Ever since Thanos snapped half the universe from existence at the end of Avengers: Infinity War, we’ve been waiting a long, long time for word on how the heroes left un-dusted would recover for Avengers: Endgame. (Hell, we waited like ten months just to learn the title.) The only glimmer of hope left in the current-day MCU was that high-tech pager Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) activated during Infinity War‘s end-credits scene moments before the S.H.I.E.L.D director floated away into nothingness, leaving the flashing symbol for Captain Marvel in his wake. Whelp, the actual Carol “Avenger” Danvers—get used to it, dweebs—has arrived in the form of a super-charged Brie Larson and Captain Marvel‘s end-credits scene wasted no time putting a bit more optimism back into the post-snap world. She’s here, she’s pissed, and Thanos’ peaceful staycation out on the farm is about to get rudely interrupted.
Let me explain: The mid-credits scene opens on Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Captain America (Chris Evans), and Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) watching the death toll rise all over the world on the screens we glimpsed in the Endgame trailer.
“It’s a nightmare,” Captain America says.
“I’ve had better nightmares,” replies Black Widow, which is saying a lot considering the horrific childhood assassin conditioning and whatnot.
The team has also recovered Fury’s pager, and although they don’t know what the heck it is they are aware that activating it was his final act. James Rhodes (Don Cheadle) appears to let the rest of the crew know the pager has “stopped doing whatever the hell it was doing.” One dramatic camera pan later and the reason why is clear: Captain Marvel has arrived on Earth, frazzled from crossing several galaxies and looking none too happy about it.
“Where’s Fury?” she asks before we cut back to black.
There’s a few takeaways here, the most encouraging being that the Russos Brothers apparently aren’t going to waste any of Endgame‘s (alleged) three-hour runtime drawing out Captain Marvel’s entrance. We’ve known she was going to be the ace up the OG Avengers’ sleeve since the trademark red-blue-and-golds first flashed on to Fury’s pager, and to pretend otherwise would be like claiming the title of Endgame wasn’t spoken during Infinity War. (Oh wait.) Here, at least, we know for sure upfront that Captain Marvel is part of the final showdown, all hopped up on Tesseract-fumes and capable of handing Thanos an L.
While Carol’s entrance is a dramatic moment, as it should be, it also acts as a low-key sweet callback to the best-buds chemistry developed between her and Nick Fury in Captain Marvel. Back in 1995, the still-young S.H.I.E.L.D. operative made a point to explain that everyone simply calls him “Fury.” His coworkers, his friends, his family, his hypothetical future children. Just, “Fury.” The ever-so-brief “Where’s Fury?” establishes that over a few decades and across thousands of light years Carol Danvers hasn’t forgotten her time huntin’ aliens on planet C-53.
As for Captain Marvel‘s second credits scene…
Goose. It’s all about Goose, the film’s undisputed MVP, a cat who is actually a tentacled outer-space monster called a flerken. Because Marvel lore established that flerkens contain pocket dimensions inside their bodies, Goose ends up storing the MCU’s favorite McGuffin, the Tesseract, in his stomach for most of Captain Marvel‘s third act. The second end-credits scene sees Goose coughing the Tesseract up like a hairball on to Nick Fury’s desk, after which it assumedly remained in S.H.I.E.L.D. custody until Tom Hiddleston‘s Loki blew the whole place up to grab it in the first Avengers film.
The unanswered question, though—the key question, some would say—is just how long of a lifespan do flerkens have anyway? It’s unclear, and if anyone would like to politely ask flerken creators Kelly Sue DeConnick and David Lopez that’d be much appreciated. Mostly because I’m wondering if Goose is still around in the modern-day MCU timeline. And by that I mean I desperately 100% need to know whether Goose survived Thanos’ snap. Surely, this will be the most important mystery answered in Avengers: Endgame when it hits theaters on April 26.
For more on Captain Marvel, click here for our thoughts on the film’s ending.