Who Are The Inhumans? Meet The Heroes Of Marvel's 2018 Movie

Did Marvel's announcement of an Inhumans movie leave you scratching your head? You're not the only one. The Inhumans are a relatively obscure group of characters from Marvel comics, though like everyone else from the comics they have their share of devoted fans. After the jump, we'll cover all your basic questions about the superpowered team — starting with "Who are the Inhumans?"

Inhumans

Who are the Inhumans?

The Inhumans were first introduced in the Marvel Comics universe in the 1960s, and got their own self-titled series in the 1970s. But despite being around for decades, they remain pretty obscure. If you don't follow comic books, you've probably never even heard of them. Which shouldn't be a problem for Marvel; we'd have said the same thing about the Guardians of the Galaxy two years ago.

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Okay, but who are the Inhumans within the Marvel universe?

The Inhumans are a superpowered offshoot of humanity, created by the Kree (the alien race that Guardians of the Galaxy's Ronan belongs to) millions of years ago in genetic experiments on Cro-Magnons. The Kree ultimately abandoned their test subjects, known as the Inhumans, but they went on to form their own technologically advanced society far away from humanity. They live in Attilan, which has been relocated several times but is currently on the Blue Area of the Moon. Guess even Marvel had to run out of fantastical names eventually.

When Inhumans come of age, they're exposed to a mutagenic vapor called the Terrigen Mists, which unlock latent superpowers. The substance has a different effect on each Inhuman individual, and can be dangerous for non-Inhumans. The Inhumans have their own culture with its own rules and generally like to keep to themselves, but they keep crossing paths with other Marvel characters all the same.

After the jump, let's meet some key Inhumans.

Inhumans

Inhumans

And who are the Inhumans more specifically?

Like, name names.

The term "Inhumans" refers to an entire race, but Marvel Comics stories about the Inhumans mostly revolve around the royal family.

Black Bolt

Black Bolt is the ruler of the Inhumans. He is necessarily the strong, silent type, because his voice has the power to unleash great destruction. He is considered extremely powerful even by Inhumans standards.

Inhumans Medusa

Medusa is Black Bolt's wife and also his first cousin. Her special power is super-strong, super-durable hair that she can move or grow with her mind. It's deadlier than it sounds.

Inhumans Maximus

Maximus is Black Bolt's younger brother, who has mind control powers, a genius-level intellect, and a shaky grasp on sanity. He's a villain and has tried to take control of his brother's throne.

Karnak

Karnak is Black Bolt's cousin and Triton's younger brother. Like all Inhumans he has enhanced strength, endurance, and speed, but he was never exposed to the Terrigen Mist so he otherwise has no superpowers. He is, however, an expert martial artist.

Triton

Triton is Black Bolt's cousin, and Karnak's older brother. Triton is an aquatic sort with scaly green skin and fins, as well as the ability to breathe underwater, swim at great speeds, and withstand great pressure.

Gorgon

Gorgon is also Black Bolt's cousin. He's built kind of like a centaur but without the back half. His legs are so powerful, he can create earthquake-like shockwaves by stomping his hooves.

Crystal

Crystal is Medusa's younger sister which, yes, makes her another one of Black Bolt's cousins. Her talent is manipulating the elements: air, earth, wind, and fire.

Lockjaw

Lockjaw is a canine who serves as a sort of companion / bodyguard / protector to the Inhumans royal family. He can teleport himself and anyone around him.

After the jump, we discuss how the Inhumans might fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Inhumans

What will the the Inhumans be doing the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

Functionally speaking, the Inhumans could stand in for the X-Men. Because Fox holds the X-Men movie rights, Marvel isn't allowed to introduce X-Men into the Marvel Cinematic Universe. As a matter of fact, they're not even allowed to use the word "mutants." But like the X-Men, the Inhumans are a human-related race with all kinds of different superpowers. Like the X-Men, the Inhumans have their own intra-group drama and politics.

And hey, you know what else the Inhumans might have in common with the X-Men? There's been a lot of rumor and speculation that the MCU's version of Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver will be Inhumans, since for legal reasons they can't be mutants. So even though the Inhumans movie isn't coming out until late 2018, we might be meeting a couple of them next year in Avengers: Age of Ultron.

Inhumans

How will the Inhumans fit into the Marvel Cinematic Universe?

The Inhumans logically fit into the cosmic corner of the MCU, alongside the Guardians of the Galaxy and Thanos (the latter of whom has threatened the Inhumans before). But they don't have to stay there all the time, and the way the MCU is structured it's a given they'll collide with characters from other parts eventually. Indeed, if Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver turn out to be Inhumans, the Inhumans will be crossing paths with the Avengers in just a few months.

Moreover, the Inhumans in the comcis do have ties to lots of other characters we've seen in the movies. Crystal has been a member of the Avengers, and she's been married to Quicksilver and Ronan at various points. Black Bolt has been part of a secret supergroup called the Illuminati along with Doctor Strange and Iron Man, which has (among other things) attempted to keep the Infinity Gems safe.

Where you probably won't see them is in the Civil War storyline launched in the third Captain America. In the comics, Black Bolt rejected the Superhero Registration Act and then declined to get involved in the ensuing battle. But hey, who knows what they'll do in the movies.

Our friend Charlie created a video primer on the Inhumans team which you can watch above. It contains a lot more information packed into an enjoyable 8 minutes.

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