Spider-Man: Far From Home Brought Back A Character From 2008’s Iron Man


Spider-Man: Far From Home has been in theaters for over a week, so we all know by now that Jake Gyllenhaal’s Quentin Beck, AKA Mysterio, wasn’t as helpful as he initially looked. In fact, his entire shtick as an inter-dimensional hero who traveled via the Blip to Peter’s Earth in order to stop the Elementals was entirely made up.

Instead, we learn that Mysterio and his story was a dangerous scheme concocted by a group of former Stark Industries employees attempting to take advantage of Tony Stark’s death. Despite not being the most original motivation within the MCU, Far From Home manages to reinforce its plot by bringing back a character from the very first Iron Man and you might not have even realized it.

Mysterio’s second act heel turn reveals that Quentin Beck isn’t working alone, but is part of a larger team of individuals whose professional careers had all suffered at the hand of their former boss’ paranoia and ego. Among this team is the bespectacled drone engineer Dr. William Ginter Riva, portrayed by Peter Billingsley.

General audiences may know Billingsley best for playing little Ralphie in the 1983 movie A Christmas Story, but the child actor has since gone on to enjoy a very successful career as a film producer. As a good fiend of Jon Favreau’s, he notably backed many of the director’s early blockbusters, including Elf, Zathura and the original Iron Man, where he also made a small cameo as a scientist who takes a verbal beat down from Jeff Bridges’ ill-tempered Obadiah Stane. Cut to 11 years later, and Billingsley has long ago left behind producing big budget Marvel movies, but that didn’t stop Kevin Feige and co. from bringing Dr. Riva back in Far From Home for a decent amount of screen time.

Though Beck may have ended up killing himself (or did he?), the rest of his crew managed to slip under the radar, walking away from the Battle of London scot free. A portion of the finale even cuts back to Dr. Riva downloading video of Mysterio’s defeat, which we know he later edits to look like a deliberate execution by Peter Parker and kicking off that much talked about mid-credits teaser.

In the wake of Tony Stark’s fate in Avengers: Endgame, Spider-Man: Far From Home serves as the perfect closing chapter to both that character’s legacy and the entire Infinity Saga arc of the MCU. We know the web-slinger is still set to play an important part in future phases of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, of course, but we’ll have to wait and see if Dr. Riva will be returning as well.