Eternals: A Team is Born

Posted by Speakeasy News > Thursday 04 November 2021 > What's On

The expanse of the Marvel Cinematic Universe timeline is about to get much wider with the arrival of Eternals, whose storyline will span thousands of years. Directed by Chloé Zhao (Nomadland), Eternals is visually distinct from many other Marvel films and Zhao's soft touch has elevated the film beyond what is traditionally expected of superhero film.

Eternals tells the story of a new team of super heroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (UMC) and takes the focus away from better-known Avengers and The Guardians of the Galaxy. Following the events of Avengers: Endgame (2019), Eternals is the twenty-sixth film in the UMC.

Left to right: Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani), Makkari (Lauren Ridloff), Gilgamesh (Don Lee), Thena (Angelina Jolie), Ikaris (Richard Madden), Ajak (Salma Hayek), Sersi (Gemma Chan), Sprite (Lia McHugh), Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) and Druig (Barry Keoghan) in Marvel Studios' ETERNALS.

The Eternals are a race of immortal beings created by the Celestials.
The Celestials arrived on Earth around a million years ago and performed experiments on humankind. They first altered the genetic code in a group of prehistoric humans which resulted in the first generation of Deviants with an unstable genetic code.

The Celestials also operated different experiments on other prehistoric humans that resulted in the first generation of Eternals and produced the potential for mutation in humankind.

Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani) fighting against a deviant.

The unstable genetic code of Deviants gives them power and abilities superior to humans but inferior to the Eternals' god-like powers, as well as a non-human appearance .

On Earth for the past 7,000 years
The Eternals, who have been living on Earth for the past 7,000 years without disclosing their identities, were instructed not to interfere with any human conflict unless Deviants were involved. Those instructions came from the Celestials long before Thanos or any of the other Avengers characters were born.

This is an easy explanation for why these massively powerful beings didn't stop Thanos from decimating half of the universe's population in Infinity War & Avengers: Endgame.

But now, in the present-day, an unexpected tragedy forces them to resurface and reunite to protect  the world from the Deviants again.

Based on the Eternals comic by Jack Kirby

The film is based on the Eternals comic and characters created by Jack Kirby, which was first released in 1976. Along with Stan Lee, Kirby is widely considered one of the most important figures in comic-book history, with his works including the The Fantastic Four, Thor, Black Panther, and Silver Surfers.

In an interview with THR, Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige discusses how the film pays homage to Kirby and the debt the film owes to the influential comic creator. Feige also notes how unfortunate it is that Kirby never lived to see just how truly successful and powerful his stories would become as part of the MCU. Feige makes clear that Eternals, and much of the MCU as a whole, all started because of one single man with a pencil and an idea that has the power to change the world.

The Eternals, Explained!
Who are the Eternals and what are they up to?

Find out more about Jack Kirby.

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