Dark Elf

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Dark Elf soldiers

The Dark Elves are an ancient race in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. They are based on the elves of Norse mythology.


Dark Elves are humanoids with white hair and skin color varying between pale and jet black. They have extraordinarily long life expectancies, apparently exceeding those of Asgardians by thousands of years.

Dark Elves do not appear to have the strength and durability of Asgardians, but they are strong enough to present a credible threat in close combat, making them far stronger and tougher than humans.

Malekith the Accursed


The Dark Elf government appears to be a dictatorship ruled by Malekith.


The Dark Elves claim to have originated in a time of darkness before the universe as we know it came into being. Their ultimate goal is to return the universe to that state. Several thousand years ago, their leader, Malekith, discovered a source of power called the Aether that he intended to use to achieve that goal.

Carrying out this plan required releasing the power of the Aether during a convergence of the "Nine Realms of the Cosmos", an event which occurs roughly every 5000 years. The Asgardians, under the leadership of Bor, intervened and prevented Malekith from carrying out his plan, capturing the Aether and hiding it. Malekith escaped the final battle with the crew of his own warship, hibernating until the Aether was revealed and the Realms converged again.

Dark Elf warships

Threat Assessment

The Dark Elves once controlled the realm of Svartalfheim. They built extensive armies equipped with directed-energy weapons, "black hole" grenades, and swords for combat. The actual number of Dark Elf soldiers isn't known.

The Dark Elves could transform chosen soldiers into "Kursed", giving them strength and durability exceeding that of the most powerful Asgardians, but the Kursed had extremely short life expectancies once transformed (although they would survive at least for a few days with their increased power).

Their armies travelled in warships hundreds of meters in length. These ships have cloaking devices that can hide them from visible light and Asgardian sensors. While the armament of the ships isn't known, they do carry fighters that are armed with energy cannons.

Dark Elves of Note

  • Malekith: Ruler of the Dark Elves
  • Algrim/Kurse