Eternals Credits Scenes Explained: What Does This Mean For The Future Of The MCU?

Marvel's "Eternals" follows in the tradition of the Marvel Cinematic Universe by having a couple scenes waiting to be revealed in the credits. In this case, there's a mid-credits scene and a post-credits scene, and both serve to expand the cosmic side of the MCU. However, both of the scenes also reach into much more obscure corners of the Marvel Comics universe, so don't be ashamed if you were made of questions after the credits scenes rolled out. That's why we're here to have the "Eternals" credits explained, making sure you know exactly what they mean for the future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Eternals Mid-Credits Scene

The "Eternals" mid-credits scene acts as a direct follow-up to the ending of the film. By the film's final act, the Eternals have learned that they're actually humanoid creations used by the Celestials to harvest the population of planets by keeping Deviants (also created by Celestials) at bay to allow enough energy to be created in order for a Celestial to be born out of a planet's destruction. The Eternals decide to let all the other Eternals in the universe know about this revelation in the hopes of stopping more planets from being destroyed, turning against their creators. 

Sersi, Kingo, and Phastos will stay on Earth to protect it, and Sprite has been granted mortality by Sersi's newfound abilities. But at the end of the film, Arishem appears above Earth and summons Sersi, Kingo, and Phastos to answer for their betrayal. Meanwhile, Thena, Makkari, and Druig head off in their ship, the Domo, to spread the word to the other Eternals, and it's with this trio where the mid-credits scene takes place.

Aboard the Domo, Makkari is worried because they haven't heard from Sersi, Kingo, and Phastos in awhile. Thena immediately deduces that it must be because of the Celestial called Arishem, and they're about to head back to Earth. However, suddenly Thena and Makkari both sense something happening inside the ship. Druig is confused about what they're feeling, but down the hall of the ship, they see an array of colors not unlike the kind that appear when someone arrives by way of the bifrost from "Thor." Suddenly, out of the color shimmer comes a small figure flying clumsily down the hallway.

After collecting himself and remarking, "No more drunk teleporting for you," the troll creature (voiced by comedian Patton Oswalt) being starts to make a grand announcement. After some mouth-trumpeting, he says, "Behold, the royal prince of Titan, brother of Thanos, the knave of hearts, defeater of Black Robert," which is then interrupted by an off-screen voice correcting him, "Roger." Recovering from his blunder, the creature continues, "The great adventurer, Starfox."

That's when One Direction group member and chart-topping singer Harry Styles appears on screen with flaming red hair and an Eternals suit and says, "What a pleasure to make your acquaintance, my fellow Eternals." Then he tells the creature that he doesn't have to put on such a show when introducing him to anyone. The creature says, "Everything you do is impressive," and proceeds to argue with Starfox before he's silenced. 

As Foreigner's "Feels Like the First Time" begins to play in the background," Starfox properly introduces himself, "I'm Eros. This is Pip." Then he can't help but put on some charm by saying, "And you are as beautiful as the legends say, Thena." Druig interrupts and asks, "What do you want, lads?" That's when Starfox/Eros reveals another tease for what will inevitably be the sequel to "Eternals." Eros takes the orb out of his chest that allows Eternals to communicate with the Celestials, an item seemingly given to only the leaders of each team. Then he says, "Your friends are in trouble. And we think we know where to find them."

Who the Hell is Starfox?

In Marvel Comics, Starfox is indeed Eros, the brother of Thanos, and not the ace pilot from a Nintendo video game. Raised on Titan, Eros lived his life mostly carefree and spent his time chasing women. Anyway, Eros doesn't really live all that meaningful of a life until Thanos launched his first major attack on Titan. Eros defends Titan from Thanos several times, and he even fought alongside Captain Mar-vell, the original iteration of Captain Marvel. Could Eros have a history with the MCU's version of Captain Marvel that we haven't heard about yet?

However, Marvel's "Eternals" reveals that the titular characters are actually humanoid beings created by Celestials to ensure the creation of new Celestials by protecting growing planets from the threat of Deviants. When a planet reaches a certain population and has enough energy, a Celestial can be born out of the planet's destruction, and the Eternals have been doing this for centuries, having their minds erased after every new Celestial is born. So how will Eros' history being raised as the brother of Thanos on Titan fit with the mythology of the Eternals in the MCU? We're not exactly sure.

