Avengers: Infinity War is already in the record books: it has had the biggest-ever opening weekend for a movie, with US$248 million taken at the box office. But, box office schmox office, the most impressive feather in its cap is its needlessly obscure background Easter egg for the excellent sitcom Arrested Development.
Right at the end of the credits, where there are all kinds of thanks and acknowledgements for brands featured in the film, it’s pointed out that an Arrested Development character appears courtesy of 20th Century Fox. But who?
It’s Tobias Fünke, as portrayed by David Cross in the show. This guy:
One of the funniest characters on an already hilarious show, he’s both an analyst and therapist, or as he self-styles himself, an ‘analrapist’. A plot in the show’s second season sees him desperately trying to become an understudy for the Blue Man Group, and spending weeks at a time covered in blue paint (“I’m afraid I just blue myself”).
(It’s a really good show.)
(Like, it doesn’t necessarily look it from that, but it really is.)
Over Gamora’s shoulder in one scene from Infinity War is a brief glimpse of Tobias, albeit played by a different actor, covered in blue paint and clad in his trademark denim cutoffs (the character is a “never-nude”, even showering in his shorts). (Yeah, that probably still doesn’t make it sound like a good show, but it really is.)
Infinity War directors Anthony and Joe Russo directed the pilot episode of Arrested Development together, and individually worked on a dozen or so more. They previously sneaked AD’s “stair-car” into Captain America: Civil War (which also featured a cameo from Danny Pudi from Community, another great show they worked on).
The Russos are currently working on the followup, the as-yet-untitled fourth Avengers movie, which if there is any justice in the world will feature Henry Winkler jumping over a shark, Bob Loblaw’s Law Blog, Mrs Featherbottom offering people a banger in the mouth and the repeated mantra “I’ve made a huge mistake”.
(Pics: Marvel Studios, 20th Century Fox)