WARNING: Spoilers for Avengers: Endgame ahead
As the sequel to Infinity War, Endgame was a highly anticipated film that brought a decade of movies to an end. The Russo Brothers took us on a journey through time that brought back memories, filled our hearts with all sorts of emotions, and caused many of us to break down in tears.
Underneath all those emotions, it may have been too hard to pay attention to the little Easter eggs and comic nods that the Russo Brothers added to the movie. So, if you were too busy looking for the tissues or laughing at Thor’s gut, here is everything you missed in Avengers: Endgame.
Endgame Director and Thanos Creator Attend Cap’s Support Group
Cap has started a support group to help people move on from the snap and recover after the death of their loved ones. During this scene, a man from the support group talks about a recent date night in which he and his date became emotional about the loved ones they lost. This man is actually Joe Russo, one half of the Russo directing team, and the MCU’s first openly gay character.
One of the other members of the group can also be recognized as Jim Starlin, the creator of Thanos. It looks like Starlin came to the group because he either has some mad beef with Thanos or because he’s grieving about creating a villain that destroyed half the universe. Either way, seems like Thanos has a face not even his creator would love.
The Memorial at Cap’s Support Group
At the beginning of the movie, we see Cap doing what he does best – encouraging, supporting, and helping others stay strong. During the support group scene, avert your eyes from the group itself and take a look at the memorial in the background.
It says, “For God and Country, In memorial of Captain Matthew Haggerty,” which is a shout out to someone that was influential in helping bring Endgame to the big screen.
Matthew Haggerty worked on both Avengers: Endgame and Avengers: Infinity War as a key second assistant director. He was also the set production assistant for Iron Man 2 and staff assistant for Iron Man.
The Names of the Missing Include Film Crew and an X-Men Character
When Scott escapes the Quantum Realm, he heads to a memorial that holds the names of people that vanished after Thanos’ snap. One of the names on the list was “Roberto da Costa” who is an X-Men mutant known as Sunspot from New Mutants and X-Force.
Not only did Endgame salute all of the previous Marvel films and characters, but they also honored some of the amazing film crew and creatives that helped make the entire universe come together. Some other names that were engraved on the memorial included:
- Matthew Lloyd: Director of Photography for the first season of Daredevil, the first season of The Defenders, and Spider-Man: Far From Home
- Charlotte Lee: Set decoration buyer for Avengers: Endgame, Infinity War, and Spider-Man: Far From Home
- Erika Denton: Director, Clearances, and Clip and Still Licensing at Marvel Studios
- Boris Lanham: This name is a combination of the Boris the Spider-Man series and the comic’s letterer, Travis Lanham.
The Book Ken Jeong is Reading
When Scott Lang makes his way out of the Quantum Realm, we see a quick shot of Ken Jeong playing a storage facility security guard.
The guard has a book in his hand entitled “The Terminal Beach” by J.G. Ballard. Interestingly, “The Terminal Beach” is a collection of science fiction short stories, and one of the stories within the book is called “End-Game”.
There’s also another story in “Terminal Beach” about a man who doesn’t come to terms with the premature death of his wife and runs away to an island. This story is something that could definitely happen in the aftermath of Infinity War.
The Uniform Cap Wears in 1970 Foreshadows His Retirement
When Cap and Iron Man return to 1970 to take the Tesseract, Cap dons a uniform with the name “Roscoe” stitched onto it. Roscoe Simons was a character in the comics who assumed the role of Captain America after Steve Rogers became Nomad. After proving himself worthy in battle, Roscoe obtained the support of Rogers and was given the iconic shield. Falcon also trained the new Cap, but Roscoe ultimately met an untimely demise at the hands of Red Skull.
In hindsight, Cap assuming the role of Roscoe in the 1970 scene could have also predicted the end of the film. If you had known who Roscoe was, you may have figured out that Rogers was planning on rewriting his history and abandoning the post of Captain America.
Black Widow’s Black Ballet Shoes
After Natasha ends the virtual call with Rhodey, Captain Marvel, Okoye, and Rocket, she puts her feet up on her desk and ponders about Hawkeye’s whereabouts. If you take a look at the chair next to her, you’ll find some black ballet slippers that are a callback to Avengers: Age of Ultron.
When Scarlet Witch invades Natasha’s mind, we see her performing ballet in the Red Room. The Red Room is a Soviet brainwashing training program in which Natasha was turned into a top-notch assassin.
