While it has been frequently stressed to fans by Marvel TV head Jeph Loeb that the Netflix Marvel series are a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), the lack of direct mentions or cameos has forced fans to believe otherwise. Fans got even more worrisome when Jeph Loeb went on a long period of silence. However, the Marvel TV head recently came back at the New York Comic-Con Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. panel that The Defenders are a part of the #MCU, stating:
Upon hearing this, many fans sighed with relief. I'm here to tell you that you should have been sighing a long time ago, because Jeph Loeb and directors have been throwing multiple references and Easter Eggs that prove the Defenders are a part of the MCU right at your face. Where? Well, I took the pleasure of listing them all out for you so you didn't have to search, so stick around and see how many Easter Eggs you missed.
1. The News Catches Everything
Daredevil was the first MCU series in the contract between #Marvel and #Netflix, and it looks like the showrunners weren't shy to put in some very detailed Easter Eggs. If you had a sharp eye, you most likely noticed that Ben Urich had some articles of importance displayed in his office, such as the fight between Hulk and Abomination (The Incredible Hulk) and the Battle Of New York (The Avengers) clearly placed behind him.
The Easter Egg effectively tied in the shows to the broader MCU, and made fans see that the New York Bulletin was there capturing shots of the Avengers battles, and have been there for quite a while.
2. Absorb This, Battlin' Jack!
Most of you know Carl "Crusher" Creel from Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D. as the Absorbing Man, but it was later found out on Daredevil that the nickname "Crusher" came from his days of boxing. It was also revealed that Carl Creel himself fought in the ring with Matt Murdock's father, Jack Murdock.
This was a nice way to connect to the two series without a straight-up crossover, giving further insight on certain characters' histories and how that affects other characters across the MCU.
3. Stark Tower
If this doesn't seal the deal for you, I'm not sure what will. The first poster for #JessicaJones released back in early 2015 included the Stark Tower cleverly hidden in the background. This certainly was more of an unexpected Easter Egg, which proved once and for all that the #Defenders are in the MCU.
4. Hammer Industries And Seagate Prison
Does anyone remember Justin Hammer, the villain from Iron Man 2 who had his own company — Hammer Industries? Well, it looks like Hammer Industries didn't quit when Justin Hammer was locked away in Seagate prison. We find out in #LukeCage that Hammer Industries gathered Chitauri tech after "The Incident" (Battle Of NY), using the tech to create the Judas Bullet and Diamondback's suit.
This was a great way to reintroduce the famous villain (or at least his company) back to the MCU, but how do we know Hammer Industries made the tech? The show literally tells us:
Luke Cage himself was also imprisoned the Seagate Prison, way back before Justin Hammer or the fake Mandarin Trevor Slattery ever landed there.
5. Dogs Of Hell — Hell's Kitchen, To Be Exact
A biker gang that first appeared in Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D with the name "Dogs Of Hell" returned in the second season of Daredevil at their HQ. As it turned out, the "Hell" in the name is that of Hell's Kitchen.
After all of that, I hope you now see the Defenders do indeed share a nice spot in the MCU along with the other #superheroes of the universe. But if that wasn't enough, here's a little extra:
- In Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., Daisy Johnson mentions working with a technologically advanced partner in the Rising Tide (a group of cyberterrorists), and his name was "Micro." Micro is The Punisher's partner from Daredevil.
- In Daredevil, yet another displayed article by the New York Bulletin has the headline: "Stark Tower ruined during Battle Of NY."
- In Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D., when Coulson's team turns on the news to find a government facility had been attacked, a headline below reads: "Gang war rages in Hell's Kitchen."
- In The Defenders Comic-Con trailer, a scene involving Stan Lee looking out the window of a taxi, you can see a poster that says: "America to the future!" The poster also included a photo of Cap's shield, and at the bottom was labeled with the Stark Industries logo.
- Since the Netflix series are a part of the MCU, that means Stan Lee's real-life cameo in the Comic-Con trailer was the same assistant to the Watchers we have seen throughout the MCU.
Check out the new official Defenders trailer above The Defenders is available to stream on Netflix August 18.