They did it Civil War and they did it again in Spider-Man: Homecoming. If there’s one thing Marvel Studios enjoys doing to its movies, it’s to load them with as many references and nods to its broader universe as one can possibly fit in a two-hour experience.
Alongside shoutouts to other popular superheroes, hints to comic-books and events great and small, Thor: Ragnarok has a few clever nods to its Marvel Universe. Whether your God of Thunder trivia is still largely from the films or you’ve read the Prose Eddas a hundred times, here are a few Thor: Ragnarok Easter Eggs that you may have missed or possibly put your finger on…
1. Thanos and Avengers: Infinity War
Marvel has so far been one of the kings of the post-ending scenes. It’s become a tradition for fans to sit through the ending credits for a juicy teaser of the next film. At the end of Ragnarok, we were indeed rewarded to an Easter Egg for Avengers: Infinity War. As Thor and Loki look to the stars and ponder what is next for the now homeless people of Asgard, their observation is interrupted by the arrival of an enormous bronze-plated starship. With Avengers: Infinity War so close there’s only one possible pilot and commander: Thanos, The Mad Titan. That would explain why the Guardians of the Galaxy found Thor bruised and beaten in space during the Infinity War preview.
2. The Grandmaster’s Birthday
The birthday celebration system in the Grandmaster’s ship was no random button push. The Grandmaster first appeared in Mighty Avengers #69 on October 10th 1969, so it really was his birthday on the night of Ragnarok’s premiere. Similar to his Guardians of the Galaxy Easter Egg, Jeff Goldblum had another secret feature in this movie, too. Watching the film on October 22nd would also count for something as this happens to be Goldblum’s birthday.
3. Stan Lee’s Cameo
That’s right. Stan Lee made yet another cameo in one of his Marvel movies. He back with another great appearance in Ragnarok as an insane hair stylist. Indeed. He’s the old guy who gave Thor his fresh new cut using a crazy, advanced-looking instrument. Thor begs him not to, but Lee laughs and does so anyway. This has got to be one of his best cameos yet.
4. “Sun’s Getting Low”
Originally mentioned in Age of Ultron by Black Widow as a way to tame the Hulk, this infamous line returns several times in Thor: Ragnarok. First, Thor tries it in the arena only for the green giant to feint and smash Thor around in a hilarious and very familiar way. Second time, Natasha says it herself during her video message in the quinjet. The line gets considerably less soothing for Banner when Thor insists on repeating the main four words to calm him down.
5. Duran Duran
Adding to Tony Stark’s collection of snazzy t-shirts is a rather theme-appropriate Duran Duran T, specifically one of the band’s Rio cover which rather conveniently included the song, Hungry like the Wolf. Funnily enough, Bruce Banner wears it and well, there’s this giant wolf Hulk fights later on that in legend is supposed to eat Odin.
6. Hulk vs. The Hammer
Hulk’s Gladiator bout with Thor is not only a direct allusion to his fight with the Silver Surfer in the original Planet Hulk story arc, but also a version of the bout in the 2010 animated version where he fights Beta Ray Bill; a horse-headed alien who was not only granted the power of Thor but went full-hog and dressed like the God of Thunder himself. You could say we got second-best but Bill was imitating the man Hulk fought in the movie.
7. A World of Pure Imagination
The Grand Master really loves his job. So much apparently that every ‘found’ arrival on his paradise is given a virtual tour to the tune of “Pure Imagination” from the 1971 classic Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. As icing on the cake, the tour is concluded with a psychedelic tunnel ride as frightening as it is exhilarating. Not too dissimilar to the frightening tunnel ride Willy Wonka shocks his guests with shortly after a soothing river cruise.
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8. The Mighty Throg
While waiting for Loki to return, Thor jokes to Doctor Strange that Loki once turned him into a frog. This is likely a joke and subtle shout-out to the mighty Throg, a talking Thor-frog hybrid who had his own little helmet and Mjolnir hammer. He was also a founding member of the Pet Avengers – a supergroup formed by the giant teleporting bulldog that is Lockjaw, who is now in cinematic canon tanks to the Inhumans having their own TV show.
9. Mjolnir’s Umbrella Disguise
Thor disguising Mjolnir as an umbrella is something he’s done before. In the comics, Thor would disguise the hammer as a cane whenever he took on his Dr. Donald Blake secret identity. He would often trigger the transformation into the God of Thunder by striking the ground with it, which usually involved a flash not too dissimilar to Thor’s lightning transformation in the film.
10. Doctor Strange’s Yellow Gloves
By the time Thor and Loki visit him, Steven Strange has donned the final piece of his classic comic-book costume – a pair of large yellow gloves. Although not so common in more recent designs, these fine-fitting marigolds were iconic alongside with the Cloak of Levitation in Strange’s initial 1960’s costume.
11. Hela and the Enchantress
If Hela seems a little familiar, it may be because she could be acting as a dead ringer for Amora the Enchantress – a really old rival of Thor’s who like Hela, was banished from Asgard for growing too powerful and ambitious for peoples’ comfort. Her list of accomplishments includes enlisting Skurge as her headsman, conquering Asgard several times and getting into battles with both Thor and Valkyrie. Hela does appear in the comics and does enlist Skurge for a time but the big guy has always had a much closer relationship with Amora.
12. The Revengers
“The Revengers” were a thing for a short time. Although coming off as a sort of “Thor’s Avengers” group in Ragnarok, they were something of an anti-Avengers in the comics. Made up of a team that included Venom, Goliath and Wonder Man (who have yet to appear in the MCU) the Revengers declared war on the Avengers, and while unable to beat the Avengers overall, had managed to damage the Manhattan-based Avengers Mansion. It seems Thor isn’t so creative when it comes to naming his superteam in the movie. In Thor: Ragnarok, he names his team “The Revengers” as a super-cool reference to the Universe’s original crew.
13. Skurge and the Bridge at Gjallerbru
Skurge’s one-man battle against Hela’s armies of the undead on the Bifrost Bridge is an enjoyable homage to the “Bridge at Gjallerbru” chapter of the story, Skurge’s Last Stand. Armed with one M16 rifle in each hand and desiring redemption in the eyes of his peers during a mission in the realm of Hel, Skurge steps forward to protect a bridge of prisoners escaping Hela’s realm. In a rain of 5.56mm rounds, Skurge cuts down the charging army like wheat to a scythe. When he is inconvenienced by the eventual lack of bullets, he proceeds to bash the hordes to pieces using the assault rifles as clubs. A fitting last stand and act of redemption for the Enchantress’ greatest warrior.
Every new movie Marvel serves provides a real buffet of extra content for its fans to dig in and explore. Did you spot all the hidden Easter Eggs in this Marvel movie? Are there any that we missed? Let us know in the comments…