Korg’s Shirt and Video Game
When we see Korg and Miek for the first time, they’re lounging around with a fat Thor and playing Fortnite. This is obviously a shoutout to the game and Fortnite’s playable Thanos character. It is also a nod and foreshadow of the Avengers: Endgame crossover event that Fornite launched with the release of Endgame.
Korg’s choice in shirts is also a shout out to the man and magnificent director that voices him. The giant rock is voiced by Taika Waititi, who seems to love a good pineapple print. He wears a lot of pineapple shirts and even rocked San Diego Comic Con in a pineapple romper. Therefore, it was only fitting to have Korg lounge around Thor’s man-cave in a pineapple shirt much like Waititi.
The New Asgardian Home Was the Home of the Tesseract
It seems as though wherever the Asgardians go, the Tesseract follows.
In Endgame, we learn that the Asgardians made Tønsberg, Norway their new home after the destruction of Asgard and Thanos’ Decimation. Interestingly, Tønsberg is also where King Laufey and the Frost Giants of Jotunheim lived while planning to take over Midgard and where the Tesseract originally ended up after being lost on Earth. It was kept there, guarded by Odin worshippers until Johann Schmidt retrieved it in WWII.
The Community Cameos
Before diving into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, the Russo Brothers were executive producers for the show Community. Therefore, you may have noticed a lot of Community cameos sprinkled throughout their MCU films and Endgame was no different.
When Cap and Iron Man travel back to 1970 to find the Tesseract (again), they find themselves riding the elevator with a very suspicious woman. She complains about Tony Stark’s weird “hippie beard” and reports them to the powers that be. This woman is none other than Yvette Nicole Brown, the actress who played Shirley Bennett on Community.
The second Community cameo comes fairly early on in the movie when Ant-Man miraculously makes his way out of the Quantum Realm. The security guard that watches Lang’s cry for help is Ken Jeong, who interestingly also played a security offer on Community.
Akihiko, Hawkye’s Yakuza Target
In Endgame, we travel to Tokyo, Japan and watch as Hawkeye infiltrates a Yakuza hideout. One of the guys says, “He’s after Akihiko”, which we can only assume is the name of the man Hawkeye assassinates. In the comics, Akihiko was a member of the Yakuza’s science division, the Shogun Reapers and was helping them build a cannon on the moon.
Black Widow Wears Hawkeye’s Necklace
When Black Widow, Cap, and Ant-Man visit Iron Man to brief him on their “Time Heist” plan, check out the bling that’s around Black Widow’s neck. She’s wearing an arrow necklace as a tribute to her relationship with Hawkeye.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen this necklace. Black Widow also wears the necklace throughout Winter Soldier and was apparently an Easter egg that Scarlett Johansson threw into the film herself.
We Meet the Real Jarvis
We all know JARVIS as Tony Stark’s AI computer. However, Endgame showed us the man that JARVIS is named after.
When Tony travels to 1970 with Cap to obtain the Tesseract, he runs into his own father. As they depart, Howard Stark gets into a car that we find out is driven by Edward Jarvis. Jarvis is a butler who worked for Howard Stark and therefore, Tony probably found it fitting to name his virtual assistant JARVIS.
Thor is The Dude from The Big Lebowski
Now we see why the Russo Brothers edited Thor out of the Endgame trailer – the God of Thunder has let himself go.
Thor’s persona is extremely reminiscent of Jeffrey Lebowski, a.k.a “the Dude” from The Big Lebowski. Much like the Dude, Thor has an unkept beard, large sweater, sunglasses, and long, unwashed hippie hair.
Iron Man even cements the reference by calling Thor “Lebowski” at one point in the film.
Ant-Man’s Original Helmet
When Steve Rogers heads back to 1970 with Stark, he breaks into Hank Pym’s lab to get some more Pym particles. On Pym’s desk, you can catch a glimpse of Ant-Man’s original helmet, which looks like the one originally designed by Jack Kirby.
Morgan Asks for Cheeseburgers
At Tony Stark’s funeral, Happy asks Morgan if she’s hungry and she responds by saying she wants cheeseburgers. When Happy tells Morgan that her father also likes cheeseburgers, most of you probably caught the touching callback to the first Iron Man movie.
When Tony Stark returns from captivity at the beginning of Iron Man, he tells Happy that he wants a cheeseburger and we see him walking to his press conference with a Burger King bag.
The Final Battle Mirrors Infinity War’s Final Battle
Endgame rewrote all the atrocities of Infinity War. Therefore, it was only fitting that the final battle scene mirrored the previous film.
