Secret Invasion Episode 4 reveals a big secret that an important Avenger is a skrull. This Avenger is none other than James Rhodes also known as Rhodey.
There were clear signs of this though. From the moment Fury said “Nobody calls me Nick” in Secret Invasion Episode 3, it was clear that Rhodes was a Skrull. Furthermore at the end of the same episode, Priscilla talks to someone impersonating Rhodey who advises her to meet him.
In the beginning of Secret Invasion Episode 4 itself, Rhodey and Priscilla meet and the later is advised to kill Fury. Fury being one step ahead has already heard everything thanks to the bug he planted on her wife.
Is Rhodey a Skrull?
James Rhodes aka Rhodey is indeed a Skrull. A female Skrull known as Raava has been impersonating him. The end credits of Secret Invasion Episode 4 confirm this.
Raava is a part of Gravik’s rebel faction of Skrulls and hence is acting on his commands.
In the comics, Raava has an alias – Raava the Un-Skrulled. She went rogue after her children Skragg and Raavaka were killed. Raava is a skilled pilot which is another reason Gravik chose her to impersonate Rhodey.
Since how long has Rhodey been a Skrull?
Secret Invasion reveals that the infiltration of Skrull is not a recent one. Since 1997, Skrulls have infiltrated higher administrative posts in the US government. In fact, in Secret Invasion Episode 3, the conversation between Talos and Nick Fury confirms this.
This also implies that the impersonation of Rhodey is not a recent one. Raava had a lot of time to infiltrate the US government to get close to President Ritson.
In an interview with Marvel.com, Marvel Studios head Kevin Feige confirmed that James Rhodes has been a Skrull for quite some time.
“[We want audiences to] understand exactly how long he’s been a Skrull. We like the idea of fans going back and watching some of the other appearances of Rhodey and realizing that that wasn’t him.”Marvel.com
Feige’s revelation easily narrows it down to 3 possibilities:
- Rhodey has been a Skrull post Civil War
- Rhodey has been a Skrull post Avengers: Infinity War
- Rhodey has been a Skrull post Avengers: Endgame
I think that Rhodey has been a Skrull post Avengers: Endgame. But let’s analyze both these situations one by one and confirm the second one.
1 – Rhodey has been a Skrull post Civil War
If this was the case then that would mean, Raava would have to keep aside her mission of infiltrating and focus on the threat at that time; Thanos.
Remember, Rhodey went to Wakanda in Avengers: Infinity War to fight against Thanos. I would particularly emphasis this moment where Bruce Banner asks if they should bow and Rhodey tells him to bow indeed. This scene became a viral meme on the internet.
But note that Rhodey loves to make joke and prank. Hence, it is safe to say that Rhodey was not a judge post the events of Civil War.
Besides that, he showed incredible resilience in stopping Thanos’ army. He even took a few hits but stood his ground. After the snap, he even called out to Sam to see where he was.
Raava is a pirate and does not possess the abilities to fight alongside Avengers to stop Thanos. Thanos winning would mean less humans which would further mean easy infiltration.
So why risk to fighting for the benefit of humanity?
2 – Rhodey has been a Skrull post Avengers: Infinity War
This is a favorable situation for both Gravik and Raava. Earth’s mightiest heroes fallen in despair. In addition to this, all the governments even the US Government would be busy trying to get over the loss of people who were turned to dust.
But Marvel Studios have not revealed if Gravik and Raava were turned to dust or not. Besides, Rhodey was very active post snap in finding Thanos. He even talked with Captain Marvel.
Again, I would like to bring your attention to 3 very important moment which clearly prove that Rhodey was not a Skrull.
i – Rhodey suggests the idea to go back in time and kill baby Thanos. If this was Raava, why bother about giving suggestions? There are obviously other more qualified Avengers present in the room.
ii – Rhodey is paired with Nebula to go to retrieve the power stone where he calls Starlord as an idiot. Similarly, why risk going back in time to another planet to retrieve a stone? Why bring back humans and increase the difficulty of infiltation?
iii – Rhodey fights alongside the Avengers to defeat Thanos. Why bother fighting for the race whom you’ve always despised?
These 3 moments literally bring out the true characteristics of James Rhodes aka Rhodey. Hence, Rhodey was not a Skrull post Avengers: Infinity War.
3 – Rhodey has been a Skrull post Avengers: Endgame
Post Avengers: Endgame, the situation is completely different. The Avengers have just brought back a significant amount of people. This would mean that no one is expecting another threat.
All the governments are busy helping people who are back after THE BLIP and everything is a huge mess. Without Stark, the Avengers are broken and dealing issues of their own.
So far in Phase 4, Rhodey has had just one appearance in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. It was serious situation and there wasn’t any humor present.
Furthermore, Kevin Feige would not want to risk impersonating Rhodey in Phase 3 because that would ignite a string of questions among the fans.
But the major reason why Rhodes has been a skrull post Avengers: Endgame is rather the fact that he is set to return in Armor Wars. The plot of Armor Wars revolves around how Tony Stark’s technology get into Damage Control’s hand.
Due to this, Ultron is recreated and there’s more chaos.
Now how would Stark’s tech get in the wrong hands?
Only if Rhodey isn’t paying enough attention and more busy to get closer to President Ritson. In other words, that would be possible only if Rhodey is a Skrull.
Raava couldn’t care less if Stark’s technology gets stolen or Ultron comes back. Hence, Rhodes will deal with the mess created by Raava in Armor Wars.
Hence, Rhodes has been a skrull post Avengers: Endgame.