There are a lot of reasons why we are excited about the arrival of the newest superheroes in the MCU: The Eternals. The movie for one of the most powerful groups of superheroes in Marvel lore has everything you could ever ask for: a top-notch cast, an Oscar-winning director (Chloe Zhao), and an interesting storyline are just a few reasons why the movie is on the top of our must-watch list. The Eternals is shaping up to be a cinematic spectacle that makes a grand addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). But unless you follow Marvel comics religiously, you probably have very little idea who The Eternals are. We’ve done most of the legwork for you – here’s your complete guide to who these superheroes are:
MCU Eternals Guide: Who are they?
The Eternals is not just a cool and catchy name just like how it is with the Avengers. The name is a description of their state of being. The Eternals come from a powerful race of beings created by the cosmic gods called the Celestials. Fans of the MCU may recall one popular celestial who was introduced in The Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2 in the form of Ego played by Kurt Russell.
Alongside the creation of the Eternals are their genetic cousins, the Deviants. Unlike most of the Eternals who chose to follow the path of peace, the Deviants are hateful war freaks, cursed with hideous appearances. Due to these distinct differences, the two races have waged war with each other in a never-ending battle, with humanity sometimes having to pay the price for it. There’s a lot to take in, which is why we decided to make this MCU Eternals Guide to detail exactly how each hero fits into the story.
MCU Eternals Guide: Their Abilities and Powers
Do not let the human-like appearances of the Eternals fool you – they may look like the rest of us but within them lies incredible strength and abilities that set them far above any mortal man. One power that most of them have is pretty much given from the name “Eternals” — their resistance against aging and disease. It must be noted however that these cosmic beings can be killed, but it will certainly take a lot of effort to do so.
Beyond the ability to live for a very long time, each member of the group has powers that are uniquely theirs alone. We were able to gather a list of all the confirmed cosmic beings that will make an appearance in the upcoming film and their respective powers:
Played by: Gemma Chan
Powers: She has the ability to alter molecular structures of all matter including living organisms.
Sersi’s unique trait that differentiates her the most from her other Eternal counterparts is her deep empathy towards humanity. In the film, she works as a museum curator on Earth and seems to have her hands full in terms of romantic relationships with potentially being caught in the center of a love triangle.
Played by: Angelina Jolie
Powers: She has superhuman strength, speed, stamina, durability, and agility. She also possesses the ability to manipulate cosmic energy to form any weapon that she chooses.
Angelina Jolie is an incredible addition to the MCU and will surely give a solid performance as Thena. This version of the character has a very personal relationship with another Eternal called Gilgamesh due to their time spent in exile, away from the others.
Played by: Selma Hayek
Powers: She can communicate with the Celestials in addition to wielding special healing powers. She is also responsible for aiding in the advancement of human civilization.
There are several changes in the characters and choices for casting for the upcoming film — Ajak is one of them. The MCU film is completely revamping the look of the superhero staring off with the gender, as Ajak in the comics is originally a male character. This change no matter how drastic will give new life, pivotal roles, and unique characterizations for Ajak and the entire storyline.
Played by: Richard Madden
Powers: Ikaris has enhanced strength and can project cosmic energy beams from his eyes.
Ikaris is the tactical leader of the Eternals, similar to the role that Captain America has in the Avengers. The Game of Thrones veteran, Richard Madden, ventures into new territory as this time around he leads this unique group of individuals in order to save the entire universe.
Played by: Kumail Nanjiani
Powers: He has the ability to release cosmic energy projectiles from his hands.
More notable for his comedic roles and performances, Kumail Nanjiani steps into the superhero mantle as Kingo. In the comics, Kingo is a skilled swordsman residing in Japan, while in the film this character has been reimagined as a famous Bollywood star. This slight deviation from the comics, adds even more to the already diverse set of cast members that this film has.
Played by: Lia McHugh
Powers: Sprite has power over molecular structures like Sersi and focuses her energy on projecting illusions.
The second major notable change in Eternal’s is with the youngest actress amongst the bunch, Lia McHugh who plays Sprite, originally another male character. Sprite’s physical appearance makes her look like she is the youngest in the group but it will be a mistake to underestimate her power and maturity.
Played by: Lauren Ridloff
Powers: She is the fastest woman in the universe and among the Eternals!
Lauren Ridloff has been making strides in the film industry as a deaf actress with her most recent appearance in the Academy Award-nominated film, Sound of Metal. The MCU will also get their first deaf superhero in Makkari who is known for her superhuman speed.
Played by: Brian Tyree Henry
Powers: He is a skilled inventor who has been known to use his powers to advance the human race in terms of technology.
The Eternals film will certainly make waves as it ambitiously aims to include almost every person from different social groups. Phastos will be the first openly gay superhero in an MCU and is set to be “the man behind the chair” or the tech guy for the band of heroes.
Played by: Don Lee
Powers: Gilgamesh has the power to create a powerful exoskeleton of cosmic energy.
Gilgamesh or also known as The Forgotten One is known for his superhuman strength and alongside Thena were exiled away from the other Eternals. The Korean-American actor, Ma Dong-Seok who goes by Don Lee in this film, appeared in the zombie apocalyptic film Train to Busan and aims to bring back his seer brute strength as the fierce and powerful Eternal.
Played by: Barry Keoghan
Powers: Druig has the unique power to control the minds of humans and specializes in reality manipulation.
Druig is an Eternal who is quite aloof from the others. He does not agree with the close interactions of the other Eternals toward the human race. This trait makes this character a wild card and we will have to wait when the film is released to know how this character will interact with the others given his personality.
The sheer length of our MCU Eternals Guide shows just how involved the new film will be, and we cannot wait to see how the new heroes play out on screen.
The MCU phase four is shaping up to an interesting addition to the plethora of films that Marvel and Disney have produced so far with many more being released this year.
In the meantime, with the help of our trusty VPN, we can follow the adventures of some characters in their own MCU series such as WandaVision, Falcon and the Winter Soldier, and Loki coming out this June 9. The lineup doesn’t end there as Marvel Studios will release the long-awaited Black Widow film this July 9, Shang-Chi and The Legend of the Ten Rings on September 3, and The Eternals capping off the year for a November 5 release date.