Avengers: Infinity War was something of a celebration of how far the MCU’s come over the past ten years. As such, it featured a host of easter eggs, references and callbacks to previous entries in the saga. Some were obvious – like the return of Red Skull, last seen in Captain America: The First Avenger – while others were easily missed and took months to notice. Like this one, for instance.
A Reddit user has noticed the way that a moment from Infinity War closely resembles a memorable scene in Guardians of the Galaxy. A running gag in that movie is Peter Quill’s annoyance at people not knowing his neat outlaw name “Star-Lord.” The first time it happens is when Korath the Pursuer fails to recognize the alias, causing an annoyed Quill to respond: “Star-Lord, man.”
In Infinity War, the roles are reversed when Quill has no idea who Iron Man, Spider-Man and Doctor Strange are when the Guardians encounter them on Titan. This leads another Peter, Peter Parker, to say “we’re the Avengers, man,” with the same irritated tone as Quill once had when he spoke to Korath in GotG.
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This is far from the only tip of the hat to the first Guardians, though. Earlier on in the movie, Thor describes the Avengers as “Earth’s Mightiest Heroes,” which leads Mantis to ask if they’re like Kevin Bacon. This recalls Quill’s retelling of the Kevin Bacon movie Footloose to Gamora in which he made it sound like it was an epic Earth legend. This also comes up again in IW when Star-Lord has a momentary spat with Spidey over whether Footloose is still the greatest movie of all-time (Parker says it never was).
These throwbacks could also have acted as last hurrahs for the team as all but two of them – Rocket and Nebula – met their demise by the end of Infinity War. How many will return in Avengers 4? We’ll find out next May.