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Marvel Cinematic Universe Wiki

"Radcliffe built a world. A world exactly like this one. Every molecular detail the same. Just with a little less hurt. For each of us."
"What do you mean, hurt?"
"Imagine if your greatest regret could be wiped away."
Phil Coulson LMD and Melinda May LMD[src]

The Framework is a simulated world created by Leo Fitz as a training program for S.H.I.E.L.D. agents. In 2017, Holden Radcliffe upgraded the Framework into a fully immersive global virtual reality.

Following the upgrade, Phil Coulson, Jeffrey Mace, Leo Fitz and Alphonso Mackenzie had their minds into the Framework, which gave them new memories and lives in the simulation. However, after Aida hijacked the program, it became a virtual world HYDRA took over, with Fitz and Aida leading the organization. After Daisy Johnson and Jemma Simmons hacked in and freed their friends, Aida deleted the program.

The remaining data was found by Deke Shaw, who integrated the technology into a virtual reality video game. In an alternate timeline 2091, the Framework servers were salvaged by Shaw, who built a localized version of the Framework for recreation purposes.



Jemma Simmons tests out the Framework

"The Framework. It's an immersive sensory experience."
"It was designed as a training exercise – a way for agents to practice sparring or jungle insertions and the like."
"Yeah, you can still feel pain while inside."
Leo Fitz and Jemma Simmons[src]

The Framework was designed by Leo Fitz as a training simulation for agents, where they could act out situations with no physical harm being done to them in the real world.[1] While at the Playground, Simmons used an early version of the Framework to walk through her lab, offering Fitz pointers on various issues currently with the design, including the fact it appeared to make her levitate off the ground while using it.[2]

Sedating Melinda May

Aida fights Melinda May in the Framework

"We call it the Framework. Your journey to escape Dr. Radcliffe's lab, our fight, all of this... it's a simulation."
Aida to Melinda May[src]

Holden Radcliffe used the Framework to keep Melinda May from escaping while her Life-Model Decoy had assumed her place within S.H.I.E.L.D.. Initially, May experienced getting a massage and facial but she resisted the program, eventually breaking out and fighting Radcliffe and his personal LMD Aida. When Aida overpowered and sedated her, Radcliffe reprogrammed the Framework with a simulation where she became stuck in a seemingly endless loop of escaping, and attempting to fight against Aida again and again.[3]

Interrogating Billy Koenig

Holden Radcliffe scans Billy Koenig's brain

"This machine will allow me access to his mind. We'll get all the information we need without laying a hand on him."
Holden Radcliffe to Anton Ivanov[src]

In an attempt to find the Darkhold and take it back, Holden Radcliffe allied himself with the Watchdogs to kidnap Agent Billy Koenig who knew where the Darkhold was being kept. To prevent the Superior from causing bloodshed, Radcliffe sent Koenig into the Framework where he experienced a puppy. Once the Framework finished mapping Koenig's memories, Radcliffe entered them, discovering that the Darkhold was held inside the Labyrinth vault.[4]

A New Reality

Agnes Kitsworth begins a new peaceful life

"I had to restart the simulation to accommodate the new residents. In order to reduce their pain, to fix a regret for each of them, I had to restart the Framework simulation from those moments in time."
Aida to Holden Radcliffe[src]

Doctor Holden Radcliffe, with the knowledge of the Darkhold, eventually recreated the Framework to the point where it could create a complete recreation of modern day Earth, with the goal being so the user would be able to correct their greatest regret. He used the Framework to allow Agnes Kitsworth to be put inside it where her mind could live on long after her body died from a brain tumor he could not cure, allowing them to continue their relationship with Kitsworth forgot all about living in an alternative digital reality.[5] Due to the fact that said regret was often a single defining moment in the user's life, such as the Rescue in Bahrain, however, this correction often resulted in the user becoming a drastically different kind of person.

Phil Coulson is put inside Framework

Sometime later, Aida captured Fitz, Jeffrey Mace, Phil Coulson and Alphonso Mackenzie before uploading all of their combined consciousnesses into the Framework. Each had the biggest regret of their life undone and the Framework extrapolated their mark on its history in the same fashion as May. This created a world where HYDRA had defeated S.H.I.E.L.D. and overthrown world governments in order to establish a fascist new world order.

Change in Purpose

Leo Fitz and Aida, lovers in the Framework

"I took away their one greatest regret. How things played out from there wasn't up to me."
"You put yourself into the Framework. You've been manipulating it ever since. The whole thing is an unmitigated disaster, and all you do is lie!"
Aida and Holden Radcliffe[src]

Following the upload of the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, Aida admitted to Radcliffe that he created a contradiction in her programming, which she used to find a loophole and betray him. She mortally wounded him before forcing him into the Framework as well, where his body died in real life. Aida then began her plan of building herself a new human body, and made herself the leader of HYDRA in the new reality.

