Who’s the captain now? If you watched the post-credits scene in Avengers: Infinity War, you know it’s Captain Marvel (Brie Larson). And after EW’s cover reveal and our first look at Captain Marvel this morning, we know *a lot* of info awaits us — head to the plot section below for more on those details, and head to our sister site GameSpot for theories on how Carol Danvers will save us all.
In that scene, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) find themselves in the middle of the Thanos-sparked chaos as half the universe’s population disappears. Fury manages to use his pager and apparently sends a message to Captain Marvel just as he, too, disappears into dust. Since her film arrives before the next Avengers films, it would seem she’s got an important role to play in Avengers 4, possibly saving the universe.
And when Infinity War was released on digital in August, a keen-eyed Reddit user pointed out that one of Thanos’ children, Cull Obsidian, was seen wearing a piece of cloth with Captain Marvel’s colors and design on it. What that means is yet uncertain, but it adds even more anticipation to the mix.
Captain Marvel? Not exactly the best-known superhero ever. But her film will be the 21st in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and if she’s going to get that kind of post-credits attention, fans had best brush up on her dossier before her film comes out.
Now that filming has officially wrapped, stay tuned for even more updates and (*fingers crossed*) some footage coming our way soon!
Who is Captain Marvel?
You can dive deep into her background and history with this explainer. A short version: This iteration of the character, Carol Danvers, was created in 1968, and was an Air Force pilot, CIA agent, security director for NASA and writer. She’s also struggled with alcohol, like Iron Man Tony Stark, and her personal battles were depicted in numerous comic-book issues.
Her superpowers came from a Kree alien named Mar-vell, the original Captain Marvel, and include flight, super strength, the ability to absorb and use energy, and to shoot energy blasts and lasers from her hands.
Numerous characters have taken on the Captain Marvel name, and even DC Comics has had an (unrelated) Captain Marvel character (aka Shazam), though to date the Marvel universe doesn’t have a ‘Captain DC.’
Release date, plot, photos
Captain Marvel is due out March 8, 2019, in the US and UK (no Australia date yet), about two months before Avengers 4 hits. And after today’s EW cover reveal, we know a whole lot of info is coming this week.
For example, thanks to EW we know a bit more about where we’ll begin the film and what we’ll see: ‘Captain Marvel sidesteps the traditional origin-story template, and when it begins, Carol already has her powers,’ writes Devan Coogan.
And Larson gave us more on the extremely human character when speaking to EW: ‘She can be aggressive, and she can have a temper, and she can be a little invasive and in your face. She’s also quick to jump to things, which makes her amazing in battle because she’s the first one out there and doesn’t always wait for orders. But the (not) waiting for orders is, to some, a character flaw.’
We’ve also learned that when it begins with her powers, we’ll see Danvers as a part of the elite Kree military team Starforce, which is led by Jude Law’s enigmatic commander, and that her main foe will be the Skrulls, with Ben Mendelsohn as their leader Talos, who is spearheading a Skrull invasion of Earth.
The film isn’t focusing solely on Captain Marvel finding out about Thanos’ slaughter of half the universe (see: Avengers: Infinity War) and leaping in to help. It’s set in the 1990s, which may explain why Nick Fury is reaching out to her on a pager, not a smartphone. (Speaking of the 1990s, star Brie Larson was almost born in that decade — Oct. 1, 1989 — which makes some of us feel as ancient as an unopened bottle of Zima.)
Why the 1990s? Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige says all will be revealed in the story, but also told the Toronto Sun the time period would feel fresh. ‘It allows us to play in an area that we have never played in before, and tapping into a ’90s action genre was fun for us,’ Feige said.
So what’s going on in the film? Marvel says it’s about Carol Danvers taking on the Captain Marvel role to protect the Earth from a galactic war between the Kree and the Skrulls, both alien races familiar to comics readers. (The comic version of this war played out in 1971 and 1972, if you want to consult your archived Avengers issues for possible spoilers.)
Who are the combatants? The Skrulls are a race of shape-shifting aliens that can take on not just the shape, but the memories and powers of those they mimic. The Kree are a scientifically and technologically advanced militaristic race, some of whom have blue skin. Getting in the way of either of them is about as smart as tugging on Superman’s cape — oops, wrong comics company.
As for Captain Marvel herself, you may know star Larson best from her Oscar-winning role as a kidnap victim forced to bear and raise her son in captivity in 2015’s Room. She also starred in 2017’s Kong: Skull Island.
Backing her up in the film are some familiar faces for Marvel fans, and a few new ones.
- Samuel L. Jackson will play a young (pre-eye patch) Nick Fury (as you saw above).
- Clark Gregg is returning as S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Phil Coulson, who’s dead in the modern Marvel movie timeline, but alive in the 1990s-set film.
- Lee Pace returns as Ronan the Accuser, a fanatical member of the Kree alien race last seen in Guardians of the Galaxy. (In August 2018, Pace posted what appears to be a vacation video where he’s wearing a Captain Marvel hat and sporting a cute, scruffy vacation beard.)
- Djimon Hounsou returns as Korath, a Kree ally of Ronan and feared intergalactic hunter, who also appeared in Guardians of the Galaxy.
- Gemma Chan plays Captain Minnerva, a Kree geneticist. (Some sources give her name as Minn-Erva, or Doctor Minerva.)
- Jude Law plays Walter Lawson/Mar-Vell, Carol’s mentor as she takes on her superpowered role.
- Ben Mendelsohn plays the film’s main villain, believed to be the leader of the Skrulls.
A hint at the film’s look may have been revealed in August 2018, when merchandise showing Larson as Danvers began t pop up. Her 1990s bob is particularly sassy.