Watch: MCU's 'Eternals' Features Gay Superhero in Teaser Trailer

by Kilian Melloy

EDGE Staff Reporter

Wednesday May 26, 2021
Originally published on May 25, 2021

Brian Tyree Henry in 'Eternals.'
Brian Tyree Henry in 'Eternals.'  (Source:Screencap/MarvelStudios/YouTube)

After 23 blockbuster films, Marvel is finally getting around to introducing a gay champion in the new teaser trailer for the upcoming film "Eternals," which features gay married superhero Phastos, played by Brian Tyree Henry.

"Eternals" will be the third of the MCU's "Phase Four" films (the 26th MCU movie overall) after this summer's "Black Widow" (premiering in July) and "Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings," which hits the big screen in September. ("Phase Three" ended in 2019 with "Avengers: Endgame" and "Spider-Man: Far From Home.")

The teaser laid out a general understanding of who the Eternals are while keeping the plot a secret. The group is comprised of immortal aliens who have lived on Earth for thousands of years and, as star Salma Hayek (who plays Ajak) narrates in the clip, "have never interfered... until now."

According to reports, the (albeit scant) plot is described as follows: "The story features a battle against The Deviants, amid bleak landscapes, filled with storms and explosions."

In addition to Henry and Hayek, the film stars Angelina Jolie, Richard Madden, Gemma Chan, Kumail Nanjiani, and Lauren Ridloff.

Henry's Phastos is described as being "an intelligent cosmic-powered inventor who secretly helps humanity progress technologically," and is recognized by Wikipedia for being "the first superhero to be depicted as gay in an MCU film."

As EDGE previously reported, Haaz Sleiman plays Phastos' husband, who does not possess any superpowers. What's more, the pair is depicted as having children and, as Indiewire reported in January, Sleiman promised in a Logo interview that there will be at least one "beautiful" and "very moving" same-sex kiss shared between the committed couple.

"For me it's very important to show how loving and beautiful a queer family can be," said Sleiman.

Indiewire pointed out earlier this year that, technically, Phastos isn't the first to be billed as the MCU's first gay superhero. That new ground was supposed to have been broken in "Avengers: Endgame," but that character — who was only on the screen in passing — "was nameless and insignificant to the film's plot."

Earlier this year, MCU fans caught on to hints that Bucky Barnes (aka The Winter Soldier) might be depicted as bisexual in "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier," the television series based on the MCU characters starring Sebastian Stan and Anthony Mackie. However, those hopes were dashed.

Watch the "Eternals" teaser trailer below:


Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Associate Arts Editor and Staff Contributor. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.