The Marvel Cinematic Universe is crawling with Skrulls, and that includes the new trailer for Loki on Disney+. The new Marvel show hasn’t started streaming, but already it’s planted seeds for the upcoming Marvel series, Secret Invasion.
But what are Skrulls doing in Loki, and why are they out in plain sight instead of hiding like they normally do?
What Happened? — Earlier this week, Marvel Studios released the trailer for Loki, set to begin streaming on June 11 after the end of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier. At the start of the trailer, Loki is escorted into the Time Variance Authority (TVA) where a lone Skrull in an Adidas track suit stands idly. You can see this Skrull at the 0:08 mark.
The Skrull in Loki isn’t individually identified, nor do they seem “important” in any way. But they are a Skrull nonetheless. And Skrulls are about to become a big deal with the future Marvel series Secret Invasion, which is reportedly scheduled to begin filming this month.
Is Loki setting up the pieces for Secret Invasion? And if so, what will Loki have to do with their imminent invasion?
The Not-So-Secret Invasion — Announced at Disney Investor Day last December, Secret Invasion is a new Marvel series coming soon to Disney+, likely in 2022. The show will pick up a narrative that started in the 2019 film Captain Marvel and continued in the post-credits scene of Spider-Man: Far From Home and the finale of WandaVision. The show’s confirmed stars so far are Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury and Ben Mendelsohn as his Captain Marvel character Talos.
The series will be a loose adaptation of the 2008 Marvel crossover comic of the same name, Secret Invasion. In the story by Brian Michael Bendis, a number of heroes in the Marvel Universe “unmask” themselves as the shapeshifting alien Skrulls. Little is known about the streaming version of Secret Invasion other than what has been teased thus far: Skrulls are hiding in plain sight throughout the MCU, and soon they will reveal themselves in grand fashion.
What’s weird about Loki is how there’s already one Skrull in their true form, just chilling out in the TVA lobby. While Skrulls are working overtime to hide on Earth, it appears that the TVA — which resides in the “Null-Time Zone,” a place that operates outside the normal rules of time and space — is a safe zone of sorts for Skrulls where they don’t need to hide their faces.
There’s nothing else in the Loki trailer that deals with Skrulls. It is, to be expected, all about Loki, in which the Asgardian trickster zig-zags from renaissance faires to alien planets (including one that looks a lot like Vormir). Spotted in the trailer is another figure who bears a resemblance to Black Widow, though even fans have doubts that Scarlett Johansson is reprising her role in Loki. And even if that is Black Widow in Loki, she could still be a Skrull.
The Inverse Analysis — Secret Invasion is shaping up to be a big event series for Marvel on Disney+, even more so than buzzy shows like WandaVision. With several instances of seed planting, Secret Invasion is bound to have grave importance for the MCU if Marvel is going out of its way to promote the show in other Disney+ shows. The premise of Secret Invasion could potentially have far-reaching ramifications for the MCU as familiar heroes may turn out to be Skrulls. (In other words: Prepare for cameos aplenty.)
As for Loki, the mere fact that a single Skrull is hanging out in human clothing shows that Earth is where Skrulls are looking to target. When it’s at the TVA, which seems about as exciting as the DMV, the Skrulls care less about keeping up the ruse.
Loki will begin streaming on Disney+ on June 11.