Summary

  • The Department of Damage Control, originally founded by Tony Stark, has shifted its purpose in Phase 4 and is now targeting new heroes in the MCU.
  • The DODC has become more villainous, going beyond cleaning up after battles and instead actively trying to restrict and oversee emerging heroes.
  • This shift in the DODC's role is opposite to what Tony Stark intended, as he wanted to protect and nurture the next generation of superheroes.

One organization founded by Iron Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe has taken on a more villainous role in Phase 4, targeting characters who perhaps don't need any oversight. Prior to his demise in Avengers: Endgame, Tony Stark was always one of the most resourceful superheroes on Earth, having acquired enough money to equip the Avengers with their specialized weapons and expand his technological empire across the globe. After becoming an Avenger in the MCU's Phase 1, Stark also used his fortune to found the Department of Damage Control, an organization with the purpose of cleaning up the mess left behind by the Avengers' battles.

The Department of Damage Control was created in the wake of the Battle of New York in 2012's The Avengers, first being properly seen in the prologue of Spider-Man: Homecoming relieving Adrian Toomes' crew of their work in cleaning up the destruction. Marvel Television had previously been toying with a Damage Control TV series, but this never came to fruition. Instead, the Department of Damage Control has made its existence known in the MCU's Phase 4, though its purpose seems to have shifted from what Tony Stark originally intended, as the organization has become something of a villain, targeting several new heroes in the Multiverse Saga.

Related: Every Upcoming Marvel Movie: Full MCU Phase 5 & 6 List (& Beyond)

Damage Control's New Character Targets Prove How Dangerous They Are

Agent Cleary in MCU's Ms. Marvel

While Tony Stark originally planned for the Department of Damage Control to clean up the Avengers' messes after battles, the organization seems to have taken this purpose to the extreme. Throughout the MCU's Phase 4, the DODC actively tried to "clean up" the emergence of new heroes, and keenly oversaw several heroes that perhaps didn't need to be watched so intently. Their first reappearance came during Spider-Man: No Way Home, which saw the DODC interrogate Peter Parker, MJ, Ned Leeds, and Aunt May after Spider-Man's identity was revealed to the world, but this was only the beginning of their villainous journey in Phase 4.

The DODC has had a larger role in Marvel Studios' TV shows on Disney+, most prominently in Ms. Marvel and She-Hulk: Attorney at Law. Ms. Marvel explored Agents Cleary and Deaver tracking down Kamala Khan and even targeting her friends, leading to a very public stand-off between the Jersey City hero, Kamran the Clandestine, and Agent Deaver of the DODC. She-Hulk: Attorney at Law revealed that Emil Blonsky had been incarcerated in a DODC facility, where Jennifer Walters herself ended up after the fiasco at the South California Law Awards gala, and the series also revealed the DODC had created a superpower inhibitor, similarly to those in Fox's X-Men franchise.

Damage Control's Phase 4 Role Show They Are The Opposite Of What Iron Man Wanted

Tony Stark with the Department of Damage Control in the MCU

In the MCU's early days, Tony Stark only intended the Department of Damage Control to be a clean-up operation, showing the Avengers' good will to the public as they were willing to clean up their own mess. However, in the wake of Stark's death in Avengers: Endgame, the DODC has transformed into something completely different. Phase 4 saw the DODC target new and vulnerable heroes, proving just how dangerous they could be to the next generation of superheroes in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Ironically, it was these younger heroes who Stark was in part hoping to protect and nurture with the DODC, so their new role would surely disappoint the fallen Avenger.

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