Best Fan-Service Moments in the Franchise, Ranked

The Marvel Cinematic Universe is arguably the most popular and the highest-grossing movie franchise in cinematic history. With 27 films completed and a dozen in development, the MCU is cranking out content at a steady pace, including the recent release of Disney +’s Moon Knight. While some would consider that the MCU’s sole focus is monetary gain, the reality is that much of the content created is to bring as much of Marvel Comics to life as possible. Thanks to this, the MCU has garnered fans from all over the world.

With such a large fan base, it only makes sense that filmmakers take the wishes of the fans into account when creating content. Referred to as “fan-service”, moments in a film that pays homage to past characters, background easter eggs, and even seeing characters do something that the fans have wanted would all be considered fan service. While there are plenty of moments of fan service throughout the MCU, these are the best, ranked.

Related: Iconic Moments of the MCU’s Infinity Saga

8 Loki – Thanos-Copter

Marvel Studios

The Disney + Original series Loki has been praised for how it has woven itself into the MCU. Probably the best Easter egg within the series is the appearance of the Thanos-copter in the background of the episode in which Loki gets stranded at the edge of the universe alongside variants of himself. Seen as a crash site, some may not have noticed this downed vehicle, but a yellow helicopter with the word “THANOS” scrawled across the side is hard to ignore once you see it. This ridiculous copter was flown by the villain in the comics and its presence is beyond goofy, giving fans a nice laugh.

7 Captain America: Civil War – Iron Man vs Captain America

Marvel Studios

In Captain America: Civil Warmany of the events that take place in the film differ greatly from the original Civil War in the comics. Realizing this, it would seem that filmmakers felt the need to make up for the drastic change in content by recreating one of the most iconic comic-book covers from Civil War # 7. When Stark fires his repulsors directly into Steve’s shield, a massive flash is created. This moment is held a little too long to just be a mere coincidence. It was added to the film intentionally for the heroes to recreate a beloved comic-book cover.

6 Spider-Man: Homecoming – Original Spider-Man Theme Song

For fans of Spider-Manit was a joy to hear a modern recreation of the original theme song in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Michael Giacchino, the composer of the original Spidey theme song was contacted to create a new theme song, but, instead, he revamped the theme featured in the classic cartoon. This was a brilliant idea on Giacchino’s behalf, as not only does the revamped theme acknowledge the roots of the hero, but it’s inviting the new generation of Spidey-lovers to go back and enjoy some classic Spider-Man content. Needless to say, hearing an orchestral version of “Spider-Man, Spider-Man, Does whatever a spider can” brought happiness and nostalgia to the hearts of many fans.

5 Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 – Stan Lee’s Cameo as a Watcher

One of the biggest recurring fan-service acts within the MCU is the cameo appearances by Stan Lee, a Marvel legend and original creator. After a fan theory circulated about Lee being a Watcher to keep an eye on the activities of the Avengers, this theory came to life in Guardian of the Galaxy Vol. 2. As the group travels from planet to planet, they charge past a group of Watchers, one of which is played by Lee who, funnily enough, is reminiscing about his past as a FedEx worker. This appearance is the ultimate fan – service, turning a fan theory into a reality, making fans extremely happy as Lee’s presence within the MCU is finally given a concrete explanation.

4 Captain America: Civil War – Ant-Man Takes a Ride on Hawkeye’s Arrow

At the airport battle in Captain America: Civil War, the Avengers are divided over differing opinions regarding Sokovia Accords. This battle has more than one moment of fan-service, but the best is a recreation of another iconic comic-book cover. Ant-Man’s shrunken form takes a ride on one of Hawkeye’s arrows. This roused many screams in the audience from those familiar with the comics and even just casual movie-goers as the pair takes advantage of Ant-Man’s shrink-ability and Hawkeye’s archery skills, spawning a wicked combination of powers.

Related: 8 Most Iconic Songs in the MCU’s Infinity Saga

3 Avengers: Endgame – Steve Rogers Lifts Mjolnir

As the last in the series of Avengers movies, Avengers: Endgame is packed with many moments of fan-service. In the finale of the film, the core trio of the Avengers – Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America – must face Thanos. While Thor struggles with the Titan, the Norse God is saved when Mjlonir levitates and knocks Thanos in the head. However, fans were screaming when it was revealed that it was not Thor who summoned his hammer, but Steve Rogers who has proven himself worthy enough to wield the legendary hammer. While this moment is pure fan-service, it still manages to work to the advantage in the battle.

2 Avengers: Endgame – “I Am Iron Man”

As the Infinity Saga was coming to a close, it was only appropriate for filmmakers to satisfy the fans’ wishes after years of loyalty. Endgame delivers once more when Tony Stark’s story is brought to a close when he snatches the Infinity Stones from Thanos and says the words “I am Iron Man”, the exact thing he said at the end of the original Iron Man movie. After this, Tony proceeds to snap his fingers, making the ultimate sacrifice to save the universe from Thanos’ tyranny. This moment was heart-warming for many, as Tony shows how much he has grown as a leader and how he is now willing to do what he has to do in order to save the world, while still acknowledging where he came from.

1 Spider-Man: No Way Home – Live-Action Spider-Verse

Marvel Studios / Sony

The most recent and the best moment on this list is the appearance of the Spider-Verse in Spider-Man: No Way Home. Fans were ecstatic to see each live-action version of Spider-Man on-screen simultaneously. The MCU has now managed to incorporate both Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire’s versions of Spider-Man into the MCU and the new Sony Spider-Man Universe (SSU). On top of this, fans got a glimpse at some classic villains, including Alfred Molina’s Doc Ocka beloved villain from the original Sam Raimi Spider-Man trilogy. Thanks to this, there has recently been a fan petition circulatingwanting Raimi to return to Maguire’s Spider-Man for a fourth film.

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