Darren Cross as Yellowjacket with Egghead as seen in The Astonishing Ant-Man #12 (September 2016).
Art by Brent Shoonover.
|First appearance||Marvel Premiere #47 (April 1979)|
The Astonishing Ant-Man #12 (September 2016; as Yellowjacket)
|Created by||John Byrne|
|Team affiliations||Cross Technological Enterprises|
|Abilities||Skilled tactician, scientist, and businessman|
Size-shifting and alteration
Superhuman strength, agility, reflexes, senses, and healing
Via Yellowjacket suit:
Darren Agonistes Cross is a fictional supervillain appearing in American comic books published by Marvel Comics. He is the archenemy of Scott Lang (the second superhero to be called Ant-Man), and the cousin of Crossfire.
The character was portrayed in live-action by actor Corey Stoll in Marvel Studios' 2015 film Ant-Man as the Marvel Cinematic Universe's iteration of Yellowjacket; this concept would later be integrated into the comics.
Created by John Byrne and David Micheline, Darren Cross debuted in Marvel Premiere #47 (April 1979). The character made his first appearance as Yellowjacket in The Astonishing Ant-Man #12 (September 2016), which was written by Nick Spencer and illustrated by Brent Shoonover.
Darren Cross is a millionaire and the founder of a successful corporation, which rivals its top competitors. Cross was diagnosed with a heart condition due to overwork, and had to use an experimental nucleorganic pacemaker in order to save his life. The pacemaker was a success but enhanced Cross's circulatory system, mutating his body and giving him superhuman abilities. With a side effect that overuse causes the burning out of his heart, Cross went through various heart transplants, which led him to capture surgeon Dr. Erica Sondheim to replace his heart and to abduct "donors" from the slums. This attracted the attention of the second Ant-Man looking for Sondheim in order to save his own daughter's life. The resulting battle with Ant-Man burned out Cross's heart, as Sondheim had reimplanted his old, worn-out heart prior to Ant-Man crashing the surgery.
Darren's body is later revealed to have been kept in a cryogenic state as Augustine was obsessed with bringing Darren back to life and eventually forces Dr. Sondheim to help. Enlisting Crossfire's assistance, Augustine had orchestrated Cassie Lang's capture as the girl's heart is required to withstand the unique conditions when transplanted into Darren. While infiltrating Cross's company to rescue Cassie, Ant-Man came across his restored nemesis. Darren engaged in combat against Ant-Man while Ant-Man buys time for Sondheim to transplant another heart to Cassie. Darren is ultimately forced to flee with his son when the Pym Particles now in his body caused him to shrink down.
As part of the "All-New, All-Different Marvel," Darren Cross was later approached by Power Broker to demonstrate his latest "Hench" App by hiring Whirlwind to kill Ant-Man. However, Cross was unwilling to give Power Broker the 1.2 billion dollars demanded for investment in the Hench app, causing Power Broker to cancel the demo and cancel Whirlwind's assassination on Ant-Man.
Cross later represented his own company when he attended a meeting at the Universal Bank with Tiberius Stone of Alchemax, Wilson Fisk of Fisk Industries, Sebastian Shaw of Shaw Industries, Zeke Stane of Stane International, Frr'dox of Shi'ar Solutions Consolidated, and Wilhelmina Kensington of Kilgore Arms where they discussed Dario Agger's and Roxxon Energy Corporation's plans to exploit the Ten Realms of Asgard. Cross also saw the arrival of Exterminatrix of the Midas Foundation who knocked out Dario and declared herself a new member of their assembly.
In order to combat Ant-Man, Cross recruited Egghead to work for his company. Egghead helped Cross control his Pym Particle abilities with the Yellowjacket armor. Yellowjacket, Egghead and Crossfire attacked during his nemesis's trial in Cassie's place, but were engaged by Ant-Man, She-Hulk (Scott's defense attorney), Miss Thing, Grizzly, Machinesmith and Stinger. Yellowjacket is defeated by Stinger, which led to Peggy Rae's final approval of Scott's superhero life and Scott's acquittal in court.
During the "Hunted" storyline, Yellowjacket is among the animal-themed characters that were captured by Taskmaster and Black Ant for Kraven the Hunter's Great Hunt that was sponsored by Arcade's company Arcade Industries. When the Great Hunt is over, Yellowjacket finds Black Ant in the bushes as he, Human Fly, Razorback, Toad, and White Rabbit plan to take revenge on him.
Darren Cross possesses a keen scientific mind and is a successful businessman. The experimental nucleorganic pacemaker that saved Cross from his heart condition also granted him superhuman abilities such as enhanced physical attributes, increased sensory perception, and a regenerative healing factor. After acquiring Cassie Lang's Pym Particle-equipped heart during a heart transplant, Cross gained near uncontrollable size-shifting abilities; he is at risk of growing when angered and shrinking when calm.
Egghead later created the Yellowjacket suit for Cross to help him control his Pym Particle quantum powers. The armor grants Cross enhanced durability and flight, in addition to featuring "stingers" that can discharge powerful blasts of bio-electrical energy.
Corey Stoll portrays Darren Cross / Yellowjacket in the 2015 Marvel Cinematic Universe film Ant-Man. Stoll wore a motion capture suit while performing as Yellowjacket, a decision that was made early on when it had been found that creating and filming with a real Yellowjacket costume was impractical. Darren Cross is depicted as Hank Pym's former protégé who becomes obsessed with Pym's original Ant-Man particle shrinking technology. When Hank refuses to divulge past work secrets out of fear of warfare, Darren forces his mentor out of Pym Industries and then takes over as CEO of Cross Technologies. Despite possessing imperfect shrinking technology, Cross manages to duplicate Pym's designs with his own highly weaponized "Yellowjacket" suit, except for the fact that it alters his brain chemistry and slowly drives him insane. When Cross attempts to sell the Yellowjacket prototype to Mitchell Carson's faction of HYDRA and the Ten Rings terrorist organization, the new Ant-Man (Scott Lang) intervenes and manages to destroy Cross Technologies with help from Pym and Hope van Dyne, prompting Darren to don the Yellowjacket suit himself to fight Ant-Man. Cross then threatens to kill Scott's daughter, forcing Ant-Man to enter the quantum realm and disrupt the Yellowjacket armor's internal mainframe, causing Cross to shrink uncontrollably and disappear.
In summer 2018, a 6-inch GameStop exclusive action figure of Yellowjacket was released in a two-pack with Ant-Man by Hasbro in their Marvel Studios: The First Ten Years Legends Series, based on his appearance in the Ant-Man film. A mini figure of Yellowjacket was also included in this set to represent his size-shifting abilities.