As comic book fans, we love a good Easter egg, and DC's latest movie, Blue Beetle, has one you might have missed. The blockbuster has been stirring quite the buzz, not just for its groundbreaking Latino representation, but also for its subtle nods to the larger DC Universe. Xolo Maridueña, who plays titular hero Jaime Reyes, might be new to the cowl and crimefighting gig, but his movie is deeply rooted in the nearly 90-year history and larger tapestry of heroes. And no, we're not just talking about that mid-credit scene that has so many people buzzing. Director Ángel Manuel Soto revealed an exciting gem about a less-than-obvious Green Lantern reference in the film. Did your eagle eyes catch it?
Soto divulged to Collider all sorts of behind-the-scenes secrets. Of course, the night wasn't complete without some tantalizing teases about possible sequels and crossovers, but what really grabbed our attention was when he addressed the Green Lantern reference. And no, you didn't have to look hard, as it was practically glowing. He told the outlet:
There's more. At the beginning of the title sequence, for those of you guys that follow the Blue Beetle comics, there's a green light that hits this character, and that's a Green Lantern. If you didn’t catch it, watch it again.
The implications are titillating. Does this mean we'll see Jaime team up with a Green Lantern in future DCU installments helmed by James Gunn and Peter Safran? It's an electrifying possibility, especially following the announcement that fan favorite Nathan Fillion would join the evergrowing cast of James Gunn’s Superman: Legacy and pick up a ring, as he will finally portray a Lantern.
Let's talk about why this Green Lantern and Blue Beetle connection is so electrifying. In the comic book’s lore, thousands of years ago, The Reach, the alien species behind the technology that gives Reyes his suit, and the Green Lantern Corps were mortal enemies. While the Corps emerged victorious, The Reach left a little "gift" on various planets: Scarab tech. This Scarab fuses to the host's spine and gifts them a living armor with extraordinary powers—something that plays a significant role in Blue Beetle. So when you spot that green light hitting Jaime in the title sequence, you're witnessing an epic ancient feud seeping into the modern day, and this small tease could mean something huge for the slate of upcoming DC movies.
Despite topping Barbie with a $25.4 million opening weekend, according to The Numbers, DC's latest offering only landed in the twenty-third spot for all 2023 movie releases. This continues Warner's less-than-stellar box office performance with DC movies, a trend kickstarted last fall by Jaume Collet-Serra's Black Adam. That movie debuted with $67 million in North America but finished its global run with a less-than-expected $391.3 million. The lackluster outcomes didn't stop there: David F. Sandberg's Shazam! Fury of The Gods and Andy Muschietti's The Flash also underperformed. Now Blue Beetle is the latest addition to the list, despite receiving a somewhat better (though still mixed) reception from critics.
It's disappointing that Blue Beetle isn't making a bigger splash at the box office, especially since it’s a charming story, and Jaime Reyes’s first cinematic outing deserves more love. Reports suggest he's not going anywhere and could play a significant role in DC's cinematic future. As for that Green Lantern Easter egg, it's still up in the air if it'll lead to anything major. With a Lanterns series in the works (James Gunn even compared it to a prestige HBO drama, a team-up between the green and blue heroes isn't entirely out of the question.
Blue Beetle is still playing in cinemas. Make sure to check your local listings for showtimes. You can also check out our list of upcoming superhero movies to see what other costumed crimefighters are headed to a theater near you.