It has begun. After being relatively radio silent for a while to (I assume) allow Marvel fans to deal with their post-Infinity War trauma counselling, the comic book movie studio has turned up the heat in the promo work for their next big release: Captain Marvel.
Last night brought us the first official look at Oscar-winner Brie Larson suited up in her awesome-looking red and blue costume (as opposed to that frumpy green outfit she wore in early set pics), but a follow-up story from Entertianment Weekly has now revealed looks at the rest of the principal cast as well, including the very first time we’re seeing the alien Skrulls in all their full green-skinned glory as well as the return of some familiar faces. Along with the pics, we also got a bunch of new details revealed about the plot and characters.
First up, we got Larson’s hero herself, Captain Marvel aka Carol Danvers. In the comics, she’s an Airforce officer who befriends Mar-Vell, an alien Kree warrior living incognito on Earth and the original Captain Marvel. She gets caught in an explosion of an alien “psychotron” device which melds her human DNA with that Mar-Vell, granting her various energy-related superpowers. She initially adopts the superhero name Ms Marvel, but eventually – years after Mar-Vell tragically dies – she would become Captain Marvel herself. But it appears things will play out differently in the movie.
For starters, Larson’s Danvers is revealed as part-human, part-Kree with no mention of a psychotron anywhere. Could she be reworked for the movie to be an Inhuman, like the characters in Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? We don’t know yet, but according to Larson, being both human and alien can be a problem.
You have this Kree part of her that’s unemotional, that is an amazing fighter and competitive. Then there’s this human part of her that is flawed but is also the thing that she ends up leading by. It’s the thing that gets her in trouble, but it’s also the thing that makes her great. And those two sides warring against each other is what makes her her.
It could be that she still may get some pieces of her traditional comic book origin, as Mar-Vell is still in the picture, played by Jude Law. The veteran actor spoke more about Captain Marvel’s struggle with her dual nature.
These extraordinary powers she has, he sees them as something of a blessing and something that she has to learn how to control. That’s a motif throughout the piece, the element of learning to control one’s emotions and to use your powers wisely.
I mentioned “some pieces” of origin only, because when we meet Carol Danvers, instead of being an ordinary human in Earth military service with Mar-Vell, she will already have her powers and “left her earthly life behind to join the elite military team Starforce on the Kree planet of Hala”. Starforce, which is described by co-directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck as “the SEAL Team Six of space”, is commanded by Mar-Vell and also includes Korath (Djimon Hounsou reprising his role from Guardians of the Galaxy) and Minn-Erva (Gemma Chan).
Danvers will be making her way back to Earth though – in the 1990s, complete with all the fashion from my teenage years! – where she will have “new questions about her past” in which I’m guessing the origins of her powers will be explored. We’ll also get to see some of her time as a US Air Force Pilot including a co-pilot that will be familiar to long-time comic book readers as Lashana Lynch will get introduced as Maria Rambeau. Described as “one of Carol’s oldest friends”, Rambeau is a single mother and top-notch pilot who goes by the call sign “Photon”.
In the comics, Maria Rambeau is the mother of Marion Rambeau, an Avenger who would also use the name Captain Marvel at one point in her superhero career before eventually adopting the name Photon. With this movie’s retro era, this is clearly setting up Marion’s appearance at some point in the present in future movies.
Speaking of retro, as previously reported Samuel L. Jackson will also be reprising his role of Nick Fury. This will be way before he became the scheming head of SHIELD – he’s still a “lowly S.H.I.E.L.D. desk jockey who hasn’t yet met any superheroes” – and when he still had two eyes. The 69-year old actor was digitally de-aged for the entire film using some hectic visual FX and it looks incredible.
Fury and the previously mentioned Korath won’t be the only familiar mugs in Captain Marvel though, as Lee Pace will also be reprising his villainous Guardians of the Galaxy role as Ronan the Accuser. In that film, Ronan was a religious extremist nutjob that had been exiled, but in Captain Marvel he is still very much a high ranking member of Kree society on Hala. Just how he factors into the story is uncertain for now.
What we do know about Ronan though is that he and the Kree won’t be the primary villains of the film. That falls on the Skrulls, the legendary shape-shifting aliens that fans have been begging to see on-screen for ages now. In this movie, Ben Mendelsohn plays their leader Talos, revealed to be up to no good on a sunny beach. Can a person even be up to no good on a sunny beach? Well, Talos is definitely going to try.
He won’t always be green-skinned and pointy-eared though. As you may have noticed from the “shape-shifting” part above, Kree can look like anybody, and Mendelsohn will be sticking to his human form as he goes undercover within S.H.I.E.L.D. for some nefarious purpose.
It has previously been revealed that Captain Marvel will be an adaptation of the famous Kree-Skrull War comic book story arc, but many fans, myself included, suspects that the film will be laying the groundwork for the next big Avengers story in Secret Invasion. In that miniseries it had been discovered that the Skrulls had secretly been kidnapping and then replacing key figures – including superheroes – for decades. Just like in the comics, this could be used in the movies to explain away any continuity errors or even to bring killed characters back from the dead.
That’s a long way off from now though – if it even happens at all. For now it’s all about Captain Marvel as Larson’s cosmic superhero – billed as the most powerful character the MCU has ever had – will be blasting into cinemas on 8 March.
Last Updated: September 6, 2018