Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat
- The code used to unlock the blood mode in the Sega Genesis version is "ABACABB", which also doubles as one of the most out-there puns in a video game.
- Scorpion's Spear and Sub-Zero's Freeze were, by Ed Boon's admission, directly influenced by Street Fighter II's dizzy mechanic; he loved the idea of having a free hit on an opponent and looked to incorporate it into the characters' actual movesets.
- The designs of the ninjas, black tight fitting clothing with a split down robe thing, looks remarkably similar to Luke's outfit in Return of the Jedi only more colorful.
- Johnny Cage was inspired directly off of Jean-Claude Van Damme's character in Bloodsport. This is because the game was originally planned as a tie-in for the film.
- In Deadly Alliance, apparently, he was a contestant on a celebrity edition of Smash TV. From the same game, one of Johnny's films was entitled Exiting the Dragon of Death. He starred opposite Hong Kong action star Channie Jack.
- In 9, he starred in various movies titled Time Smashers, Citizen Cage, and Tommy Scissorfists.
- One of the Challenge Tower missions has Reptile trying to stop him from reaching the premiere of Breaknose Mountain.
- In X, one of his Fatalities has him recreating a classic scene from The Shining, complete with Johnny saying "HEEEEEERE'S JOHNNY!"
- Chapter 1 of the story mode has him defending himself from Sub-Zero by using a familiar looking crowbar.
- One of his Brutalities has him performing the same jumping split kick Van Damme did in Bloodsport. The kicker? The Brutaility's called Blood Spurt.
- One of his bucke designs in 11 is called Bullet Gang is Fine. The design is composed of two cross pistols over a multicolored skull of sorts
- His moves are taken from Immortal Iron Fist's Daniel Rand, and his last name from Luke Cage.
- Both being actors who were named after Luke Cage, some of Johnny's films and his general reputation as an actor in later games come off as a pastiche of Nicolas Cage.
- A tower in 11 sees you fighting Johnny multiple times while trophies that look like Razzies are thrown at you.
- An alternate palette for Johnny's tuxedo costume in 11 resembles the purple suit worn by The Joker.
- Kano's cybernetic eye-plate pays obvious homage to Terminator.
- Deadly Alliance has a fake cereal advertisement showing Kano eating a bowl of Kan-Os.◊
- The style of his Badass Beard in X might have been inspired by Khal Drogo.
- The names of some of his combo strings in 11 include references to Australian pop culture, such as AC/DC and Butterfingers.
- His sleeveless tee/mustache combo costumes in 11 make him resemble Cypher from The Matrix.
- His robotic costume in 11 heavily resembles Cyborg.
- Liu Kang:
- There are several aspects of him that make him a Bruce Lee Clone:
- His costume in the first game is black pants, no shirt, black laceless shoes, and a mullet. Later games add color and a headband for slight Divergent Character Evolution.
- One of his fighting styles in Deception and Armageddon is called Jun Fan, after Bruce Lee's birth name, Jun Fan Lee. In Shaolin Monks, he has Jeet Kune Do (misspelled without the "e" in "Kune"), Bruce Lee's fighting style.
- In Deception, Armageddon, and 11, he wields a Nunchaku as a weapon.
- One of his fatalities in 11 begins with a more grotesque take on the Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique from Kill Bill, and ends with an explosive One-Inch Punch as another homage to Bruce Lee.
- He also takes after fellow Bruce Lee Clone Kenshiro, having some Rapid-Fire Fisticuffs kombos and the "hopping" Jeet Kune Do stance with hand gestures.
- In Shaolin Monks, he has a Fatality named Shaolin Soccer.
- His arcade ending in the DC crossover has him gaining the ability to summon the powers of the Elder Gods by shouting "MORTAL KOMBAT!", much like Captain Marvel's powers.
- In Mortal Kombat X his throat-ripping fatality surely reminds people of MacGruber.
- Also in X, if Cassie Cage uses her "Selfie" Fatality, Liu Kang may post on her "Friendships" page using the account name "Kool & The Kang"
- His "Spring Autumn Knife" skin in 11 is based on Son Goku's color scheme.
- There are several aspects of him that make him a Bruce Lee Clone:
- Raiden's most iconic traits, namely his electric powers and his conical straw hat, were both designed after Lightning, one of the three servants of Lo Pan from Big Trouble in Little China.
- His arcade ending in the DC crossover has him being weakened under Earth's sun, but being able to regain his power so long as he keeps a mysterious green rock nearby; this is an inversion of how Superman's powers work.
- Likewise, his Torpedo special is renamed as "The Superman".
- His second fatality in 9, "Just a Scratch", is a reference to the Black Knight scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
- His Friendship in 11 shouts out to the dance group Light Balance, which performed an MK-themed routine to help promote 11.