Daisy Johnson enters the Framework

Following the Siege of the Playground, Daisy Johnson and Jemma Simmons decided to enter the Framework and extract their colleagues.[6] They soon discovered the fascist regime ruled by HYDRA, but were surprised to discovered how different their friends were inside the Framework. Leo Fitz was a ruthless doctor and second-in-command in HYDRA, Melinda May was a high-ranking operative in HYDRA, Phil Coulson was a history teacher and Alphonso Mackenzie lived with his daughter.

The Framework S.H.I.E.L.D. led by the Patriot

The two joined S.H.I.E.L.D., which operated as a resistance led by Jeffrey Mace, who was an Inhuman in the Framework. With the aid of virtual incarnations of people who were dead in the real world, like Grant Ward, Antoine Triplett and Burrows, Johnson and Simmons tried to convince their friends about the real world, while fighting against HYDRA and its leader, Madame Hydra, Aida's alias in the Framework at the same time.[7][8]

Leo Fitz designs the machine for Aida

As Johnson and Simmons almost succeeded in gathering all their friends, Mace was killed in the Framework, killing him in the real world as well.[9] Simmons then realized Aida's true plan for the Framework: In order to create a human body for herself, Aida needed a machine constructed out of Quantum Batteries. Putting the agents in the Framework was to prevent them from stopping her plan, and also using Fitz to design the machine through Project Looking Glass. Once Aida's plan was fulfilled, she could kill them all inside the Framework.[10]

Phil Coulson escapes from the Framework

Eventually, Johnson and Simmons managed to return to the real world with Coulson, May and Fitz, but without Mackenzie, who decided to stay with his daughter. Aida's plan for the Framework succeeded, as she created for herself a living human body.[11] This body also granted Aida a number of superhuman abilities, obtained from Fitz's experiments on captured Inhumans.[12]

Digital Apocalypse

The Framework's last moments

"Aida's shutting down the Framework. It's collapsing on itself. This is what happens when you piss off your creator."
Holden Radcliffe to Yo-Yo Rodriguez[src]

Aida decided to delete the Framework and all its contents.[13] Meanwhile, Elena Rodriguez entered the Framework in order to convince Alphonso Mackenzie to exit it. She woke up in the middle of the world's crisis.[12] With the help of Holden Radcliffe, she found Mackenzie who still refused to leave. As more and more details were deleted from the Framework, Daisy Johnson created for Rodriguez and Mackenzie a way out of there. Only after Hope Mackenzie was deleted too, Mackenzie agreed to leave. As the last person in the Framework, Radcliffe accepted his death and was deleted before the Framework world was erased completely.[13]

Remorath Rumble

Deke Shaw playing Remorath Rumble

"A gaming system like the Framework, it's gonna be a cash cow."
Deke Shaw to Sequoia[src]

Upon parting ways with the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents to explore the world he had been transported in, Deke Shaw actually stole many of S.H.I.E.L.D. tech. Having started his own tech company, Shaw used the Framework equipment, his previous experience with the Framework and his memories of his adventures with S.H.I.E.L.D. to create a Framework-based virtual reality video game called Remorath Rumble, in which the Framework users could fight against Remorath and Kree warriors.[14]

Alternate Universe


Deke Shaw using the Framework in 2091

"You're pimping out the Framework?"
"I never called it that, but yeah. That's the technology the hardware interface is based on. I had to rebuild the software from scratch because Kasius had the historical archives erased. But I was able to get my hands on the servers. I got bits of data here and there."
Daisy Johnson and Deke Shaw[src]

In an alternate timeline where Earth had been destroyed, Deke Shaw rebuilt the Framework and programmed it to simulate an early 21st-century bar. He went on to make a profit by allowing the residents of the Lighthouse to use it as a form of leisure in exchange for currency.[15]


"To the human mind, there's no difference between the perception of the Framework and the physical world."
Holden Radcliffe[src]

The Framework is a computer simulation that can simulate various environments. These simulations can vary from simple recreations of the Playground, to an entire alternate version of modern day Earth, depending on what is coded in. Alongside this, the Framework can also create avatars of living beings. The user enters the Framework through a specialized helmet that uploads their consciousness into the simulation. Once the upload is complete, the Framework adapts to the user's environment through cerebral and physical re-calibration.[3][5] The user's real life body, meanwhile, is left in a sleep-like state while inside (which does not apply to the original early design). Nevertheless, if a user is killed within the Framework's reality, they will also perish in the real world.[9] With the future version of the design, the user can instead automatically enter the Framework by getting within range of Deke Shaw's custom transmitters.[15]


Appearances for Framework

In chronological order:

Alternate timeline:


  • The Framework may be considered the first reality other than Earth-199999 to appear in a Marvel Cinematic Universe-related production.
  • The concept of a virtual reality has been used previously in Marvel Comics, although it doesn't have any relation to S.H.I.E.L.D. In Incredible Hulk #608, the Intelligencia designed a trap for Hulk, which is also considered Earth-10508.


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