The final MCU movie of Phase 3 (and 2019) has arrived in cinemas, and as is our way we diligently sat through a midnight screening to get you all the best and most obvious Easter eggs and references that the film has to offer. Fortunately for my sleep cycle there aren’t that many, but there are still plenty to digest if you’re not constantly on the look out like I am.
Here are the best ones we spotted first time round.
The Opening Film
Just like Homecoming which opened up with a ‘film by Peter Parker’, Far From Home kicks things off properly with a poorly-made memorial video from the students at Peter’s school. Set to the tune of Whitney Houston’s I Will Always Love You, it memorialised Tony Stark, Captain America, Black Widow, and Vision – aka the major Avengers casualties from Infinity War and Endgame.
Well, Cap wasn’t so much a casualty; more of a ‘left to grow old with Peggy Carter in the past/an alternate timeline’ (we still don’t know which).
We call it the Snap, Marvel claims it was called the Decimation, but in Parker’s world they call it the Blip. The people who were dusted away by Thanos and then reappeared suddenly five years later. Here we literally see how it happened, and it shows people just popped back into existence when Banner snapped his fingers.
There were also some displacement issues caused by the Blip, as May mentions at her fundraiser after snapping back to reality and discovering someone else was living in her apartment. So she’s working for a charity that helps people in similar situations – much like how she works for a homeless shelter in the comics and the recent PS4 game.
We also find out that some people faked being Blipped to get away from their lives, which is exactly what happened to Mr Harrington’s wife. Well, if people can pretend to have died in disasters like 9/11, you can be sure they’ll do this too. And as we saw with Ant-Man in Endgame there was no perfect way to detect who had and hadn’t been dusted.
Oh, and the Blip causes a few issues with certain laws, like drinking ages, shown when Flash has his alcohol confiscated. Sadly the scene with Peter collecting his passport was cut, and we don’t get to see if there’s a special stamp used to point out someone was Blipped and is actually five years younger than they should be.
They Moved Again
People noticed that Peter and May seemed to move between Civil War and Homecoming, and it seems now they’ve moved again. Though this time it’s due to some Blip-related shenanigans. It doesn’t explain why they seem to be back in the first apartment seen in Civil War – or something very similar to it.
Oh, and May knows Peter is Spider-Man, even taking advantage of that fact to help boost the profile of the charity she works for. Sadly we don’t get to see the aftermath or her finding out at the end of Homecoming but it seems she got over it very quickly.
In a twist literally everyone saw coming, it turns out Mysterio was the bad guy all along. Just like in the comics, Quentin Beck put on the hero facade for his own selfish gain, and fooled just about everybody until he was caught in the act. He’s just a disgruntled former Stark Industries employee who wasn’t too happy Tony took his work and used it as his own tool. So he tricks Peter into handing over EDITH and uses it to stage a disaster that will see him as the saviour of the world. Because, in his words nobody will take you seriously if you don’t have a costume or a cape.
In the comics, Beck is actually a special effects genius upset that he never gets any recognition, and that’s alluded to in the fact Tony took all the credit for BARF. He also starts wearing a mo-cap suit in the second half, hinting at his comics career.
What’s in a name?
Like many hero films the villain doesn’t actually name themselves, and after an Italian newsreader calls Beck the “uomo di mistero” (man of mystery) Peter and his friends adopt that as his actual name. After hearing it from Peter, Beck also adopts it and becomes ‘Mysterio’.
Last seen in Civil War as Tony’s little therapy experiment, it’s revealed here that BARF is actually Beck’s invention and now Stark is dead he starts using BARF to stage his disasters with the help of other disgruntled Stark employees. Employees that include the scientist from the very first Iron Man film that was berated by Obadiah Stane for not being able to miniaturise the ARC reactor.
Stephen Strange was alluded to when Parker asks Fury why he was chosen for the mission, with Hill claiming he wasn’t available. Aunt May also mistakes Mysterio for Strange, which makes sense given how his ‘powers’ are similar to that of magic.
Peter also name drops Thor (off world) and Captain Marvel – whose name Fry says not to evoke.
Peter’s Got Issues
Despite eight months having passed since Endgame, Peter still has some issues overcoming Tony’s death. He feels a bit guilty that he could have done more to help (even though he was literally snapped out of existence for most of the film) and in a way it turns Tony into an Uncle Ben-like figure. Especially after Mysterio forces him to face Tony’s grave in one of his later illusions.
Uncle Ben still hasn’t been mentioned at all in the MCU, but we get another hint in Far From Home – Peter uses a suitcase with the monogram ‘BFP’. An obvious reference to Benjamin Franklin Parker, aka Uncle Ben.
Despite the fact they’re proven to be inventions by Mysterio, it has been revealed that some of the Elementals are based on lesser-known Spider-Man villains from the comics. The ‘Earth’ elemental is similar to Sandman, Water is Hydro Man, and Fire is Molten man.
That said, the Elementals are a little-known group of Marvel supervillains from the ’70s with their own names and identities. Sadly they’re not named as such in the film, only that they’re supposed to be mythological beings.
The Real Hydro Man
After the Venice attack, Flash claims Buzzfeed is reporting that the water elemental is actually a man called Morris Bench who gained hydro powers after being exposed to an experimental underwater generator. That’s the exact origin of Hydro Man the villain in the comics, though in that case both Spider-Man and Namor were involved.
