Warning: Spoilers lie ahead for Captain Marvel and much of the MCU.
Captain Marvel has arrived in theaters after critical responses ranging from mostly positive to just fine, and now, it’s up to theatergoers to decide how many dollars it will make on opening weekend. The credit scenes held revelations, and there’s a fitting Stan Lee tribute at the beginning that drew unquestionable applause. However, mixed reactions are flying after the confirmation of a rather incredible fan theory involving the demise of one of Nick Fury’s peepers.
Let’s refresh briefly. in 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Fury mysteriously told Steve Rogers, “Last time I trusted someone, I lost an eye.”
The identity of that “someone” was never clarified in the MCU, so that’s been a point of mild contention for years. In the comics, the official explanation is that one of Fury’s eyes was minimally damaged by a grenade during World War II, and he slowly lost use of the organ over decades. However and in the first Captain Marvel trailer, a digitally de-aged, 1990s-era Fury wasn’t wearing his omnipresent eye patch, although he was sporting a bandage over an eyebrow, which felt like foreshadowing. Fury also he revealed himself to be a cat person, and this set the speculation in motion that Goose the Cat was tied to the long-standing MCU question about exactly how the veteran S.H.I.E.L.D. operative suffered injury to that peeper.
Further speculation surrounded Goose’s likely status as a flerkin, an alien life form who is capable of tearing some sh*t apart and creating pocket universes inside its own body. Indeed, the film made a point of including dialogue (uttered by Skrull leader Talos) that clarified Goose’s flerkin-dom, and we saw him spew octopus-looking tongues and swallow the Tesseract (which he later vomited), and yes, he did the deed. Fury’s eyebrow got banged up during a car wreck, but Goose definitely sliced up the corresponding eyeball near the end of the film.
When that paw unleashed hell on Fury’s face, audience members gasped in my theater. This reaction was swiftly followed by much laughter, and on Thursday night, Goose’s actions quickly surfaced on social media.
Well, the Twitter responses have been mixed, to say the least, with some folks expressing shock and disappointment over the departure from comic book lore.
However, many people found the revelation to be absurdly hilarious, given that the take-no-bullshit Fury lost literal face to a cat. Also, what will the Avengers think if and when they find out?
Still, others were not pleased to see Fury “reduced to a joke.”
This doesn’t even begin to touch the bizarre film moment described below, and really, what was up with this scene?
At the end of Captain Marvel, Agent Phil Coulson and Fury come to an “official” consensus going forward, which is that a Kree burned Fury’s eye out after he refused to give up the Tesseract. Uh-huh. Well, the eye-related debate shall surely continue to rage, but now we know (from the post-credits scene) that Captain Marvel will definitely be in Avengers: Endgame. Will Goose come along for the ride, and will we see Rocket Raccoon freak out in the process? April 26 can’t arrive soon enough to answer that question.