Since Eros can can psionically stimulate the pleasure centers in nearby people's brains, making them calm and open to suggestion, he's quite the charmer. It also makes him sound a bit like a dirtbag, if you ask me, but I'm betting that part of his character won't be manifested through his powers but rather with a flirtatious personality instead. After all, Harry Styles may be handsome, but I'm pretty sure even he couldn't play a character who uses his superpowers to convince women to sleep with him and get away with it. 

For those curious, there is a storyline in Marvel Comics where Eros is put on trial after being accused of manipulating a married woman into having an affair with him. She-Hulk is even hired to defend him in court. To make a long story short, the court case on Earth is moot when Eros is teleported back to Titan by his father, Mentor. But a trial is held on Titan, and She-Hulk finds that Eros is innocent, though he did manipulate She'-Hulk and made her fall in love with John Jameson, son of J. Jonah Jameson. I can't imagine that's a story arc we'll see play out on the "She-Hulk" series on Disney+, but who knows?

Starfox, Avengers, and the Guardians of the Galaxy

So where does the name Starfox come from? When Eros makes one of his trips to Earth (where he's known as a legend), he applies to join the Avengers. After being accepted, the team didn't think Eros was a good enough name, so The Wasp gives him the name Starfox. Obviously that won't be the reason for his nickname in the MCU, and again we're wondering exactly how his character history will be explained with regards to how the Eternals operate. But this is all information that we're likely to learn whenever the character returns in another Marvel Studios movie.

For what it's worth, Starfox also formed the Dark Guardians, a cosmic team of superheroes comprised of the characters Gladiator, Nebula, Wraith, and Cosmic Ghost Rider. The team was formed to stop the return of Thanos, who somehow was able to upload his consciousness into a new body before being killed in the "Infinity Wars" arc. The Dark Guardians are assembled to find Thanos' new body and stop him from being resurrected. I can't imagine Marvel Studios would try to bring Thanos back with that storyline, but it's certainly an intriguing idea.

Since Starfox is one of the more obscure characters of Marvel Comics, and his comic history doesn't easily fit within the MCU, we're betting there will be a lot of liberties taken with his character. Perhaps he'll end up forming a new version of the Guardians of the Galaxy. After all, director James Gunn has said the third film in the franchise would mark the end of the story for the current iteration of the team. If "Eternals" doesn't end up being the hit that Marvel Studios presumably needs it to be, then maybe shifting Starfox to a different franchise would be a better option, especially with the presumed box office draw Harry Styles will have.

Starfox isn't the only new character who may soon have a significant presence in the MCU. Another one emerges in the post-credits scene of "Eternals," but this one was already being anticipated by fans.

Eternals Post-Credits Scene

In "Eternals," the team has been on Earth for 5,000 years. In her human life, Sersi (Gemma Chan) has been working as a museum curator, and she's struck up a romance with fellow scholar Dane Whitman, played by Kit Harrington. Whitman isn't aware that Sersi is an Eternal, but based on her avoiding any significant commitment with him, such as moving in together, he adorably guesses that she's some kind of wizard like Doctor Strange. So he's not entirely caught off guard when Sersi finally reveals her status as an Eternal after they're attacked by a Deviant in London. For the rest of the movie, Whitman is pretty much on the sidelines back in London while Sersi is trying to save the world, though she does have a moment to FaceTime with him. 

Once it seems like Sersi and the rest of the Eternals have prevented Earth from being destroyed by stopping the birth of the Celestial known as Tiamut, Whitman is reunited with his lover, and the two may actually be able to progress in their relationship. But first, Whitman reveals that his family may have a secret of their own. Before that secret can be revealed, the Celestial called Arishem suddenly appears above Earth and teleports Sersi, Kingo, and Phastos from the planet to hold them responsible for their actions, leaving Whitman behind with the rest of the confused and panicked citizens of London. The audience is left to wonder what Whitman's secret could be, but it's about to be revealed in the post-credits scene.

In the post-credits scene, Dane Whitman is standing in what appears to be his university office. Sitting on his desk is a large ornate case featuring his family crest, which was previously seen on an ancient ring that Sersi gave to him as a gift early on in "Eternals." Whitman is looking at the case with trepidation, and he tries to psyche himself up, saying out loud, "You can do this." 

