Ever since the first trailer for Captain Marvel dropped, I've been holding my breath. Part of it was anticipation, part of it was trepidation. The trailer looked—well, let's go with "good," but it didn't necessarily look "fun" or "exciting." This happens often with Marvel films. The first trailer is the moody stakes-setter, while subsequent ones traffic more in excitement and witty banter. (The first Thor: Ragnarok trailer was a notable outlier.) But the first Captain Marvel trailer played it too close to the vest, opting for '90s nostalgia (a Blockbuster Video!) over big hero shots (maybe the CGI wasn't done?), and the minimal dialogue felt flat. Today, though, I'm no longer waiting to exhale.
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Last night, during the College Football Playoff National Championship, Marvel released the trailer—or, OK, "special look"—it should have dropped all along. Clocking in at exactly a minute and a half, it not only features Elastica's '90s alt-rock classic "Connection," but also has Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) dropping the kind of quips Captain Marvel is going to need to work. Because seriously, if you send Sam Jackson back in time to the 1990s and put him in a booth with someone who's not at least gently doing a Vincent Vega impression, what are you even doing with your movie? (Sure, Danvers says "that's a photon blast; a Skrull cannot do that" instead of "bacon tastes gooood, pork chops taste gooood…" , but you get my meaning.)
The latest trailer also finally reveals some of Mar-Vell's (Jude Law) role mentoring Carol Danvers, who believes she's Kree like him and not an Earthling, which she actually is . (It's complicated.) We see, through a painfully brief clip, that he's the one who helps Carol channel and deploy the aforementioned photon blast. He also calls on her to "let go" of her past—even if she can't remember it. There are even a few more seconds of Captain Marvel kicking the ass of that old lady (really a Skrull shapeshifter) on a public bus, in case you wanted to yell "WorldStar!" at your TV.
But more than anything, this trailer finally shows that Captain Marvel will have balance. There will be huge space fights (looks like those special effects are coming along!) and there will be the quick-draw humor that's kept Marvel's movies above the fray. You know, the kind of humor that Avengers: Infinity War was, for obvious reasons, very lacking. This, dear reader, might actually be a good time!
And really, this is what assuaged my fears and let the anxiety subside. There was a moment where it looked like Captain Marvel was being kept too under wraps. All Marvel flicks come with their share of secrecy, but the first trailer—and the general lack of early promo images—made it seem as though the film had something to hide. That, this time around, the studio might not have the goods. And that still is possible. When it comes out on March 8, Captain Marvel will be the final standalone (s)hero origin story before the completion of Phase 3; there is always an outside chance that this could be the one that goes off the rails. But right now, it looks like Captain Marvel saved the best for last. You'll just have to take her word for it.
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