Excitement is building for 2018's Captain Marvel, starring Brie Larson as the mightiest Marvel superhero of them all! But the big question for all fans is a simple one: How will the character be introduced? In The Mighty Captain Marvel #0, Marvel has taken the unprecedented step of rewriting the character's origin, and may be setting a precedent.
So without further ado, let's explore the possible ways Marvel could introduce this titanic new superhero to the MCU!
1. She Could Be Introduced As Carol Danvers, Rather Than Captain Marvel
As I've discussed elsewhere, Carol Danvers doesn't need superpowers — after all, she was a secondary character in Marvel Comics for almost a decade before she got them. Carol's military background is a major part of her backstory, and the MCU is full of opportunities to explore it. In Marvel's Ultimate Universe, Carol never had superpowers at all. Instead, she rose through the ranks and ultimately became director of S.H.I.E.L.D.
Interestingly enough, there was an early draft of Avengers: Age of Ultron that featured Captain Marvel. Kevin Feige, though, felt it wasn't appropriate:
"To me, it would have done that character a disservice, to meet her fully formed, in a costume and part of the Avengers already when 99% of the audience would go, ‘Who is that?’ It’s just not the way we’ve done it before.
"The way we reveal Scarlet Witch [in costume] at the end of the movie? Those were Captain Marvel plate shots. Joss [Whedon] said, ‘We’ll cast her later!’ And I said, ‘Yeah Joss, we’ll cast her later.'"
Feige clearly wants us to get an origin story, and Carol's background is perfect for an unusually long-form approach. A recent casting call teased that Brie Larson's character will be introduced in #InfinityWar, even though Captain Marvel co-writer Nicole Perlman has described her script as an origin story, so this approach seems very likely.
2. She Could To Be Tied To The Kree
Let's face it, the Kree are the go-to aliens for the MCU. Introduced in Guardians of the Galaxy, they've made their presence felt in Marvel Entertainment's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., where the Inhumans were created from their blood.
The Captain Marvel of the comics is essentially a Kree-human hybrid, possessed of vast power that was bestowed when an exploding alien artifact caused her DNA to be spliced with that of a Kree. Here's the catch, though: In order to get Carol tied to the Kree, we need them to increase their presence on Earth.
Here's where The Mighty Captain Marvel #0 completely changed Captain Marvel's origin, though. Carol Danvers was originally a background character in the superheroic journey of Kree character Captain Mar-Vell, and was empowered due to being in his presence when a Kree device known as the Psyche-Magnetron exploded. She actually bears the identity of Captain Marvel in honor of Mar-Vell! The Mighty Captain Marvel #0, though, retconned Mar-Vell's presence out of existence, and portrayed Carol as a NASA astronaut who was exposed to Kree energy while in space. Removing Mar-Vell from Carol's origin simplifies it, removing the 'alien granted her powers' aspect that Nicole Perlman felt was too similar to the origin of Green Lantern. It's a smart move, and hints at what Marvel Studios may yet do.
3. She Could Be Empowered In 'Avengers: Infinity War'
Like Ant-Man and the Wasp, Captain Marvel is sandwiched in a very unusual place — between Avengers: Infinity War and the as-yet-untitled Avengers sequel. Given that the recent casting call revealed that they're still being cast as a group, though, these films clearly lead into one another - and yet have a time-gap between them, as the #MCU runs in a chronological order.
This means that the cosmic events of Infinity War must result in a change in the status quo that will be explored by the next two films (and likely over in Marvel Entertainment's TV series, whatever that might entail). That change in the status quo will then be resolved by the sequel. It's unlikely to be anything so dramatic as Thanos winning and death conquering the universe, but he could decimate a large part of the world — destroying our favorite Avengers along the way. If that happened, the next two films would explore how the new superheroes stepped up in a world without Avengers.
Regardless, Carol Danvers gained her powers in a cosmic conflict, and it makes sense for Infinity War to be that conflict in question. Back in May, the Russo brothers made a slip-up that appeared to confirm at least part of this theory. The solo Captain Marvel film would then chart her rise to prominence as she strives to fill the void left by the Avengers.
With everything we know about the comics, here's what I think will happen. First, it's possible that Carol Danvers will enter the MCU in an earlier Marvel film - perhaps 2018's Black Panther, or one of 2017's three #Marvel movies.
- All The Evidence That Captain Marvel & The Defenders Will Appear in 'Avengers: Infinity War'
- Everything We Know About 'Captain Marvel' So Far!
- The Changing Fashions Of Captain Marvel
I'm expecting Carol Danvers to be empowered during Infinity War (the revised origin suggests she no longer needs the explicit involvement of the Kree). Her solo film will then see her step up to protect the world in the Avengers' absence. It would be a cool move, transitioning Carol Danvers from a background character to a powerful superhero in her own right. In the end, it would be a unique take on the long form storytelling Marvel's used in its films before.