Easter eggs you missed in Spider-Man: Homecoming

Spider-Man: Homecoming has arrived, and it's far more tangled up in the massive web of the Marvel Cinematic Universe than anyone ever expected. Not only did Homecoming elaborate on the established MCU, it built a pretty rich world for itself, entrenched in over 50 years of Marvel comics. The average spider can lay anywhere between ten and 1500 eggs—just how many Easter eggs did Homecoming leave behind? Read on to find out.

And if your Spidey-sense is tingling, that's only because there are spoilers ahead.

Damage Control

Who cleans up after superheroes and their arch-villains have their mega-destructive throwdowns? In the comics, that job goes to Damage Control, a government agency that's been around since 1988. Marvel's been kicking around the idea of a Damage Control sitcom since 2015, but the project never really made it off the ground. So, while we may never see a Marvel TV comedy a la DC's failed Powerless, Damage Control has officially made it into MCU continuity… much to the chagrin of Adrian Toomes.

Betty Brant

The gloriously awkward closed-circuit TV news program at Peter Parker's school is a great throwaway gag, but it also reveals the presence of another well-known Marvel Comics character: Betty Brant, who first appeared in 1963's The Amazing Spider-Man #4 as newspaper mogul J. Jonah Jameson's secretary. Eventually, she becomes a pretty successful investigative reporter, and even has a fling with the Hobgoblin. She plays a pretty big part in Spider-Man's life, and a version of her even appeared in Tobey Maguire's Spider-Man, so it's not unlikely that she'll figure into the future, in one way or another.

Spider-Signal

We see it only once when Spider-Man is tinkering with his suit's devices, but comic fans all felt a weird tingle when Peter briefly projected a Spider-Man logo onto the wall, bringing back comic memories of his most hilariously useless device (and the Civil War post-credits scene). Contrary to Batman's awesome Bat-signal, which summons the Dark Knight from great distances, Spider-Man's Spider-Signal doesn't do much more than announce his arrival to criminals, and occasionally act as a flashlight. Not every idea from the early days of Spider-Man was a good one, and ol' Webhead intentionally destroying the element of surprise with a projector was, and always will be, a bonehead move. Those armpit webs, on the other hand, will always be pure comic book gold.

Summon the Sinister Six

The appearance of Adrian Toomes, a.k.a. the Vulture, definitely isn't an Easter egg, but it takes a real comics fan to spot some of Spidey's other legendary foes. While the Sinister Six has taken many forms over the years, the elderly Vulture has usually been a core member (with a younger Vulture occasionally standing in). Also pretty prominent in Homecoming is Shocker, whose villain name is mentioned a few times—and whose power isn't electricity, as one might guess, but shock waves generated by a technologically enhanced suit. In Homecoming, Shocker is whoever's wearing an alien-tech-enhanced glove, but the reference to the comics' Shocker goes twofold when those guys are seen wearing the same distinctive, yellow quilted fabric that the comics villain wears.

You'll find Mac Gargan, a.k.a. Scorpion, played by Better Call Saul standout Michael Mando. While big-screen Gargan seems to be a career criminal, comic book Gargan started out as an investigative reporter whose life is messed up by an experimental process that gives him super-strength and leaves him outfitted with a giant, mechanical scorpion tail. But if there was any doubt that these two Gargans were the same person, the cinematic Gargan's hatred for Spidey is revealed in the movie's mid-credits scene. Oh, and there's that giant Scorpion tattoo on his neck, too. That's probably a hint. It's also worth noting that in the comics, Gargan also served a stint as Venom, a character who's getting his own solo film in 2018.

Is that enough Sinister Six for one movie? Apparently not. While we don't get the ridiculous dome-headed Mysterio or the guy who wears a lion's head as a shirt, Kraven the Hunter, we do get a whole lot of Hobgoblin—and sorry to say, it's Peter Parker's biggest fan and best friend, Ned. While his full name is never given anywhere in the film, Ned's last name has been listed as 'Leeds' in a few different publications. In the comics, Ned was Betty Brant's husband and a reporter at the Daily Bugle, and saw his life ruined after he was brainwashed by the original Hobgoblin, Roderick Kingsley, to take his place. Needless to say, that story didn't end well for Ned; here's hoping his big-screen counterpart follows a different path.