When Whitman opens the case, inside is a medieval sword. But there's something different about this sword. An ominous sound emanates when the blade is shown, and there appear to be tiny black molecules moving around on the blade. Whitman reads an inscription in another language that says, "Death is my reward." Whitman, seemingly knowing the danger and power of this sword, says, "I'm sorry. I have to try." 

Whitman then slowly reaches his hand towards the blade, and you can see the molecules on the sword reaching towards his hand as that ominous sound returns. It's as if the sword wants to be wielded. But before Whitman can touch the sword, a mysterious off-screen voice asks, "Sure you're ready for that, Mr. Whitman?" The scene cuts to black.

Who is The Black Knight and What is the Ebony Blade?

Those who are familiar with the name Dane Whitman in Marvel Comics were already waiting for this reveal. That's because Dane Whitman is known as Black Knight, a character who wields the sword known as the Ebony Blade. It's that ancient weapon that drives Dane Whitman to become a hero. But the weapon is a dangerous one to use.

The Ebony Blade (which is actually mentioned elsewhere in the movie before the post-credits scene) was created by the wizard Merlyn and Sir Percy of Scandia, both allies of King Arthur. The two forge the Ebony Blade from a Starstone meteorite, and it was enchanted to cut through any object, prevent the death of whoever wielded it, and deflect magic. However, with those powers comes a curse. Anyone who wields the Ebony Blade will slowly be corrupted by a lust for violence, bloodshed, and death. That's why the blade can only be wielded by the impure of heart. For example, when the sword was wielded by Sir Percy, it brought out his repressed rage, bloodlust, and psychosis. 

Since Dane Whitman is a descendant of Sir Percy, will he succumb to the same fate? Since this is the Marvel Cinematic Universe we're talking about, it's likely that Whitman will fight back against the Ebony Blade's pull into madness, and he will be able to wield the sword without taking a dark turn. In fact, we wouldn't be surprised if he was assisted by Merlyn, who could be the source of that mysterious voice heard at the end of the scene.

Much like Eros/Starfox, the character of Black Knight doesn't have a comic book history that fits easily into the MCU. Surely Dane Whitman's wielding of the Ebony Blade will come from his desire to save Sersi from Arishem in a presumed "Eternals" sequel. But beyond that, Black Knight is kind of a wild card. The character has been part of various incarnations of the Avengers, not to mention Defenders, Ultraforce, Heroes for Hire, and more. Since none of those teams have a clear presence in the MCU, or even a path to introduce them, Black Knight could do almost anything in the MCU. 

What Do These Scenes Mean for the Future of the MCU?

This are easily the most obscure characters to be teased in the credits scenes of a Marvel Studios movie yet. They both have direct ties to a sequel to "Eternals," but if the movie somehow doesn't perform as well as it needs to at the box office, we're not sure what the future would hold for them. There's a good chance that Marvel always has a contingency plan if a certain movie doesn't land as firmly as they'd like. Perhaps Kevin Feige already knows what they could do with Eros/Starfox and Black Knight if they decide not to make an "Eternals" sequel. There may be a way to bring those characters into other parts of the MCU without relying on an "Eternals" franchise as their vessel, especially with the concept of the multiverse being introduced.

Then again, we could be looking at the possibility of Marvel Studios taking a big swing and striking out with "Eternals." If the movie isn't successful at the box office, Marvel Studios may need to reconfigure a lot of moving pieces in the MCU in order to recover. But considering they now have "Fantastic Four" and "X-Men" back in their hands, there are plenty of options to expand the MCU if they need to pivot away from their hopes for "Eternals" and the cosmic side of the MCU. After all, the "Fantastic Four" villain Galactus is cosmic being who could easily have ties to elements of "Eternals," allowing a shift of the narrative to another franchise that still incorporates some of the film's characters without giving them a full fledged sequel. It would basically amount to the way Hulk is used in the MCU without having his own franchise anymore.

For now, we'll just have to wait and see what fans think of "Eternals" and whether the box office performance is enough for Marvel Studios to continue their story. We've got at least a couple years before we'd have to start thinking about that movie anyway, because Marvel has a full slate of films that goes into 2023. Stay tuned to see what happens next.