The season finale of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law (‘Whose Show Is This’) shocked viewers with the surprise arrival of Skaar, the son of Hulk. Some of you might be wondering who Skaar is, and what his arrival could mean for the Marvel Cinematic Universe. With that in mind, let’s break down everything there is to know about Skaar.
Skaar joins the MCU
With everything that’s happened since the beginning of the series, it’s easy to forget that She-Hulk: Attorney at Law began with a Sakaaran ship approaching Bruce Banner. The MCU version of Hulk had previously spent a few years on the planet Sakaar, as seen in the 2017 film Thor: Ragnarok. We never learned why the Sakaaran ship seemed to be looking for Bruce, but in the second episode ('Superhuman Law') we saw Bruce onboard the ship as it flew through space.
Bruce returned to Earth in the season finale, and he wasn’t alone. Bruce showed up to a family barbeque, surprising his family by introducing them to his son Skaar. The son of Hulk then steps out from behind his father. He is visually similar to his father, but smaller in stature and with a crewcut. His arms appear to have tattoos on them, perhaps symbols of his Sakaaran heritage.
Like Hulk and She-Hulk, Skaar appears onscreen as a VFX character, but his appearance is modeled after a real actor. Skaar is played by Wil Deusner, a young actor who previously played the son of the villain Wizard on the DC Comics TV series Stargirl. Skaar only appears onscreen for a few seconds, and doesn’t say any lines, but his arrival has major implications.
Who is Skaar in the comics?
The comic book version of Skaar is a product of ‘Planet Hulk,’ one of the most consequential Hulk storylines of the '00s. After a deadly rampage from the Hulk, a think tank of Marvel heroes known as the Illuminati decided to take action. They trapped the Hulk on a rocket, and launched him into space. Hulk winds up on the planet Sakaar. The natives capture Hulk, and force him to battle in a series of gladiator games, similar to what was seen in Thor: Ragnarok. Hulk eventually causes an uprising, freeing the gladiator slaves. He fell in love and married Caiera, a member of Sakaar’s Shadow People.
Caiera told her husband she was pregnant, but tragedy soon struck. The warp core on Hulk’s rocket exploded, resulting in an apocalypse that killed millions of people on Sakaar, including Caiera. Believing his unborn child had perished along with his wife, Hulk returned to Earth to turn his fury on the Illuminati. It was later revealed that Caiera had used her final moments to place her unborn child in a cocoon. Caiera was able to do this thanks to a form of magic called the Old Power which her people possessed.
After a period of gestating in the ground, Skaar emerged and rapidly matured to a young adult. The early days of his life were spent on Sakaar fighting to survive, before he journeyed to Earth confront his father. Skaar blamed for his father for the death of his mother, and allowing the planet to descend into chaos. Over time their relationship has improved, but there’s still a lot of work to be done. Skaar acts as an anti-hero, ruled by anger, but only hurting people who harm others.
What are Skaar’s powers?
Don’t mistake Skaar for a derivative version of his father, because he’s so much more. Skaar inherited the Old Power from his mother, which makes him one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel Universe. The Old Power allows Skaar to control the ground of any planet he’s on. He can summon magna, split the planet’s surface, turn his own body into stone, and manipulate any terrain.
This is in addition to all the powers he possesses as the son of the Hulk. Like his father, Skaar has super-strength, enhanced stamina, and more. He once sent the unstoppable mutant Juggernaut flying into space with a single punch. Unlike his father, Skaar likes to use weapons, and is often seen carrying a sword.
What kind of role will Skaar play in the MCU?
What does the arrival of Skaar mean for the Marvel Cinematic Universe? With only a few seconds of screentime to go by, it’s hard to say. At first glance the MCU version of Skaar seems more docile than his angry comic book counterpart, but appearances can be deceiving. While it’s possible the story of Skaar could be continued in a Hulk motion picture, it’s worth noting that the cinematic rights to Hulk are a bit complicated.
Marvel Studios signed a distribution deal with Universal Pictures during the production of the 2008 film The Incredible Hulk. At the time Marvel Studios didn’t’ foresee the upcoming Disney acquisition, and the complications that would bring. As a result of this deal, Marvel Studios is free to produce Hulk films, but Universal has the distribution rights. This has resulted in a stalemate between Disney and Universal, which is why there hasn’t been a solo Hulk film since 2018.
The issue with Universal’s distribution rights doesn’t apply to movies where Hulk is a supporting character. This has allowed him to appear in films like The Avengers and Thor: Ragnarok. This also means that until a deal is made with Universal Pictures, we probably won’t be seeing a Planet Hulk movie. However, Skaar’s story could still be told in future MCU projects. Hulk characters like the Leader and General Ross are set to appear in the 2024 film Captain America: New World Order. It’s possible Skaar’s story could continue there, or in a potential She-Hulk: Attorney at Law season 2 if the series is renewed.
It's interesting to note that the MCU has slowly been building their next generation of heroes. The Disney+ series Hawkeye introduced Kate Bishop, Billy and Tommy Maximoff were introduced in WandaVision, and Eli Bradley was seen in The Falcon and The Winter Soldier. There’s also original characters like Thor’s adoptive daughter Love, seen in this summer’s Thor: Love and Thunder. Perhaps we’re building to a modified version of the Young Avengers. If so, will Skaar have a place on the team? Skaar’s arrival to the MCU raises a lot of interesting questions, and I have a feeling we’re going to have a lot of fun seeing them answered.
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