Marvel’s WandaVision may be all about the titular couple, but Marvel fans know new MCU character Captain Monica Rambeau is destined for the spotlight one day soon.
Monica is set to appear in Captain Marvel 2 and will co-star alongside Brie Larson’s Carol Danvers and the soon-to-be-introduced Ms. Marvel/Kamala Khan played by Iman Vellani. Monica has a long history in the comics as a powerful and important superhero, and what we’re seeing in WandaVision is just the beginning of her MCU journey. IGN spoke with actress Teyonah Parris about how her role in WandaVision creates a new superhero and sets the stage for her next MCU appearance in Captain Marvel 2.
Warning: full spoilers for WandaVision ahead!
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Setting Up Captain Marvel 2
While there are many, many fan theories about WandaVision, there’s one particular scene in Episode 5 featuring Monica that left fans buzzing with speculation. As Monica talks with Randall Park’s Agent Jimmy Woo and Kat Dennings’ Dr. Darcy Lewis about Wanda’s growing powers, a passing mention of Captain Marvel triggers an unexpectedly troubled look on her face.
You’ll remember the child version of Monica from the Captain Marvel movie set in the ‘90s looked up to Carol Danvers because she was a superhero who was best friends with her mother in the Air Force and affectionately referred to her as Lt. Trouble. But it seems something changed in their relationship over the years. Monica gets lost in thought at the mere mention of Carol, and that moment is a hint at what’s to come, according to Parris.
“I think that we know Monica will be in Captain Marvel 2 with Carol Danvers and Kamala Khan. So I think there’s space there for us to further investigate what’s happening with those two,” she said.
The going fan theory on why Monica might not be so happy with Carol has all to do with Monica’s mother, Maria Rambeau. As Episode 4 of WandaVision showed in horrifying fashion, Monica was snapped away by Thanos and returned in The Blip, only to learn that in the intervening five years her mother passed away from cancer. It could be Maria only got cancer in the first place because Carol exposed her to dangerous radiation with her powers. Maybe Carol encouraged Maria to go on more space missions and that’s how she got exposed to too much cosmic radiation. Or perhaps Monica is upset with Carol for not being there for her sick mother while she was Snapped out of existence. Either way, the thinking is Monica blames Carol for her mother’s death.
As you can see, there are are plenty of reasons for Monica to have beef with Carol, and now we know Captain Marvel 2 will address that drama. While Parris’ tease of Monica’s future is small, it does paint a big picture about the dynamic between the leading ladies of Captain Marvel 2. Young Ms. Marvel idolizes Captain Marvel, whereas Monica will be critical of her. This could allow the upcoming sequel to deliver a character study of Captain Marvel, dissecting the hero’s triumphs and flaws to better define where she stands in the pantheon of the MCU, while also establishing what makes the other two Marvel-ous ladies unique.
Watching Monica Evolve Into a Superhero
Before Monica confronts Carol in Captain Marvel 2, she has to help Wanda put an end to the Maximoff Anomaly in WandaVision. Though we witnessed Monica gain new super powers in Episode 7 thanks to a third trip through the Hex, her best tool to help Wanda may be something else entirely. Having just suffered a tragic loss herself, Monica is able to empathize with Wanda and understand what she’s going through after the loss of Vision.
“I think when she sees Wanda and realizes what’s happening, I do think that this parallel experience of grief is what is drawing her to be more compassionate with Wanda,” Parris said of her character.
Acting Director Hayward and pretty much everyone at SWORD considers Wanda a threat that needs to be neutralized, so it speaks volumes about Monica that she’s choosing to address the situation with compassion instead.
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That’s not to say that Monica’s powers won’t come in handy. In the comics, her ability to manipulate all kinds of energy on the electromagnetic spectrum gives her the power to fly and blast villains into next week. She’s considered one of the more powerful Marvel superheroes, and she’s been the leader of the Avengers to boot.
But before any of that materializes on screen in the MCU, Parris emphasized how it was her goal to first introduce audiences to who Monica Rambeau is as a person.
“What I wanted to do was go to the source material to find out who this woman was,” she said. “And for me, Monica is ambitious, she’s compassionate, she’s a leader, and she’s also pretty funny in the comics.”
With so much lore behind the Monica Rambeau character in the comics, there’s certainly plenty of material for her to chart a course into the future of the MCU, but right now Parris is focused on enjoying the moment.
“I’m excited for her future,” she said. “I don’t know what will happen, but even just in this moment, I’m grateful and excited and can’t wait for you guys to see what else we have in store because it’s not over yet.”
Want more on WandaVision? Check out why they decided to revisit the Blip, a theory that finds one simple answer for every mystery in the show, and a breakdown on the big, red villain fans think is really pulling the strings.
Joshua is a Senior Editor and Producer of Features at IGN. If Pokemon, Green Lantern, or Star Wars are frequently used words in your vocabulary, you’ll want to follow him on Twitter @JoshuaYehl and IGN.