MCU veteran Cobie Smulders shared her thoughts about her surprising return to Marvel in the animated Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur series.
The super-powered Disney channel and Disney+ show is in the midst of its first season, telling the zany tale of 13-year-old genius Lunella Lafayette and her red Tyrannosaurus-Rex, Devil Dinosaur.
While not put on the level of mainline MCU projects (a la Secret Invasion), the animated series has been described as "complementary to the MCU," featuring cameos and Easter eggs from across the red brand.
One of these MCU touchstones was announced to be coming in the form of Cobie Smulders showing up in Season 1 as her iconic SHEILD agent Maria Hill.
Cobie Smulders' Surprising MCU Return
After showing up as a guest star in Disney Channel's Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur, Cobie Smulders offered up her take on her surprising MCU return.
In a spot promoting her animated appearance as Agent Maria Hill, Smulders said she was "so excited" to be popping up in the super-powered series:
"I am so excited to be reprising my role as agent Maria Hill in 'Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur'. Maria is coming into this place where she can be a guide. The idea that we get to see another strong powerful young woman leading this is very exciting."
She pointed to the impact that animation, in particular, has on young kids and its ability to "connect" to the creative side of children's brains:
"When kids watch animation, they're able to connect with this type of program because it is something that they can do, to draw, to write their own stories, to write their own songs."
The MCU veteran also revealed "animation had such a huge impact on [her]" growing up and she "can't believe [she gets] to play a small part in" the show:
"Animation had such a huge impact on me in my life - all of the early Disney movies. So my hope is that kids just get inspired by watching this show, and I can't believe I get to play a small part in it. It is really exciting, and it makes me feel like a really cool mom."
Despite Smulders' appearance in the animated series having been previously announced (all the way back at San Diego Comic-Con 2022), MCU fans still seem to be shocked about her appearance, with many wondering if Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur is now "secretly an MCU show."
Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur in the MCU
With connections such as Maria Hill showing up and it very much being the same (or very similar) version of the character seen in the MCU-proper, it is hard to deny that Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur is an MCU project.
It might not sit on the timeline behind Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige at any pompous press conference, but it very much appears ingrained in that big screen universe.
Then again, there's a good chance it could also sit in a universe similar, but not exactly the same, to the MCU. This isn't the first time an MCU agent has popped up in a standalone animated Marvel series, as Clark Gregg's Phil Coulson appeared several times across its four-season run.
It remains to be seen if the connections go any farther than small Easter eggs and a few character cameos, but many would agree they do not have to. The animated series seems to be thriving as MCU-adjacent, in a similar way to what Agents of SHIELD did for years on ABC.
Yes, pieces of the big screen universe will make their way to the small screen for an episode here or there, but the show will remain on the periphery when it comes to the happenings of the mainline MCU narrative.
Although, all that could be thrown out the window if Diamond White's Moon Girl shows up to save the Multiverse in Avengers: Secret Wars.
New episodes of Moon Knight and Devil Dinosaur air every Wednesday on Disney Channel and can be streamed now on Disney+.