There is one indisputable fact about the Marvel Cinematic Universe as we march towards Avengers: Endgame. That fact? Thanos is the biggest bad in the universe. However, if things go the right way for the heroes in Endgame, Thanos' time at the top may be coming to an end and Captain Marvel may have just introduced the next great threat in the MCU.
Now, before we get too far along in this be aware that there are spoilers for Captain Marvel below.
To say that Captain Marvel had a singular villain would be somewhat inaccurate. Yes, there were "bad" guys in the film. Yon-Rogg (Jude Law) and the rest of Starforce are positioned as not only chief antagonists but were pretty villainous when it came to their treatment of the Skrulls as they followed along with the Supreme Intelligence's plans for the Kree civilization and presumably the universe at large. It's that Supreme Intelligence that may ultimately end up being the next big threat in the MCU.
Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby, the Supreme Intelligence debuted in Fantastic Four #65 in 1967. While the character's comic book appearance is quite different than the way it's portrayed in Captain Marvel, the general concept remains the same: an artificial intelligence comprised of the greatest Kree minds in history that serves as the Ruler of the Kree Empire with most Kree devoted to it.
In the film, the Supreme Intelligence is on a brutal campaign to wipe out the Skrulls entirely under the guise of such efforts being defensive for the Kree. However, in the comics the Supreme Intelligence has much higher ambitions than just wiping out one race of cosmic beings and we kind of get a taste of the sinister side of the Supreme Intelligence when Carol (Brie Danvers) confronts it (in the form of her mentor Wendy Lawson/Mar-Vell, played by Annette Bening) after having begun to learn the truth about the Kree's mission. While the movie doesn't get into exactly what those ambitions are, in comics they include evolutionary advancement, specifically genetic experimentation some of which led to the creation of the Inhumans. It's a rich source for story, even if the Supreme Intelligence currently doesn't feel like a Thanos-level threat.
And if we really think about it, Thanos didn't really feel like the massive threat he turned out to be when we first saw him in the MCU. When we first meet Thanos in the MCU, he's working with Loki to get the Tesseract from Earth, making him indirectly responsible for the Chitauri invasion of New York in Marvel's The Avengers. While the post-credits scene in that movie was certainly menacing, many fans probably didn't connect the dots that we'd be dealing with the Mad Titan snapping half the life of the universe out of existence several movies later.
It's possible that the Supreme Intelligence is being set up in much the same way. Like Thanos, its plans were thwarted when humans turned out to be tougher than they appear and with Carol already declaring that she will end the Kree's war, it's pretty clear that there's more story to tell with the Supreme Intelligence -- possibly with it as the big bad for the whole of the MCU.
Captain Marvel is in theaters now. Avengers: Endgame opens April 26.
Do you think that the Supreme Intelligence will be the next big bad in the MCU? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
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