The upcoming Captain Marvel film has expanded its alien cast with the addition of Gemma Chan as the Kree spy, Minn-Erva. To Marvel Comics readers, the character is better known as Doctor Minerva, and she has had a long and strange history in the Marvel Universe as someone who is obsessed with the evolution of the Kree race to the point where she has done some shocking and disturbing things over the years to achieve her delusional goals.
She made her debut in 1977’s Captain Marvel #50 (by Scott Edelman, Al Milgrom and Terry Austin), where we see her monitoring Captain Marvel (the Kree hero who was born Mar-Vell)….
At the end of the issue, Captain Marvel finally freed Rick Jones and himself from their shared connection to the Negative Zone and we see the mysterious woman announce that this was perfect for her plans…
So what was her plan, exactly? The next issue, she kidnapped Rick Jones. When Mar-Vell went to find his friend in the following issue, he ran against the mysterious woman, who revealed herself to be Minn-Erva (or Doctor Minerva, as she would soon be called). She explained that she wanted to mate with him so that they could help the Kree race to evolve, as otherwise, the race was deemed to be nearing its evolutionary end.
Her mission soon became a rogue one, as she was taken off the case by a superior, but she could not bear to stop. So she broke from the Kree Empire and remained on Earth.
Of course, a few years later, Mar-Vell died from cancer, so her goals were apparently dashed.
She popped up again in Quasar #10, where she was now wearing a version of Ms. Marvel’s original costume (which, itself, was a female design of Captain Marvel’s original costume) and she had with her a new mate, a Kree warrior named Captain At-Lass (or Captain Atlas), who wore a version of Captain Marvel’s original costume (which, to be fair, was pretty much a standard Kree captain uniform to begin with). She figured she would try to improve the Kree race with him, as she used the device that gave Ms. Marvel her powers to give powers to herself and Atlas. They also tried to steal Quasar’s Quantum bands, since they were connected to Captain Marvel’s Nega bands….
When the Kree Empire went to war with the Shi’ar Empire a couple of years later, Doctor Minerva and Captain Atlas were right there with their people again, helping to steal the Nega Bands from Mar-Vell’s tomb.
However, it turned out that the Nega Bands were then used to power a Nega Bomb. The Shi’ar were then tricked into deploying the bomb on Hala, the Kree throne world, where it killed billions of Kree people. However, the whole thing was a plot by the Kree Supreme Intelligence, as he knew that the bomb would kickstart the Kree evolution again. Minerva was in on it the whole time! Captain Atlas was disgusted with her and the part he played in it, so he tried to kill himself. She seemingly died with him…
It turned out that that was all a ploy, though, to escape from the Avengers. They popped up alive, still hoping to mate to move the Kree people’s evolution along.
Most recently, Minerva showed up on Earth working with A.I.M. (who she worked with back in Quasar, as well) to kidnap some Inhumans to do experiments on to also help the evolution of the Kree race…
She did some of the experiments on herself, transforming herself into a powerful creature…
However, these experiments were done without approval of the Kree Empire, so when Spider-Man sent a message out about her experiments to the Kree, she quickly skedaddled.
She popped up again during Civil War II, where she continued to run experiments on innocents. Captain Marvel and the Ultimates used the visions of Ulysses to capture her before she could get away again. She was arrested and imprisoned by the Kree Empire.
She hasn’t been seen since.
Her obsession with genetics might very well play a role in an Earthwoman like Carol Danvers getting Kree powers in the upcoming Captain Marvel film.
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