D23: Has Marvel Debuted the First Look at the Celestial Arishem From Eternals?

Disneys' D23 Expo is now in session, and fans are eager to see something, anything, new from big Disney properties like Star Wars and Marvel. In the case of the latter, Marvel Studios has put up an elaborate display or promotional material for its Phase 4 lineup - and one promo image may actually be a pretty big reveal!

Take a look at the image below from the D23 Expo Marvel promos, and decide for yourself if that is indeed the Celestial known as Arishem!

D23 Expo Marvel MCU Phase 4 Promotional Images Celestial Arishem

As you can see above, this promotional banner features a lot of the characters that are expected to step out in Phase 4 of the MCU, as well as some cosmic entities that will likely be overseeing those events unfold - if not playing a direct role in said events. Fans are freaking out to see a Watcher included in the visual lineup, as well as a Celestial. And not just any Celestial - the details of this image hint that the Celestial in question is none other than Arishem, also known as "Arishem the Judge."

In Marvel Comics, Arishem is the leader of the Four Celestial Hosts on Earth, who judges civilizations influenced and "seeded" by The Celestials, to determine if they should be culled from existence, or are worthy of further influence and growth. So why would Arishem, specifically, be included in this Marvel Phase 4 promo image? Because of the Celestial's influence on history of some new MCU Phase 4 characters: The Eternals.

Marvel Eternals Movie Arishem the Judge Celestial

(Photo: Marvel Comics)

The backstory of The Eternals involves the Celestials first coming to Earth and creating three races: The superpowered Eternals, The unstable mutate race known as the Deviants, and "Normal" humans programmed with the genetic potential to develop superpowers, or even mutant powers. The Eternals and Deviants built advanced civilizations that eventually went to war, while humans were still in their Neanderthal stage. The Deviant Empire grew big and vast enough to push back the Eternals, and nearly conquer the world, an aggressive expansion that reformed the world a we know it, causing milestone events like the sinking of Atlantis.

During the Celestial's Second Host, Arishem came to judge the three races of Earth, and the Deviant Empire was wiped out, reshaping the world into the races of humans and pockets of Eternals that would define the Marvel Universe thereafter.

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Depending on the storyline of Marvel's Eternals movie, Arishem could either be a key figure in the backstory of the Eternals, or the pivotal figure who returns to judge the god-like race. Hopefully D23 will reveal more of those details.

Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame are now available on home video. Upcoming Marvel Studios projects include Black Widow on May 1, 2020, The Falcon and The Winter Soldier in fall 2020, The Eternals on November 6, 2020, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings on February 12, 2021, WandaVision in spring 2021,Loki in spring 2021, Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on May 7, 2021, What If? In summer 2021, Hawkeye in fall 2021, and Thor: Love and Thunder on November 5, 2021.