Marvel’s Secret Invasion is now over as of a few days ago, and raised several questions during its six-episode run. Most of them we’ll have to see play out in other movies or shows in the coming years (probably), but one of the most important right now is: how long has Rhodey (Don Cheadle) been a Skrull? Following the show’s finale, director Ali Selim gave an answer to ComicBook that, to quote Hermes from Futurama, raises further questions.
According to Selim, the Skrull infiltrator Raava (Nisha Aaliya) hanging around as Rhodey since 2016's Captain America: Civil War. He cites Rhodey’s inability to walk in episode six as proof, since he ended up paralyzed during the events of that movie and required assistance walking when rescued from Skrull captivity. “From there,” Selim continued, “does it have to be definitive, or is it more fun for the audience to go back and revisit every moment, every Rhodey moment and look at it with a different lens now that they think, ‘Oh, he might’ve been a Skrull there.’ And make the decision for themselves, or it’ll be answered in Armor Wars.”
Take this for what it’s worth, because I’ve yet to watch the show (a decision that was apparently the right one), but the idea of a Skrull hanging around as Rhodey since 2016 doesn’t really work. If we go by his following appearances (the end of Civil War, both Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame, then Falcon & the Winter Soldier), there isn’t really anything in any of those to play at him being a double agent. Nothing in those movies is out of character—saying the Avengers should just time travel and murk Baby Thanos feels pretty on brand—and he’s not in Falcon long enough to make you think something’s up. And since Raava got killed in the finale, that means any definitive answers may be in an unrelated movie, which is deeply unsatisfying. It’s a twist for twist’s sake, and someone during production should’ve asked, “Are we doing this because it makes sense for the character, or because it be a potentially cool thing to end an episode on?”
Secret Invasion’s whole first-episode season is available in full over on Disney+.
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