The Quentin Tarantino Easter eggs in ‘The Vince Staples Show’
(Credit: Netflix)

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The Quentin Tarantino Easter eggs in ‘The Vince Staples Show’

Quentin Tarantino, known for his iconic characters and aesthetic cinematic style, has left an indelible mark on pop culture. In the latest Afro-surrealist satire on Netflix, The Vince Staples Show, Tarantino’s influence is unmistakably present.

The show pulls inspiration from Staples’ own life and his brushes with fame and fortune. It manages to build its own sense of style and humour while throwing cheeky little nods to its stylistic predecessors, from iconic scenes to thematic parallels.

With a keen awareness of its place within contemporary pop culture, the five-episode series draws inspiration from and pays homage to everything from Abbot Elementary to Kill Bill and Pulp Fiction. Created by Staples and produced by Kenya Barris, The Vince Staples Show is bite-sized genre-TV at its finest.

If you haven’t seen the series yet (what are you doing?), avoid spoilers and stop reading right here. For those curious to unpack the many Easter eggs sprinkled throughout the series, read on.

Quentin Tarantino homages in The Vince Staples Show

In the streaming era, we often rush through films and shows. Staples understood that he had to do something different to stand out, to “give people a reason to go back,” as he told Tudum. So he emphasised, “Gotta leave Easter eggs in there, and there’s definitely a lot of meaning behind them.” It was all about the viewing pleasure, “It’s really important [for the audience] to have a fun experience, to have people go back and ask, ‘Did you hear this? Did you see this?’”

Well, in case you missed it, there is more than one Tarantino nod in the series, from the glowing suitcase to the music used in the chase sequences. One of the most striking Tarantino references in The Vince Staples Show occurs in the finale, where Vince and White Boy (Patrick Walker) engage in a tense stare-down reminiscent of scenes from Tarantino’s iconic film Kill Bill

Similarly, the show pays tribute to Tarantino’s classic, Pulp Fiction, through subtle costume choices. In a scene where Vince changes clothes in a laundromat, he dons the same UC Santa Cruz Banana Slugs shirt worn by John Travolta’s character, Vincent Vega, in Pulp Fiction.

The Kill Bill homage in The Vince Staples Show

The loudest Tarantino homage appears in the post-credits scene, where we glimpse White Boy’s son eating cereal at home alone. He’s engrossed in a commercial for Kapow! Pops, the same sugar-free cereal Vince wanted a business loan for back in the second episode, ‘Black Business’. We presume that Staples has shot White Boy fatally in their mall altercation and managed to get away scot-free.

This scene echoes a memorable one from Kill Bill, where Uma Thurman’s Bride confronts Vernita Green, AKA Copperhead (Vivica A. Fox), in her suburban blissed kitchen. In the film, Vernita pulls a gun out of a box of Kaboom cereal, leading to a fatal shootout where she dies right in front of her daughter, Nikki. The Bride then delivers a chilling message to Nikki, “When you grow up, if you still feel raw about it, I’ll be waiting.” 

A future reckoning is implied. But will White Boy’s son come looking for Vince Staples when he grows up, or will he be able to move on? Perhaps a possible season two of the show can tell. Till then, you can stream The Vince Staples Show on Netflix (or tune in for an ending explainer) and catch the trailer here: