There are plenty of reasons to get excited about Marvel’s next Disney+ series, Secret Invasion. The cast is among the most impressive of any MCU show, the comic book storyline it’s based on is iconic, and Kyle Bradstreet (Mr. Robot) is the head writer. But all of that aside, Secret Invasion is one of my most anticipated MCU projects of Phase 5 because, like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, it doesn’t seem concerned with the Multiverse Saga.
At this point, I’m hopeful that Marvel can turn this saga around, but I am definitely not holding my breath. Not only has the Multiverse Saga been far less compelling and intelligible than the Infinity Saga, but now the studio has to decide what to do with Jonathan Majors.
With all of that looming, Guardians Vol. 3 succeeded by sidestepping the multiverse altogether. It was both a satisfying conclusion to James Gunn’s trilogy and a great standalone sci-fi adventure movie all at once. Most importantly, Marvel didn’t try to shoehorn any extraneous plotlines to set up the next five movies, as was the case in Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania.
Now, I’m well aware that Secret Invasion has already been shot and edited. Any lessons Marvel learned from the response to Guardians Vol. 3 won’t impact this series, but one thing that Secret Invasion has in common with Vol. 3 is its connection to the Infinity Saga. The story should tie up loose ends from Captain Marvel and Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Although there were a few stumbles, Phase 3 has been the pinnacle of the MCU so far. I’m optimistic that having Secret Invasion pick up where Phase 3 left off will give it a chance to remind us why so many of us fell in love with the MCU in the first place.
Plus, I’m fairly certain this show has far too much story to tell to worry about what Kang is doing. There’s a group of shapeshifting Skrull replacing people in positions of power all over the world. Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson), Talos (Ben Mendelsohn), and Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) are up against the Skrull rebel leader Gravik (Kingsley Ben-Adir), who has complicated matters by adding G’iah (Emilia Clarke), Talos’ daughter, to his ranks.
Toss in War Machine (Don Cheadle), and Everett Ross (Martin Freeman), and you have assembled some of the best actors of the MCU — few of which have seen much screen time since the Multiverse Saga kicked off. That’s where I think Secret Invasion will shine.
On the other hand, if Marvel is too desperate to set up The Marvels (which this show will do as well), then it could all fall flat. That balance is what Marvel has struggled to find in recent years, but here’s hoping it’s present in one of the few MCU projects remaining in 2023.
Secret Invasion premieres on Disney+ on June 21, 2023.