3 Things That Make "Spider-Man: Far From Home" More Deceptive Than You Even Realized [SPOILERS]
THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE CONTAINS MAJOR SPOILERS FOR SPIDERMAN: FAR FROM HOME, AVENGERS: ENDGAME, AND CAPTAIN MARVEL
Deception is everywhere in Marvel’s first post-Endgame adventure, Spider-Man: Far From Home. From the trickery of Mysterio’s realistic holographic calamities to the shocking mid and post credit scenes, nothing in Far From Home is what it seems.
But the tricks in the film don’t stop with plot twists and surprising reveals. Some details in Far From Home not only play with audience’s perception of the film’s story, but with our understanding of the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe as a whole.
Here are some things I realized after I left my showing of Far From Home and thought I was done being duped.
If you watched Captain Marvel, you’re probably familiar with Skrulls. So it was likely a pleasant surprise when the end credits sequence reveals that Nick Fury and Maria Hill turned out to be the shapeshifters we just met right before Avengers: Endgame. I use the term “surprise” loosely because most Marvel fanatics have been assuming that the introduction of Skrulls was leading to something like this, and eventually to a big story arch from the comics: the Secret Invasion, where Skrulls impersonate many familiar Marvel characters.
But here’s what Far From Home does not address: when exactly did the Skrulls replace Fury and Hill?
It’s easy to just assume this was a single movie swap. The real Hill is unaccounted for so far, but perhaps after Tony’s funeral in Endgame, Fury took off with Carol Danvers and swapped places with Talos who took over his role on Earth.
But the funeral though. In Far From Home, Fury (who we now know was actually Talos) says that he saw Parker at Tony’s funeral, but it “didn’t seem like a good time to exchange numbers”. Why would Talos voluntarily address the funeral if it was Fury that attended?
He likely wouldn’t, unless it was actually Talos that attended the funeral, not the real Fury. It’s a small detail with big implications. What if Talos wasn’t just impersonating Fury for the duration of Far From Home, but for the entirety of the Infinity Saga?
What Fury does and doesn’t know speaks volumes about whether he’s real or whether he’s Talos, and the fact that we see Talos’s knowledge of Fury’s endeavors extends before the events of Far From Home indicates that the swap is not as clear as Far From Home may have made it out to be.
Since before Avengers: Infinity War, I have been hoping and wishing that the end of the Infinity Saga would trigger the reveal of a Marvel Cinematic Multiverse. As one who strongly favors continuity, this is an impeccable opportunity to loosely link all of the various Marvel offshoots and spinoffs between films, TV, and the impending Disney+ streaming service while opening unlimited logical possibilities for future stories.
So you can imagine how giddy I was when Peter Parker formally meets Quintin Beck, aka Mysterio, and is informed that this new hero is from another version of this world, leading Parker to finally drop the term “multiverse”.
Of course, as the film goes on, we learn that Beck is not actually a hero; rather, an attention-hungry technomaniac with an extremely elaborate fictional story supporting the existence of the Mysterio character. One crucial piece of Mysterio’s fictional story that is glossed over and never reexamined: the fact that the multiverse was a lie.
While this doesn’t necessarily mean the potential for a multiverse is completely out of the question, it shows Marvel’s consciousness of the plot device and subtle disinterest for it in the stories they’re telling right now. It’s an unfortunate blow to my expectations for Marvel properties, but I’m confident that shelving the possibility of a multiverse is all a part of Marvel’s grand cinematic plan.
In a dramatic and harrowing conclusion, Parker finally figures out how to tap into his so-called “Peter Tingle” and uses this 6th sense to overcome Mystero’s drone-powered illusions. After Mysterio is apparently shot by one of the drones, he pulls one more trick on Spider-Man, projecting one last monologue as he appears to be dying, while actually standing behind Parker ready to pull the trigger and shoot him point blank.
Of course, Parker’s senses apprises him of this assault and he quickly thwarts the plan. Beck dies of his wounds, and Peter asks EDITH, his augmented reality assistant, if this is real and she says “all illusions are down.”
But are they? Sure, the drones were put out of commission, but Beck proved to be quite the performer in the midst of his grand spectacles. Who’s to say he didn’t just perform his way though a very convincing fake death?
The mid-credits scene shows footage that Mysterio leaked framing Spider-Man for all of the attacks, then outs Parker’s identity. Is it reasonable to think that Beck was so proactive that he knew exactly how their final encounter would unfold and program the exact incriminating clips to leak after he died? Or could he have just filmed the entire sequence, pretended to have been shot by the drone to fake his death, then leaked exactly what he wanted the world to see a week later.
This wouldn’t be the first time we’ve seen such deception from the MCU. But with Loki now off on his own with the Tesseract and unofficially out of the MCU, what if Mysterio is being positioned as the MCU’s new master of illusions? Gyllenhaal is a gem of acting talent to hold on to, and his performance as Mysterio is worthy of reprisal, so I would not be at all surprised if his death in Far From Home is just another trick in Mysterio’s book.
There is plenty of discussion to be had about the mind games played in Far From Home, and perhaps even more details that flew under the radar. I for one am thrilled that even though Endgame brought an epic 22 film story arch to a close that Marvel still has new and interesting ways to keep us talking and guessing.
Nick Fury’s swap. The multiverse theory debunked. Mysterio’s alleged death. What are your thoughts on these Far From Home events? And what surprised you the most in the film?