In Secret Invasion episode 3, "Betrayed", three Skrulls use their power of mimicry to take over the roles of 3 sailors who are being deployed. The Skrulls’ power seems to give them the ability to assume the shape (and apparently even voice) of their victims from a single glance from a distance (see this question about Skrulls and clothes).

But how do the Skrulls deal with memories? It's one thing to pretend to be a "nobody" and slip by just based on looks, but in this episode the Skrulls are pretending to be reasonably high level sailors at active duty stations. At the very least they will be interacting directly with fellow sailors, and layered on top of that is that they have to be competent in performing their actual duties.

How do Skrulls obtain this information? It could be that the Skrulls had sequestered the sailors and downloaded their memories (as other humans are shown in being detained in devices that give access to memories), but in this particular case the only thing that we are shown is the Skrulls being handed physical dossiers of the people they are mimicking.

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    As you said, the Skrulls are shown to be kidnapping the people they impersonate and copying their memories into the impostors' brains. Is there any reason to suspect that they didn't do the same thing here? It'd be tedious to show them assuming people's forms and memories every single time they needed to do so.
    – F1Krazy
    Jul 11, 2023 at 15:57
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    @F1Krazy As per my last sentence, we aren't shown anything other than the dossiers. Even an establishing shot of the sailors being held by the Skrulls would have helped. And I have no knowledge of what those devices do. For all I know they could simply be a form of VR in order to help hold the humans
    – Peter M
    Jul 11, 2023 at 16:01

1 Answer 1


Yes they can.

This is seen in the first episode, when an activist for Americans Against Russia is kidnapped so that Brogan, a Skrull, can take his place. He is placed inside a cage-like device that seems to keep him in stasis, and which allows his memories to be accessed and copied by Brogan:

Pagon: Take his face.

[Brogan shape-shifts to resemble the activist]

Activist: No!

Pagon: Now, take his mind.

[the device activates and begins copying the activist's memories into Brogan's mind]

Later on in Episode 3, after Fury and Talos are unable to extract the launch abort code from Fairbanks' impostor, they contact G'iah. She finds the real Fairbanks trapped in another of the devices, which she uses to access his memories and find the abort code.

If Fairbanks had been kidnapped, then it's safe to assume that the other two sailors had been as well, even if it wasn't shown. At minimum, the Skrulls would have accessed their memories in the same way that G'iah did, and then compiled a dossier containing the important ones. It's also possible that they performed a full memory-copy off-screen, and the dossiers were merely meant to serve as a refresher or a "these are the important bits" highlights reel.

The exact purpose of the dossiers is admittedly unclear, but to answer your main question, the Skrulls to indeed have the ability to access and replicate people's memories, and I have no reason to believe that they didn't do so in this particular case.

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