The Marvels: What is a Flerken?

Jasmine Valentine
Flerkens on the poster for The MarvelsMarvel Studios

Fans waiting to see The Marvels might be wondering why the film has gone so hard on the cat coverage, even with the industry strikes. The answer is found in the creature that is the Flerken.

With new trailers, teasers, and posters for The Marvels dropping regularly, feline faces have continued to appear throughout.

Marvel cat cafe experiences have taken the internet by storm (even we managed to pop along to one), and fans have frequently joked about Goose the Flerken doing legitimate press – only for this to come true a few weeks later.

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So what is the link between The Marvels and tiny fluffy cats? Here’s everything you need to know about what a Flerken actually means.

The Marvels: Flerkens explained

In the MCU – particularly Captain Marvel and The Marvels – a domestic-looking cat isn’t actually an Earth cat at all, but is instead something called a Flerken.

A Flerken, or Flerkens, are actually alien creatures with an exterior that matches any typical feline friend.

They reproduce by laying up to 117 eggs and have tentacles that often extend from their mouths. To make things even more interesting, their bodies also hold pocket realities, bubbles of space and time that exist in other worlds.

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Their abilities include pocket dimensions, tentacle protrusion, nested mouths, dimensional travel, toxicity, and understanding human intellect. On top of this, they get away with a lot just for being so cute.

As well as clearly being lead stars in The Marvels, the Flerken is a creature that Marvel fans will have seen before.

In Earth-616, Captain Marvel first has a pet cat named Chewie. The Captain was initially unaware that Chewie was actually a Flerken, but during a space adventure, Chewie started laying eggs.

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Goose the Flerken chronologically appears next in both the comics and movies, in Earth-199999. Goose was brought to Earth by Mar-Vell, but was then left alone at the Project P.E.G.A.S.U.S. Facility after Mar-Vell’s death. There, Goose met Nick Fury and Carol Danvers years later, sneaking onto the plane that Fury used to escape the base.

After this comes Earth-18157, where the Kree have launched the Flerken program. With the goal of being able to inhabit worlds purely based on their cuteness, the Kree later tried to take control of the Flerkens with an attacking signal beacon. The plan was stopped by Captain Marvel and the Guardians of the Galaxy, with the Guardians then needing to relocate the Flerkens to their homeworld.

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So far, Flerkens have appeared in Captain Marvel, What If…? Season 1, Ms. Marvel, Secret Invasion, and The Marvels, with additional references made in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law.

The Marvels hits screens this week – for more on the movie head here, or click on the below articles:

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About The Author

Jasmine Valentine is a TV and Movies Writer at Dexerto. She's written for the likes of Total Film, The Daily Beast, and Radio Times. Jasmine loves anime, dystopian thrillers, and anything starring Tilda Swinton. You can email her here: jasmine.waters@dexerto.com.