Theory: The Skrulls Unlock Captain Marvel's Powers And Change Her Suit
The Captain Marvel trailers have included a number of scenes in which Captain Marvel is restrained in some sort of advanced device, held upside-down as unknown energy is projected into her temples. Until the second trailer, it had been assumed that this was some sort of Kree memory-modification device, and that it explained Carol's amnesia. Significantly, though, the second Captain Marvel trailer showed a Skrull stood next to the machine, not a Kree. It looks as though, at some point, Carol Danvers will either surrender to, or be captured by, the Skrulls - and they will subject her to an unknown technology.
Comic book fans will find the device eerily familiar. It's very much reminiscent of a similar machine used on Carol Danvers in the comics, back in Uncanny X-Men #163. That issue saw Carol experimented on by an alien race known as the Brood, who claim human beings as hosts. They were fascinated by Carol's unique DNA matrix, which was neither human nor mutant; curious to see what their potential host could become, they irradiated her cells with energy to literally evolve the hero to her maximum potential. The Brood experiments unlocked Captain Marvel's Binary powerset, thus making Carol Danvers more powerful than she had ever been before. The same powerset is glimpsed in the second trailer, most famously associated by flares of energy streaming from Captain Marvel's hair. This simply can't be a coincidence; whatever this machine is, it seems safe to assume it will grant her the Binary powers. Presumably the Skrulls will also give her a new costume at the same time; either that, or the energies Carol Danvers is being irradiated with transform the uniform's fabric.
In the comics, it made sense for the Brood to accelerate Carol's evolution; they believed she would become their host, and that they would thus gain any additional powers they unlocked. But, in the MCU, why would the Skrulls give Captain Marvel a power-up? There's only one reasonable explanation; that the Skrulls aren't the villains in Captain Marvel after all.
The Kree Are The Villains, Captain Marvel's New Suit Rejects Them
It's already clear that the central theme of Captain Marvel is deception, and it's generally believed that the Kree have been manipulating the amnesiac Carol Danvers into working for them. Is it possible that literally everything Carol knows is a lie? Far from being a race of "noble warrior heroes," have the Kree deceived Captain Marvel into helping them pursue an innocent race who have already been defeated and who are simply using their shapeshifting powers to seek sanctuary? That would explain why there are no scenes of Captain Marvel battling the Skrulls while in the red outfit. She's realized they're not the villains - the Kree are.
The plot of Captain Marvel clearly revolves around Carol Danvers trying to discover the secrets of her own past. Significantly, in one scene in the second trailer Ben Mendelsohn's Skrull leader Talos asks Carol if she wants to know what she really is. That raises the possibility that, even as they enhance Carol's powers, the Skrulls also reverse the Kree memory-modifications. Indeed, it's possible the device they're using on Carol does that in addition to unlocking her Binary powers; notice the energy around Captain Marvel's temples, which could reflect a healing of her mind.
Circling back to the costume, this theory neatly explains why Carol Danvers will decide to ditch the colors of the Kree Starforce. She realizes that she's been betrayed, and that the Kree aren't the heroes she believed them to be. As a result, Captain Marvel takes up a far more individualistic uniform; she retains the Hala Star in honor of the principles she has dedicated her life towards, but ditches the colorscheme because she no longer honors the principles of the Starforce. Instead of serving as an agent of the Kree, Captain Marvel's Carol Danvers has decided that she will not fight in their wars any longer. Rather, she will end them.
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- The Avengers 4 / Avengers: Endgame (2019) release date: Apr 26, 2019
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019