- His arcade ending in the DC crossover has him being weakened under Earth's sun, but being able to regain his power so long as he keeps a mysterious green rock nearby; this is an inversion of how Superman's powers work.
- Scorpion's blazing skull is an homage to Ghost Rider.
- In the official Mortal Kombat comic book, Scorpion grabs Sub-Zero and tells him to look into his eyes. This is an even clearer reference to Ghost Rider and his Penance Stare power.
- After defeating Scorpion in Shaolin Monks, Scorpion gets dragged into the lava by skeletons. As his arm goes in, he gives the player a thumbs up. This is a reference to the ending of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, in which the T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger) gives John a thumbs up before he gets engulfed by molten metal.
- In X, while using his Hellfire ability, Scorpion may occasionally say "through fire be cleansed!"
- In 11, Scorpion's Maize and Blue skin heavily resembles Wolverine's classic outfit◊.
- In the first game, Shang Tsung's role is similar to that of Mr. Han from Enter the Dragon. His Evil Sorcerer-ness, however, is pure Lo Pan.
- Sonya Blade is inspired by the karate champion and movie actress Cynthia Rothrock.
- In the Krypt of Deadly Alliance, one can unlock a picture of Lifeguard Sonya.◊ Her red bikini makes her heavily resemble Pamela Anderson of Baywatch fame.
- Her arcade ending in the DC crossover has her acquiring a Green Lantern ring, but because she isn't a member of the Green Lantern Corps, the ring only gets one charge, and she has to use it sparingly until she gains a means to recharge it. Amusingly, she also shares her military background with Hal Jordan and John Stewart.
- Her costume redesign in 9 is interesting, however, given one of her Fatalities involves piano wire, it hints at Cammy's portrayal in Street Fighter II V.
- Her X look evokes Sarah Connor from the Terminator franchise. What cements this even more is her use of flying drones in her Fatalities, which heavily evoke the designs of those seen in the Terminator Ride at Universal Studios. Taking this even further is her Cyborg Hunter skin in 11 that resembles Sarah Connor in T2.
- One of her head gear designs in 11 is called Never gives up, never surrenders.
- The fatality where she shoots her opponent into helicopter blades in 11 is called To the Choppa
- Sub-Zero's Spine Rip fatality resembles the Predator's method of killing people, which becomes Hilarious in Hindsight when the alien showed up in X.
- His eye scar in Mortal Kombat 3 is very similar to the scar Oharra has in Enter the Dragon
- He becomes Batman in his ending for Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe.
- The design of his primary costume in Mortal Kombat: Deception pretty much screams The Shredder.
- His second Fatality in 9 (as Cyber Sub-Zero) has him latching onto his opponent in a fashion akin to a Saibaman and then self-destructing.
- His ending in X has him hatching Outworld frost dragons and becomes a "Father of Dragons".
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat II
- Jade's main outfit in Deception is a very similar imitation of that worn by Black Orchid in Killer Instinct.
- Jax's fatality in Mortal Kombat 3 in which his arms turn into blades is likely a reference to the T-1000.
- In MK vs DC, his ending is very similar to Cyborg's origin story.
- Also, his look in MK vs DC is inspired by his appearance in Mortal Kombat: Annihilation.
- In 9, one of his fatalities is a shot-for-shot copy of Tak's Fatality in War Gods, another Midway project. If you remove the kick at the end, it's also a shout-out to one of Superman's Heroic Brutalities in MK vs. DC.
- In X, if his Carl Weathers-inspired costume is chosen and his opponent is Johnny Cage in his "Commando" costume, they recreate the handshake from Predator, complete with "You son of a bitch!"
- In one intro in X with Ermac, he seeks revenge for having his arms taken, saying, "Call it my pound of flesh."
- Kitana's Animality in Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 turns her into a white rabbit. She then proceeds to attack the enemy in some savage manner.
- In 4, her facial features are modeled after Talisa Soto, the actress who portrayed Kitana in the theatrical adaptations.
- In MK vs DC, she becomes Mortal Kombat's version of Wonder Woman when the gods grant her Shang Tsung's island to form the Edenian resistence, which is also seemingly made up of only women.
- In 9, her chapter during story mode contains a scene very much like one found in Alien: Resurrection where she finds a lab filled with progressively more human half-breed clones of herself.
- Her Arcade Ladder ending has three Edenian women re-united to fight for justice all over the realms; as the narrator explains this, the three characters are posed in silhouette over an orange background and as the ending fades to black, the music closes with the iconic jingle from the show.
- Kung Lao's weaponized hat gimmick was inspired by Bond's villain Oddjob.
- In the SNES version of the game, Sculptured Software continued its tradition of humorous credits, including a parody "special thanks" list titled, "People We Owe No Thanks To". The people thanked include three famous figures, namely Elvis Presley, Howard Hughes, and Jim Morrison. The other two names on the list are probably just shout-outs to more personal friends of the developers.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat 3
- Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 for the SNES has the Konami Code as a Classic Cheat Code.
