Secret Invasion Just Broke a Frustrating MCU Runtime Record

By Aeron Mer Eclarinal Updated:
Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury, Secret Invasion, Marvel Studios logo, Avengers

Secret Invasion's total runtime isn't what fans expected despite being billed as Disney+'s first MCU's "crossover event."

In May 2023, Empire gave an exciting runtime update about Secret Invasion, noting that the MCU series includes "six hour-long episodes" that "give Jackson more space to explore [his character]."

However, in June 2023, Secret Invasion director Ali Selim confirmed that some episodes of the MCU show will be "considerably shorter" than that previously-mentioned hour-mark. 

Secret Invasion Sets Disappointing MCU Runtime Record

Secret Invasion, Nick Fury

Following its series finale, Secret Invasion's total episode runtime has become the shortest of all the live-action MCU Disney+ series, clocking in at 3 hours, 43 minutes, and 30 seconds, not including credits or recaps.

The series is 10 minutes and 10 seconds shorter than the 9-episode first season of She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, which was the shortest Marvel Studios series until Secret Invasion's release. Moreover, Secret Invasion has an average runtime of 37 minutes and 15 seconds. 

WandaVision still holds the record for the longest MCU series on Disney+ with a total runtime of 4 hours, 30 minutes, and 4 seconds.

Here's how all of the MCU's Disney+ series rank in terms of runtime, from longest to shortest: 

  • WandaVision (9 episodes) - 4 hours, 30 minutes, and 4 seconds
  • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (6 episodes) - 4 hours, 26 minutes, and 2 seconds
  • Loki (6 episodes) - 4 hours, 8 minutes, and 38 seconds
  • What If…? (6 episodes) - 4 hours, 9 minutes, and 52 seconds
  • Hawkeye (6 episodes) - 4 hours, 2 minutes, and 8 seconds
  • Moon Knight (6 episodes) - 4 hours, 21 minutes, and 12 seconds
  • Ms. Marvel (6 episodes) - 3 hours, 57 minutes, and 14 seconds
  • She-Hulk: Attorney at Law (9 episodes) - 3 hours, 53 minutes, and 40 seconds
  • Secret Invasion (6 episodes) - 3 hours, 43 minutes, and 30 seconds

These runtimes only accounted for new episode footage, not including episode recaps, introductions, and credits.

This information was compiled by Reddit user SpaceCaboose.

Why Secret Invasion’s New Runtime Record Hurts the MCU

Another day, another Secret Invasion update that adds to the show's growing list of Marvel disappointments

In Marvel Comics, Secret Invasion received widespread acclaim due to its main premise of Skrulls infiltrating Earth for a long time while also revealing that some Avengers and a plethora of world leaders are actually shapeshifting aliens. 

This story would've worked in the MCU, considering that its shared universe had been around for more than a decade. 

However, this short runtime record only proved that the MCU's version of the Secret Invasion storyline felt rushed. 

While the finale showcased some ramifications that will be felt in other projects like Captain America: Brave New World and Armor Wars, some have pointed out that aspects, such as James Rhodes' Skrull twist, affected the quality and impact of scenes from previous Marvel movies. 

Hopefully, this latest setback would allow Marvel Studios to bounce back strong in future projects. 

All episodes of Secret Invasion are streaming on Disney+.

- In This Article: Secret Invasion
Release Date
June 21, 2023
- About The Author: Aeron Mer Eclarinal
Aeron is a news/features writer and Content Lead for The Direct who has been working for the site since March 2020. From writing about the inter-connectivity of the Marvel Cinematic Universe to having an extended knowledge about DC TV's Arrowverse, Aeron's expertise has since expanded into the realm of reality TV, K-drama, animated, and live-action shows from Netflix,  Disney+, Prime Video, MGM+, Peacock, Paramount+, and Max. When he isn't writing and watching all things MCU, Aeron is heavily invested with the NBA (go Celtics!) and occasionally watches thrilling matches in the WWE.