The latter was especially exciting in that we got the very first details of what the Captain Marvel will be about (and what Brie Larson will will look like in costume), and it quickly became apparent to fans that the events of the seemingly standalone Captain Marvel movie will in fact rock the foundation of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe!
In fact, based on the details of Captain Marvel that were revealed, fans are already speculating on where the MCU's overarching storyline could be headed in Phase Four, following the events of Avengers 4 (or Infinity War - Part 2, or whatever the official title is). So Is Secret Invasion The Next Big Marvel Cinematic Universe Story Arc? Here's what we know:
The big reveal about Captain Marvel's storyline is that it will be set in the 1990s, and will introduce The Skrulls, Marvel's shape-shifting alien race from the comics, to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. More than that: Captain Marvel will actually adapt the classic Marvel storyline known as "The Kree/Skrull War" for the MCU!
The way this massive development is being handled (with Marvel Studios 'retroactively foreshadowing' the Skrull's existence in the modern MCU), it begs two big questions, no matter how the events of Captain Marvel shake out:
What has Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel been up to in the decades since, as the MCU has grown into the modern age?
What have the Skrulls been up to, as the cosmic-related events of MCU Phases 1, 2, and 3 - and all the universe-changing events of Avengers: Infinity War - have been transpiring?
Given the subversive nature of the Skrulls' powers and cultural ideology, it's not hard to see how their encounter with Earth in the 1990s could lead to...prevnext
A Secret Invasion
The 2008 Marvel Comics crossover event "Secret Invasion" featured The Skrulls hatching a plot that was years in the making: a subversive campaign of kidnapping key world figures and Marvel superheroes, and replacing them with Skrull deep-cover operatives.
In the story, the events of the Kree-Skrull War and destruction of the Skrull homeworld crown a new Skrull empress (Veranke), who comes to Earth. Using knowledge of Marvel superheroes gained from kidnapping key subjects (Marvel's "Illuminati" cabal), Veranke impersonates Jessica Drew/Spider-Woman, and is drafted into the New Avengers team.
Eventually, some figures in the Marvel Universe begin to figure out the Skrull plan, as the death of one hero (Elektra) reveals that she was a Skrull to the rest of her teammates. Veranke uses that revelation to sow seeds of suspicion and distrust amongst all the Marvel heroes, goading Tony Stark and others into turning on their allies. When the time to strike comes, the Skrulls launch a multi-pronged attack on Earth, using a new breed of superpowered Skrulls to match the heroes in battle. In addition, The Skrulls attack Black Panther's homeland Wakanda (for its vibranium), release an entire prison full of supervillains, and disable S.H.I.E.L.D.'s ability to police the world.
After a massive battle, The Skrull invasion was defeated; although, some key superheroes lost their lives; the kidnapped heroes who were replaced by Skrulls for years struggled to find purpose or acceptance in the new Marvel Universe around them; and Spider-Man's nemesis Norman Osborn was but in charge of S.H.I.E.L.D.'s replacement, H.A.M.M.E.R., ushering in a dark era in which supervillains (posing as superheroes) had run of the Marvel Universe.prevnext
Phase 4 Skrull War
It's easy to look at the current state of the MCU, and all the breadcrumbs being sprinkled on the path, and see how Phase 4 (after Thanos' three-phase story arc) could bring forth a new (but much more clandestine) story arc, based on "Secret Invasion."
The Captain Marvel story leaves plenty of room for the Skrull Empire to fall at the hands of superpowered Earthling like Carol Danvers, only to eventually return to exact revenge, through years of manipulation and subversion. Spider-Man: Homecoming had the conspicuous detail of Avengers Tower being sold to a new owner - a devlopment many fans speculate could be Norman Osborn's entry into the MCU, and a perfect setup for Osborn's pivotal role in Secret Invasion. There's also the idea that Secret Invasion could be used to retcon or invalidate any character deaths that have taken place in the MCU up to that point, as those corpses could be revealed to be Skrull impostors. It's also something that both MCU movies and TV shows could indulge in, as the effects of showing a known character (read: actor) morph into a little green alien is well within the budget for shows like Agents of SHIELD or Inhumans.
Best of all: a story like Secret Invasion is a slow-burn event that Marvel Studios could take years and several phases to build, much like Thanos' grinning face in the Avengers mid-credits scene was just a "button" that would require two more phases and half a decade to deliver the "Infinity Gauntlet" adaptation we will get in Infinity War.
In short: it's the sort of story arc that Marvel fans would definitely enjoy watching for the next few years of MCU development.prevnext
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Avengers: Infinity War is directed by Anthony and Joe Russo, from a screenplay by Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely, and stars Robert Downey Jr., JoshBrolin, Mark Ruffalo, Tom Hiddleston, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, JeremyRenner, Chris Pratt, Elizabeth Olsen, Sebastian Stan, BenedictCumberbatch, PaulBettany, Samuel L. Jackson, Cobie Smulders, Benedict Wong,Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Vin Diesel, Dave Bautista, Pom Klementieff, Scarlett Johansson, Benicio delToro, Tom Holland, and Anthony Mackie.prev