It’s par for the course that any Marvel superhero film will be stuffed full with Easter Eggs and comic-book callbacks, and according to Avengers: Infinity War directors Joe and Anthony Russo their eagerly-anticipated new film will be no different.
“Everybody on the crew was really away of Marvel mythology,” Joe Russo told RadioTimes.com in a video interview, “and they’re complicit in layering in Easter Eggs.”
And while at the moment it’s still a bit of a mystery what Easter Eggs we’ll be seeing in Infinity War – the film’s not out yet, give us a chance – the Russos did hint that one reference fans had been hoping for might make an appearance.
“I would say, also that Arrested Development fans should keep their eyes open,” he said.
Considering the Russos cut their teeth directing episodes of the cult comedy, and have brought friends from their TV work to the big screen before (cast members from Community cameo-d in their last two Marvel movies) this move is typical of the pair – but it also seems to confirm something Arrested Development fans spotted a few months ago in some leaked footage that they’d hoped was a sneaky callback.
In the unfinished footage, fans were treated to a scene set in the home of Benicio del Toro’s Collector, the outer-space character from Thor: The Dark World and Guardians of the Galaxy who spends his time gathering rare species and objects.
In the course of this collecting, we previously saw him get his hands on the Reality stone, which is why he factors into the new film – but eagle-eyed viewers also spotted that one of his specimens in the footage looked an awful lot like an Arrested Development character, specifically David Cross’ never-nude analyst/therapist Tobias Fünke in scenes where he painted himself blue while wearing jean-shorts.
Look, he was trying to join the Blue Man Group, and…it makes sense if you watch the series, OK?
Anyway, the Russos’ comments seem to confirm that this bespectacled blue specimen is an intentional callback to the comedy series (which they previously acknowledged in Captain America: Civil War by including the Bluth’s stair car in the background of a scene), and therefore the first official Easter Egg that we can all bask in the glow of before we see all the rest in cinemas next week.
Unless of course, the Russos have simply stuffed the film with Arrested Development Easter Eggs and this blue man is just the tip of the self-referential iceberg. We’re hoping to see Thanos’ chicken impression, personally.
Avengers: Infinity War is released in UK cinemas on Thursday 26th April
Sign up to the Radio Times newsletter for the latest TV and entertainment news