This article contains spoilers from Captain Marvel.
Among the countless alien forces to have invaded Earth (i.e. the Chitauri and Outriders from Infinity War), the Skrulls have got to be the most dangerous one yet. Unlike their predecessors, they are no wave of faceless grunts to be thrown as cannon fodder. Nor shall they be cannon fodder to the greater drama and battles playing out in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). In fact, it could be argued that next to Thanos they are the greatest threat to Earth’s mightiest heroes.
We got our first glimpse of them in a trailer for Captain Marvel. In it, we saw one of them posing as a sweet old lady before getting brutally decked by our heroine (note: we do not endorse you hitting old people, no matter how much they remind you of Skrulls). We briefly touched on them when discussing possible reasons why Captain Marvel wasn’t in Infinity War.
As we continued to delve into the history of this alien race’s comic past, we came to realize how powerful these guys are. And I’m not just talking about abilities. They hold the potential to change the MCU as we know it.
So put on your Marvel geek hat and grab your trade paperback issues of Marvel’s 2008 Secret Invasion as we find out why the Skrulls might be Marvel’s greatest asset yet.
Who Are They?
Before we address how Marvel might use the Skrulls in future films, we need to do a rundown who or what exactly they are. Long before man emerged on Earth, the Skrulls resided on the planet Skrullos. They were a primitive people and considered nothing special within the cosmic evolutionary hierarchy. That is until the Celestials, a group of godlike energy-based lifeforms, began tampering with their DNA to the point where the Skrulls had mutated into three distinct races.
Quick side note, the Celestials are also responsible for creating the human mutants you see on Earth, so yea tampering and experimenting on whole species is sort of their favourite past time. We also got a quick look at them in Guardians of the Galaxy using the Power Stone to eradicate whole civilizations.
Anyways, out of this experimentation, the three races formed within the new Skrull gene pool are the Eternals, Normals and Deviants. The Eternals were near perfect lifeforms with long extended life, the Normals were (you guessed it) the ones with regular lifespans and the Deviants who were subjected to unstable and rapid mutation.
The Deviants would go on to conquer the planet of Skrullos, committing mass genocide on their sister races, wiping out the two other sub-species. Thus making the deviants the last, true Skrulls.
The Skrulls possess a mutative ability that allows them to mimic the appearance and even powers of the native population of whatever planet they’re attacking. From there, they would infiltrate civilizations and tear it down from the inside before conquering it wholesale. Throughout the years, the Skrulls would attempt to conquer Earth and fail. The most recent event being Secret Invasion in 2008 when they infiltrated Earth, posing as Elektra, Black Bolt, Hank Pym and even the original Captain Marvel, Mar-Vell.
Judging by the trailers we’ve seen so far, the film will be heavily centred around the Kree-Skrull War. The Kree being a rival empire who also has a nasty pension of tampering with DNA, with the purpose of making living weapons. The Skrulls are an aggressive alien species who have a warlike culture but are not without honour.
There have even been Skrulls who refused to participate in their empire’s mandate of conquest. Some of them were seen just hiding in plain sight on Earth, just trying to live a normal life. Which brings us to another subject…
A Secret Phase 4
Captain Marvel is set to take place sometime during the 1990s with the Skrulls already making contact with mankind around that time. The events of Avengers: Infinity War occurred in 2018 which means if there were any Skrulls on Earth, they’d have at least 19 years to infiltrate into Earth’s defences and possibly pose as high ranking officials in local governments, or perhaps even heroes. (In fact, we’ve seen in Captain Marvel that there are indeed peaceful Skrulls just looking for a home.)
Which begs the question: Are there Skrulls among the Avengers? And if so, how long have they been there? I mean 19 years is a long time and we’ve seen the MCU is no stranger to having shocking reveals with Winter Soldier. One thing’s for sure, in trailers for Captain Marvel, the Skrulls play a prominent part in them.
How often do Marvel trailers talk about the Chitauri, Outriders or any other big baddie’s armies? The answer is never, so for them to play up Skrulls would probably mean that they’d plan to use them more in the MCU. Personally, I find the possibilities highly exciting.
Though Disney’s Marvel has kept a rather tight lid on Phase 4 for the MCU, a lot of folks online are speculating that we could be getting a loose adaptation of 2008’s Secret Invasion on the big screen. Imagine after the events of Avengers: Endgame, the universe is in disarray. Thanos is defeated and all the souls taken are suddenly restored back to life.
That window of time would prove an opportune moment for the Skrulls to kidnap the returning heroes and impersonate them. The ones already embedded on Earth could aid in this game of espionage and soon, they’ll be a secret army of Skrulls taking down the Avengers from the inside.
YouTubers like Matpat from “Film Theory” are already speculating on who might be a possible Skrull, so this isn’t just some absurd idea floating around the fanfiction universe. Can you imagine the looks on the audience’ faces when they see that one of their beloved heroes was in actuality a Skrull? My money is on Nick Fury, there’s no way he could survive so much punishment and still be human!
If Marvel does decide to do a Secret Invasion reveal in future films, it’s going to be big, perhaps even bigger than Thanos. It would change the way we’d look at our characters forever if we realized that all this while, they were Skrulls. It would also give Marvel a way to trim by having characters being revealed to have been killed and their places were taken by Skrulls. Though, I imagine they’d use it sparingly.
The Skrulls have always been a major threat to heroes of Marvel in comics, I would expect nothing less of this shape-shifting warrior race in the MCU. We’re definitely looking forward to how Captain Marvel will be incorporating them into the wider plot. We’ll be sure to look out for that post credit scene for any hint of possible Secret Invasion film. And who knows, maybe you just may find some clues for who may be a Skrull in previous films.
So what you guys think about all this? Are you excited to see the Skrulls in Captain Marvel? Are there heroes you feel have been acting particularly Skrull-ish? Be sure to let us know in the comments below and remember to stay tuned to your friendly neighbourhood film publication for all the latest movie news and reviews!