WARNING: The following contains spoilers for Morbius, which is currently playing in theaters.
In Morbius, Jared Leto’s Living Vampire has prowled New York to find his evil vampire “brother” Milo (Matt Smith). The latter wanted to feed on humanity, while Morbius tried to stop him, realizing that he had triggered a curse when he tried to cure them of their rare blood disease. Interestingly, Sony and Marvel working together again, even closer after the success of the new Spider Man movies, fans have spotted some intriguing Easter eggs in previous trailers. With that in mind, let’s dissect the nods to the Marvel arena from the comics to the movies.
The X-Men get a shout out
Early on, a young Morbius saved Milo in their hospice in Greece, using a ballpoint pen to fix a complicated machine during a blood transfusion. Dr. Nicholas (Jared Harris) remarked on how smart Morbius was, saying he wanted to send the child to a “school for gifted children” in New York to hone his skills. It’s a subtle nod to Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters in Westchester, New York, allowing Sony to tease the X-Men, though mutant rights belong to Marvel Studios.
Morbius works at Horizon Labs
Morbius attempted to save children with the same blood disorder at Horizon Labs, while experimenting on vampire bats on himself. This lab got its start in amazing spider man #648 in Dan Slott’s controversial race. Peter Parker worked there, flexing his genius a la Reed Richards, while Morbius also worked there, healing people who turned into arachnids in Spider Island. Otto Octavius also conducted sinister experiments there, when he placed his mind in Pete as the Superior Spider-Man.
Morbius’ Boat Had Nods to Dracula and Marvel
Morbius eventually used a boat to conduct his experiments, aided by his beloved colleague, Martine. The ship was away from the Long Island coast to avoid legal ramifications, nodding as Morbius used a similar boat called the Zenith in comics. This ship, however, was named the Murnaua tribute to director FW Murnau, who made the very first vampire movie: 1922 Nosferatus. To top it all off, Morbius joked that he wouldn’t go “full Dracula” on Martine, paying homage to Marvel’s own version of the warlord, which debuted in the ’50s. Dracula has since established his kingdom in Europe, waging war against Blade as well as the Avengers.
Kraven may have made his off-screen debut
Earlier, when Nicholas was telling Milo about his bodyguards and shady hobbies, Milo admitted he needed protection after coming across a “Russian gentleman”. It’s probably a nod to Kraven the Hunter, aka Sergei Kravinoff. The longtime Spider-Man villain debuted in 1964 amazing spider man #15, chasing Spidey to show who the real alpha is. A Kraven The film began production in London in March 2022, starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson as the titular predator.
The Daily Bugle had key notes
While The daily bugle was a digital platform in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, it’s back in traditional press form here. At various locations, different characters grab the paper, which features numerous allusions to Spidey’s enemies. A title referred to Rhino being cowardly, leaving fans wondering if this is Paul Giamatti’s character from The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Another mentioned that the chameleon was on the move, which could be related to the next one Kraven movie because the master of disguise is Chameleon’s half-brother. One also questioned whether Black Cat was friend or foe, again nodding to how Sony’s Marc Webb universe planned a movie with the thief.
Morbius is a vampiric Hulk
After feeding on mercenaries on his boat, Morbius was wrongfully locked up in a Manhattan detention center after Milo killed Nurse Sutton in Horizon. Unfortunately, Morbius didn’t have his red blood nor the artificial blue to keep his beast at bay. In an interrogation scene, when his face began to turn into vamp mode, he told FBI agents, “You won’t like me when I’m hunger.” It’s a nod to many Pontoon comics, movies and also, The Incredible Hulk TV series where Bruce Banner clearly said, “You won’t love me when I’m angry”, before transforming into Green Goliath.
Morbius pays homage to venom
Morbius needed a second lab after Horizon, so he hijacked a counterfeit lab and upgraded it for blood work. However, as he snapped the chef’s fingers, the goon asked what he was. Morbius paid tribute to Eddie Brock Venom while stating “I am Venom!” It’s the anti-hero’s famous line, hinting that they may soon cross paths. Another one Venom a nod came earlier when the Feds compared the boat massacre to “that thing in San Francisco,” alluding to when the symbiote went on its own feeding binge in the first film.
Martine becomes a vampire
Before the final battle with his “brother”, Milo gutted Martine, leaving her for dead. Morbius, however, drank from her and transferred some of his blood into her. The film ended with Martine’s eyes transforming, indicating that she is also a vampire. It’s a nod to when she was transformed in the comics by a vampire trying to frame Morbius in the 70s. She would then embark on a quest to become the “real vampire”, all for spend eternity with Morbius. Unfortunately, her story ended with Morbius killing her to put her soul to rest.
The MCU Vulture has come
In two weird post-credits scenes, Michael Keaton’s Adrian Toomes appeared from the MCU. The first showed the flaws in Spider-Man: No Coming Home, which dropped him into this reality in a prison cell. Since he didn’t officially exist here, he became free. This has left fans wondering if this issue will be resolved when Doctor Strange meets Scarlet Witch to discuss the MCU’s multiverse. The second scene had Toomes in an upgraded vulture costume from Spider-Man: Homecomingwith the face more in the shape of a beak.
Sony is preparing the Sinister Six
In numerous comics, video games, and cartoons, the Sinister Six have teamed up, using different members to attempt to kill Spidey. Sony has been looking to do this for some time, even the director, Daniel Espinosa, admitting that Toomes was the catalyst now after the Webb films were dropped. The second post-credits scene had Vulture recruiting Morbius, who deemed the partnership “intriguing”. Notably, Morbius never officially joined the group, but he was affiliated in the books and comics, his research and technology aiding them.
To see all the Marvel references, watch Morbius, in theaters now.
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