Fans of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) are waiting in anticipation for the release of Secret Invasion – the next installment of the long-running franchise, which has been described as having a darker tone compared to Marvel’s signature blend of seriousness and comedy. Together with Quantumania, Secret Invasion marks the start of the studio’s Phase 5. Considering how far the franchise has gotten, it’s worth revisiting some incredible and often pivotal moments in the MCU — but in the context of eyewear. There’s a long list of impressive optical gear in Marvel’s movies and TV shows. Whether it’s in fashion or function, these are just some of the coolest eyewear moments in the MCU (so far!):
Iron Man’s Grand Entrance
Even though we may never see Robert Downey Jr back as Iron Man, fans will always go back to the first movie and his iconic entrance scene. At the start of Iron Man, Tony is seen sporting classic Ray-Ban sunglasses – the discontinued RB3320, to be exact. The aviator-style sunnies shown in the scene had metal frames and brown lenses. Considering Ray-Ban’s reputation as a quality brand that allows people to customize their sunglasses to their liking, this wardrobe choice completely fits with Tony’s playboy-billionaire persona. Notably, a different pair of Ray-Bans appear on another MCU character: Steve Rogers, who has always been somewhat at odds with Stark. Captain America rocks a pair of Aviators in Captain America: Civil War, where their conflict peaks. Perhaps this is meant to show how both characters, despite their surface differences, are similar at the core of who they are.
Tony’s AR Technology Presentation
Considering his affinity for sunglasses, it should be no surprise that Tony earned another spot on this list. Again, during Civil War, he presented a new invention at his alma mater MIT – an augmented reality program to help process grief. And while the technology in the movie is fictional, the eyewear used was certainly not. The shades used in the scene were created by world-renowned designer Paul Smith, who has recently partnered with Marchon Eyewear to distribute their sunnies in the US. Tony uses the designer’s Cortland model with black frames and grey lenses in the film. Granted, the movie adds some CGI to make the glasses look more technologically advanced, but this scene utilizes eyewear to deliver major themes in Tony’s storyline.
Peter Defeats Mysterio
Despite how the glasses called E.D.I.T.H. was an invention by Tony Stark that first appeared in Endgame, the scene listed here focuses on Peter Parker/Spider-Man. Not only does this pair of sunglasses act as part of the antagonist’s driving force to gain more notoriety, but it also helps set the stage for the third installment of Spider-Man since he used the tech to reveal Spider-Man’s identity. Utilizing a pair of distinctive Dita eyewear, the Flight.006 model from the movie has gained popularity in recent years for being stylish and memorable. Though it comes in 10 colors, E.D.I.T.H. has palladium black and smoke grey frames with transition grey lenses. And fans can certainly thank this piece of eyewear for giving them a film with all three movie iterations of Spider-Man in one film.
The Skrulls Scan Captain Marvel’s Memories
Captain Marvel is a landmark film in the MCU, as the first female-led standalone movie Marvel released. This scene, in particular, gives Carol Danvers the revelation of her origin and that she is, in fact, human. With the release of Captain Marvel, MCU fans were able to see one of the strongest heroes in the franchise to date, as well as the predecessor to the character’s upcoming film The Marvels, which just recently released its trailer. Carol is seen wearing Randolph Engineering Aviators, which shows some real-life accuracy. Many military pilots frequently wear these chrome frames and grey lenses, driving home that Carol is highly skilled and trained in her job on Earth. This small detail may not be evident to most, but it is the perfect choice for a character who is as confident and sure of themselves as Danvers is.
The eyewear in the MCU has always been used as a tool to help in their storytelling, although we often don’t notice it. It helps to pay attention.