The Martian Wikia

This is the page to add any Easter eggs, references or things missed.

1. Marvel in The Martian

  • In the book and movie Watney says he will cut a hole in his suit and fly around like Iron Man which in the movie he actually does, but this isn't the only Marvel reference in this movie (which is ironic seeing as Matt Damon is a childhood friend of Ben Affleck, who was Batman at the time, Matt Damon also plays Loki during a theatre scene in Thor: Ragnarok (2017).

    Lewis catching Watney in space.

  • Sebastian 'Seb' Stan who plays Chris Beck in the film also plays James 'Bucky' Buchanan Barnes/ The Winter Soldier in Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), Captain America: Civil War (2016), Black Panther (2018) and Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019) and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier TV Series.
  • Kate Mara, who plays Beth Johanssen, played Sue Storm/Invisible Woman in Fantastic Four [Fant4stic] (2015) which is widely regarded as the worst Fantastic Four movie in existence. She also plays a Deputy U.S. Marshall in Iron Man 2 (2010).
  • Michael Peña, Rick Martinez, plays Luis in Antman (2015) and Antman and The Wasp (2018).
  • Actor, rapper, DJ, producer of both music and TV, singer and comedian Donald Glover/Childish Gambino, who plays awkward genius Rich Purnell, voiced Miles Morales Spider-Man in the animated series Ultimate Spider-Man (2012) and plays Morales' uncle in Spider-Man Homecoming (2017) as a side antagonist.
  • Chiwetel Ejiofor (Vincent Kapoor) and Benedict Wong (Bruce Ng) were both in Doctor Strange (2016) as Baron Mordo and Wong respectively. Wong reprised his role in Avengers: Infinity War (2018), Avengers: Endgame (2019), Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021) and Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021).

2. Sean Bean and Lord of the Rings

  • Project Elrond is a nod to the Council of Elrond in Lord of the Rings in which Sean Bean's character Boromir was a member of. He is the first one to explain the reference to Annie.
  • During the "Council of Elrond" discussion, Teddy Sanders states that he wants to be called Glorfindel. While many people assumed he was making a joke by creating a silly, vaguely Elvish sounding name, there is actually an important, but minor character from the Lord of the Rings novels named Glorfindel. His name means "golden-haired," and actor Jeff Daniels has 'blond' hair.
    • While it makes sense since in the books, both characters are important, it actually becomes ironic in the film since Glorfindel became irrelevant in the LotR films (to which he does not appear in). So not only Sanders was making a joke with the name, he was also joking about his status as a director of NASA by comparing it to the irrelevant importance of Glorfindel in the films.
  • This is one of the few times that Sean Bean's character does not die in a movie. Instead, he just gets fired. (Seriously, this guy can't catch a break.)
  • Hilariously, Cate Blanchett, the actor of LotR's Galandriel was initially considered for the role of Annie, but opted out due to conflicting schedules.

3. Alien

The text on the computer screen where the astronauts have their first remote conversation from ship to planet displays just like Mother, the computer from the film Alien (1979), also directed by Ridley Scott.

In Space No One Can Hear You Scream

  • As Beck is about to take a dangerous trip outside the Hermes, Beth tells him to be careful because "In space...", an unfinished quote of the famous tagline from director Ridley Scott's Alien (1979).
  • In the novel, Watney logs "In space, no one can hear you scream" when he is on Mars.
  • In the book, just after he has been rescued, Watney remarks how he had "screamed like a little girl" because of the injury he received during his ascent (broken ribs) from Mars so he muted his mic so that the others couldn't hear him. He then says, 'What they say is true. In space, no one can hear you scream like a little girl'

4. The Biggest Mistake

  • The atmospheric pressure on the Martian surface averages 600 Pa (0.087 psi), about 0.6% of Earth's mean sea level pressure of 100 kPa (14.69 psi). It is so low that a "fierce storm", as they put it, would be something akin to a very light breeze messing up your hair. Author Andy Weir admitted this was his biggest inaccuracy in the story, which was made in order for the plot to develop.

5. Ancient History (Been There Done That)

  • The Ares Missions were named after the Greek god of war, Ares, whose Roman counterpart is Mars (as in the planet Mars). NASA frequently names their missions after Roman and Greek gods.
  • Hermes. the ship that carries the crew to and from Earth and Mars was named after the Greek god of messages and travellers.
  • Taiyang Shen in Chinese translates to 'The Sun God' .
  • Sol is the Latin word for 'Sun' as well so the word for a Martian day. It is the official word for "Mars day"
  • 'Mark' is the English version of the Latin name 'Marcus', which means 'of Mars'.
  • The new space vessel that replaces the Hermes Spacecraft after Ares IV is called Olympus. Olympus is where the main Greek/Roman gods live.
  • In 1877 the Italian astronomer, Giovanni Schiaparelli, named the Acidalia region after the Roman goddess Venus' mythical fountain of Acidalia (Greek counterpart is Aphrodite), where the three Graces of Greek mythology were said to have bathed. Once upon a time, there may have been water in Acidalia Planitia - at least enough to carve serpentine channels and steep scallops along the edges of wide valleys, the same way that the Grand Canyon was carved by the Colorado River.

6. "Houston, be Advised: Rich Purnell is a Steely-Eyed Missile Man"

  • The "steely-eye missile man" is a reference to flight controller John Aaron's actions following two lightning strikes to the Apollo 12 rocket in its first minute after liftoff. The electrical surge caused numerous problems in the telemetry system of the craft, which if unresolved would force a mission abort.

Aaron recognised the telemetry problem as similar to one seen in testing a year before, and advised that the crew to switch the Signal Conditioning Electronics (SCE) system to the auxiliary position. This control was so obscure that neither the Capsule Commander, nor the Mission Commander knew what, or even where it was, but pilot Alan Bean did, following Aaron's advice. Altering the setting immediately fixed the problem, allowing the mission to continue. Aaron's quick, calm, and effective response to the crisis earned him the appellation, widely considered to be the highest praise possible within NASA.

* This could also be a reference to the movie Apollo 13 (1995).

7. CNN and The News

  • The character identified as "CNN Reporter" in the cast list is played by CNN's actual Berlin-based correspondent, Frederik "Fred" Pleitgen. He is German, but speaks with an American accent due to a German undergraduate and graduate education that focused on North America, and postgraduate studies in the U.S.

8. Star Trek

9. Buffy The Vampire Slayer

  • During technical checks before launching the rescue probe, a technician declares the signal is 'five by five'. As well as being a term to describe the strength and clarity of a radio signal, this was also a phrase repeatedly uttered by the character Faith in the TV series Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997), a show that counted the screenwriter Drew Goddard as one of its staff writers.