Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery brings back Benoit Blanc (Daniel Craig) for another murder mystery. However, while you're busy trying to work out the culprit, you might have missed some hidden details in the background. Director Rian Johnson is a master at sneaking things into his movies, and Knives Out 2 is no different.
So whether you’re trying to spot Easter eggs as you watch along, or you’re hoping to spot some hidden details on your rewatch, we’re here to help. We’ve broken down some of the biggest things we spotted, from cheeky cameos to clues to the case. Of course, we’ll be getting into major spoiler territory here, so bookmark this page for later if you’ve not managed to see the movie yet.
Glass Onion Easter eggs
Glass Onion is set during the height of the Covid pandemic, meaning there are plenty of nods to coronavirus throughout. One of the best is the use of the masks each character is wearing when they turn up in Greece ready to board a boat to Miles Bron’s (Edward Norton) island. As Kate Hudson explains, each of these exemplifies the characters' personalities. "The masks in this movie are an Easter egg as to who all these people are," she said during Variety’s Actors on Actors (opens in new tab). "Each person, in the way they wear their mask, is really who they are."
Of course, Birdie Jay’s mask is a great example of this, as she’s wearing a chainmail one that is completely useless and a bland gesture towards abiding by the rules. We also see that Duke Cody (Dave Bautista) is not wearing one at all and Blanc is wearing an eco-friendly reusable mask.
When Blanc is on a star-studded video call, they’re playing the game Among Us. The murder mystery game was a huge hit during the pandemic and given we're in whodunnit territory, it's also a very apt choice of game. There are some more fun nods in the call too. Angela Lansbury has the username "MSheSolved" in reference to her playing iconic detective Jessica Fletcher in Murder, She Wrote. Meanwhile, Natasha Lyonne will soon be starring in Johnson's new crime thriller Poker Face. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar starred in the detective movie Fletch and Stephen Sondheim co-wrote the murder mystery The Last of Sheila. Check out our guide to all of the Glass Onion cameos for more.
The Beatles song
When Glass Onion was first announced as the movie’s title, fans channeled Blanc to try and work out what the hidden meaning behind it was. Of course, after seeing the movie, we now know that it refers to both the bar that the group of friends first met at as well as Miles’ glasshouse in the middle of his island.
It's also a song by The Beatles that plays during the movie’s credits, which was written by Paul McCartney as a comment on people reading too much into the band’s lyrics. Johnson’s inclusion of the song is both a cheeky nod to McCartney's lyrics, as well as a red herring to distract the audience. Also of note: Norton's character plays the Beatles track "Blackbird" on guitar.
Fans of director Johnson will know to be on the lookout for his calling card: a Noah Segan cameo. The actor has featured in all of Johnson’s projects, including the original Knives Out and Star Wars: The Last Jedi, and even the Breaking Bad episode he directed. Of course, Segan is here too as Derol, Miles’ mysterious lodger on the island. He’s not up to much this time around, often lingering in the background as chaos erupts, but it’s a great cameo nonetheless.
The voice of the clock
Another great cameo that you might have missed in the movie comes from the voice of the clock on the island. Joseph Gordon-Levitt actually voiced this ominous "hourly dong" that rings out. What’s more, this is the actor’s second Knives Out cameo too, after previously voicing a sitcom in the background of the first movie.
Miles’ murder mystery game
In a great nod spotted by Insider (opens in new tab), Miles’ murder mystery game includes some key foreshadowing for what happens later. In both the fake mystery and the real mystery that unfolds, the answer is hidden in plain sight: for the fake game, it's Birdie's necklace, while for the real murder, it's the napkin that Miles has in his office.
Miles also takes credit for creating the game but later admits to commissioning Gillian Flynn – author of Gone Girl – to write it, similar to how Miles steals the idea for his company from Janelle Monae's character Helen. Finally, the billionaire uses a fake blood packet to indicate his death, which is very similar to how Blanc fakes Helen’s death using hot sauce.
Speaking of the murder mystery game, Miles confesses to Blanc that it was actually thought up by Gillian Flynn, the author of Gone Girl. However, he pronounces her name wrong, which seems fit well with his character's egotistical personality.
Posting on Twitter about her namecheck, the author herself wrote (opens in new tab): "Cannot say how much fun I had watching Glass Onion last night – the most twisty, clever, funny movie I've seen this year. Then I had my name dropped right in the movie! Thank you for the moment, Rian Johnson. Also loved the sly red herring, where my name was pronounced Jillian, instead of the way I say it (Which is hard G, as in: Good God I should just Go with Jillian). But honored to be included, with any pronunciation."
When Serena Williams is sitting on the video call in the gym, she’s reading a book called 'Gravity’s Rainbow'. This is a nod back to the first movie when Blanc tells Marta (Ana de Armas) that no one has actually ever read the Pulitzer Prize-winning book by Thomas Pynchon.
The Tom Cruise costume nod
In one of the flashback scenes in the movie, Miles is dressed just like Tom Cruise’s character in Magnolia. This was Norton’s idea as he figured the character would be so unoriginal that he would copy an outfit he’d just seen in a movie. "He and Jenny Eagan, our costume designer, came up with the look and I had no idea," Johnson told Insider (opens in new tab). "I started cracking up. But then I thought, 'Is this too much?' I also thought, 'What is Paul going to think of this?' Hopefully, he takes it in the right spirit."
Keep an eye on the art
All the way through Glass Onion, there is a lot of amazing art lingering in the background, including some from Rothko and Jeff Koons – and, of course, a Matisse in the bathroom. However, a few eagle-eyed viewers may have noticed that the Rothko is upside down, in a nod to how clueless Miles is. Explaining why this is, Johnson told RogerEbert.com (opens in new tab): "I showed up and there was the big Rothko painting. But of course, it's Edward's character, Miles. So, I said, 'Can we turn it upside down?' So, it's actually upside down [laughs]. A joke for the art nerds."
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery is out on Netflix now. For more on the movie, check out our piece on the Glass Onion ending explained.