By Nora Ali
“Captain Marvel” crushed the box office and Brie Larson flew higher, further, faster. But the internet, per usual, still wants to know more about Marvel’s latest superhero. Cheddar tackled the web’s most burning questions by typing “is Captain Marvel …” into Google’s search bar and answering the first queries that auto-completed. Here we go! Caution: Major spoilers ahead
Is Captain Marvel … gay in the new movie?
It’s possible. We don’t know for sure because, for the first time in a superhero movie, the lead character doesn't have a romantic interest! What a breath of female-power-driven fresh air. Even the only other female-led superhero movie, DC’s “Wonder Woman” featured a fling between its superhero (Gal Godot) and Steve Trevor (Chris Pine).
This doesn’t mean the door isn’t open for love: Captain Marvel director Anna Boden has said, “One day, I hope Captain Marvel finds somebody that is a good support for her, be that male or female.” In the comics, she does get together with James “War Machine” Rhodes, played by Don Cheadle in the Avengers movies.
Is Captain Marvel … a man?
Sometimes. In this movie, she’s a woman. The original Captain Marvel, who went by Mar-Vell was a man. But in several iterations over time, Captain Marvel has been embodied by both men and women.
Is Captain Marvel … the most powerful Avenger?
Yes. As Marvel President Kevin Feige said in 2016: “Her powers are off the charts, and when she’s introduced, she will be by far the strongest character we’ve ever had.”
Captain Marvel can fly, has superhuman strength, and can control photonic energy blasts from her hands. She also the ability to control gravity, radiation, and light.
Some have argued that Thor and the Hulk have an advantage in physical strength, but Captain Marvel seems to have the greatest sheer power to defeat her opponents.
Is Captain Marvel … the first Avenger?
Technically, yes. In “Captain America: The First Avenger,” released in 2011, Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) got his superhuman strength in 1942 but was then frozen until the movie’s present-day, when he met Nick Fury. So while Captain America got his powers at an earlier date, Captain Marvel was the first to meet Nick Fury, in the 1990s, and inspire him to create the Avengers.
In the “Captain Marvel” movie, the name “Avengers” came from Carol Danvers herself. Toward the end of the film, Fury spots Danvers’ call sign along the side of her plane as he is looking at old photos. It says Carol "Avenger" Danvers. (In the comics, her call sign was actually “Cheeseburger.”)
Is Captain Marvel … in “Avengers Endgame”?
Duh. We saw Fury page Marvel in the post-credits scene after “Avengers: Infinity War” ー just before he was vaporized by the Thanos “snap.” And in the mid-credits bonus scene for “Captain Marvel,” we see Captain America, Black Widow, Bruce Banner, and War Machine ー who all survived the snap ー waiting to interpret the signal on Fury’s pager. Captain Marvel appears and asks “Where’s Fury?” Then the movie screen literally says: “Captain Marvel will return in ‘Avengers Endgame.’” There are no doubts there, but another question remains: Can she stand up to Thanos?
Is Captain Marvel … Kree?
Debatable. As a reminder, Kree are a species from Hala, at war with Skrulls. In this iteration of Captain Marvel, Carol Danvers is born a human on Earth, but is saved by a blood transfusion from her Kree mentor, Yon Rogg (Jude Law), after she absorbs the energy from Dr. Wendy Lawson’s lightspeed engine. (Wendy is secretly a Kree on Earth.) This all makes Danvers bleed blue, like all Kree, but makes her sort of a human-Kree hybrid.
Is Captain Marvel … Shazam?
Actually, kind of. In the 1940s, Fawcett Comics created a story about Billy Batson, who turned into Captain Marvel when he cried “Shazam!” He had superhuman strength and worked as a reporter ー a notably similar set-up to DC Comics’ “Superman.”
DC took legal action against Fawcett, who eventually created a series called “Shazam” (with the protagonist still named Captain Marvel), then renamed the superhero Shazam decades after Marvel trademarked “Captain Marvel” themselves. Confusing.
Coincidentally, a “Shazam” movie, starring Zachary Levi, premieres in April 2019, less than a month after the release of “Captain Marvel. But don’t expect a crossover anytime soon: Shazam lives solidly in the DC Universe, while Captain Marvel lives in the Marvel Universe.