Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS for Spider-Man: Far From Home!
One of Spider-Man: Far From Home's biggest revelations is that Talos (Ben Mendelsohn), the Skrull who was last seen becoming an ally of Captain Marvel (Brie Larson), was impersonating Nick Fury all along! Spider-Man: Far From Home's second end-credits scene casually dropped the major bombshell that fans weren't watching the real Nick Fury or Maria Hill in the movie and it was always Talos and his wife Soren (Sharon Blynn) portraying the ex-honchos of S.H.I.E.L.D. But this begs the question: how long has Talos been posing as Fury?
Talos and the real Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) joined forces in Captain Marvel when the Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D. and Carol Danvers helped the Skrulls against the Kree. The last time Talos was seen before Spider-Man: Far From Home, Carol was escorting him and the rest of the Skulls into deep space aboard Mar-Vell's laboratory to locate a new homeworld for the Skrulls. But those events happened in 1995; Spider-Man: Far From Home is set in 2024 (just a few months after the events of Avengers: Endgame), almost three decades later. So, clearly a lot has changed and Talos returned to Earth sometime within the interim 29 years. But when, exactly, did he step into the role of Nick Fury?
In Spider-Man: Far From Home's end-credits scene, Fury and Hill are seen driving and, content that they now enjoy privacy in their car, they both revert back to their original Skrull forms as Talos and Soren. Talos admits embarrassment that he completely believed the lies and illusions of Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal), which is especially damning considering he's a shapeshifter who trades in deception. Finally, Talos contacts the real Fury and files his report; the Skrull glosses over his own screw-ups in the debacle between Mysterio and Spider-Man (Tom Holland) before urging the Fury to relieve him of his duty as "Nick Fury". When the super spy received the message, he ended his vacation aboard a space ship and urged the Skrulls aboard to get back to work.
But the question remains: how long has Talos been posing as Fury on Earth? Talos mentioned that Fury is on a "mission" in outer space that likely has something to do with the Kree sleeper cells hiding on the Terran homeworld. So did Talos and Fury swap places when Fury began this mission? Since Spider-Man: Far From Home is set 8 months after Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) used Iron Man's Infinity Gauntlet to reverse 'The Blip', which is what Thanos' snap is now called, it's possible Fury set his new plan involving the Skrulls immediately after he was seen at the funeral of Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.). Which means that Talos has been incognito as Fury for up to 8-months after Avengers: Endgame.
However, it's also possible that Talos has been on Earth and pretending to be Nick Fury for much longer than that. Assuming the real Fury formed the Avengers in 2012, a potential point where Talos could have doubled him is when Nick Fury went into hiding after the events of 2014's Captain America: The Winter Soldier; the one-eyed spy next appears with Maria Hill and a S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier a year later in Avengers: Age of Ultron - but there's a chance that could already be Talos and Soren in the roles. (After all, Fury eats a diagonally-cut sandwich in Age of Ultron, something he swore in Captain Marvel he never does.) After Age of Ultron, Fury isn't seen again in the MCU until the end credits of Avengers: Infinity War when he and Hill get dusted by Thanos' snap - but what if that was Talos and Soren in disguise who actually died at that moment and it was Talos who used Fury's beeper to summon Captain Marvel? (If so, maybe the real Fury didn't die in the Decimation.)
Of course, there aren't enough hard facts yet to resolve this mystery, but now that the cat's out of the bag that Talos poses as Fury, it's natural for fans to now question whether it was really Talos-as-Fury in the spy's MCU appearances that occur after Captain Marvel's 1995. But since Spider-Man: Far From Home sets up Phase 4 of the MCU, hopefully, fans will soon find out how long Fury and Talos have been perpetrating their ruse and what Fury's mission with the Skrulls aboard the space station is.