Ben Mendelsohn, who plays Talos, a Skrull general who appeared in 2019’s Captain Marvel, is ready to reprise his role in the upcoming Disney+ Secret Invasion series — and he’s confident that not only will Secret Wars live up to its title, but end up as a series that both grownups and younger fans of Marvel alike can enjoy.
“You can’t have a secret invasion without an invasion, right? What’s the point? What are you going to call it, ‘Secret Attempted Invasion’? ‘Secret Nearly Got There Invasion’?” Mendelsohn said jokingly in an interview with USA Today. “Something has definitely gotten in.”
Mendelsohn, a Melbourne, Victoria, Australian native will rejoin Captain Marvel co-star Samuel L. Jackson, Avengers founder and former S.H.I.E.L.D. director Nick Fury in the six-episode mini-series, with (Warning: Spoilers for Spider-Man: Far From Home ahead) Fury returning to Earth after the events of Spider-Man: Far From Home revealed that the eyepatch-sporting super-spy had left the planet to monitor activities aboard a spaceship. Talos, on the other hand, had taken over the appearance and identity of Fury on Earth (which Spider-Man and other superheroes presumably had little knowledge of beforehand).
“The relationship between Talos and Fury is sort of tighter than it’s ever been, and really not good,” Mendelsohn added. “I don’t know if (Talos) is like Abbott to his Costello (but) it’s something that the audience will enjoy without losing how bad the situation gets.”
True to its title, Secret Invasion will feature an influx of Skrulls in disguise around the world, and it’s this aspect of spy vs. Skrull disguised as spy disguised as human that will lend the series a layered, “old-school Cold War paranoia thriller told through a Marvel superhero lens” approach unlike anything we’ve seen offered from the MCU thus far.
“This is one the grownups can dig,” Mendelsohn added. “It’s mental. I hope it ends up being one of the coolest things that they’ve done.”
Joining Mendelsohn and Jackson will be MCU newcomer Emilia Clarke (Game of Thrones, Terminator Genisys), portraying Talos’ daughter G’iah, a grown-up version of the character from the Marvel Comics. “Emilia is awesome in this,” Mendelsohn said.
Mendelsohn emphasized his love for being able to work with Jackson again, saying, “He’s the most significant blockbuster actor in the history of the human race, but at the same time he is a very cool and fun guy. He doesn’t B.S. around, he’s not mean to people and he’s a joy.”
Mendelsohn described one moment on set with Jackson that is both indelible and reinforced all of latter actor’s ingratiating qualities.
“We’re sitting on the sidelines waiting to do a shot,” Mendelsohn said. “Sometimes I bring a speaker to work. I started playing some Coasters and ‘Poison Ivy’ comes on. Now I know my way around that song. Sam knows his way around that song better. Sam starts singing. I start singing. Sam knows all the words, proper; I missed one or two.
“Forget about it, there’s nothing better. That’s the good life.”
Mendelsohn, Jackson and Clarke are set to appear in Disney+’s Secret Invasion series on June 21st.
Featured art by Alex Kovalenko