Warning: This article contains SPOILERS for Spider-Man: Far From Home.
Mysterio may have died in Spider-Man: Far From Home - but that doesn't rule the villain out from returning to the MCU. Spider-Man: Far From Home's take on Mysterio was lifted straight from the comics; he was introduced as a disgruntled and vain super-villain who initially attempted to persuade the world he was really a hero. In this case, Mysterio's scheme involved manipulating Spider-Man into handing over Stark tech in order to put on a spectacular show in London.
Mysterio made one mistake, though; he underestimated Spider-Man. The wall-crawler may have been tricked into handing over the Stark tech, but he realized he'd been fooled and attempted to expose Mysterio. Spider-Man survived their initial battle, and arrived in London spoiling for a rematch. That didn't go Mysterio's way, with Spider-Man's spider-sense guiding him past Mysterio's tricks. Mysterio tried one last stunt, using a holographic image to hide a direct attack on Spider-Man, but the webhead dodged the bullet. It ricocheted and killed Mysterio.
That doesn't necessarily mean Mysterio's story in the MCU is over, though. After all, the Marvel Cinematic Universe is inspired by comics, and death is something of a revolving door in comic books. Here's how Mysterio could return.
Mysterio's Death Was All A Lie
The most obvious solution, which would allow Jake Gyllenhaal to reprise the role, is if Mysterio's death was all an illusion. The MCU has something of a reputation for fake deaths, and in Mysterio's case he's a master of illusion. The script of Spider-Man: Far From Home attempts to reassure viewers that this time it's real, with Spider-Man asking the artificial intelligence EDITH if Mysterio is really dead. EDITH assures him that this time there are no illusions.
The fundamental problem, though, is that Mysterio has a lot of experience with Stark tech. He's been working with Stark Industries drones for several years, meaning he has a good idea what they're capable of; what's more, he's had time to experiment with EDITH's drones as well. Mysterio will be intimately familiar with the advanced sensor suite EDITH has access to, and it's certainly not inconceivable that he figured out how to deceive this tech. Thus even EDITH isn't a reliable witness - and it's entirely possible Mysterio has faked his death.
If this is the case, then it's likely Mysterio took this dramatic step when he realized there was no way he was going to beat Spider-Man. This was his way of ending the fight, giving himself an opportunity to retreat and rally his forces. Presumably he then decided to manipulate the public by releasing faked footage of his battle with Spider-Man, footage that conveniently portrayed Mysterio as a hero and Spider-Man as the bad guy. The video shown in the mid-credits scene would be just the first step in his plan, which would surely see him miraculously "resurrected," to the delight of an adoring public.
Could Someone Else Don The Mantle Of Mysterio?
It's also possible that someone else could inherit the mantle of Mysterio. Indeed, there's comic book precedent for this idea; while Quentin Beck was the first Mysterio in the comics, he's by no means the last. The bubble-headed look seems to be strangely attractive to criminal types, and as a result there have been no less than three others. After Beck had died, Daniel Berkhart was hired by J. Jonah Jameson to torment Spider-Man by claiming to be Mysterio's ghost. Then there's Francis Klum, a teleporting mutant who purchased Mysterio's paraphernalia from the Kingpin in order to attack Spider-Man. Most recently, an unnamed African-American purchased a Mysterio costume and crossed paths with the Punisher. Amusingly, there was one comic where no less than three versions of Mysterio were active at the same time, and they despised each other just as much as they hated Spider-Man. The wall-crawler settled down to read a paper while the Mysterios fought it out.
Spider-Man: Far From Home may well have already set up Mysterio's successors as well. The MCU's Mysterio was the frontman for a pretty large organisation, with all the members sharing his vendetta against Tony Stark and the Avengers. Many of these men and women would understand Beck's technology better than he did himself, and as a result almost any one of them could become the next Mysterio using the same holographic technology.
The video plays into this scenario in some quite interesting ways as well. Note that the video dedicates just as much time to claiming Mysterio is a hero as it does to presenting Spider-Man as a villain; this may hint that Quentin Beck's followers aren't finished with the Mysterio identity, and wanted to redeem it. It's also perhaps significant that the video was released by The Daily Bugle.net, which in the MCU is an InfoWars-esque website run by none other than J. Jonah Jameson. The comic book version of J. Jonah Jameson has been heavily involved with some of the wall-crawler's greatest enemies, ranging from the Scorpion to Berkhart's Mysterio; he could potentially be part of Mysterio's gang in the MCU as well.
Mysterio's Lies Become Real With The Arrival Of A New Mysterio
There's one final possibility; that Mysterio's lies could become real, with a new version of Mysterio arriving in the MCU from another dimension. This would be an entertaining and ironic twist, not least because it would leave Spider-Man completely wrong-footed. And again, there is actually precedent from the comics. Brian Bendis' Spider-Men miniseries saw the Spider-Men of two realities unite against the one Mysterio, Quentin Beck, who had learned how to travel between the dimensions.
This is the least likely for now, but it would probably be the most entertaining. It would allow Marvel to reintroduce Jake Gyllenhaal as Mysterio without retconning his death. Meanwhile, Mysterio's arrival from another reality would carry huge implications for the MCU, and would open the franchise up to explore the Multiverse. Spider-Man: Far From Home, meanwhile, would essentially become a grand bait-and-switch, which is quite fitting for a movie starring an illusionist as the villain.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019