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When Did Rhodey Become A Skrull In The MCU? Secret Invasion Director Weighs In

Contains spoilers for "Secret Invasion" 

Rhodey (Don Cheadle) being a Skrull was the worst-kept secret of "Secret Invasion," as it didn't take long for the question to shift from "Is Rhodey a Skrull?" to "How long has Rhodey been a Skrull?" According to director Ali Selim, "Secret Invasion" did some MCU-retconning with Rhodey's story, as he's been a Skrull for quite some time. 

"A lot of people have asked about, 'Definitively, when did Rhodey...?'" Selim told Comicbook.com. "I think his legs not working in the end of Episode 6 and him being in the hospital gown points to ['Captain America: Civil War']. And, from there, does it have to be definitive, or is it more fun for the audience to go back and revisit every moment, every Rhodey moment, and look at it with a different lens now that they think, 'Oh, he might've been a Skrull there.' And make the decision for themselves, or it'll be answered in 'Armor Wars.'"

Although Selim seems hesitant to give a definitive answer, "Secret Invasion" all but confirms Rhodey has been a Skrull ever since his spinal injury in "Civil War," wearing the same hospital gown he did at the end of the movie. It also makes a lot more sense how quickly he stopped wearing the exoskeletal leg brace that Tony (Robert Downey Jr.) gave him in "Civil War," as he didn't use it in "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier." It turns out it wasn't Marvel getting lazy with continuity, but rather it was Rhodey's Skrull healing factor kicking in.

Rhodey has missed so many events

Although "Secret Invasion" doesn't touch on it, Rhodey being a Skrull is actually heartbreaking for the Marvel Cinematic Universe character. Thankfully, it isn't as if audiences have never met this Rhodey, as he appeared in the "Iron Man" series, "Avengers: Age of Ultron," and "Captain America: Civil War." However, the real Rhodey has missed some very significant events.

First and foremost, the real Rhodey wasn't around for either "Avengers: Infinity War" or "Endgame," meaning he doesn't know anything about Thanos' invasion, half of all life getting snapped out of existence, or the Avengers' time-travel shenanigans. He also has no idea that his longtime friends Natasha Romanoff and Tony Stark sacrificed themselves to save the universe, which is the most heartbreaking part of the "Secret Invasion" reveal.

However, "Secret Invasion" did build hype for "Armor Wars," as we now know, presumably, it'll focus on the real Rhodey as he reintegrates into society, learning about everything he missed. Remember, Skrull Rhodey had deep conversations with Sam Wilson (Anthony Mackie) in "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier," leading him to accept his new mantle as Captain America. The real Rhodey shouldn't even know that Steve Rogers is retired, let alone that Sam is now carrying the shield.

While Rhodey's situation seems bleak, there is one positive take. This means that Skrull Rhodey was the one who suggested going back in time to "take care" of Baby Thanos in "Endgame," not the heroic member of the Avengers.