Even to die-hard Marvel Comics fans, Jack Kirby’s The Eternals is a deep cut series. But thanks to their upcoming movie, the MCU is about to make the family of immortals into household names. But could The Eternals also be setting the stage for the MCU introduction of Marvel’s biggest team franchise, the X-Men? In this installment of Nerdist Now, Dan Casey explores the theories which link these ancient beings to the birth of Marvel’s mutant nation. Watch:
The theory posited by fans on reddit suggests that mutants already exist in the MCU. It’s just that no one has realized it yet. This is due to the mutants possibly being the result of genetic tampering by the Celestials, Marvel’s ancient race of all-powerful beings. We saw them briefly in Guardians of the Galaxy. This theory, however, has roots deep in the lore of the comics themselves.
Way back in 1976, Jack Kirby Eternals #1 explains how the ancient godlike Celestials visited Earth millions of years ago. They performed experiments on early hominids, creating three distinct species: the super powered Eternals, the monstrous Deviants, and baseline humans. But over the years, different writers at Marvel have explained how the Celestials planted an “X-gene” in regular humans. One of which would eventually activate over thousands of years. This is how Homo sapiens evolve into Homo superior, a.k.a. mutants.
Marvel Studios might have planted the seeds for this eventual reveal already in fact. A Screen Rant report noticed how the official Marvel Studios Visual Dictionary retconned Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver’s powers. It reveals that their abilities are the result of the Infinity Stones altering or activating something latent inside the twins. Our first clue to the latent X-gene perhaps? Avengers: Endgame reveals that the Infinity Stones unleashed a wave of gamma radiation—one which unlocked the potential powers of thousands of otherwise ordinary humans. Kevin Feige may have planned to introduce mutants into the MCU going way back. If so, then well played sir. Well played.
Featured Image: Marvel Comics