In the vast multiverse, there is a version of the MCU that does not feature the TV shows from before Disney+ such as Agents Of Shields and Inhumans. There is also a timeline that includes everything in the MCU as part of the sacred timeline, including those shows and other projects such as the “The Defenders Saga”. Which of those timelines is earth 616 is a matter of personal opinion at this time, but for the sake of this article, we will be discussing the latter, the timeline that would treat ABC’s Inhumans, AOS and Disney+’s Ms. Marvel as part of the same franchise.
One of the biggest reveals on AOS was that Daisy Johnson was an Inhuman, eventually becoming the superhero known as Quake. She even lead an Inhuman strike team alongside her teammate, Yo-Yo, another Inhuman. The Kree’s relationship and history with the Inhumans were explored, and while the Royal Family and Attilan never appeared, other famous Inhumans such as Flint played major roles on the show.
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For a brief period, it was a great time to be an Inhumans fan. They were appearing in dozens of books, with more Inhumans comics being announced seemingly every day. The TV show was on the way, arriving in IMax no less, and Agents Of Shield was doing some great work with the franchise on ABC. But eventually, AOS came to an end. The Inhumans TV series turned out to be not only a bad adaptation, but a bad TV show, and probably the worst product in the entire MCU. And of course, because the fanbase for Inhumans has never been large or notable, low sales lead to the cancellation of all of those Inhuman comics.
PHASE 4 REPRESENTS THE DEATH OF THE INHUMANS IN THE MCU
I wish that I could tell you that was the end of the story. That, in the wake of their failure, Marvel decided to take a step back and figure out how to tell a great Inhumans story in the modern era. That would have been nice. But that’s not the way things happened. In truth, Marvel decided to double down, and to dance on the graves of the Royal Family.
Modern-day Marvel Comics superstar Donny Cates wrote a 5-issue miniseries in 2019 called Death Of The Inhumans. It followed Black Bolt and the Royal Family’s last stand against the Kree empire, as their home and peoples were destroyed. Despite the misleading title, only a small handful of relevant Inhumans died. But just because the others survived, doesn’t mean they made it out OK. Marvel Comics used this miniseries as an opportunity to shelve almost every character in the Royal Family except for Lockjaw. I don’t expect to see any of them return to the world of Marvel comics in a meaningful way anytime soon.
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The most popular Inhuman of all time is Ms. Marvel. Her books received critical acclaim, as did her TV show, and she led the Square Enix Avengers video game. Kamala Khan was a byproduct of the forced Inhuman boom of the 2010’s, yes, but she was also their greatest success and the brightest light of hope for Inhumans fans in the modern era. At least, she was until the MCU decided that this version of Kamala Khan should be a mutant instead.
Yes, Marvel Studios outright admitted that even they believe that Inhumans and Mutants are interchangeable, displaying a complete lack of understanding and respect for the source material which they are adapting. While Black Bolt was not the only member of the incredibly powerful and supposedly intelligent 838 Illuminati to fall in battle against the Scarlet Witch rather foolishly (I’m looking at you, Charles and Reed), his return and death was unique because of his live-action origins.
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This was a multiversal version of Black Bolt, and therefore not the same character as the one seen on the ABC series. But it did feature Anson Mount reprising his role, as well as a brand new costume and massively impressed visual effects to showcase his incredible vocal power. Because the ABC TV series had been such a disappointment to Inhumans fans, Black Bolt’s appearance in Dr. Strange 2 was very exciting, leaving many wanting to see more of the Inhuman royal family, or curious about what the Black Bolt of the primary timeline is doing these days.
While it was never the responsibility of Ms. Marvel to reintroduce Inhumans to the general public on a bigger scale, there is no denying that it would have been an ideal avenue to due so. Especially considering that Kamala Khan was previously one of the most interesting Inhumans in Marvel’s library, and that she still has a connection to the Kree in the MCU.
Ms. Marvel could have been the Inhumans-centric TV series that brought the 616-Inhumans back into the fold and started repairing the years of damage that the MCU’s done to the franchise. Instead, it completely ignores Inhumans and reinvents Kamala’s backstory.
What a waste.
The good news, Inhumans fans, is that another amazing, relatively fresh Inhuman character is making her way to the small screen. Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur is an animated children’s show being developed for Disney Channel, set to release in 2023. It is an adaptation of the comic book of the same name, which stars Devil Dinosaur and Lunella Lafayette, a young black genius with Inhuman DNA. Of course, with the way things are going, perhaps Moon Girl will be a mutant in that show too, just like Kamala!
I sure hope not, but only time will tell.
On the MCU side of things, it is possible that a plan for the Inhumans is in the cards, but secret to the public at this time. Kevin Feige has never been one to show all his cards at once, and he has final say in what happens with these characters. Great civilizations like Wakanda and Atlantis have laid dormant in the MCU for years at a time, before returning to the universe in a big way. Perhaps Black Bolt, Medusa and all the people of Attilan are slated for a similar return someday, and we just don’t know it yet.
What do you think of the modern Inhumans franchise? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or on our social media!
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