New photos from Marvel’s Secret Invasion set reveal a potentially significant role for Don Cheadle’s James Rhodes, aka War Machine (in addition to a Hawkeye Easter egg). One of the set photos shows a copy of The National Reporter newspaper. The front-page photo is of Rhodes meeting with, as the headline says, “President Ritson in London for Emergency Talks.” What emergency? It could be the alien infiltration of Earth taking place in the series. What is Rhodey doing there? Well, is it Rhodey at all? Or a shapeshifting imposter? Fans will likely need to wait for Secret Invasion to debut to find out.
It’s interesting to see Rhodey with the president here. The Avengers: Endgame writers had intended him at one point to become vice president.
“We took it out because it did not have any story weight, but I believe that during one draft, in the five year jump, Rhodie became vice president,” Christopher Markus told ComicBook.com in 2019. “Vice President Rhodey.”
Markus specified that Rhodey became vice president or did not have anything to do with Marvel Studios’ streaming plans. “It’s not like [Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige] said, ‘You know what, we had a meeting, and we’re going to have these three streaming services, so let’s make sure …’ “Markus continued. ‘No, if anything, I do not know what all the streaming shows are, but it feels like they might come off of Endgame in some ways, but at no point did anybody say, ‘That’s what we should do, so therefore, sprinkle that in.’ “
Previous photos from the Secret Invasion set offered looks at familiar Marvel Cinematic Universe faces like Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury) and Cobie Smulders (Maria Hill). Other offered fans their first look at Game of Thrones star Emilia Clarke in the MCU.
Secret Invasion takes its name from the 2008 Marvel Comics event series that included virtually every character in the Marvel Universe. Fans should expect the scope to be a little more focused in the Disney + version of the series.
“Well, there were more characters in the Secret Invasion comic series than there were in Endgame so, no, “Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige told ComicBook.com in 2021.” It’s not that but it very much is a showcase for Sam Jackson and Ben Mendelson and tapping into the paranoia elements of the Secret Invasion comic series that was great with the twists and turns that that took. So, that’s certainly our focus more than, ‘Can we cram in more characters than Endgame? “
The six-episode Secret Invasion series is expected to debut on Disney + in 2022.