In our timeline, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has only been around since 2008. But as the first teaser trailer for Eternals reveals, it existed for eons before that. Directed by newly minted Oscar winner Chloé Zhao, the all-star blockbuster rewinds the clock all the way back to the earliest years of the MCU, before Iron Man, before Captain Marvel and even before Captain America. That's when a super-sized spaceship carrying a race of advanced extraterrestrial beings descended from the heavens and encountered some of the first people to walk Earth-199999. (Watch the trailer above.)
And these arriving gods like what they see. "It's beautiful, isn't it?" matter-manipulating Eternal Sersi (Gemma Chan) asks her companion Ikaris (Richard Madden). The group's leader, Ajak (Salma Hayek) likes their new digs so much that they put down roots in Earth's soil — roots that have grown for 7,000 years. "Unguided, we have helped them progress, and seen them accomplish wonders," she says, adding. "Throughout the years, we have never interfered."
As you might expect, there's a "but" coming and, sure enough, Ajak reveals that the Eternals are about to announce their presence in a big way. That's because their destruction-minded equivalents, the Deviants, are looking to undermine the planet's rocky-post Endgame status quo, and it's going to take the entire line of immortal warriors to keep the world's balance intact. The rest of the super-diverse team includes Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani), who leads a public life as a Bollywood cinema star; Sprite (Lia McHugh) who is much older than she looks; and Phastos (Brian Tyree Henry) and Makkari (Lauren Ridloff) who break new ground as the MCU's first gay hero and first deaf hero, respectively.
One hero who may or may not be eternally allegiant to her fellow immortals is battle-hardened Thena (Angelina Jolie), who has spent centuries exiled from the Eternals alongside the super-strong Gilgamesh (Don Lee). Although it's worth noting that Thena doesn't appear to be holding any grudges against the rest of the group in this first trailer, at least. She's glimpsed joining an all-Eternals dinner and rolls her eyes at Ikaris's suggestion that he lead the Avengers in the wake of Steven Rogers and Iron Man going to their great reward.
It's safe to say that eye-rolling wasn't the main reaction on Twitter, although some fans noted that the group has a lot to answer for in terms of the crimes they let slide over the centuries.
— leann | loki era (@moonchildloki) May 24, 2021
— fran multi 💫🕷️🕸️🦇 (@hpspideywayne) May 24, 2021
— karl (@themarvelparker) May 24, 2021
Kingo’s bollywood dance sequence! pic.twitter.com/upjbW2EGvn
— ETERNALS UPDATES (@Eternalsupdate) May 24, 2021
The Eternals flying over a slave plantation: pic.twitter.com/bdC4myht9Y
— the bad guy (@pinkprinttingz) May 24, 2021
eternals watching the earth go through infinity war and end game like they didn't care ? char haha
— ᴡᴇᴀʀ ʏᴏᴜʀ ᴍᴀsᴋ ᴘʀᴏᴘᴇʀʟʏ 😷 (@crsnxvii) May 24, 2021
the eternals when you ask them about slavery and the holocaust: pic.twitter.com/1RtD0S6w4m
— alex (@alex_abads) May 24, 2021
Eternals premieres Nov. 5.
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