In this series…
- Captain Marvel’s powers explained, for those who need a little refresher.
- Our Captain Marvel review, from chief critic Rob Hunter.
- A shot-by-shot breakdown of the Captain Marvel trailer, courtesy of the One Perfect Shot team.
- Read the story of Captain Marvel and The Avengers through the years.
- An explanation of everything you need to know about Captain Marvel’s cat.
- Meet the Skrulls, a race of characters Marvel nerds have been waiting to see on-screen.
- The Captain Marvel ending and post-credits scene explained — spoiler warning, obviously.
- What Captain America means for Avengers: Endgame — aka, look out Thanos.
- A list of movies to watch if you enjoyed Captain Marvel.
- What we think might happen in Captain Marvel 2, because we’re weirdos who think about that kind of thing.
Captain Marvel is new to theaters this weekend, and while we here at FSR haven’t really been talking about it all that much I found myself left with a few questions. I asked around the office in the hope of getting some conversations started, but none of my fellow rejects really seemed to care. “I’m too busy preparing for the Game of Thrones finale,” said Neil Miller. “Get back to us when Captain Marvel joins the Lars Von Trier Universe,” demanded Anna Swanson and Meg Shields in weirdly melodic unison. “Den of Thieves was robbed at the Oscars!” yelled Kieran Fisher before I had even said a word.
So I guess I’ll share my thoughts with you dear readers instead. Keep reading for a look at eight burning questions I’ve been pondering since seeing Captain Marvel. Spoiler warning, naturally.
Why Don’t the Humans Care About the Tesseract?
We know Howard Stark recovered the Tesseract from the ocean floor after the events of Captain America, and after all manner of experiments with it he left it in S.H.I.E.L.D.s capable hands. At some point, Dr. Wendy Lawson, aka the ridiculously named Mar-Vell, began doing her own research with it in the hopes of building a light-speed engine. Her death in 1989 put an end to her efforts — research she had been conducting in part on an orbiting space space-station — and all of her co-workers, military bosses, and S.H.I.E.L.D. executives just went on with their lives. Look, I get it, I’ve lost things before too without even realizing they were gone but did no one at S.H.I.E.L.D. or the US Air Force or NASA think to look for this incredibly powerful alien device? Did no one know about her floating space lab? That’s just an irresponsible use of American tax dollars.
What’s the Deal With Fury’s Eye?
We see the Nick Fury lose his eye in the film — because of course we have to, it’s a prequel for him after all — but the circumstances surrounding it raise two questions. First, why is he so mind-boggling stupid as to hold a creature to his face that he’s recently witnessed spew brutally violent tentacles from its mouth? Fury’s not a historically dumb man, but this was just an idiotic choice seemingly made to continue the film’s overdone reach for “cute” moments. Second, Fury tells Captain America (in Captain America: The Winter Soldier) that “The last time I trusted someone, I lost an eye,” so that “someone” is supposed to be Goose the cat? Indefinite pronoun issues aside, Fury’s delivery made it sound incredibly intense even though we see him in Captain Marvel essentially taking the loss in his stride. What happened between those two points in time? Has Fury convinced himself he lost the eye due to some deep, dark betrayal? Or maybe, and bear with me here, is Fury a Skrull in The Winter Soldier and therefore unable to remember that far back in his life?!?
Will We Get Some Even More Heroic Rambeaus?
Carol’s best friend is Maria Rambeau, a fellow Air Force pilot whose call sign is “Photon.” In the comics, Maria’s daughter Monica grows up to be a superhero in her own right and kicking ass under a variety of monikers including Captain Marvel, Daystar, and… Photon. Monica’s only a child in Captain Marvel, but that’s set in 1995 meaning she’s in her 30s during the MCU’s current timeline, so will she be joining the team as Photon sometime soon? The last we see of her in Captain Marvelis as a young girl staring up into the sky in awe, but since we haven’t met her as an adult yet it’s safe to assume she hasn’t gained powers yet either. In the comics, she gains abilities after mixing it up with villains and some manner of superweapon, but could a reunion with her Aunt Carol lead to something heroic instead? The MCU needs to get moving on creating a new hero roster as a few of the current players are bowing out after Avengers: Endgame — at least temporarily — and a powerful African American woman seems like an ideal member to help lead the team through the next few phases.
Can We Still Get a Secret Skrull Invasion?
