[Difficult to ask this questions without spoiling parts of the plot, read with caution]

I recently saw Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, and I am confused regarding Ego's face (I watched the film in English which isn't my first language).

During the scene where Ego tells Quill that he can chose any appearance that he wants, he quickly morphs into David Hasselhoff, referencing a scene in which Quill says he pretended Hasselhoff was his father. This indicates that a lot of U.S. pop culture elements exist in the world of GotG. However, we see him throughout most of the film, including in the first scene that takes place in 1980, "wearing" Kurt Russell's face. However, in the 1980s, Kurt Russell was already a famous actor, since he started acting in the 1960s. In 1980, when Ego came to impregnate a human, he didn't know back then that his son would love U.S. pop culture and that looking like Kurt Russell would help his get his son on his side.

Did Ego model his appearance on American actor Kurt Russell's face, or is his face supposed to be the face of an unknown person?

  • 4
    Ego's original face is a giant red planet with glowing blue eyes and mouth.
    – cde
    May 10, 2017 at 3:38
  • 1
    His original face is Kevin Bacon...
    – m1gp0z
    Nov 12, 2018 at 21:00

2 Answers 2


If we are going by Ego's own (admittedly unreliable) history of himself, he chose a humanoid form before finding humans. In his diorama we seem him replete in a red jacket and jeans with long hair at this time. This would indicate he looks like Kurt Russell and Kurt Russell does not exist in the MCU.

By using clues and indications found later in the movie (e.g. The myriad skull shapes in the cavern, and a more revealing diorama when Ego reveals his true plan), we see that Ego is probably picking a form that a mate of whatever race would find attractive. This still leaves room for Ego arriving at the guise of Kurt Russell (as Ego) being a generically attractive human form that he arrived at independently. There is still no indication that Kurt Russell exists in the MCU; given Peter's knowledge of 80's pop culture meshing well with our current memetic understanding of it, he would likely know about Kurt Russell if he did.

  • 2
    Or maybe he killed Kurt Russell and took is place and was able to juggle between a busy movie career and world domination? May 8, 2017 at 19:08
  • @MicroMachine I would hope Meredith would pick up on such an elaborate scheme!
    – Ross
    May 8, 2017 at 19:41
  • 3
    I believe that's the most likely answer. Kurt Russell is just playing Ego, ergo Kurt Russell (the actor) does not exist in MCU.
    – CyberClaw
    May 9, 2017 at 8:36
  • @CyberClaw: That's not an ironclad assumption. For example, Julia Roberts exists in the Ocean's 11 (well, 12) universe. But I concede it was played for laughs.
    – Flater
    Feb 6, 2019 at 15:19
  • @Flater that's partially discarded, because like the answer says, StarLord was abducted on the 80s, and he is a pop junkie. He referenced for example FootLoose (released in '84) and Knight Rider / David Hasselhoff. He'd recognize the Kurt Russel semblance if there was one. Escape from New York , and Big Trouble in Little China were both released before StarLord's kidnapping.
    – CyberClaw
    Feb 7, 2019 at 16:24

James Gunn sort of addressed this in his recent Facebook Live Q&A

It feels like an off-the-cuff answer, but he offers the idea that the MCU version of Kurt Russell doesn't look like the same Kurt Russell we know. Thus,

So noone in the MCU has ever seen a Kurt Russell movie? Oh, because Kurt Russell is.. Oh, I don't know, maybe because Kurt Russell looks different in the MCU, who knows?

So, there is no indication that Ego used anyone else's face in particular.

  • 1
    Yeah, it's easy to be confused with this mix of claimed pop-culture references and things we're supposed to think aren't pop-culture references... Especially when he turns into David Hasselhoff! May 16, 2017 at 20:47

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