We’re a few weeks away from the introduction of Brie Larson’s Marvel superhero, Captain Marvel, in the MCU movie named after the powerful being. And we expect CAPTAIN MARVEL to answer a lot of burning questions we’ve had about this warrior ever since it was revealed that she’d be part of the growing Marvel Cinematic Universe.
AMC has brought you so much information from the set of CAPTAIN MARVEL, but there are still two major questions that we need addressed by the upcoming Marvel movie when it opens in March — especially because CAPTAIN MARVEL guides the overall MCU story directly into AVENGERS: ENDGAME. Let’s start with the most obvious one.
Where Has Captain Marvel Been?
Officially, Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) was referenced at the very end of 2018’s AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR. In the post-credits scene, as he faded to dust, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) used a pager device to summon assistance. The logo that showed up on screen belonged to Captain Marvel, setting the stage for March’s solo origin story adventure.
So, where the heck has she been all of this time?
Why didn’t Nick Fury call for Captain Marvel, aka Carol Danvers, when aliens were attacking Manhattan in THE AVENGERS? Or when Ultron was lifting an entire nation and threatening to drop it back on the surface of the Earth in AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON?
There has to be a reason, and we’re speculating that it’s because of where Carol has been that prevented Nick Fury from ever calling her before. As we expect to learn in CAPTAIN MARVEL, Carol Danvers was a former Air Force pilot who now fights at the side of the Kree, a militaristic race of aliens who police the galaxies. Because of her role as a space captain, Captain Marvel quite literally could be anywhere in the universe and be completely unaware of what is happening on Earth. We think that by the end of CAPTAIN MARVEL the hero’s connection to Earth will be re-established. But it’s likely she has been on missions in the deepest reaches of space as Nick Fury was putting together the Avengers Initiative with Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson).
There also have been theories that Captain Marvel could have been trapped in one of two mysterious locations: the Quantum Realm (as referenced in ANT-MAN AND THE WASP) or one of the Infinity Stones. We think the latter is bogus, as we have now seen all of the Infinity Stones in action. But INFINITY WAR did suggest that Gamora now resides in the Soul Stone, so anything is possible.
As for when CAPTAIN MARVEL takes place, its setting raises yet another important question.
Why Is Captain Marvel Set in the 1990s?
There have been flashbacks in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. We’ve seen young Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) and the early days of the Winter Soldier (Sebastian Stan). But not since CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER has an entire movie been set in an earlier period in the MCU timeline.
So, why is CAPTAIN MARVEL set in the 1990s?
The answer likely will be waiting for us in the movie. Setting it before GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY allows co-directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck to use existing characters like Ronan (Lee Pace) and Korath (Djimon Hounsou). And Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige has talked about how he likes tapping into the nostalgic motif of the 1990s. See the Blockbuster Video as a location and Carol wearing a Nine Inch Nails T-shirt as examples.
But there’s a fun theory that there’s a bigger reason for setting CAPTAIN MARVEL in a time before Nick Fury recruited Tony Stark to help him form the Avengers.
There’s a popular Marvel Comics storyline called “Secret Invasion.” And in it, the Skrulls — the shape-shifting villains that will be introduced in CAPTAIN MARVEL — replace recognizable Marvel superheroes. Numerous heroes were revealed to be Skrulls in disguise. While that’s not expected to be a plot point of CAPTAIN MARVEL, what if the hint of the possibility is established, so it can be picked up in a later MCU movie? What if it’s revealed that some major character who we have followed in the MCU for years has actually been a Skrull, hiding in plain sight? It could be someone like General Thaddeus E. “Thunderbolt” Ross (William Hurt). It could even be someone as important as Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner).
This would explain the significance of placing CAPTAIN MARVEL ahead of the formation of the Avengers as a super team, because it would change how we view everything that has happened in the MCU to date and set the story on a dangerous course for future movies.
Again, we will know a lot more once CAPTAIN MARVEL opens at AMC on March 8. Be sure to grab tickets to opening weekend, because they’re going to disappear quickly.