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7 interesting facts about the MCU series Secret Invasion

The alien invasion is upon us. It’s impossible to know who is actually a human and who is a Skrull, as these shape-shifting extraterrestrials have infiltrated key controls in leadership across the Earth in a bid to control the planet. At least, that’s the case in the upcoming Disney+ and Marvel Studios series Secret Invasion, which is easily one of the most anticipated shows of 2023. We last left Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) operating alongside Talos (Ben Mendelsohn), a Skrull with a more virtuous outlook who is only seeking to protect his family and his own kind. Now, Fury leads a rather familiar crew to protect Earth from dissident Skrulls who seek to use their biological gifts to take control of Earth.

Secret Invasion will see the return of Fury’s closest ally and operative, Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders), alongside Martin Freeman’s Everett Ross. James “Rhodey” Rhodes (Don Cheadle) will even play a substantial role in the series as he will ultimately experience conflict between his duty as a serviceman in military leadership and his natural instincts and moral code. There will be plenty to explore in the world of Marvel with this thrilling six-episode series.

Secret Invasion is based on the comic series of the same name

Secret Invasion Omnibus cover written by Brian Michael Bendis
Image used with permission by copyright holder

This might be a no-brainer, at least for tried-and-true Marvel and comic book fans. Of course, there is a Secret Invasion comic book miniseries. Why wouldn’t there be? Just about every major event in the MCU is named after or based on a storyline from Marvel comics. This eight-issue series written by famed comic book writer Brian Michael Bendis features many major heroes including Iron Man, Black Widow, Wolverine, and even the Fantastic Four. But, of course, those first two heavy hitters are now deceased in the MCU. And it’s unlikely that, outside of a cameo or small role, we are going to see many other major heroes. This is the Nick Fury show.

The Disney+ Secret Invasion series will, however, borrow the basis of a Skrull invasion from the comics as they use their shape-shifting abilities to infiltrate major positions of leadership and defense across Earth. So, if you want a reading companion to enjoy alongside the TV series, look no further than this graphic novel.

Nick Fury’s war with invisible forces

Captain America Winter Soldier 6
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This isn’t the first time the MCU has barked up the spy-thriller tree.Given the premise, this series becomes a “who can Nick Fury trust?” scenario. Rogue Skrulls with a penchant for embodying humans in positions of power are expertly disguised thanks to their physiology. But you may recall that Fury, alongside Captain America and other Marvel heroes, once found themselves in this same predicament.

Captain America: Winter Soldier proved to be a major event in the MCU as Hydra’s infiltration into every key component of world leadership, and even the unbreakable S.H.I.E.L.D. agency, was revealed. It was a key moment that resulted in the demise of the agency in the MCU. Fury and Hill, among others, became fugitives and off-the-grid operators fighting for their own causes. Because the events of Winter Soldier proved to have ramifications for the greater MCU, one can only wonder what impact the Skrulls’ infiltration will have on the world at large.

A descendant of the Howling Commandos?

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Secret Invasion will debut the character of MI6 Special Agent Sonya Falsworth, portrayed by Oscar winner Olivia Colman (The Favourite, Empire of Light). While she doesn’t seem to have direct inspiration from the world of Marvel comics, there is something rather peculiar about her surname. In fact, if you have a habit of paying close attention to detail within the MCU, you’ll recognize that surname as one carried by a former ally of Captain America during WWII. James Montgomery Falsworth (aka Union Jack) is a British soldier who became a part of the Howling Commandos that aided Cap in his fight against Red Skull and HYDRA.

There’s an implication here that the MI6 agent who apparently is a close ally and old friend of Fury’s is connected to the Howling Commandos, likely as a direct relative of James Montgomery Falsworth. It’s a small world, after all.

Emilia Clarke portrays Talos’ daughter

Emilia Clarke uncovers a secret in Marvel's Secret Invasion.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Game of Thrones alum Emilia Clarke is taking her first steps into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Her debut into this world sees her portray Gi’ah, Talos’ daughter. In 2019’s Captain Marvel, we were able to see the young Talos’ family, including an unnamed daughter, hiding aboard a space station as refugees. It’s likely that Gi’ah was this youngster at the time when Fury and Captain Marvel helped fight to secure the safety of these refugees from the militant Kree.

But a lot of time has passed, and it seems that Gi’ah has grown distant and resentful over the treatment of the Skrulls. Secret Invasion is bound to portray her as one who is conflicted over her allegiance toward her own feelings and that of her father.

The absence of the Avengers

Samuel L. Jackson in Secret Invasion.
Marvel Studios

Like it or not, we’re currently existing in an MCU that is operating without the Earth’s mightiest heroes banded together. After all, the last time we really saw the Avengers in action was Avengers: Endgame — a film in which both Black Widow and Iron Man perished while Captain America laid down his shield for good. News of a new team assembling hasn’t been addressed in any of the subsequent MCU productions since the battle with Thanos.

The comic book basis for Secret Invasion may feature a multitude of heroes, but even the early trailers hint that the Avengers are not in play. In one particular trailer, a voice-over line states, “Where are the Avengers?” Nick Fury replies,” This is one I have to fight. Alone.” Whether a new team is in the making or not, it’s clear that the Avengers won’t play a role in this world-threatening scheme enacted by a rogue extraterrestrial element. This is all on Fury and his closest allies.

The first series of Phase 5

Nick Fury enters a crypt in Secret Invasion.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

It’s hard to keep track of MCU Phases anymore, isn’t it? At least the first three phases of films were each capped off with an Avengers ensemble film. But, believe it or not, Phase 4 actually ended rather unceremoniously with the release of Black Panther: Wakanda Forever. The fifth phase in the MCU began with the first major Marvel film of 2023, Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.

That also means that Secret Invasion is the first Disney+ series of the new phase that will eventually include a second season of Loki and What If…? — as well as new series Echo, Ironheart, Agatha: Coven of Chaos, and Daredevil: Born Again.

Mr. Robot’s creators also made Secret Invasion

Mr. Robot on Amazon Prime
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Do you remember Mr. Robot? Of course, you do. It was the ultrapopular and critically acclaimed sci-fi series featuring Rami Malek (Bohemian Rhapsody) as Elliot Alderson, a cybersecurity engineer who fancies himself as a vigilante hacker. While often struggling with mental and emotional distress, Alderson follows the lead of anarchist Mr. Robot (Christian Slater) in a bid to take down bigger fish.

It just happens that the executive producer and notable writer from that series, Kyle Bradstreet, is leading the charge in the production of Secret Invasion. He is credited with adapting the series for television, being a key writer, and serving as executive producer of the Marvel series. Mr. Robot was ultimately known for it’s espionage and thriller themes that will no doubt be carried over into the spy-centric landscape of Secret Invasion. Bradstreet’s talent for crafting thrilling drama is proven already, which bodes well for the latest Marvel series.

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Christopher Hinton
Chris is a passionate and creative writer whose abiding fondness for cinema, video games, television, novels, and comic books…
5 Marvel comics to read before you watch Secret Invasion
A group of Skrulls impersonating the Avengers on the cover of "Secret Invasion" #1.

Marvel Studios is set to reshape its cinematic universe with its upcoming Disney+ series, Secret Invasion. This streaming event will show the legendary Nick Fury returning to Earth to stop a sect of shape-shifting Skrulls from taking over world governments from the inside.

This sci-fi spy thriller is sure to be a darker and more unpredictable new chapter for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and it's anyone's guess what could happen. To prepare for what's to come, fans should take a look at these five comics depicting the Skrulls and their impact on the world of Marvel.
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