As of this writing, I have written 99 articles on this blog, with a vast majority of them being Street Fighter lore theories. When I first went viral in 2018 for my first G and Q theory, never did I think I would be the flagbearer for Street Fighter theory crafting. Never did I think I would be able to make anything out of the overanalysis of the complex story of Street Fighter. Nearly three years later, however, I’m the guy people come to to find out what might be going on in the biggest, most recognizable fighting game franchise of all time. I have readers around the world who make it a part of their week to check out my articles because they love Street Fighter as much as I do.
As I approach my 100th article, it’s occurred to me that not only have I gone deeper into the story of Street Fighter more than anyone else has tried, but in the end, I was able to do something very few people could: show that the story makes sense even when it doesn’t. By pointing out the hidden plot threads, showing the supplementals that expand on the overall canon, and predicting what could possibly happen next, I’ve showed the possibilities that Street Fighter could conceivably go, and all of it comes from research of what is there.
Certainly, I’ve engaged with my share of people who don’t want Street Fighter to be anything but just a competitive fighting game, one where they can win through the “git gud” mantra, and become as good as Daigo, Justin, or Punk, competing at Evo and getting the glory they feel they deserve. I only have one question for those people: why engage with me in the first place? It’s not my mission to make you a better competitive player, although reading about the characters you play could actually help you understand your character from a design perspective.
All of this being said though, the one thing I don’t want this theory, or the next theory, to be is a gripefest. This blog is about the research, analysis, and prediction of the stories within video games, Street Fighter being my specialty. As such, it’s important to me to find hidden lore where it lies, and the theory you’re about to read could prove to be one of the most important ones I write concerning the future of Street Fighter.
“Didn’t you write that the world of Street Fighter is going to end?” Yes, and it appears to be inescapable. Rose will likely fail in her time travel bid, meaning G is free to do whatever he wants to do. G will be the most likely victor, bringing every person under his control. All will either become Qs or die, and the likes of Ryu, Gill, and Akuma will not be strong enough to take him down.
That being said, there is a chance that G can be beaten. There is at least one character who has seen it all, who can beat G at his own game, and, in both strength and title, can compete blow-for-blow with anything G can muster up.
Cody is not only one of the strongest characters in the game canonically, but, as the newly-elected mayor of Metro City, he has an actual contingency of people who depend on him to save them from the unfortunate situations they’re in. With the Mad Gear apparently reassembling (although without some of their more recognizable stalwarts like Poison, Hugo, and Abigail), Cody knows that he can help the city for the better as its trusted face.
Of course, this doesn’t mean he doesn’t wax poetic about simpler times, when justice came at the end of his fist rather than the end of his pen.
Cody fighting someone like G would be great for story flavor reasons; the Mayor of Metro City vs the President of the World is something that fans already are conceiving in their heads. However, it could be that this was the plan all along.
As seen in How to Make Capcom Fighting Characters, Cody’s design was meant to counter G’s – saying he went into politics “to restrain the President of the World” is a dead giveaway to what Cody’s future is going to be, and it will involve G in some way. So, if we assume this is the case, what can Street Fighter V tell us about what Capcom has planned for the story between Cody and G?
Back in 2020, I wrote a theory that G was actually Belger due to some odd, but striking similarities between them, including that both have scars over their left eyes, both have been seen pointing in similar ways, and both have possible links to Q. With Belger becoming G, despite his speeches of wanting to unify the world, it’d be pretty clear that he’d want to continue his crime syndicate on a much larger scale. https://manestreetblog.com/2020/03/15/g-q-patient-zero/
After his previous defeat, Belger would know that Cody could very much beat him again even with his newfound earth powers, and the stigma would hang over his head. In fact, it could even be that Belger as G watches Cody closer than anyone else, using spies to inform him on everything the mayor is doing.
In other words, the only person G actually considers a threat is Cody.
There’s one problem with this, though: Rose and Oro would have sensed this right away. Even if Belger was in disguise, the fact that he was in it for himself wouldn’t have gone past them. Instead, what they sensed was a powerful force of nature, something Belger just isn’t. Even if he did create some sort of device (through Abigail’s shop, no less) that could disguise his intent while in G’s guise, he still appeared as himself in Abigail’s ending without any sort of concealment. Belger may be able to hide himself from Rose and Oro, but Abigail can’t, and they would have just approached Abigail instead.
While there’s a chance that G and Belger are the same, there are too many inconsistencies that prove otherwise. At this point, we could call the “Belger is G” theory debunked. However, there is one thing that may still hold true: G may be afraid of Cody.
You may ask yourself why, but like the How to Make Capcom Fighting Characters picture shows above, Cody entering the political world means he is stepping onto G’s turf, and G’s ability to manipulate and give vapid speeches would be running against Cody’s speak-from-the-heart, everyman philosophy. This would be a disaster for G, so there would only be one option left for him – keep Cody distracted. Changing Cody into a Q would not be in G’s best interests as the disappearance of Metro City’s popular mayor would raise a TON of suspicion, and as someone working from the shadows, G would not want that kind of spotlight on himself. So, G’s plan would be to make sure Cody stayed out of the way by forcing him to do mundane deskwork.
However, Cody seems to have a plan B to turn the tables:
Although Cody states in his own ending that utilizing Zeku’s assistance, with Zeku himself working from the shadows much like G, would make him “no better than the people [he’s] fighting against”, it appears that by the time of Lucia’s story mode, Cody has embraced the idea of having someone watching out for him in secret.
As it turns out, Cody having his own shady dealings may be the great equalizer he needs, as his office may have already been infiltrated by G. There is one person who Cody seems to trust implicitly in regards to his office, someone he feels comfortable enough with to help him do much of the important work that entails being the mayor of a metropolis.
