‘The Marvels’ Post-Credits Scene: What It Means For Marvel’s Future
The following post contains SPOILERS for The Marvels. Do not watch until after you have seen The Marvels. Maybe don’t read it even after that. You can never be too careful where spoilers are concerned.
The final trailer for The Marvels leaned heavily into the possibility of big Marvel cameos showing up out of nowhere in this movie. Title cards warned potential customers that if they didn’t see the film, they’d miss out on a “moment” that “changes everything.” It also included a line from Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury saying “they’re here” without revealing who they were supposed to be.
The line came after references to the multiverse and holes in reality, suggesting some recognizable characters from other universes may show up for the first time in the main Marvel Cinematic Universe. For Marvel nerds, the most obvious thing the studio could be teasing there is the debut of one of the two signature Marvel teams who had Fox film franchises but have yet to join the MCU proper: The Fantastic Four or the X-Men.
Well, that didn’t quite happen. And I don’t think any moment in The Marvels “changes everything” in the MCU. Buuuuut the film’s post-credits scene does feature the surprising debut of a beloved Marvel character who previously appeared (in somewhat different form) in a Fox Marvel movie.
To set the stage: The dramatic climax of the film sees the villainous Dar-Benn (Zawe Ashton) ripping a hole in the fabric of reality which Captain Marvel (Brie Larson), Ms. Marvel (Iman Vellani), and Monica Rambeau (Teyonah Parris) must work together to fix. Captain and Ms. Marvel blast their power into Monica, who then uses their combined abilities to sew reality back together. For whatever reason, Monica does this from the other side of the hole — i.e. the side that is in another reality separate from the main MCU. When she closes the hole, she remains trapped on the other side. Her friends mourn Monica as if she is gone, perhaps forever, but Marvel fans know this is “The Multiverse Saga” we’re watching, and that means she will back.
Sure enough, Monica returns before the closing credits even finish rolling. After the main closing titles appear, Monica reappears in a hospital bed. Sitting at her bedside is her mother, Maria Rambeau (Lashana Lynch), who was Captain Marvel’s best friend in Captain Marvel and made a brief appearance in a flashback earlier in The Marvels. In the main MCU, Maria died of cancer; in this alternate reality, she is somehow still alive — and she has super powers and is called “Binary,” one of the codenames that Carol Danvers has used in Marvel Comics through the years.
She’s not alone, either. Joining her in this high-tech hospital is Beast — the furry blue mutant and longtime member of the X-Men. Although the character is fully CGI, he’s voiced by Kelsey Grammer, who previously played Beast (that time in prosthetic makeup) in X-Men: The Last Stand.
Beast deduces that Monica comes from “a reality parallel to our own” and says that “Charles asked for an update” about her health — obviously referring to Charles Xavier, the head of the X-Men played in the Fox X-Men franchise (and recently in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness) by Patrick Stewart.
Does this “change everything”? That feels generous. But it does get the MCU one small step closer to fully introducing the X-Men, by far the most important Marvel property that the company’s own studio has yet to adapt to their big film and TV universe. This Marvels post-credits scene is still an alternate reality, meaning this version of Beast might never be seen again, or might only be seen in another brief cameo. But Marvel is building towards an Avengers: Secret Wars movie — and if the movie is anything like the comics, it will feature many different Marvel characters from many different alternate realities.
So Monica, Maria, and Beast could appear in that film in that context; as residents of this alternate universe where the X-Men are going full force and Binary is part of the team. (In the comics, there was a period where Binary spent a lot of time hanging out with the X-Men.) The next MCU movie is also Deadpool 3 — and it’s very possible that that film takes place in the same universe as this post-credits scene.
But that’s just one possible option. Marvel may not even know how this tag will pay off at this point — it could just be a way to give impatient fans a little hint of the X-Men without having to worry too much about the fine points.