‘Captain Marvel’ Star Sheds Light on the MCU’s Photon

Before Monica Rambeau can (hopefully?) take on a role among Marvel's costumed superheroes onscreen, her mother Maria will appear in Captain Marvel, using the name "Photon" and giving fans a sense of where Monica came from.

The film, as has been widely reported, will take place in the 1990s, so there will be plenty of opportunities for unexpected cameos (a two-eyed Nick Fury, and seemingly not-evil versions of Korath and Ronan, for instance) and mythology building.

“Maria’s got a strength that’s undeniable, in that you don’t feel like you need to help her,” Lashana Lynch, who plays the character, told EW. “She is thrown into many a situation in this movie that she’s never been a part of, never seen, never experienced — and she just learns it, immediately. She’s very resilient and very strong.”

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(Photo: Entertainment Weekly)

According to the interview, Maria flew alongside Carol Danvers for years as pilots (presumably before Carol became Captain Marvel and started flying under her own power) and were close friends.

Lynch will appear in the upcoming TV adaptation of Vertigo's Y the Last Man, but before she joins an almost-entirely female cast, she had some very positive experiences with comic book women on Captain Marvel.

“There’s a certain level of female sisterhood that I haven’t seen in a superhero film before, that we have in abundance,” Lynch said.

In the comics, Maria only appeared a handful of times since her first appearance in 1984, and her primary character trait is that she worries costantly that her daughter Monica will get herself killed working with The Avengers.

Monica, who first appeared in 1982, had gone by various aliases in the comics, including Captain Marvel, Daystar, Pulsar, and Photon. The name "Photon" can be seen stenciled near the entrance to Maria's plane in the newly-released still from Captain Marvel featuring Lynch.

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Created by Roger Stern and John Romita Jr., Monica inherited her powers while she was working in New Orleans as a ship captain at the harbor. The heroine was given extra-dimensional powers when she tried to keep a weapon from being created, and Monica became a hero who operated under the name Captain Marvel.

During her tenure, Monica did some big projects as she joined the Avengers and even came to lead the team. She may have lost her powers for a spell, but Monica got them back after Quasar recruited her for a team mission along with Carol Danvers, Black Bolt, and more. Most recently, Monica has worked under the name Spectrum and aided in the destruction of Earth-1610.

Captain Marvel is set to arrive in theaters on March 8, 2019.