Roxxon Explained: Behind the Sinister Marvel Organization Teased in ‘Loki’

Roxxon Explained: Behind the Sinister Marvel Organization Teased in ‘Loki’

Minor spoilers for Loki episode two follow.

You might have noticed their flashing neon signs throughout Loki. Specifically, the signs for Roxxcart, the big-box store where thousands of people are taking refuge from a coming hurricane and where Loki and the Time Variance Authority agents descend on a mission in episode two of the Disney+ Marvel series.

But Roxxcart and its neo-futuristic signage is more than just a chance for Loki to flex its Blade Runner influences — it’s a reference to Roxxon, a famous corporation in Marvel Comics. Could there be room for two enigmatic organizations in one show? Here’s what you need to know about Roxxon.

What is Roxxon?

The Roxxon Energy Corporation (also known as the Roxxon Oil Company, the Roxxon Oil Corporation, Roxxon Corporation, or simply Roxxon) is a massive petroleum industrial conglomerate that has appeared throughout Marvel Comics, often going head-to-head against the Avengers and various superheroes. Imagine every depiction of a greedy corporation across pop culture and you’ve got Roxxon, a company run by ruthless executives who are prepared to use illegal and underhanded methods to make bank. Which naturally gets them in trouble with superheroes like Captain America, Iron Man, Spider-Man, and Black Panther.

Introduced in Captain America #180 by Steve Englehart and Sal Buscema, the issue deals with the president of the “monstrous oil conglomerate” Roxxon being kidnapped by the Serpent Squad — the first-ever reference to the go-to evil corporation of the Marvel universe. It would go on to play even larger roles, often allying with the Serpent Squad and HYDRA. Ironically, Roxxon was also one of the earliest financial supporters of S.H.I.E.L.D., but they were naturally double crossing them to work with HYDRA at the same time.

Roxxon in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

The Roxxon as we see in Loki appears to be a riff on Amazon and its aesthetics, rather than a typical evil oil company — though it should be noted that these scenes are set years into the future, and Roxxon may have evolved. Apparently not evolved enough to expand their website, which is literally just a still image of the Roxxon logo, but the fact that Marvel has created a Roxxcart website suggests we may see more of it soon.

This brief stint at Roxxcart, clearly a subsidiary of Roxxon, is after all, not the first time Roxxon has appeared in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The corporation has appeared as an Easter egg in several MCU movies, primarily the Iron Man movies — a Roxxon Corporation truck was accidentally hit by Iron Man and Iron Monger as they fought near the Roxxon Corporation Building in the first Iron Man.

But it’s played a more prominent role in the Marvel TV shows. In Agent Carter, it’s revealed that Roxxon created the atom bomb after making a Nitramene weapon based on a formula by Howard Stark, and Roxxon CEO Hugh Jones also popped up in the short-lived ABC series. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. had the most significant dust-ups with Roxxon, with Roxxon’s Cybertek division acting as a significant antagonist against Phil Coulson and his team in season 1, and playing a pivotal part in the HYDRA takeover of S.H.I.E.L.D. There are also references to Roxxon in Cloak and Dagger and Netflix’s Daredevil series.

What Role Could Roxxon Play in Loki?

But we’re talking Loki here, one of the Disney+ Marvel shows with actual, concrete ties to the MCU (sorry Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fans, it was never “all connected”). Could Roxxon play a more prominent part in Loki than it has in previous MCU appearances, where it was little more than set dressing? And could the series really have room for two enigmatic organizations?

Here’s how it could happen: the current CEO of Roxxon in Marvel Comics is Dario Agger, a minotaur who regularly does battle with Thor and Jane Foster. He is a leading member of the Dark Council, a group who planned to conquer the Ten Realms of Asgard, teaming up with Malekith and the Dark Elves to declare war on all the realms, including Asgard — which our Loki variant has only just learned has been destroyed, to his sorrow. Perhaps our Loki variant is playing a long game through which he plans to restore Asgard, putting him at odds with Dario? Probably not. At least not yet. But that certainly sounds like a great pitch for season 2

Honestly, considering the lack of any lip service to Roxxon in Loki beyond “Hey, we’re at Roxxcart!”, it’s very unlikely that Roxxon will play more of a role than the set dressing it was in the Iron Man movies. With all the time-hopping in Loki, which is more concerned about finding the fugitive Loki variant in apocalyptic hiding places (the first of which probably just happened to be at a Roxxon location), this is likely the extent of Roxxon’s part in Loki. But that doesn’t mean we won’t be seeing more Roxxon in the future of the MCU.

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