*Warning: This article contains spoilers for Secret Invasion episode 1*


The first episode of Secret Invasion has arrived on Disney Plus and it certainly packs some bombshell reveals, one of which has left fans scratching their heads.

The episode opens with former CIA agent Everett Ross (Martin Freeman) working with Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders) on a covert operation in Russia.

He encounters Agent Prescod (Richard Dormer), who seems utterly paranoid that a Skrull invasion of Earth is happening right under their noses, with Ross promising to alert an absent Nick Fury (Samuel L Jackson) about this concern.

Then all hell breaks loose! Ross narrowly escapes strangulation at the hands of Prescod, before suffering a fatal fall from a high-storey building after being chased through Moscow by a gang of Skrulls.

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Then, the reveal: Ross himself was a Skrull and the individuals chasing him were in fact allies of Talos (Ben Mendelsohn) - a longtime friend to Nick Fury and humanity as a whole.

All this raises more questions than answers. Let's discuss.

Secret Invasion: Is Everett Ross dead?

Martin Freeman stars in Secret Invasion
Martin Freeman stars in Secret Invasion. Marvel Studios

The first thing that fans will be wondering after Secret Invasion's opening scene is whether Everett Ross is canonically dead in the Marvel Cinematic Universe moving forward. The answer, most likely, is no.

As we see later in the episode, in order for Skrulls to perfectly replicate their human targets, they have to keep them alive in stasis pods.

Therefore, while Ross's imposter has bitten the dust, the real spy is probably still alive in Gravik's hideout for the time being – although Skrull custody is hardly a safe place to be.

Here's hoping he can be rescued soon.

How long was Everett Ross a Skrull?

Martin Freeman plays Everett Ross in Captain America: Civil War
Martin Freeman plays Everett Ross in Captain America: Civil War. SEAC

A more pressing mystery that emerged from Secret Invasion episode 1 is the question of how long Everett Ross has been a Skrull for.

Given that the aliens arrived on Earth in the 1990s (as seen in Captain Marvel), he could theoretically have been a Skrull for as long as we've known him – the character debuted in 2016's Captain America: Civil War.

However, it's more likely that the agent was swapped out recently, as his previous appearance in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever spent considerable time building out his personal life.

Specifically, the film explored his strained relationship with ex-wife Valentina Allegra de la Fontaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus), with the two characters having strong comedic chemistry.

It would be a shame to introduce that element and then tear it away by revealing that Ross has always been a Skrull - a development which would fundamentally alter the dynamic of any future meetings with Valentina.

Therefore, it seems likely that Ross was replaced sometime after his most recent adventure with the Wakandans, which perhaps will be clarified in later episodes of Secret Invasion.

Secret Invasion is available to stream on Disney Plus. New episodes weekly. Sign up to Disney Plus for £7.99 per month or £79.90 for a full year’s subscription.

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