As soon as the final Endgame battle commenced, it was as if we were transported back to Infinity War. Black Panther and the rest of the Wakandans came charging through the battleground chanting “Yibambe” and we catch little Rocket riding on War Machine’s shoulder just like in the last Avengers film.
We then see the all-powerful scene with the females of the MCU letting the baddies know that they’re not alone. Not only did this scene set the MCU up for a future all-female film, but it was also a callback to Infinity War and a tribute to Black Widow, who originally said the “She’s not alone” line.
Later on, we also see Rocket fighting alongside Winter Soldier like we did in Infinity War and Captain America bringing on the thunder much like Thor did previously.
Each of these scenes worked to enforce the fact that the Avengers were rewriting the past and it all culminated in the reversal of the snap. This time, the villains were dusted and Ebony Maw was the one reaching out to Thanos, much like how Spider-Man reached out to Tony in Infinity War.
Hulk was completely absent from the Endgame trailers and we now know why. Banner informs Ant-Man that he was able to get the “best of both worlds” by combining the brains of Banner with the bronze of Hulk. This created a merging of Bruce’s two personas and led to the birth of Professor Hulk.
First debuting in the 1991 comic, Incredible Hulk #377, Professor Hulk is what we see in Endgame – a spoonful of Banner’s brains and a dash of Hulk’s strength. However, in the comics, if Hulk gets too angry, he transforms into Bruce Banner with the personality of a destructive Hulk. Although this didn’t occur in Endgame, it could be something the MCU explores in later films, particularly as Banner deals with Black Widow’s death.
Pepper Potts is Rescue
Although Gwyneth Paltrow spoiled this one before Endgame was released, Pepper Potts dons one of Iron Man’s suits and fights alongside her husband. This role might be familiar to fans since Pepper does the same thing in the comics under the name Rescue.
In the comics, the Rescue Suit was Iron Man’s MK 1616 armor that was designed with defense in mind. Tony wanted Pepper to be protected throughout their journeys and therefore created a suit with a forcefield powerful enough to protect the team, catch a plane, or take substantial damage.
Interestingly, Tony Stark foreshadows the Rescue suit in Endgame when he tells Morgan that her mother never wears anything he buys her.
Morgan is Named After Pepper Potts’ Eccentric Uncle
In Infinity War, Iron Man says that he had a dream about him and Pepper Potts having a kid and that they named the child after Potts’ “eccentric uncle”, Morgan. This is exactly why Tony’s daughter is named Morgan in Endgame. Although Pepper doesn’t have an uncle named Morgan in the comics, he does have a cousin named Morgan Stark.
All of the Throwback Quotes
Endgame was definitely a film full of nostalgia. Therefore, there were a bunch of quotes that took us back to some of our favorite Marvel movies. See if you caught the references in each of these quotes.
- “On Your Left” – When the dusted Avengers return to battle, we hear Falcon’s voice telling Cap that he’s “on your left”. This is a shout out to Sam Wilson’s introduction in Winter Soldier. While out on a morning jog, Wilson is constantly passed by the superhuman Steve Rogers as he says “on your left”.
- “Long Way From Budapest” – When Hawkeye and Black Widow head on their mission to Vormir, they say that they’re a long way from Budapest. This is because Romanoff and Barton participated in a mission to Budapest which was also quoted in The Avengers (2012). In The Avengers, Baton says “Just like Budapest all over again” to which Romanoff responds, “You and I remember Budapest very differently”.
- “You’re Taking All the Stupid With You” – When Cap heads back to the past to return the Infinity Stones, he tells Bucky “Don’t do anything stupid until I get back” and Bucky says, “How can I? You’re taking all the stupid with you”. This is a direct quote from Captain America: The First Avenger when Bucky and Steve are on a double date. However, in the original dialogue, Steve is the one telling Bucky that he’s taking all the stupid with him.
- “Activate Instant Kill” – Didn’t know that Spider-Man’s suit had an instant kill mode? Well, that might be because you missed Spider-Man: Homecoming. While testing out his new suit, Spider-Man activates instant kill mode but says “No, no, no… I don’t want to kill anybody” and deactivates the mode. Looks like he feels differently now that he’s been snapped.
- “A Suit of Armor Around the World” – Stark mentions that they could’ve protected the planet from Thanos if he had made a suit of armor around the world. This is a throwback to Age of Ultron when Stark tells Banner they should make a defense program using the mind stone in Loki’s scepter to create a “suit of armor around the world”.
