The most important character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe is Nicholas J. Fury. Samuel L. Jackson’s character has been the staple of the whole franchise and the catalyst of most storylines in the universe. However, in recent years, even Nick Fury went back to the background of the MCU, and coincidentally, the projects haven’t been as good as we thought they would. Thankfully, Nick Fury is back in the Disney+ series Secret Invasion this June, and we cannot wait for the show to premiere. Of course, fans started their speculation regarding Fury, but his appearance in the trailer poses a question for this article – why is Nick Fury not wearing his signature eyepatch?
Nick Fury doesn’t wear an eyepatch in the MCU because Skrulls may impersonate him in the Secret Invasion series. In the trailer for the series, we saw Nick Fury with an eyepatch and without it, implying a definite character development towards the end. Still, it also suggests that showrunners want the fans to distinguish the real Nick Fury from the Skrull one in the Secret Invasion.
We will discuss these two possibilities in more detail by looking into hints and “evidence” from the trailers and teasers, what fans speculate, and why the eyepatch is important for the character. If you are interested, stay with us until the end.
Nick Fury always wore his signature eyepatch until the Secret Invasion series
What casual fans of Marvel forget is that the MCU version of Nick Fury is actually the son of Nick Fury, Sr. The older Nick Fury had a baby with a CIA agent Nia Johnson, who gave birth to her son, Marcus Johnson. Fearing that Nia and the baby boy will be targeted by his enemies, Nick Fury, Sr., decides to distance himself from his family to protect them.
Three decades pass, and while in Afghanistan, Marcus Johnson (Fury’s son) discovers that Orion killed his mother, Nia, and decides to return and seek revenge. After close encounters with death by Orion’s goons, Nick Fury finally reveals himself as Marcus’ father. The duo defeats Orion and reconciles, while Marcus discovers his real name is Nick Fury and adopts the name and the lifestyle his father had.
This is the brief origin story of Nick J. Fury, and the MCU version is close to its original character from the comics. The comic book version of Nick Fury adapted most of his father’s lifestyle, including the signature eyepatch, and this is why Samuel L. Jackson’s version of the character is so cool.
Nevertheless, Nick Fury wore the eyepatch throughout the Marvel Cinematic Universe, specifically in his 13 appearances in multiple projects. The whole lore behind his eyepatch revealed in the Captain Marvel movie that Nick Fury lost his eye to Flarken named Goose, an extremely dangerous alien that completely resembles Earth’s cat. At the time, fans were disappointed by the silly reasoning behind the mysterious injury, but over the years, they accepted the canon of MCU.
Despite that silly moment, Nick Fury stayed cool in the eyes of the fans of MCU. When fans saw him in the Secret Invasion trailer, they quickly started speculating why Nick Fury doesn’t wear his trusty eyepatch.
I believe there are two possible reasons behind the absence of an eyepatch.
Two possibilities may determine why Nick Fury doesn’t wear his eyepatch in the MCU
After Avengers: Endgame and the disbandment of Avengers, Nick Fury, and Maria Hill disappeared, or better yet, left Earth, at least in Fury’s case. Nick Fury left the Earth because of Skrulls and potentially more, which we will discover in the Secret Invasion series in more detail.
Spider-Man: Far From Home ending of the movie revealed that Talos and Soren, Skrulls we met in the Captain Marvel movie, and Captain Marvel and Fury met in the 1990s, impersonated Nick Fury and Maria Hill the whole time.
Meanwhile, during that time, Maria Hill was working from the shadows, while Nick Fury was seen in space, in casual clothes, wandering around the spaceship. In the post-credit scene, Nick Fury wears his eyepatch even in his casual outfit, confirming that he rarely takes it off.
Secret Invasion presents us with the opposite: Fury returning to Earth and looking worn out and tired. The trailer reveals that misplaced, rebellious Skrulls invaded Earth and started impersonating the world’s leaders to take over the whole planet.
In the Captain Marvel movie, we discover that Kree destroyed many Skrull colonies, including their homes. Captain Marvel and Nick Fury promised to find a home for displaced Skrulls. Of course, many years have passed since then, and some of the aliens got fed up with “false promises” and took the matter into their own hands by secretly invading Earth, aiming to make it their new home.
When Nick Fury returns to Earth, he looks tired and paranoid, and without an eyepatch, those epithets are even more emphasized.
We mentioned two possible reasons why Nick Fury doesn’t wear an eyepatch in the Secret Invasion TV series. The first theory revolves around Fury’s character development in the series, with him returning to Earth, not being himself, paranoid and tired. By the end of the series, we see the former director returning in full glory, the eyepatch Fury that we know and love.
The symbolism of Nick Fury returning home after a very long time and losing himself during the absence could be top-notch, but it seems Secret Invasion has something more interesting in the works.
Despite the previous theory being legitimate, this next theory is more plausible and cooler – Nick Fury is a Skrull. Specifically, the eyepatch Fury in the trailer is a Skrull, while the one we see at the beginning of the trailer without it is “our” Fury.
This little detail seems as if showrunners found a way to present the viewers with the distinction between the characters. Eyepatch-less Fury is paranoid, tired, and tense, while the other seems like Nick Fury we have known for the last fifteen years. The second version of Nick Fury doesn’t make sense in the context of the happenings in MCU and the Secret Invasion series – he is genuinely worried about the consequences of the Skrull invasion of Earth.
There is also a scene where the seemingly real Fury wears an eyepatch, suggesting that he may wear it shortly after he starts uncovering the conspiracy.
Maybe both theories will merge by the end of the series, but this second theory seems much better and cooler for the Secret Invasion show. It will also add more tension to the already dark atmosphere of the Disney+ series.
Until the show starts airing in June of this year, we won’t know all details, but it’s still cool to speculate about the most exciting Marvel project among the average projects we got in the past two years.