We all know that there are times when the little things in the MCU have pointed towards a conflict between the heroes. Whether it is Tony and Steve talking about their ideological differences, or the government trying to hold Black Widow accountable, it has been sure for quite some time that war is coming, and here is the progression of the MCU towards [Captain America: Civil War](tag:994409) from the very beginning!
In Iron Man, Tony revealed himself to be Iron Man. This was what I like to think of as the very first step towards Civil War, even before Captain America was returned to us. This was the first time that heroes were made accessible to the government, they knew who he was, and that made a huge difference to the world. The government knew who they could hold as responsible for the destruction caused by heroes and villains.
Then came that very first post credit scene. Nick Fury, a government agent (kind of) trying to bring together heroes to work together. The government wanted to monitor superheroes ever since this point, and that is the beginning of the path to Civil War!
The Incredible Hulk
Needless to say that the huge amount of destruction caused, partially because of a government agent (Abomination) the need for the government to control heroes intensified in this film, and suddenly in the post credits scene was Tony Stark, representing the government as a hero... just like he is set to do in Civil War.
Iron Man 2
This was interesting, because not only did SHIELD directly attempt to control Stark by putting Black Widow on him, but they also made sure that they had War Machine, in order to keep the power in their own hands. This put Rhodey on the level of Iron Man for power, and that is what they wanted the whole time. Also, at Tony's senate hearing he totally disregarded any sense of government protocol, pushing them to distrust his and any other heroes actions even more than before.
In Thor, SHIELD once again showed what the government were trying to do with powerful artifacts when they found the hammer. Also, the destruction of most of the small town in New Mexico was exactly the kind of thing that could set the government off on their road to legislation about heroes being kept on tabs.
Captain America: The First Avenger
Most of this film was set in the past, and that makes it hard to say that it started off any legislation or government action. However, at the end you see how SHIELD tried so desperately to control Steve once he woke up, not even allowing him to know what century it is.
Obviously there are a lot of events in this film that left the government wishing for more control over heroes. The destruction of New York left the government in uproar. The Secret Committee ordering Nick Fury around found that he couldn't even be controlled safely, and his total disregard of their orders showed them that they had lost control of the situation. SHIELD's attempts to build their own arsenal of weapons showed the destructive nature of the organisation.
Iron Man 3
Iron Man 3 showed the ominous things that can happen when heroes identities are public. Tony's home was destroyed and he was forced to go on the run. That is some heavy stuff, and I think it could impact the way some heroes think about revealing their identities in Civil War. Let's be honest, a lot of them don't even have secret identities, and that is why Black Panther and Spider Man will be such good additions to the universe.
Thor: The Dark World
Thor: The Dark World pulled off a whole lot of reality bending crazy stuff, and while the government will not have understood it, they will certainly feel fear after seeing it, and if the events of The Avengers didn't make them scared enough about alien threats, then London will.
Captain America: Winter Soldier
The events of this film derailed SHIELD, which was supposedly keeping an eye on the Avengers and other superpowered people. Once it was discredited and found to be chock full of Hydra agents, the government would certainly begin to work on legislation to get some other form of control over the heroes. Also, with such high ranking members of the government like Alexander Pierce being found as Hydra agents, they would have done some serious reshuffling and put some hard-asses in those offices who are wary of heroes. Plus, just like Tony Stark in Iron Man 2, Black Widow was... uncooperative in her hearing at the end, see two minutes into the below video.
Guardians of the Galaxy
I apologise. Guardians of the Galaxy has no relevance to Civil War... I just thought this article needed a little more Groot.
Avengers: Age of Ultron
Age of Ultron, with all of it's crazy destruction, certainly caused quite a stir towards Civil War. The rivalry between Tony and Steve really showed throughout this film, and even though they made up at the end, you could tell something more was coming. Also, the fact that Tony was kind of responsible for all the destruction Ultron caused will get a lot of blame placed on him. And the almost total annihilation of a whole country will really cause a few people to be annoyed at heroes. I think the government lesiglation probably kicked off by Captain America: Winter Soldier really started to gain movement and support after the events of Age of Ultron.
This was finally when Civil War began. All of the build-up came to the post credits scene of Ant-Man, which surely had the most important post credits scene since Iron Man itself. In it, as most of you know, Captain America and best buddy Falcon are trying to free the Winter Soldier from a trap he has gotten his arm into. They mention that they are unable to get help from Tony because he's "too involved with the accords" which is definitely a reference to the government act which demands superheroes register with the government. This means that at this point, Iron Man and his team are working with the government, and Cap has taken to some secrecy and underground work with the likes of Falcon and Winter Soldier. Or in other words:
WAR HAS BEGUN!!!
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