Captain Marvel Mutant: Shocking MCU theory has become more likely

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This article contains spoilers for Ms. Marvel episode 6.

Ms. Marvel episode 6 makes one popular theory, that Captain Marvel is secretly a mutant, far more likely. Carol Danvers has long been associated with the X-Men in the comics. In fact, for a time she practically served as one of the mutants when she operated under the superhero codename “Binary,” fighting alongside the X-Men in some of their more spectacular space battles. Not all her relationships with the X-Men have been positive, of course; Captain Marvel’s first encounter with Rogue left her in a coma, while Emma Frost will never forgive Captain Marvel for failing to support the mutants after the genocide on Genosha.

This historic connection naturally made many viewers curious when The Wakanda Files (an in-universe book supposedly written by Shuri as she considered the MCU’s superhumans) hinted that Infinity Stones had unlocked latent powers in Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. It reveals Hydra chose to conduct their experiments in Sokovia because they had observed a number of genetic anomalies among the Sokovians, leading them to believe they would be perfect test subjects. This led to some speculation Captain Marvel was also a mutant, her powers unlocked by the Tesseract rather than granted by it.

Related: We’re Totally Getting An X-Men Announcement At SDCC Now, Right?

Mutants are now officially part of the MCU, specifically name-dropped in Ms. Marvel episode 6 – and with a riff on the classic X-Men: The Animated Series theme tune playing in the background. There’s a degree of irony to the implication Ms. Marvel is a mutant, because in the comics she’s an Inhuman, created at a time when Marvel was trying to make Inhumans bigger than the X-Men. It seems history has not been kind to that plan; Ms. Marvel is currently the only ongoing comic book featuring an Inhuman, and now she’s been transformed into a mutant in the MCU as well. But the way it has been done suggests she may not be the only mutant in the MCU.

Ms. Marvel Sets Up A Captain Marvel Mutant Retcon

Ms. Marvel episode 6 sets up Ms. Marvel as the first official MCU mutant. According to Bruno, Kamala Khan’s family asked him to check out her DNA in more detail because they wanted to know whether they had potential superpowers as well. Bruno swiftly noticed a key difference between Kamala’s DNA and that of her family, and he described it with a keyword – stating that it was a “mutation.” The word choice was deliberate, because until Disney acquired the bulk of Fox’s film and TV empire in 2019, “mutant” was a banned word in the MCU. Ms. Marvel star Iman Vellani was well aware of the scene’s significance, recalling sending Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige an all-caps email when she heard the news asking if he was sure because she was so excited.

The end of Ms. Marvel season 1 aligns perfectly with the theory that suggested Captain Marvel, Quicksilver, and potentially even Scarlet Witch were secretly all mutants. In Kamala Khan’s case, there is indeed something unique about her genetic code – a latent gene of some kind that was activated by an external energy, granting her superhuman powers. This could potentially fit with the pattern of other characters who gained powers after being exposed to alien energy, albeit in their cases from Infinity Stones.

What Captain Marvel Being A Mutant Means For The MCU

Should Marvel take this approach, it would retcon mutants into the history of the MCU all along. Hydra could have learned of the specific genetic markers through studying Captain Marvel, trying to figure out the secret of her powers. This would mean Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel have more in common than either would ever have thought, in that both are mutants. If that were the case, it would raise the possibility that The Marvels – the sequel to Captain Marvel, which features both characters – is really all about the MCU’s mutants. Appropriately enough, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige first announced Captain Marvel 2 at San Diego Comic-Con 2019, also telling audiences the studio had “pretty much settled” on how exactly it would introduce mutants into the shared universe. Ms. Marvel was officially confirmed to be in the works shortly afterwards.

Related: Ms. Marvel Finale MCU Easter Eggs & References

Could Monica Rambeau Also Be A Mutant In The MCU?

The Marvels will feature another character who’s traditionally been associated with the “Captain Marvel” title in the comics, Teyonah Parris’ Monica Rambeau. As seen in WandaVision, like Captain Marvel and Ms. Marvel, Monica gained her powers after being exposed to an external energy – in her case the Hex, the magical energy field cast around the town of Westview by Scarlet Witch. It’s always seemed rather odd that Monica seems to have been the only one who gained superpowers as a result of this exposure. It could be, however, that she too has that unique latent gene – one that was activated at Westview.

It’s actually possible Marvel is switching up mutants a little in the MCU, and that – initially at first – they will be called “Marvels.” There have been rumors Marvel is working on a film called The Mutants, and these reports could have been garbled references to The Marvels itself. If that is indeed the case, then Ms. Marvel episode 6 revealsCaptain Marvel as a mutant in the MCU – the first of a whole wave of them.