'Spider-Man: Far From Home': "Earth-616" Reveal Raises Some Huge Questions
'Spider-Man: Far From Home' is showing just how deep the changes run in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but just how badly did Thanos mess things up?
It was to be expected that Avengers: Endgame would change the Marvel Cinematic Universe forever. But Spider-Man: Far From Home is showing just how deep the changes run, which now includes the actual dimensional designation of the MCU. Just how badly did Thanos mess things up?
Spidey is taken aback to be meeting Mysterio until Quentin and Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) inform him Quentin is not from this Earth but a parallel one. “I’m sorry, you’re saying there’s a multiverse?” Peter asks.
Yes Peter, there is a multiverse.
Here’s the thing: Quentin tells Peter he’s from Earth-833, while Peter and the rest of the MCU are in Earth-616. Fans will recognize the Easter egg “616” and where it comes from — it’s the designation for the main Marvel Universe in the comics — but this little nod is actually messing things up in a big way. Because the MCU already has a designation, and it ain’t 616.
(Note: The clip has not yet been made officially available. Below, we’ve embedded one uploaded by a fan on YouTube, but we’ll update this post with the official clip when it’s released.)
Back in 2008, when the MCU started with Iron Man, Marvel published the hardcover coffee table book, Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z, Vol. 5. This book contained the official designation for the budding Marvel Cinematic Universe: Earth-199999. Fans have since run with this designation, even naming a subreddit after it. This has been the designation for years, but all of a sudden we’re now supposed to accept that the MCU is Earth-616.
So what happened? The answer: Probably nothing! This could be an oversight by Marvel Studios, which has a habit of rewriting canon in clumsy ways. Remember how Spider-Man: Homecoming, released in 2017, took place “eight years” after The Avengers, which was set in 2012?
Or this could be another misdirect by Mysterio, a villain whose sole superpower is to be a master bullshitter. Once again, we need to remind you how you can’t believe a thing you see when it comes to Mysterio.
Another possibility (and beware, we’re really getting into nerd territory here) is that the MCU is as much “Earth-616” as the comics are, which means we’re entering the omniverse. So not only can the Marvel Comics and the MCU both be “Earth-616,” but there is a wider scale of parallel universes we’ve yet to see, and possibly can’t even comprehend.
Let’s be clear, numbers don’t mean anything when it comes to the superhero multiverse. They’re arbitrary. “616” doesn’t mean anything different from “199999” unless you’re talking about the actual value of 616 and 199,999. But in terms of what these numbers mean to the fandom — they matter a great deal.
Let’s be even more clear. I’m not implying that the MCU is replacing the Marvel Comics Universe as the new Earth-616. The comics are still going on, complete with their own epic crossover events that can scratch your Marvel itch post-Endgame. It’s just a tad bizarre that such major things are happening in the MCU before our eyes, and it’s all becoming Spider-Man’s fault.
Spider-Man: Far From Home will swing into theaters on July 2.