The Howling Commando legacy

If you thought you spotted a familiar face behind the desk at Peter Parker's school, it's because you did: actor Kenneth Choi played his own grandfather. Way back in Captain America: The First Avenger, Choi played Jim Morita, a member of Cap's Howling Commandos, a legendary group of Marvel Comics soldiers originally operating under Nick Fury. Choi returned in Homecoming to play Principal Morita, a guy obviously very proud of his grandpa, given the photo of Jim that can be spotted in his office. Morita Jr. Jr.'s love of history also possibly explains his unwarranted affection for those terrible Captain America instructional videos.

And speaking of cameos in photos around the school, the Incredible Hulk himself, Bruce Banner, appears in one of the many posters of great scientists featured around the science classroom.

Spider-Man 2.0

Donald Glover fans know there was a grassroots campaign to get him cast as Spider-Man in a big-screen adaptation of the comic books, and his dedication to the role was so complete that Spider-scribe Brian Michael Bendis actually created a new Spider-Man inspired by Glover named Miles Morales. And while Glover never made it to the big screen as Spidey, he did voice Miles for the Ultimate Spider-Man animated series in 2015.

Glover returned to the Spidey-verse in Homecoming as Aaron Davis, a career criminal with the alias of "Prowler," according to Spider-Man's files. Marvel's main Prowler is some guy named Hobie, but in the Ultimate Universe, it's a guy named Aaron Davis. His nephew? A guy named Miles Morales, the very same nephew that Prowler refers to during his parking garage confrontation with Spider-Man.

And if that wasn't confirmation enough of Glover's connection to Spidey, check out his license plate: UCS-M01, which is short for Ultimate Comics, Spider-Man #1.

Karen & JARVIS

Once Spider-Man has access his suit's full capabilities, he's treated to Karen, a very JARVIS-like computer that's able to cater to his every need. Avengers fans know that, in the comics, Jarvis was the Avengers' loyal butler—but when it came to the MCU, JARVIS became Tony Stark's personal computer, which then merged with a robot body, becoming Vision. Along the way, JARVIS was always played by Paul Bettany, even as the Infinity Stone-wielding Vision. In real life, Bettany is married to Jennifer Connelly…who plays none other than the voice of Karen in Homecoming, keeping the pair of companion computer personalities as close as the people who actually play them.

True to the page

By now, it's a bit of a trope that a hero will get into an impossible physical bind, only to summon the strength to break free by thinking of his responsibilities and the people he loves. It's a story beat that's used a lot, but Spider-Man's over-the-top use of the technique has made it synonymous with him. One of Spidey's most memorable scenes came in Amazing Spider-Man #33, written by Stan Lee and drawn by Steve Ditko. The comic's cover spells out Spidey's peril pretty clearly, and it's nearly identical to the scene in Homecoming when Vulture causes the roof to cave in on Parker. For five pages, Spider-Man struggles under wet rubble, thinking of his responsibilities as the well-crawler… and that gives him the strength to set himself free. It's pretty much comic book perfect.

And when Peter Parker sees himself reflected in the puddle beneath him, half-obscured by his Spider-Man mask, it's an obvious reference to the way Spidey is drawn whenever his Spider-senses tingle. And while Homecoming's Peter Parker didn't really seem to have precognition, this one subtle reference was more than enough.

Credits due

Blink and you'll miss it among the countless scrawls of graffiti decorating Peter Parker's New York City, but eagle-eyed viewers have spotted the word 'Bagley' emblazoned amid the colorful chaos. Mark Bagley is noted in the Marvel Comics universe for being a huge contributor to Spider-Man, co-creating the villain Carnage and illustrating Venom's early turn as an anti-hero in the Venom: Lethal Protector miniseries, so his quick mention is no mistake.

And casual comic fans might be left wondering why Jack Kirby is given any credit at all for anything Spider-Man during the film's credits sequence. After all, Spidey is one of the few 1960s comic characters that Kirby was never associated with. While Stan Lee generally gets all the credit for most things, comics history reveals that Kirby and Lee sat down together to come up with Spider-Man, and Kirby even drew the first batch of pages for the hero, using his own designs, before Lee rejected the concept outright and changed it a bit to fit his own vision. Kirby ended up pencilling just the cover of Spidey's debut in Amazing Fantasy #15, as well as Amazing Spider-Man #1, before moving on to other projects, but his impact on Spider-Man being acknowledged by Marvel is a pretty big deal.