There was a lot to like about Captain America: Civil War, not least of which was the inclusion of Spider-Man, who made his long-awaited debut in the MCU. While I still maintain Ant-Man stole the show, it was Spider-Man who actually had the best single moment of the movie.
Warning that there are spoilers ahead.
During the big fight scene at the airport, Spider-Man proves he can more than hold his own, tangling with both Cap and Bucky like he’s sparring with a friend at a boxing gym. And he did it with the kind of enthusiasm and spark you’d expect from a young teenager, but it was the movie reference he threw out that was the most fun.
As Iron Man and his team try and take out Giant-Man, Spidey offers up a delicious suggestion that Star Wars fans will instantly recognize. I don’t remember exactly what Spider-Man says, but he simultaneously manages to date himself and the rest of the Avengers crew, especially Tony, who scoffs at the reference.
“Hey guys, you ever see that really old movie, Empire Strikes Back?” Spidey says.
Once the line is delivered, you immediately know what he’s getting at—and the team does, too. Spider-Man was, of course, referencing the Battle of Hoth, in which the AT-AT walkers are brought down by tying tow cables around their legs. Spider-Man does the same thing to Giant-Man, and it’s absolutely glorious.
Not only was it a great call back to one of the best scenes in Empire Strikes Back, but it added a bit of corporate synergy; Disney owns both Marvel and Lucasfilm.