SPOILER WARNING: The following article contains major spoilers for Deadpool 2, now in theaters nationwide.
After two long years, everyone’s favorite Merc with a Mouth has finally returned to the big screen in 20th Century Fox’s latest X-Men-adjacent blockbuster, Deadpool 2.
Much like Wade Wilson’s first solo outing, this film is packed to the brim with subtle nods to not only the comic book source material but to just about everything else in the realm of pop culture. After all, this is Deadpool we’re talking about.
While we’ve already compiled a list of some of the more meta references, here are the 10 best Easter eggs from Deadpool 2:
If there’s one thing Ryan Reynolds’ Wade Wilson loves, it’s poking fun at franchise veteran Hugh Jackman, who played Wolverine for the better part of two decades. However, not all of Wade’s Jackman jabs are strictly in relation to his tenure as Logan.
While sketching out a set of blueprints (in crayon, naturally) for their mission to save Russell, X-Force’s new leader Deadpool makes it a point to list the pyromancer’s prisoner number as “24601.” This, of course, is the prisoner number that was also assigned to Jean Valjean in the acclaimed musical Les Misérable; a musical in which Jackman portrayed – you guessed it – Jean Valjean in the 2012 big-screen adaptation.Advertisement
The X-Men Origins Bullet Slice
Fans don’t often look back fondly at 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine and much of that has to do with how the film handled Wade Wilson the first time Reynolds portrayed him on-screen. The character’s mouth was sewn shut and he was given a plethora of powers from other mutants, turning him into a hodgepodge of X-Men pieces, but definitely not into Deadpool. Nevertheless, Reynolds put on a fine performance prior to that transformation, and in Deadpool 2, we see a callback to one of the film’s most visually striking scenes.
While Deadpool is battling Cable on the mutant-prisoner transport truck, he pulls out his katana and slices one of Cable’s incoming bullets clean in half. It’s practically a shot-for-shot recreation of what Reynolds did in Origins, but with this being a Deadpool film, what follows is far less pleasing for the Merc with a Mouth, who’s subsequently filled with bullet holes.
The Canadian superhero team known as Alpha Flight has yet to make its proper cinematic debut. However, in Deadpool 2, we do get a brief look at what the team is apparently up to in Fox’s X-Men universe.
Like most taxis, the one Dopinder drives in the film has an advert mounted onto the vehicle’s roof. If you look closely, though, you’ll see that the ad on Dopinder’s cab is for a commercial airline company called “Alpha Flight.” Sure, it’s probably not the Alpha Flight nod fans were hoping for, but it’s a fun Easter egg nonetheless.
Mr. Sinister Evades Us Once More
It was in the post-credits scene of X-Men: Apocalypse that fans were first teased with the possible arrival of Mr. Sinister, as materials from Wolverine’s Weapon X days were placed into a briefcase that read “Essex Corp.” This, of course, was a nod to Mr. Sinister’s alter ego, Nathaniel Essex, who’s yet to appear in an X-Men film but is teased once more in Deadpool 2.
When we first come across Julian Dennison’s Russell, we discover he’s been living in an orphanage that tortures mutants for the apparent betterment of humankind. The name of that orphanage? The Essex House for Mutant Rehabilitation. Surely, Mr. Sinister is coming any day now… Right?
Addressing the T.J. Miller Controversy
T.J. Miller’s Weasel was a fun counterpoint to Reynolds’ Wade Wilson in the first Deadpool. However, when word broke that Miller had been accused of sexual misconduct, fans wondered if his scenes from the sequel would ultimately be left on the cutting room floor. As we now know, Fox opted against this, but the studio still made an effort to acknowledge the controversy in an appropriately meta fashion.
While Cable is watching a news broadcast from his hotel room, the ticker at the bottom of the screen reads that actor Christopher Plummer had turned down a role in Deadpool 2. For those unaware, Christopher Plummer was the actor who was brought on the replace Kevin Spacey in Ridley Scott’s All The Money in The World after Spacey was similarly accused of sexual misconduct. So, while Fox might not have cut Miller from the film, at least the studio was willing to address the situation, rather than completely turning a blind eye.
The Duggan and Simone Nods
Obviously, when comic book fans think of Deadpool, they think of the character’s creators, Rob Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza. Two other creators with notable runs on the Deadpool series, though, are Gerry Duggan and Gail Simone, both of whom receive some recognition in the film.
The Duggan nod is easier to spot as he’s actually called out by name. When Cable is interrogating Weasel, Weasel reveals that the mutant prisoners are in a truck on Gerry Duggan Parkway. As for Simone, her nod comes in the form of the red Vespa Wade rides through the city, which the character was forced to use in Simone’s Deadpool run after the Merc’s car was destroyed.
The Cure for Blindness
In the first Deadpool, Wade tells his vision-impaired roommate Blind Al that he buried 1,600 kilos of cocaine in the apartment, “right next to the cure for blindness.” In Deadpool 2, we learn that Wade wasn’t kidding.
After Vanessa is killed, Wade breaks into Blind Al’s apartment to retrieve some of his stash, and, low and behold, underneath one of the floorboards is a large bag of coke resting next to another bag that’s labeled, “The Cure for Blindness.” Unfortunately for Al, that bag is also filled with cocaine, so the likelihood that it will actually help restore her sight is slim, at best.
Inside the aforementioned Essex House for Mutant Rehabilitation, there are a number of propaganda-style posters hanging from the walls. One that might look rather familiar to comic book fans, though, is the one that reads, “M-DAY IS NEAR.”
In the comics, M-Day is at the heart of the House of M event, which saw Scarlet Witch warp reality and establish mutants as the planet’s dominant species. However, it culminated with Scarlet Witch uttering the words, “No more mutants,” wiping out almost all of the world’s mutant population. That day, of course, is known in the Marvel Universe as M-Day.
While the inclusion of Mr. Sinister would have been a fitting way to incorporate more of Cable’s comic book origin into the film, there’s another character who’s equally pivotal to his backstory: Madelyn Pryor. Cloned from Jean Grey by Mr. Sinister, Madelyne went on the marry Cyclops and the pair had a child named Nathan, who would eventually become the man known as Cable.
In Deadpool 2, we don’t get any major nods to Madelyne Pryor, but there is a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it namedrop. During the prison convoy scene, there’s a shot of an ice cream parlor with a sign that reads, “Pryor’s Treats.” It’s not much, but admittedly, it’s probably for the best that the film didn’t try to flesh out the Cyclops/Madelyne/Cable history on-screen, as it would have been far too convoluted for general audiences.
Deadpool’s Costume Homages
While Deadpool is a character who’s sported a number of hats and accessories over the years, depending on what sorts of shenanigans he’s up to, his costume has remained relatively unchanged. However, there are two secondary outfits he’s donned in the comics that both show up in the film… Sort of.
The first is the yellow X-Men jersey Wade wears after he’s recruited by Colossus. This is a throwback to when Wade actually did join the core X-Men team in the comics for a short-lived stint. The second is when Wade is hit with Russell’s mutant fire abilities, charring his suit and turning it grey. This, of course, is an homage to the striking grey costume Wade wore in Uncanny X-Force, which is arguably his most popular look outside of the standard red-and-black.