In the end credits scene of Avengers: Infinity War, while witnessing chaos as people start vanishing into dust around him, Nick Fury, seeming to realize the gravity of the situation, immediately springs into action, racing against his own impending doom to send out a message to Captain Marvel. Now we finally get to meet the hero he called out to when the need was most dire.
The trailer for Captain Marvel dropped this morning and it finally gave us a look at the ultra-powerful hero and showed an MCU movie that looks and feels different than what we've seen before. The first trailer is light on plot details, but it is chock full of amazing moments that are worth taking a second look at as we begin the countdown to the arrival of Brie Larson's hero when Captain Marvel opens next year.
We heard that this would not be a traditional origin story, and the trailer makes that clear right away. After crashing to Earth and landing in a Blockbuster, we see Brie Larson's Captain Marvel walking, in her full Starforce uniform no less, through a metro station. But the strange looks from passers by are nothing compared to Carol Danvers' clear confusion as she looks around, trying to gauge her surroundings and where she has arrived. She is lost and confused, a stranger in a strange land. But she is a human, so why is Earth so foreign to her?
Thanks to Captain America: The First Avenger and Agent Carter, we know that S.H.I.E.L.D. has existed since World War II, but the Captain Marvel trailer gives us our first look at the agency in the 1990s. S.H.I.E.L.D. certainly doesn't seem to have helicarrier-level tech at this point, and that makes the contrast of power with the alien threat all the greater in this time period. S.H.I.E.L.D. appears to be operating out of an Area 51-esque hidden basement where we see Nick Fury, along with another man, witnessing the dissection of what appears to be a Skrull.
One fascinating aspect of this trailer is that it sets up Captain Marvel to be a first contact story as humanity (or at least S.H.I.E.L.D.) gets a first glimpse at the level of threats that are out there. The trailer shows an alien ship de-cloaking in our orbit. We don't know whether this ship is Kree or Skrull but it appears to be greeting a ship that is coming from Earth. No matter whom these two vessels belong to, it is clear that the alien threat will not be in some far off galaxy, but will be on our doorstep.
Nick Fury called this person when Thanos was busy wrecking shop on half the Avengers, so she needs to bring it, and thankfully we get a glimpse and just what kind of power Captain Marvel is packing. This trailer is light on her fighting but we do see her in action (in classic superhero fashion) on top of a train. She is using her photonic blasts that emit a concussive force of photon and stellar light energy from her hands at some unseen foe. This brief glimpse gives us an idea that she has some truly awesome and cool-looking powers.
Nick Fury narrates the whole trailer, and we also get to see Samuel L. Jackson's character onscreen meeting Captain Marvel. This Nick Fury is rocking binocular vision and a more youthful look thanks to de-aging technology. Younger Nick Fury is still cool as can be, not fazed or flustered when confronted with Captain Marvel's arrival. Based on his narration, he, in a very Murtaugh fashion, was ready to hang it up prior to meeting Captain Marvel. But this meeting and the events of this movie will send him down a path to becoming one of Earth's most important defenders.
Much of the Captain Marvel trailer is set on Earth but we know that a lot of the movie takes place in space. We get a little bit of that in one of the more intriguing shots in the trailer that shows Brie Larson's character on what I imagine is the Kree homeworld, Hala. Carol Danvers is looking out a window at a vast, technologically advanced cityscape with flying vehicles everywhere. It would seem that she calls Hala home, so it will be interesting to see how that allegiance may come into conflict with her true home of Earth.
Probably the most interesting point of discussion following this trailer will be Captain Marvel's memory. She seems to have lost her memory of who she is and where she comes from, and this trailer gives us a glimpse how it happens. Inside an alien structure, she is restrained upside down and some kind of energy is permeating her temples, erasing who she used to be and leaving only the soldier behind. We don't yet know why her memory was erased but she doesn't appear to be in pain or resisting in this shot, so I wonder if it was a choice.
Lee Pace's Ronan the Accuser didn't quite live up to expectations to be a menacing and memorable villain in Guardians of the Galaxy but the character gets another chance to make his mark in Captain Marvel. Ronan is a high judge and part of the Kree aristocracy, and in Guardians we saw him as a radicalized zealot, but here he will be a part of Starforce, as he was briefly in the comics. In the trailer, we see him on a ship, hammer in hand, looking out over what looks like the Earth, perhaps intensifying his beliefs in Kree superiority.
Carol Danvers may be a future Avenger, but in Captain Marvel she is a member of the elite Kree military arm, Starforce. The Starforce had a brief but important run in the comics during the Operation: Galactic Storm storyline and the Kree-Shi'ar war, where the loyal group was deceived about their true purpose. Here we see Captain Marvel walking along with her Starforce teammates, Algenis Perez Soto's Att-Lass and Gemma Chan's Minn-Erva, as they appear to be heading out on a mission. We also get a glimpse at Jude Law's mysterious Starforce leader, who may or may not be Mar-Vell.
The most surprising moment in the trailer comes when Captain Marvel is on a train and she looks down at a cute old grandma who smiles back up at her. Captain Marvel wipes the smile off her face with a mean right to the jaw. So what does Captain Marvel have against old people? Well, I think it is safe to say that granny is no granny at all, but a Skrull in disguise. The shape-shifting ability of the Skrulls creates for a tense, invasion atmosphere where even the most meek may really be wolves in sheep's clothing.
Perhaps even more exciting than getting to see a younger, two-eyed Nick Fury is the return of Clark Gregg's Agent Phil Coulson. The heroic agent from The Avengers hasn't been seen in the film side of the MCU since his temporary death in that film, but now he is back and like Nick Fury, he will get a major taste of what is out there. Knowledge that will likely instill his beliefs in the importance of S.H.I.E.L.D. Coulson is a fan favorite so it will be great to see this hero again, perhaps as the Riggs to Fury's Murtaugh.
When Nick Fury called for help in the end credits scene to Avengers: Infinity War, he did so using a pager. This seemingly antiquated technology obviously had some modifications done to it and the Captain Marvel trailer shows what appears to be that same pager, pre-modifications. Nick Fury sends out a page saying that he is with the target, but who he is sending it to and who the target is we know not. This also reminds us that, at least in the earthbound stuff, there probably won't be any cellphones, making communication less immediate and more of a challenge.
We know that when Captain Marvel starts, Carol Danvers will already have her powers and be off Earth. This trailer shows that the way we will find out the origin of this character will probably be via flashback. One of those flashbacks shows Carol Danvers, in a flight suit, taking a huge blast of energy full force. We also see a shot of her lying on the ground with energy swirling around her fingertips. This could be the moment she gains her powers. Historically, Carol Danvers is exposed to radiation from a Kree device. This radiation transforms her DNA, giving her powers.
This is it, the money shot. The end of the trailer gives us a glimpse at the true level of power lurking within Captain Marvel and it is incredible. The otherworldly energy is surging all around her and within her, even making her eyes glow with power. She looks like a Saiyan powering up to unleash everything in an intense battle. Not since Thor have we seen a hero with this sort of display of awesome power and it lets us know that this hero is exactly the kind of cavalry the Avengers need right now. Thanos should start sweating.