Into 'Avengers: Infinity War'?
Hela (Cate Blanchett) has also been seen on the set of Thor: Ragnarok, in what looks to be Asgard, accompanied by various CGI-heavy figures around her. The details surrounding these scenes are unknown, but it appears that Hela has invaded Asgard. She would have no reason to leave her realm unless someone's death called for her to make a visit. With that in mind, someone in Asgard could be dying.
It just so happens that Thor: Ragnarok is the last standalone film to take place before Avengers: Infinity War. Revealing all of the Infinity Stones imminently before Avengers: Infinity War makes quite a lot of sense. This draws up an even bigger question: how will the corners of the Marvel Cinematic universe converge all at once?