- “I Can Do This All Day” – When Steve Rogers was in an alley fight pre-serum, he told the aggressor, “I can do this all day”. This line has ultimately become Cap’s catch phrase and you can hear him say it in Civil War while fighting Iron Man and in Endgame when he meets his past self.
- “I am Iron Man” – To mimic Thanos’ “I am inevitable” quote, Stark takes the Infinity Gauntlet and says “I am Iron Man”. This is an obvious nod to Stark’s line at the end of Iron Man when he reveals that he is in fact, Iron Man.
Lila Barton and Cassie Lang Set the Stage for the New Avengers
At the beginning of Endgame, we see what Hawkeye was doing when Thanos snapped half the world away. During this touching scene, Barton tells his daughter that she made a nice shot, calling her Hawkeye. This is a nod to the comics and potentially the future of the MCU.
In the comics, a young girl named Kate Bishop takes over the role of Hawkeye. Although she’s not Barton’s daughter, it does provide precedent for a female archer. As Endgame seemed to usher in a new era of superheroes, Hawkeye’s daughter would be a great candidate to add to the team.
However, young Lila Barton isn’t the only young person we could see as a new Avenger. In the comics, Scott Lang’s daughter Cassie also grows up to become a superhero just like her dad. Under the name Stinger, Cassie teams up with Kate Bishop to join the New Avengers in the comics.
We also saw references to a young Photon in Captain Marvel and with the addition of Cassie and Lila, it looks like the MCU is setting up its next round of new heroes.
The Boy at Iron Man’s Funeral
Iron Man’s funeral brought together each of the MCU’s franchises. We saw his family, the Wakandans, the Guardians, SHIELD, and the Avengers. However, some people were wondering who the boy was standing so close to Agent Hill.
This boy is actually Harley Keener, the child from Iron Man 3. We first saw him when Tony found his way into Harley’s family garage. Harley helped Tony repair his Iron Man suit and the two became pretty close. Looks as though they stayed in touch over the years and that Harley might be an important character in the upcoming MCU films. With Iron Man gone, we may even see young Harley take on the Iron Man title.
Steve Rogers and His Retirement
The end of the movie was highly emotional as Steve Rogers rewrote history, “got a life”, and returned to the love of his life. However, aside from all the emotions, this scene was also full of Easter eggs, references, and future possibilities.
The jacket that “old Rogers” is wearing in the final scene is the same tan jacket that Steve wore in Captain America: The First Avenger before he received the soldier serum.
Later on, we also see Steve and Peggy dance to the song “It’s Been a Long, Long Time”. It certainly has been a long time since Cap selflessly dove his plane into icy waters and told Peggy that he’s “gonna need a raincheck on that dance”.
Now, with Cap pulling a Flash and messing with the timeline, this could also open the MCU up to an entire realm of possibilities and a number of alternate universes much like the comics. We could potentially see these alternate scenarios play out in future films.
Stan Lee’s Cameo
Stan Lee’s cameo in Endgame was definitely an emotional one. Not only did it bring the entire Marvel franchise full circle, but it also brought us back into Stan’s life.
Stan Lee’s cameo comes when Captain America and Iron Man travel back to 1970 to steal the Tesseract and obtain more Pym particles. As the camera zooms in towards the military base, we suddenly hear the sounds of classic rock and a car driving through. From the passenger seat of the car, a very 70s-looking Stan Lee calls out “Hey man, make love not war!”
If you take a look at the back of the car, you’ll notice the “420” license plate and a bumper sticker that reads “Nuff said”. This phrase was an iconic line that Stan Lee used to sign off his “Stan’s Soapbox” columns in his Marvel comics.
How the Film Set the State for the Future of the MCU
Most of Endgame seemed like it was setting the stage for the future of the MCU. For one, allowing Captain America to travel back in time and mess with the timeline provides Marvel Studios with the opportunity and ability to create alternate universes and many future stories, much like in the comics.
Secondly, the ending of the film set the stage for many of the Disney+ series that the studios has planned. Loki obtaining the Tesseract when Cap and Iron Man revisit the past directly connects to the Loki television series Disney is currently producing. The plot of this series will feature Loki traveling through history, influencing historical events and creating a little mischief.
Endgame’s ending, featuring Captain America as he passes the shield to Falcon, also set up the Falcon and Winter Soldier series that is expected to release on Disney+. Now that we have an understanding of Endgame, we might expect to see the series feature Falcon’s journey to becoming Captain America and how Bucky helps him along the way.
Did you find any other Easter eggs, hidden reference, or secrets in Avengers: Endgame? Let me know in the comments!