On the plane we get to see another small reference to Wakanda playing a much larger role in global affairs, since one of the in-flight movies is a documentary called Finding Wakanda. Here’s hoping it’s a David Attenborough, and he was allowed exclusive access to the nation.
There’s also a Tony Stark documentary called Heart of Iron. Which may also be an accidental tease of Iron Heart – the teenage hero that took on the Iron Man mantle for herself after Tony’s most recent comics death.
In Homecoming, Peter had the AI Karen who promptly vanished, but now he has been bequeathed EDITH by Tony Stark. EDITH stands for ‘Even Dead I’m The Hero’ and gives Peter access to pretty much everything. Communications networks, Stark industries satellites, and pretty much everything Tony had access to when he was alive. Naturally, this is what Mysterio wants, since it will let him unleash his illusions on a larger and more destructive scale.
Not a Star Wars Reference
Fry tells Peter that Tony told him to say “uneasy lies the head that wears a crown”, a quote from Shakespeare’s Henry IV Part 2″. It means that whoever bears responsibility is never able to sleep properly due to worry, and is in many ways a variation of the old “with great power…” line Spider-Man is known for.
But Tony apparently said Peter wouldn’t get it because it wasn’t a Star Wars reference. Also he’s a science nerd, not a literature nerd like MJ.
MJ manages to figure out Peter is Spider-Man, particularly after the whole Washington Monument thing in Homecoming. He vanished while Spider-Man showed up, and MJ put two and two together. Just like Vulture did.
While not relevant to the film or the story, the design of Peter’s ‘Night Monkey’ suit was based on that of Spider-Man Noir – a version of Spider-Man set in depression-era New York. Yes, the same one from Into the Spider-Verse played by Nicholas Cage.
This film features the most Spider suits we’ve seen so far, with the standard Stark suit, the Iron Spider, Night Monkey, the black-accented suit, and a cameo from the original homemade suit. When developing the black suit in Happy’s Jet we also see holograms of the Iron Spider suit from the comics (albeit with four arms instead of three) and the actual Stealth suit that pops up from time to time. That one has active camouflage abilities and made a quick cameo in Into the Spider-Verse.
Finally returning the MCU after a seven year absence is AC/DC. Happy switches on Tony Stark’s favourite band when Peter is making his new suit, and it just happens to be the same track that opened up the original Iron Man more than 11 years ago. Sadly, Peter being a dumbass Gen Z-er thinks it’s Led Zeppelin.
Bad Peter. Everyone knows Led Zeppelin is Thor’s favourite band.
Just Like Power Rangers
The final ‘boss’ Mysterio sets up for himself is a combination of all four elementals, and Peter’s teacher Mr Dell insists it’s just like something out of Power Rangers – referencing the Megazord. But Mr Harrington insists it’s actually like Voltron, which also features robot animals combining to form a giant robot fighting machine. Who is right? That’s up to you to decide.
Obviously it’s Mr Dell.
The Spider-Sense is prominently referenced in this film, after making a brief appearance in Infinity War and probably also explaining some of Peter’s acrobatics in Homecoming. But it’s been renamed the Peter Tingle for comedic effect, and he likens it to a sixth sense. This is probably the closest we’ve seen to a comics-accurate spider-sense on film, it comes especially handy when he can’t trust his eyes. In fact it saves his life when Mysterio tries to tick him into thinking he’s won, and tries to shoot him in the head.
As to why it didn’t warn him of May throwing a banana at him, the Spider Sense is only supposed to alert Peter to danger. May tossing a banana into his head is obviously not danger.
How Does Cap Do that?
Happy utterly fails at fighting off one of Mysterio’s drones at the end of the film, trying to fling an antique metal shield at it in the style of Captain America. He doesn’t even come close to hitting it, and he shouts about how Cap manages to do that so easily.
Well Cap has a light aerodynamic shield and enhanced strength to go with it. That’s how!
It’s All Fake News
Mysterio’s plan is very prudent in modern times, in the era of fake news and disinformation campaigns being raged by political and non-political entities. He insists that people will believe anything these days, and he uses that to his advantage several times – especially in the very last scene of the film.
Post Credit Scene #1
In the typical Marvel style of continuing the plot somehow, the first credit scene features Peter and MJ at the end of their swinging session with MJ refusing to ever do it again. Then a news bulletin pops up, portraying one of Beck’s contingencies: he uses his illusion technology (and some clever editing) to frame Spider-Man for the London attack and outs his secret identity in the process. This video was first seen on ‘controversial news site’ the Daily Bugle – clearly taking inspiration from the Spider-Man PS4 game and turning it into a fringe right-wing outlet not too dissimilar from the likes of Info Wars.
But that video is accompanied by some commentary from none other than J. Jonah Jameson, once again played by JK Simmons – proving Marvel knows perfect casting when it sees it. Jameson declares Spider-Man to be a menace and that Mysterio was the true hero all along.
Post Credit Scene #2
The final credit sequence reveals that Fry and Hill were actually Skrulls the entire time – specifically the Skrull general Talos and his wife. But this isn’t Secret Invasion, they quickly get in contact with the real Fury who’s relaxing on a Skrull ship somewhere out in space – and in front of a beach scene not too dissimilar from the ‘TAHITI’ memories in Agents of SHIELD. Clearly Captain Marvel took him out to the Skrull refuge after Endgame for some much needed post-Blip relaxation.
It also explains why Fury seemed so offended when Peter casually name-dropped Captain Marvel. She’s basically Skrull Jesus, after all.