Now that this phase of the MCU is coming to an end we’re left wondering where they’ll go next. More precisely, which big comic “event” from Marvel’s Avengers will follow in the cinematic footsteps of Civil War and Infinity War? The big hope by many people — including our own Brad Gullickson — is that all this Skull action suggests that Secret Invasion is heading our collective way. The basic gist of the crossover event was that the shapeshifting Skrulls have been embedded in positions of power all over the world, and like sleeper agents of more conventional times they rise up, reveal themselves, and attempt to take control. (This feels far too similar to the wholly played out HYDRA game of “Guess Who’s a Secret Bad Guy Now!” for me, but to each their own.) It seems like a possibility now that we’ve seen their chameleon-like powers on the big screen, but Captain Marvel threw something of a narrative wrench into the mix. The Skrulls aren’t bad, per se, they are simply a vilified species in search of a home. So can they be turned around again and made into the big baddies? It’s a movie franchise, so of course they can, but more to the point there’s no reason why the Skrulls we met here can’t be good while other Skrulls are bad. Just as there are good and bad humans, Kree, Asgardians, etc. So yeah, it can still happen.
What Exactly Are Captain Marvel’s Powers?
Captain Marvel’s known as an extremely powerful being in the comics and her film gave viewers a pretty good taste of them. She starts with photon-blasting fists but discovers she has much more to offer in the form of flight, space travel, god-like strength, and the gift of illumination. She not only stops a warhead mid-air and throws it backward, but she also tears a space ship asunder by flying straight through it. Captain Marvel is essentially Marvel’s answer to Superman — and that risks making her pretty damn boring. She’s by far the strongest and most powerful Avenger now, and you have to wonder what could possibly stand in her way. Superman at least has a weakness in kryptonite which is often used to level the playing field, but Captain Marvel has no such Achilles’ heel meaning she’ll be the one leveling everyone else’s field, setting it ablaze, seeding it with acid, and then feeding it to Goose for good measure. And that’s just with the powers we know as there could be more to be revealed later on in Avengers: Endgame. We know she’ll play a big role in helping right what Thanos so beautifully wronged, but simply beating him into jelly won’t bring everyone back from the dust… so what else does she have up her Space Stone-infused sleeve? My money is on flying super fast around the globe, reversing time, and saving Lois La– err, the recently deceased half of all life in the galaxy.
Where Art Thou, Yon-Rogg?
The last we saw of the traitorous but devilishly handsome Yon-Rogg he was bound and en route back to Hala where he’ll presumably have to answer for his behavior. He obviously never appeared in earlier films (that took place later) even as his fellow Kree did, so are we to assume he was dispatched or imprisoned? Or has he been hunting Captain Marvel in the years since, chasing her around the galaxy as she worked to find, establish, and protect a new Skrull homeworld? He seems a wily one so I’m assuming the latter, and that brings me to a follow-up question…
When Will the Sequel Take Place?
Captain Marvel catches up to the MCU’s main timeline for Avengers: Endgame, but will she remain there for Captain Marvel 2? It would make the most sense as that way she’ll be able to interact with other members of the MCU so as to help build branding and anticipation for what’s coming next, but there’s also that big twenty plus-year gap between the films. A lot could have happened in that time including crossing paths with a vengeful Yon-Rogg again in her attempt to help the Skrulls. Sure the film would have to take place entirely off-Earth, but it wouldn’t be the first time as Thor: Ragnarokproves the outer reaches of the galaxy are every bit as interesting. The sequel will more likely pick up post-Endgame and feature some space shenanigans with the Skrulls as well as some Earthbound fun — as a way of setting up the Secret Invasion!
Where Were They When They Were Needed?!
You knew this question was coming, so here goes… Captain Marvel leaves Nick Fury with a special pager that he can use to call her for emergencies, but he doesn’t use it until half of the universe is turned into dust by Thanos’ epic snap. Or does he?! Point is we don’t know, and that’s fine and not even the real question. If we’re gonna start wondering where so and so was during whatever big calamity, there’s really only one important question worth asking — where the hell has Goose been since 1995?! This cat can touch the Tesseract, sneak behind enemy lines on the power of cuteness, and dismantle enemies with its dental Kraken, so why didn’t Fury call up Goose during the battle for New York?! Is Goose dead? Was the Flerken too busy with a ball of yarn to come help the Avengers in their fight to save the Earth? We demand answers!