Where strange fact and stranger fiction collide
Comic book readers are geeks. People who watch comic book movies and superhero shows on TV are geeks. Know who else are geeks? The writers and production staff of said shows. They fill the shows with secret tributes that only their fellow geeks can understand. It is almost a secret code that can only be cracked with nerd cred.
Today we are going to talk about Easter eggs hidden in superhero movies and TV shows. Specifically trivia and fun facts that only a true fan would catch. Now I am going to be honest, some of these I caught myself, others had to be pointed out to me.
There are hundreds of these Easter eggs in comic book shows. This is in no way meant to be a complete list. These are just some that made a big enough impression on me that I felt like passing them on. Feel free to add some of your favorites hidden gems, that I may have missed on to the comment section at the end of this post.
Quintin Lance’s call sign on Arrow. On the CW’s Arrow, Paul Blackthorn plays Quinton Lance, a police officer and father of not one but two Black Canary’s. During the second season when he got busted down to a beat cop for helping the “Vigilante” his call sign was David Charlie-Fifty Two. This is a clear reference to DC Comics 52. Which explained what happened in the year after the massive retconing in Infinite Crisis.
The Bus’ Call Sign on Marvel’s Agents of Shield is an in joke. Call signs are an easy and fun thing to play with. The Bus is Coulson and crew’s airborne mobile command center. Its SHIELD call sign is 616 which is also the code number for the main Marvel universe. (Ie the one your favorite heroes live in)
Kevin Smith played a coroner in Daredevil named Jack Kirby. Director/comic book/ultimate fan-boy had a role as the coroner in Daredevil. I know all you remember about that movie is Jennifer Gardner in a sports bra, so take my word on this. Smith’s character was named after Jack Kirby the legendary comic book artist. OK how about this for six or less degrees of separation. Daredevil star Ben Affleck played real life superspy Tony Mendez in the movie Argo about the CIA smuggling out Iranian hostages disguised as a movie production crew. Well in real life the fake story boards for the Argo op where drawn by Jack Kirby.
X-Men’s Days of Future Past uniform pun. Mystique is the ultimate comic book bad girl. She can be whoever you want on the outside and still keep who she is on the inside. She has been everything form a full blown villainess to an anti-hero. And apparently she has a sense of humor to boot. In the scene in Vietnam in X-men: Days of Future Past, she chooses to disguise herself as an army colonel named Sanders.
Arrow’s Dr. Ivo and his Amazo. On the Arrow Dr. Ivo runs a freighter called The Amazo like he was Captain Bligh and it was his personal Bounty. In the comic books Amazo was the name of Ivo’s first robotic creation.
Tony Stark’s Familiar ringtone. In the movie Ironman, Tony Stark’s ringtone is the theme form the 1966 Ironman cartoon. In that cartoon Tony was played by John Vernon, to distinguish the Ironman voice form Stark’s he said all of Ironman’s lines with a Styrofoam cup over his mouth to give it a robotic or metallic quality.
Nick Fury’s grave marker has a familiar quote. In Captain America Winter Solider, the headstone on Nick Furry’s grave quotes Ezekiel 25:15, which is the same scripture that Fury’s actor, Samuel L Jackson quoted with such glee in Pulp Fiction before he bust a cap in some fool.
An interesting address of a bar in Arrow. In the Arrow episode, Birds of Prey, a bar was mentioned to be on the corner of Gail St and Simone. This is a reference to Birds of Prey creator and longtime writer Gail Simone. For those of you not familiar with that awesome comic, it about a group of female superheroes including Huntress and Black Canary both of who appeared in that episode.
The Bat Man V Superman Logo first appeared in the Will Smith Movie I am Legend. When Will Smith walks through the zombie infected waste land in I Am Legend there is a movie theater in the back ground that was the Superman “S” on the Dark Knight’s bat. Which means exactly what we thought it would mean. A Ben Affleck movie is a harbinger of the end of the world.
Young Bruce Wayne watches old Zorro movies in the Gotham episode, Viper. Zorro has always been important in the Bat Mythos, because Bat Man creator Bob Kane was inspired to create his brooding hero on Johnston McCulley’s Zorro. In honor of that fact in most adaptations, the movie Bruce’s parents take him to when the Waynes are killed is usually The Mask of Zorro.
The credits of the movie Watchmen is a complete alternative history of superheroes, set to a Bob Dylan song. One of the best things about Zack Snyder’s Watchmen is the credits. We see the original Minutemen. We learn that Silhouette was killed because she was a lesbian. We find out that JFK was killed by the Comedian, we see some of Rorschach’s childhood home life and Ozymandias trying to pick up on the Village People. But my favorite part is that the B-29 in that universe was not named Enola Gay after the pilot’s mother but after the super heroine Silk Specter real name (or at least her stage name) Miss Jupiter.
A Global Frequency phone made it to Smallvile. Here at DCotU we are huge fans of Warren Ellis, espionage comic Global Frequency. And I hoping that the third attempt to turn it into a TV show will be the charm. It is a great comic and deserves a large audience. But a prop from the first TV attempt made it in to an episode of Smallvile. The iconic and distinctive GF phone was used by Lex Luthor as a remote for his security system. I noticed the logo on the phone and assumed that is where it came from but the only place I have ever seen it officially mentioned was on Warren Ellis’ website.
The license plate on Kaito Nakamura’s car is NCC-1701. On Heroes, Hiro Nakamura’s father Kaito was played by George Takei. For those of you who know Mr. Takei only as an internet pundit, he was originally on a TV show called Star Trek, and the serial number on the enterprise was NCC-1701.