Details have finally begun to emerge about the MCU's first Disney+ crossover event, Secret Invasion. Though the show has been on the docket for quite some time, little was known about it until a new trailer dropped at D23, providing a first glimpse at the show and how it connects to the rest of the MCU.
Secret Invasion draws its name and inspiration from one of Marvel's most famous comic arcs. In it, the shapeshifting Skrulls infiltrate Earth to begin a takeover, with some even impersonating superheroes.
Some heroes will definitely be appearing in the show, but the trailer focuses heavily on former SHIELD leaders Nick Fury and Maria Hill.
Those with sharp eyes might just be able to find another MCU connection in the form of a reference to another of Marvel's wide-reaching government organizations.
A Familiar Organization Faces a Secret Invasion
The new trailer for the Secret Invasion series reveals a brief glimpse at members of the Department of Damage Control accessing some form of secure container. Given the Skrulls' ability to shapeshift, it's quite possible that one or both of these agents are actually Skrulls in disguise. What they're attempting to access is unclear.
Damage Control has been present in MCU projects from nearly the beginning (in some form or another). The earliest mention of them on screen is found in 2008's Iron Man on a news ticker seen on the TV behind Tony Stark just before his famous reveal. The organization, which in that film was a part of SHIELD, was there to pick up the pieces of Stark's battle with Obadiah Stane in Los Angeles.
They had a larger appearance in Spider-Man: Homecoming during a sequence following the 2012 Battle of New York. Now a fully-fledged government department in its own right, the DODC took over the cleanup of leftover Chitauri technology from independent contractors like Adrian Tombes/the Vulture in an act that kickstarted the events of that film.
Recent projects have given Damage Control an even larger role to play. In Spider-Man: No Way Home, it was DODC agents led by P. Cleary who detained Peter Parker and investigated his involvement in the death of Mysterio. Later in the film, J. Jonah Jameson would call agents to apprehend Spider-Man, though their efforts were stymied by the Lizard.
Agents P. Cleary (right) and Sadie Deever (left) returned in Ms. Marvel where they served as antagonists searching for Kamala Khan. Deever went so far in her pursuit of the titular hero that she committed insubordination and was relieved of her command.
Most recently the DODC has appeared multiple times in She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, where they are in charge of the Damage Control Supermax Prison that held Emil Blonsky/the Abomination.
A Department That's Not in Control
The DODC's track record in the MCU so far has been...less than stellar. While they're normal people trying to keep a lid on the superhuman, they've proven themselves to be heavy-handed, short-sighted, and, at their worst, bordering on incompetent.
It's difficult to see how an organization that struggled to detain a teenaged Kamala Khan intends to tackle the insidious invisible threat of the Skrulls. It could well be the Department's poor historical performance that plays a part in leading Nick Fury to personally battle the Skrull threat. His experience in dealing with the shapeshifters puts him miles ahead of the DODC in terms of ability to respond to that kind of enemy.
It's not unreasonable to assume that the Department's glaring weaknesses could go a long way in amplifying the danger of the Skrull threat. Over the course of the MCU films the DODC has seemingly been continuously granted more and more authority. Where they began as essentially a glorified clean-up crew for SHIELD, they're now controlling supermax prisons and handling the detaining of superpowered individuals like Spider-Man and Ms. Marvel.
If the Skrulls can successfully infiltrate Damage Control (as they might have in the trailer footage), it gives them easy access to all of the dangerous intelligence the Department has been given control over. Whatever it is the Skrulls are looking for, if it has anything at all to do with metahumans it's likely to be in the hands of the DODC.
Perhaps the buildup of the Damage Control across recent projects has been specifically to establish them as the premier government agency dealing with anything superhuman in time for Secret Invasion. Controlling that information would certainly give the Skrulls an upper hand as they attempt to expand their influence.
Most of what fans can expect from Secret Invasion is, well, a secret. For now, be sure to keep one eye out for Skrulls and another on the calendar because Secret Invasion is set to premiere in 2023, only on Disney+.