From Roxxon to the Darkforce: How Does Cloak and Dagger Tie into the Wider MCU?
There's a tantalizing hint at the MCU origin of these two up-and-coming superheroes.
The show may not be due out until 2018, but that hasn't stopped Marvel and Freeform dropping the first trailer for #CloakandDagger. It's a beautifully atmosphere trailer, setting up a dark teenage romance that looks to be filled with emotion. But at the climax of the trailer, there's a tantalizing hint at the MCU origin of these two up-and-coming superheroes. And it's all to do with one word: Roxxon.
As you can see in the trailer, it comes to an end with one of our heroes - Cloak - waking up on the roof of a Roxxon building. He clearly has no idea how he got there, and is kind of freaking out. Given the #comicbook version of Cloak developed powers of teleportation, it's not hard to work out how Cloak got there.
But that nod to Roxxon? It's an important scene, hinting at the overall narrative of the entire first season of Cloak and Dagger.
First Comes the Darkforce
In the comics, Cloak and Dagger were injected with illegal narcotics and gained superpowers. There's no hint of that origin in the trailer, so the question remains: how do these two runaways become so powerful? The answer, it seems, is found in Roxxon Corp.
Roxxon is a powerful energy conglomerate. In the comics, its known for its corruption and greed, and was even responsible for having Tony Stark's parents killed when they threatened its monopoly. In the #MCU, Roxxon has been established as a powerful - but still very, very corrupt - force. Agent Carter Season 1 revealed that, as far back as the 1940s, Roxxon was willing to conduct dangerous experiments and even industrial espionage in order to get a business advantage.
But here's where things get really interesting. Agent Carter Season 2 saw Peggy Carter dealing with yet another corrupt company, Isodyne Energy. Isodyne had stumbled across a powerful extradimensional power source known as the Darkforce, one that actually threatened the planet; needless to say, Peggy Carter shut them down. The company got a recent nod in #AgentsofSHIELD Season 4, where we learned that in the 1950s Isodyne had been taken over by Roxxon.
This matters because Cloak's powers are traditionally associated with an extradimensional energy source known as... you guessed it. The Darkforce. In another important detail, #AgentCarter Season 2 established that fragments of Darkforce energy - or people who are under the influence of the Darkforce - are drawn to each other. So the fact that Cloak wakes up on the roof of a Roxxon building is kind of significant, and strongly suggests that Roxxon is playing with the Darkforce again. It's likely that this will be tied in somehow to Cloak and Dagger's origin in the MCU.
The Recurring Thread of Roxxon
Fans are always eager for the MCU to tie together, and Roxxon is quickly becoming one of the most important threads. So far it's appeared in films, one-shots, and TV shows; it's been consistently presented as a dark, dangerous and unethical corporate force. Here are Roxxon's appearances so far.
- Agent Carter Season 1: In the earliest chronological appearance of Roxxon, Peggy Carter took on the corrupt leadership of Roxxon.
- Agent Carter Season 2: In one subplot, we learn that major companies - including Roxxon - were tied to a dangerous cabal that had been manipulating the world for decades. Peggy broke into the Los Angeles branch at one point while investigating this sinister group. Unfortunately, Agent Carter was canceled, and this concept has never been developed.
- Iron Man: There's a brief glimpse of a Roxxon logo.
- Iron Man 2: Early on in the film, Tony Stark competes in a race at the Monaco Grand Prix. One of his opponents is sponsored by the Roxxon Oil Corporation.
- A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Thor's Hammer: Phil Coulson stopped off at a Roxxon Oil gas station, and took out some robbers. The same gas station is visited in the tie-in comic The Avengers: Fury's Big Week.
- Iron Man 3: Killian stages the execution of a Roxxon accountant. He later kidnaps President Ellis, and holds him on a Roxxon oil tanker.
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1: The team briefly revisited the gas station in the episode 'Repairs.' According to 'T.R.A.C.K.S.,' Roxxon owned Cybertek, the Hydra-compromised company responsible for much of the Project: Deathlok.
- Daredevil Season 1: Matt Murdock and Foggy Nelson discussed their internship with Parish Landman. One of their old cases involved working for Roxxon against one of their own employees.
- Daredevil Season 2: Elektra hired Matt Murdock to investigate corruption in the Japanese branch of Roxxon Oil, which had ties to both the Yakuza and the Hand.
- Iron Fist: Harold Meachum told Danny Rand that the Hand were using Roxxon to move their drugs.
- Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 4: Doing some digging into potential energy sources that could be used to manipulate dimensional energy, Fitz reeled off some backstory; he revealed that Isodyne (from Agent Carter Season 2) was bought out by Roxxon in the 1950s.
As you can see, Cloak & Dagger looks set to be just the latest appearance from Roxxon. Roxxon has been a constant background presence through the history of the MCU, but now they seem to be moving to center-stage. The Darkforce connection is a subtle one, but it definitely sounds promising; it suggests a close link between Cloak and Dagger and themes we've seen #Marvel Television build over the last few years!