The New Shazam Movie Has Some Odd Video Game References

Illustration for article titled The New Shazam Movie Has Some Odd Video Game References

This weekend the newest DC superhero film, Shazam, was released. Critics enjoyed it. I liked it a lot too. Though while the action and jokes are strong in Shazam, there are some weird video game references that caught me off guard.


To be very clear, I don’t have screenshots of most this stuff because of the fact that movie just came out. But take my word for it! You can find these video game related things in Shazam!

No specific spoilers below, but if you want to be surprised by what games are mentioned, stop now.

Illustration for article titled The New Shazam Movie Has Some Odd Video Game References
  • A kid using a PS3 Sharpshooter and PS3 Move Controller as a weapon.
  • Someone shooting lighting out of their hands and yelling “Hadouken!!”
  • A scene where Shazam and his friend play Mortal Kombat X.
  • Some hacker referencing all the hours of Watch Dogs they’ve played.
  • After a finisher, a character yells out “Fatality!” like the announcer from Mortal Kombat.
  • A reference to early 2000's PC game Uplink, from the same hacker who loves Watch Dogs.

Some of these are obvious and most folks will get them right away. The Mortal Kombat ones, in particular, had my theater laughing loudly. Though I have to wonder how many folks got the Watch Dogs reference. Or the Uplink name drop.

Also, there was one dude in my showing of Shazam who YELLED very loudly when the Haudoken scene happened. Like REALLY loudly. I even looked back to see if I could spot the dude, I assumed he was standing honestly.


I can’t help but overthink the Mortal Kombat X scene. Does that mean Injustice 2 exists in that universe and was the predecessor to that MKX? Is Shazam in that Injustice 2?

I’m not going to think about this anymore.

Kotaku Weekend Editor | Zack Zwiezen is a writer living in Kansas. He has written for GameCritics, USgamer, Kill Screen & Entertainment Fuse.



The Uplink reference really caught me off guard. I first learned about it when I found it on a PC Gamer UK demo disc and ordered it from Introversion immediately (the game hadn’t had a boxed retail release by that point and Steam didn’t exist yet so you could only buy it straight from the developer and they would mail you the disc. If you brought it earlier than I did you would have gotten a CDR rather than a semi-professional pressed disc). I put way too much time into that game back when it first came out and have followed Introversion ever since. It was probably a big part of my introduction into PC games.

I never would have expected an Uplink namedrop in a Holywood movie.