Did Mysterio really die at the end of Spider-Man: Far From Home - or was it all just an elaborate hoax? Mysterio is a classic Spider-Man villain from the comics, and Jake Gyllenhaal's version in Spider-Man: Far From Home proved himself almost a match for the wall-crawler. The MCU's Quentin Beck was a scientific genius who used to work for Tony Stark, and created the BARF technology seen in Captain America: Civil War. Bitter and twisted, Beck concluded that he lives in an age where real scientists will never get the acclaim and respect they deserve. He recruited a team around himself, and established the fake identity of Mysterio, using drones and holograms to create monstrous Elemental threats that he could defeat on a public stage.
But that was only the first step in Mysterio's villain plan. He successfully manipulated Peter Parker into handing over more Stark tech, which allowed the illusionist to put on an even greater performance in London. Unfortunately for Mysterio, Spider-Man learned the truth and attempted to expose him. That led to one of the most stunning fight scenes in the MCU to date, that felt as though John Romita Sr's comic book artwork had sprung to life on the big screen.
The end of Spider-Man: Far From Home saw the wall-crawler come back with a vengeance, pursuing Mysterio to London and confronting him in a battle that tested his spider-sense (or "Peter Tingle") to the max. It all culminated in Mysterio's death - or did it?
How Mysterio "Died" in Spider-Man: Far From Home
Mysterio used the additional Stark drones to create a bigger illusion than he'd ever fashioned before - a single, monstrous Elemental being that was designed as a combined version of the four Elementals he'd previously faked. The idea was that this would be an Avengers-level threat, and its defeat would lead to Mysterio being viewed as a hero on the same level as Iron Man, Captain America, or Thor. Unfortunately for Mysterio, Spider-Man knew that the Elemental was illusory, and he dove into the creature's holographic interior. There, he began taking out the drones, causing the image to begin to fail.
Spider-Man forced Mysterio to adapt his tactics. Mysterio dropped the hologram and simply unleashed the drones, with Spider-Man himself as the primary target. It all ended in a confrontation in a confined space, with Mysterio once again attempting to create a twisted reality that would disorientate Spider-Man and allow him to beat the wall-crawler. What he didn't count on, however, was Spider-Man's Spider-sense, which allowed Peter to differentiate between truth and fiction. Mysterio tried one final magic act, using a fake version of himself to make a sneak attack on Spider-Man with a gun, but Peter avoided the gunshot. The rogue bullet ricocheted back and killed Beck himself. It was a fitting end to Mysterio's story; the master of illusion killed by his own weapon.
How Mysterio Could Have Faked His Death in Spider-Man: Far From Home
But Mysterio's death could still be an elaborate hoax. Mysterio is an illusionist, after all, and the film's entire theme is basically that you shouldn't believe your eyes - even running to the Nick Fury/Talos twist. The script is aware that viewers may not believe in Mysterio's death, and as a result features a line of dialogue in which Peter desperately asks the Stark AI EDITH if this is real. He's assured that it is and, just like Spider-Man, audiences are expected to believe that Mysterio is dead. But there's a simple reason that may not be the case.
In order to pull off a convincing trick, a good magician needs two things: a sense of the observational skills of the people they're trying to fool, and control of the environment they're in. Mysterio has both. He knows exactly what scanners and analytical systems EDITH has; he's working with the people who designed them, after all. It's certainly not inconceivable he could figure out a way to trick EDITH. Furthermore, Mysterio is the one who chooses where the final fight will take place, and he's killed in a ricochet - a result of that enclosed environment. It all looks extremely suspect.
This argument is supported by the fact that Mysterio seems to have moved to a fallback plan. He drops the holograms around the drones, revealing their true nature to the world, and then engages Spider-Man in one-on-one combat. It's reasonable to assume this was a contingency in which he blamed Spider-Man for the drones, and portrayed himself as the hero; but could that plan have also included his faked death?
Mysterio Revealing Spider-Man's Identity Fits His Original Plan
The idea of a fake death actually fits surprisingly well. While Spider-Man: Far From Home shows Mysterio's crew packing up and moving on - one even pulls out a drive, presumably containing recordings of Peter Parker for the contingency - it doesn't devote any time to showing their emotions. There's no hint of grief or loss. The next trace of their plan comes in Spider-Man: Far From Home's mid-credits scene. In this extended sequence, Spider-Man watches a viewscreen in horror as he sees faked footage portraying Mysterio as a hero and Spider-Man as a rogue. Worse still, this footage doesn't just ruin Spider-Man's reputation; it blows the lid on his secret identity.
The film clearly portrays this as though Mysterio's followers have gotten their revenge, enacting Quentin Beck's contingency plan and ruining Spider-Man. But the recording just as much time pretending Mysterio is a hero as it does claiming Spider-Man is a villain; it does such a good job that J. Jonah Jameson of The Daily Bugle.net declares Mysterio the greatest hero of all time. It's exactly the kind of spin Mysterio himself would want to put on it if he were still alive, and, after all, leading into his confrontation with Spider-Man he declared "they'll see exactly what I want them to."
With Spider-Man having been exposed, all Mysterio would need to do is sit back and wait for a while before returning to the global stage. He could claim to have been mysteriously resurrected, or spin some story of how he never really died in the first place; frankly, as far as Beck is concerned, it doesn't really matter. He has a dismissive view of people's ability to discern between truth and fiction, and all he'd need to do is come up with a convincing enough lie and fake some evidence. His enemy Spider-Man would have been ruined, and Mysterio could claim his place as a superhero.
Is Mysterio Really Still Alive?
Now, let's be clear; as far as Spider-Man: Far From Home is concerned, Mysterio really is dead. The conversation between Peter and EDITH is intended to reassure viewers that, this time, what they're watching is true. But it doesn't need to be so; in fact, it's surprisingly easy for Marvel to retcon EDITH as unreliable, and to set up Mysterio as a returning threat. Frankly, that would be a fun twist, with Spider-Man 3 continuing the feud between Peter Parker and Quentin Beck. It may also give Peter a way to get his life under control once again, given if he can expose Mysterio as unreliable and untrustworthy, he could get the genie of his secret identity back in the bottle.
- Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019) release date: Jul 02, 2019