Marvel has sadly removedInhumans from their current slate of movies because they’re allegedly struggling to find room in Disney’s schedule with the addition of Ant-Man & Wasp, Spider-Man, Star Wars and Indiana Jones films. This move has led to the film being considered Marvel’s problem child, which I think is far from the truth.
For me, Ant-Man, Guardians Of The Galaxy & even Thor had much more difficult concepts and mythologies to sell than the relatively straightforward prospect of an ancient race of evolved humans living in isolation. The Inhumans are a huge integral part of the history of the MU and I have no doubt we will see them in at some point in Phase Four of the MCU. Though there has been something of an introduction to them in Agents Of Shield the show has barely scraped the tip of the iceberg in terms of exploring the better known Inhuman characters and The Royal Family.
So I thought it might be time to let people know just how awesome Black Bolt & Co. truly are.
If you’ve never heard of the Inhumans before, get ready for a history lesson…
Millions of years ago The Kree (the ancient alien warrior race responsible for GotG‘s Ronan the Accuser) were searching for strategic positions in the galaxy for their everlasting war with the shape-shifting The Skrulls. The Kree came upon Earth and it’s indigenous Neanderthal species, hugely dissimilar to the Kree themselves who had reached an evolutionary dead-end.
The Supreme Intelligence, leader of The Kree (everyone’s favourite head in a jar) desperate to find a cure ordered for the experimentation on any life on Earth with genetic potential, not only to help perpetuate their own species but to create super powered soldiers to aid in their battle with The Skrulls.
The Kree experimented on his nascent species, forcibly evolving them, and giving them superhuman (or indeed Inhuman powers).
While succeeding in creating a new race of superior beings, The Supreme Intelligence foresaw that one of these creatures would bring an end to the Kree Empire and so had all records of these experiments erased from history.
Inhomo Supremis, after being abandoned by their creators, formed their own society and culture over the years of development and are presided over by The Royal Family who currently consist of…
The King and most powerful of all The Inhumans; his voice is the source of his incredible power. Indeed, his merest whisper can obliterate mountains. A silent and stoic leader (thank God) with strength comparable to The Hulk, his excellent leadership has led to his being considered almost messianic by his people, proving the actions are truly stronger than words… Well except for his of course.
Ever thought to yourself, “I can’t do a thing with my hair”? Well the Inhumans’ Queen with locks of living hair with the tensile strength of steel can! She fell in love with Black Bolt at a young age and over the years created a form of sign language for him to use (now that’s true love for you). She’s also a proven warrior, having been a member of The Frightful 4 & Fantastic 4 respectively.
Keeping it in the family, Crystal is sister to Medusa and an elemental manipulator of earth, wind, fire and water. Crystal is probably the one with the strongest emotional connection to the human race even becoming a member of The Fantastic Four and The Avengers.
A gifted martial artist who has the ability to see any weakness in anything and anyone which has caused him to be at odds with many of his Inhuman brethren in the past, including Black Bolt his cousin.
What do you Satyr (say to) The Inhuman military adviser Gorgon was gifted with giant goat legs that have the power to cause tectonic plates to shift? Not much. (get it? GET IT?)
This is one Inhuman you don’t want to butt heads with…
An amphibian who is best suited to an aquatic environment and can’t last long out of water without dehydrating. He has various devices that can forestall that effect but unfortunately for him he has the personality of a wet fish.
Maximus The Mad
The demented brother of Black Bolt who has tried to usurp the throne on many occasions with his inventions and genius level intellect not to mention his mind control powers.
If Loki had an evil twin, it would be Maximus.
The Royal Family even have family pet, this lovable giant bulldog who has the ability to teleport anywhere as long as you scratch him behind the ear. He even had his own adventures leading The Pet Avengers…Yes that’s a thing!
Now The Royal Family aren’t the only ruling body for Inhumans. The Genetic Council were placed in charge of The Terrigen Crystals; a substance that once inhaled by someone of Inhuman decent brings forth mutagenic changes in them which sometimes brings about violent, debilitating and deadly consequences.
This is exposure is the culmination of a rite of passage ceremony for Inhuman teenagers. There are, of course parralels with The X-Men franchise which heavily features adolescents learning to control their new powers. It’s a simple but potent allegory, the idea that during puberty we fear these changes that we have no control over and the worry that in the end we won’t be the same person we used to be.
In these stories this is only compounded by the fact these characters have no idea how they will be affected by the process. They could turn into a giant blob or even disintegrate.
Terrigenesis, as it’s known, is a huge part of Inhuman culture. After the transformation the less human you look in Inhuman society the more accepted you will be.
In The Royal Family many of them wear masks because of the shame of their more human appearance.
Inhumans are very strict about genetic purity and have a very selective breeding program in order to ensure the best possible Terrigenetic results.
At one time Medusa became pregnant with Black Bolt’s son outside of the breeding program. This led to The Royal Family’s exile ordered by The Genetic Council.
The Inhumans rigid conformity was also challenged when Gorgon’s daughter struck up a relationship with an Alpha-Primitive (a slave caste of Inhumans) and she sought protection from her father with Susan Richards, who in the end tragically could do nothing as she wasn’t allowed to interfere with Inhuman culture without costly retaliation.
This uneasy relationship with humanity has led to Attilan (ancestral home of the Inhumans) declaring all out war on more than one occasion.
Their isolation from humanity has not only effected their closed-minded judgement of the human race but also their health.
In their domed city of Attilan (based originally in the Himalayas) being encased for so long that when they were exposed to our atmosphere they became fatally susceptible to Tarth’s pollution which concluded in the city being moved to Blue Area of the Moon; an ancient Kree city with a clean breathable atmosphere.
Another time Attilan was encased in negative energy by the evil Maximus which would have caused all The Inhumans to suffocate if not for Black Bolt using his voice on the barrier as a last resort.
He was successful in destroying the barrier but at the cost of most of the city and many lives. The Inhumans once even converted Attilan into a star ship and took the battle to their more cosmic enemies.
As we can see, the Inhumans offer a great opportunity to use science fiction / fantasy to hold a mirror up at our real world issues of identity, climate change, religion, slavery, international relations etc.
Much like the X-Men mythology, its heart lies in the disenfranchised and I believe Inhumans would make a fine, unique addition to the MCU, not to mention all the back-stabbing royal politics being a real treat for the Game of Thrones crowd!