Marvel’s Secret Invasion Ep 4 Review
Since the start of the Secret Invasion miniseries, a lot of fans have speculated on who in the show might secretly be a Skrull. One name kept coming up on the list of suspects on social media: Col. James “Rhodey” Rhodes, AKA War Machine. Many fans were convinced that Rhodey is sus, that he’s a Skrull working against humanity. As the end of last week’s episode proved, the fans were right! And that’s only the beginning of what Fury endures in this episode as he may have lost one of his closest allies…and friend.
Beyond that, though, this episode asks an important question of Fury and Talos: have they done what they wanted with their lives? Are they “beloved on the Earth?”
That will make more sense in a moment.
To Be Beloved on The Earth
Firstly, the episode starts off by revealing that G’iah is not dead. Contrary to speculation from our review of last week’s episode, though, that was G’iah that Gravik shot, not a decoy. She survived by using Gravik’s machine to imbue her with Extremis, giving her the healing factor needed to survive a bullet wound.
Following this revelation and the opening, a flashback to 2012 and the aftermath of Avengers takes place, with Fury and Varra discussing how he played a role in that. It’s another moment that helps humanize Nick Fury for MCU fans. That’s when Varra brings up the poem “Late Fragment” by the late Raymond Carver. The Heavy Spoilers channel on YouTube did an excellent job explaining its meaning in its video breakdown. Written shortly before his death from cancer in 1988, “Late Fragment” is Raymond asking himself if he did what he wanted to with his life, to be beloved, despite how it ended prematurely. Carver’s answer was yes, but for Fury and Varra, that remains to be seen.
That poem ties back into an underlying theme of Secret Invasion: have Fury and Talos done what they set out to do with their lives?
Have Fury and Talos Done What They Wanted to Do?
Have Fury and Talos done what they wanted to do with their lives? At one point, Fury might have said yes. As Director of S.H.I.E.L.D., he helped keep the Earth safe for decades. More importantly, he was the one who brought the Avengers together, and they went on to help save the universe from Thanos. However, he also saw S.H.I.E.L.D. fall apart, his friends and allies die or take different paths, and he couldn’t do anything to stop Thanos. Now his legacy’s marred by his failed promise to the Skrulls and the resulting fallout. He and Varra come close to shooting each other when the latter orders them to kill him.
Then, we have Talos, the father desperate to protect what’s left of his people. All he ever wanted was a safe home for Skrull-kind, but everyone’s lost faith in him. Even his daughter, when they reunite in this episode, calls him and his plans to show Earth the good they can do “delusional.” G’iah’s generation wants to be able to leave home every day looking like a Skrull rather than someone else; that’s why so many follow Grafik, despite how insane his plans are. So, has Talos failed at what he wanted to do in life? Given the events of the episode, he may not even know if that happens.
Rhodey is a Skrull and Gravik is a Super-Skrull
Now, for the big twist of the episode that fans suspected. The Rhodey we’ve seen in the series is, in fact, a Skrull imposter. He, or rather, she, is the Skrull everyone thought was G’iah from the promo. This revelation is sure to make fans rewatch previous works that featured Rhodey and guess as to how long the imposter’s been impersonating Rhodey. As a result of “Rhodey’s” status, they’re able to put the US President in a position where Gravik can assassinate him and blame it on Russia.
At first, that plan goes off without a hitch until Fury and Talos arrive. In the ensuing firefight, three major things occur that change the game. First, Gravik reveals that he’s already turned himself into a Super-Skrull, having given himself the Extremis Virus and the powers of Groot. Secondly, while trying to save the President, Talos gets shot, causing him to drop his disguise in full view of human forces. While Fury ultimately gets them to not shoot him, it may only be a matter of time before the existence of the Skrulls becomes public knowledge. While that would hamper Gravik’s plans, it could cost the Skrulls not on his side a home on Earth and create hysteria on a global scale.
The worst part, though, is that Talos may not even live to protect his people. Just to hurt him even further, Grafik stabs Talos in full view of Fury, who has no choice but to flee to save the President. Talos might now be dead!
Is Talos Really Going to Die a Failure?
So, to ask once more: will Talos die doing everything he could for his people, or will he go down in history as a failure? Will Fury be seen as a failure in the end? Given how the episode ends bleaker than ever, there’s no telling what might happen.
There’s still a chance that Talos might be alive, but it’s very slim. The bigger issue is what will happen to the Skrulls. If Gravik’s plans are exposed, then he might do something reckless and try to take Earth by force, potentially dooming their race. Fury is dealing with a lose-lose scenario, and he may not even be able to get out of it.
There are only two episodes left of Secret Invasion, and despite the criticism and low viewership, this series should be noticed. This could end up being the final act in the story of Nick Fury in the MCU, and given how important he is, that’s worth paying attention to.