Darren Cross was the CEO of Cross Technological Enterprises, a direct competitor of companies like Stark Enterprises, Trask Industries, and Oscorp. Darren was a successful self-made man but after realizing that he was suffering from a rare heart condition, he underwent a radical surgical procedure.
Darren Cross was created by David Michelinie and John Byrne and first appeared in Marvel Premiere issue 47 (1979).
Major Story Arcs
A New Body
Since realizing that he was suffering from a rare heart condition, Darren Cross underwent a radical surgical procedure. Dr. Erica Sondheim implanted an experimental but sophisticated nucleorganic pacemaker in order to prolong Cross' life. However, Cross' implant increased the size of his entire circulatory system and as a result, it mutated his body.
With the heavy toll brought on by the implant, Cross had undergo a continuous lapse in heart transplants and since an ordinary human heart could not sustain his augmented body, Dr. Sondheim would have to alter each donor's phisiology
Sondheim was trailed by Scott Lang, a man who had stolen Hank Pym's Ant-Man suit in order to save Sondheim, who was the only person who could perform life-saving surgery on his daughter, Cassie. Cross battled Ant-Man, and died from the resulting stress caused to his heart. The company was later taken over by Darren's son, Augustine, and his brother, William.
Return to Life
Years later, it was revealed that Augustine Cross, the son of Darren Cross, inherited Cross Technological Enterprises and had put his father's body in suspended animation. At one point, Augustine kidnapped Dr Erica Sondheim and forced her to operate on the body of his father and transplant another stronger heart inside his body. This heart came from Cassie Lang, Scott Lang (Ant-Man)'s daughter. The theory was that her heart could take on the stress of Cross' body because it was exposed to Pym Particles. Reluctant, Sondheim agreed and put a new heart inside Cross' body. Cassie received a new heart of her own as well. Cross soon stood up and eventually fled the scene after a battle with Scott Lang (Ant-Man).
As a side effect of having Cassie's heart, Cross found himself permanently shrunken, a situation which enraged him. After eventually encountering Egghead, Cross was given an old prototype battle suit that had been created by Hank Pym, allowing Cross to become the new Yellowjacket. He nearly overpowered Ant-Man, but was defeated when Cassie used a special drug to negate the Pym Particles within Cross' body.
In Other Media
Darren Cross appears as the lead villain of the Ant-Man film, portrayed by Corey Stoll. The movie radically reimagines Darren's origin and powers by essentially making him an evil version of Ant-Man instead of a hulking, pink monstrosity.
In the movie, Cross was originally Hank Pym's protege many years ago, but he ended up engineering a hostile takeover of Pym's company after he refused to share the secret of the Pym Particles with him. As the company's new CEO, Darren set out to try and recreate the Pym Particle formula, making it his goal in life.
This version of the character differs from his comic counterpart in other ways as well. In addition to being close with Pym, he is also much younger than he is in the comics, and has a bald head instead of a full head of hair. He also works with Hope Van Dyne, Hank's daughter, at the company. He shows a romantic interest in Hope, but she rebuffs his advances.
In the present, Darren has finally managed to make a breakthrough in his research. He plans to use the Pym Particles to fuel an advanced prototype battle suit called the Yellowjacket, which he ultimately wishes to sell for military and terrorist use. Hank recruits his Hope and ex-con Scott Lang to stop Darren's plot, which results in the Pym Technologies facility being destroyed. Enraged, Darren dons the Yellowjacket armor and tries to kill Scott, who has now become the new Ant-Man. He attempts to kill Scott's daughter Cassie as payback, leading to a final confrontation between Ant-Man and Yellowjacket. Scott ultimately manages to shrink down and sabotage the Yellowjacket armor from inside, seemingly killing Darren when the suit shrinks away into nothingness.
- A Yellowjacket minfig was included in the LEGO set that was released for the Ant-Man movie.
- Funko released a Pop! bobblehead of Yellowjacket.
- Hot Toys released a stylized Yellowjacket figure as part of their Artist Mix line.
- King Arts released a miniature Yellowjacket figure.