Someone who has never been seen before Street Fighter V.
Someone who claims they were told to watch after Cody on direct order from Haggar.
Someone who is as mysterious as G.
So, who is Miss Marlowe?
Capcom hasn’t said much about Cody’s secretary; she appears to be nothing more than a minor, throwaway character in the series. If this is true, though, then why is Capcom so adamant on protecting her identity?
In the few scenes where we see Miss Marlowe, her face is obscured by shadows or objects like her own red hair or Cody’s arm. Why go through the trouble of keeping Miss Marlowe’s face hidden from view if she is only supposed to be a background character? Is there something that Capcom doesn’t want to reveal yet that would blow the lid off of Street Fighter’s canon?
Based on what I’m seeing, the answer’s yes, as Miss Marlowe may not be the person she says she is. In other words, Marlowe is a fake name.
I have been suspicious of the secretary since her debut, even though she is implied to be very good at her job and pays attention to small, mundane things, like broken street lights. Even though politicians in real life do have to take care of small, mundane things like broken street lights to keep their cities functioning, in context, Marlowe seems a bit too focused on the small scale stuff Cody has to do. That being said, is there any evidence that Marlowe isn’t just a concerned secretary who wants the best for her city and is in fact working for G? The answer is yes, and while the evidence can be seen as somewhat circumstantial, they can also be seen as huge clues to the true identity of Miss Marlowe.
The first piece of evidence is given by Cody himself as he converses with his secretary. Subtly showing how familiar he is with her, he uses her first name to try to “prove” that he’s listening to her.
This makes Miss Marlowe’s full name “Maisie Marlowe”. However, the name “Maisie” is a nickname that is derived from the name Margaret, a common name throughout the United States. So, Miss Marlowe’s true name is Margaret Marlowe. In any other game, this would just be a random, but plausible American name. In Street Fighter, it has far more importance. Both Margaret and Marlowe begin with the same three letters: M-A-R. If you’ve been reading my blog up to this point, you’ll know that there is one female character of importance that my theories have been leaning on to figure out G’s plans, whose ultimate fate remains unknown. However, having the same three-letter string in her name combined with the idea that she was ultimately rescued by G seems to show what happened to her after the Shadaloo base fell:
Could Miss Marlowe be the missing März? It’s imaginable with the minute clues that have manifested. Not only do we have a mysterious, hidden-faced woman who has “Mars” in her name, but the parts of her we do see are reminiscent of the original Doll. Both Marlowe and März wear glasses, which isn’t that big of a deal (Nash and Haggar wear glasses, too). However, there is something else Miss Marlowe has that heavily implies she was once a Shadaloo Doll:
Marlowe shares an identical beauty mark with März. The argument could be made that the mark is not on the same side, but this argument can be easily waved away by saying that Street Fighter artists are not always on the same page as the developers (Ken’s blue eyes are a huge example of this). Just because the beauty mark is on the wrong side really doesn’t matter for this theory – the fact Miss Marlowe has one at all is very telling.
In the same picture where Marlowe is seen with the beauty mark, we also see her making a gesture, her thumb touching her bottom lip in thought. While not exactly the same movement, it is reminiscent of G’s beard stroke, meaning she would be under G’s full control. The only reason Marlowe doesn’t have the exact same hand movement? Marlowe doesn’t have a beard – she’d literally be clawing at air if she tried.
The idea that Marlowe is März in disguise may seem like a bizarre premise, considering that Marlowe is far more confident than the very shy former Shadaloo Doll, has a different voice (and voice actress), and has completely different hair. However, all three of these can be explained. Based on my previous theories, G seems to have the ability to transfer his charisma to a person along with his powers, meaning that if he did capture März and force her to work with him, she would end up with a completely different personality – a braver, condescending, and more assertive März. März’s ability to change her voice would have actually come from Enero, who has the ability to vocally impersonate anyone, and März could have easily been trained by Enero to do the same. As for Marlowe’s hair, it’s pretty safe to say she’s wearing a wig – März’s own hair is blue and relatively short, so she’d have to cover it up.
As for the act of wearing a convincing disguise, März wouldn’t be the first Shadaloo Doll to have done it. Juni was actually the first Doll to have impersonated someone; she disguised herself and took the place of Agent Gibson, an original character who is only seen in Udon’s comics. While this is non-canon, it is still the first time in Street Fighter history where an established character literally became someone else (Eleven and Twelve don’t count here). In yet another twist, Agent Gibson also wears glasses.
So we are left with one final question. If März’s disguise is so good and convincing, why hide her face at all? Why is there a need for Capcom to tell her artists that her face can’t be revealed? Well, it’s not really her face that needs to be covered – it’s her eyes. It’s Marlowe’s eyes that are concealed the most in the scenes she’s in. If she is März, then she appears to be unwilling or unable to wear contacts to disguise her eye color. This is the secret Capcom is hiding – her eyes will completely give away her identity. There are two colors Marlowe’s eyes must be then: either blue or yellow. März’s eyes are naturally blue, so if Marlowe’s eyes are also blue, there’s a chance that this theory holds. If Marlowe’s eyes are revealed to be yellow, however, then it would be all but confirmed that Marlowe is under G’s control.
If Miss Marlowe is März, then it would show that G sees Cody as his biggest threat. The hero of Metro City could end up being a hero to the world at large. It would be one of the best redemption stories in gaming: a fallen hero with nothing left to live for who rises to become a true civic leader and an eventual world icon for saving billions from an uncertain fate. G doesn’t want this to happen, so it’s pretty clear there’s only one thing he can do – G needs to research, analyze, and predict what Cody is going to do next.
In other words, he needs to “git gud”.