Now that the combination of Disney+ and home isolation is affording many people the opportunity to watch MCU content in quick succession, viewers are spotting continuity errors brought about by the piecemeal construction of the shared universe’s history. The latest is a small detail from Captain America: The Winter Soldier that seemingly runs counter to Captain Marvel‘s account of how Nick Fury lost his left eye.
One point in the film has Alexander Pierce being questioned about Fury, where he states a photo of the two of them was taken five years after they met during a mission to rescue hostages taken in the US embassy in Bogotá, Colombia that included Pierce’s daughter, which resulted in Fury’s promotion to the director of S.H.I.E.L.D. The issue is that the picture shows Fury having both of his eyes, although the timeline is presumed to put the moment after the events of Captain Marvel when Fury was a mid-level field agent and lost his eye after being scratched by the unexpectedly popular catlike Flerken Goose.
Of course, the logical reason is that exactly when and how Fury lost his eye had not been established at this point in the MCU’s development, but real-world reasoning isn’t important when discussing such issues. In Captain Marvel, Coulson offers Fury a selection of glass eyes and it might be one of them that he’s seen with in the photo, while it’s possible he later opted for the eye patch to look like even more of a badass and to cultivate an aura of mystique around himself, both of which would be entirely within character for him.
In any case, this is far from the first of such continuity issues, ranging from the likes of the end of Iron Man that explicitly establishes the first use of the acronym S.H.I.E.L.D., when later movies and TV shows see it as having been used for decades previously, to The Avengers when Tony Stark declares he would uncover all of S.H.I.E.L.D.’s dirty secrets, except seemingly for Captain America: The Winter Soldier’s revelation that from its founding the entire organization was a secretly a Nazi death cult.
Spotting discontinuity such as this is part of the fun of watching MCU movies, as is coming up with reasons that explain them away, and you can be sure that the timing of Fury’s choice of eyewear will be far from the last of these newly-discovered plot holes.