- Brutalities were influenced by Ultra Combos and consist of hitting your opponent over and over at high speeds until they explode.
- Cyrax and Sektor seem to be ripped right out of Predator. If you ever had doubts about this one, Cyber Sub-Zero from 9 and Predator himself in X makes it even more obvious.
- Cyrax's self-destruct fatality has him typing some kind of sequence in a panel in his pulse, like the Predator himself. Later games show that Sektor and Cyber Sub-Zero have similar panels.
- Cyrax uses a "Sabre of Light" in 4. In the PS2 games, Sektor also uses that and was renamed as "Pulse Blades": A blue one (green in Armageddon) for Cyrax, and two red ones for Sektor.
- If Ermac gets knocked off Raiden's Sky Temple in Deception/Unchained and Armageddon, and sent plummeting to his death, he's got two words for ya: "SUCK IT!!!" note
- The gas mask Kabal wears? A tribute to Tusken Raiders.
- Speaking of Star Wars, Kabal was burnt alive, horrifically scarred, and forced to wear a respirator & hide behind a mask the rest of his life, a possible reference to Darth Vader.
- One of the game over messages in Shaolin Monks is "Kabal says thank you very much." Aside from referencing the mission in which you can rescue him, Kabal's voice acting appears to be modeled after Elvis Presley.
- Kabal's ending in 9 features a cyberneticist who rebuilds him "Better. Faster. Stronger."
- Kabal's Slasher Skin in 11 heavily resembles Jason Voorhees.
- Rain's costume is purple, there's also his name, and Armageddon reveals that he's a Prince.
- Sheeva's namesake is Shiva, the (male) Hindu destroyer god with multiple limbs. Like Shiva, Sheeva has extra arms and is turned into a destroyer goddess in her Armageddon ending.
- Stryker's design in 3 has him resemble Woody Harrelson to a good degree.
- In Armageddon, Stryker wears a very futuristic suit, giving him a passing resemblance to the main character from Street Fighter 2010: The Final Fight, which was originally an unrelated game remodeled to serve as a spin-off for the series. It's worth noticing that in the original game, the character was actually named Stryker instead being passed off as Ken Masters.
- His bio in 9 has him single-handedly defeating the terrorists in the Greenbury Tower Incident and saving an explosive-rigged bus full of civilians while maintaining a high speed. Even further, it refers to him as a "die-hard cop".
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero or Mortal Kombat 4:
- The original Quan Chi is somehow similar to Spawn's demon-in-the-guise-of-an-evil-clown, Violator. His appearance in X was modeled after classic horror movie actor Boris Karloff.
- Reiko's original design in Mortal Kombat 4 bears more than a passing resemblance to Nightwing.
- Shinnok is an expy of Yan Wang.
- He was numerous visual elements and mannerisms evocative of Emperor Palpatine and his appearance in X also has some elements of the Marvel Cinematic Universe version of Loki as well.
- His arcade ending in X has more than a few similarities to The Instrumentality scene in Neon Genesis Evangelion, albeit with less tang and fewer hugs.
- The Nepalese character Kai has a strong resemblance to African-American retired professional basketball player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (given that Kai's prototype was originally to be an African-American instead of Nepalese), who was also student of Bruce Lee and also starred along with him in Game of Death.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance
- When you win a Test Your Sight challenge, the announcer will say "You chose... wisely". However, he says "unwisely" rather than "poorly" if you fail.
- Bo 'Rai Cho's Krypt Comedy Commercial endorses a vomiting-inducing drink called Peptic Thunder,◊ a clear knockoff of Pepto-Bismol.
- Kenshi draws heavily from Zatoichi, the blind swordsman; one of the main differences between the two is that Kenshi wears a blindfold.
- Mokap is a tribute to Carlos Pesina, the guy who did some of the MOtion CAPture for Deadly Alliance.
- Nitara's character design is a tribute to Vincent Valentine.
- Many of her Konquest mode messages in Deadly Alliance are references to different rock bands and songs performed by them. What's more, her alternate costume surely brings to mind KISS. For the curious, said messages include...You must be deaf. Leopard style is not executed in such a way.
You have not yet failed on this Journey. Do not stop believing.
You are a midnight queen. You are a creature of the night. Kiss your black diamond freely to draw strength from dark light.
Patience, sweet child of mine. You are not the first to fail. You are crazy if you do not continue. It is so easy. You must get back in the ring.
[...]But this time, add one more hit between the eyes.[...]it looked as though Scorpion might black out from the force of the blows
You must successfully learn the Kama. Khameleon would have mastered it with ease had her culture not been clubbed by Shao Kahn ages ago.
Do not be afraid. On this secret journey, you must learn to harness your Vampiric essence to bring on the night. I will be next to you watching every step you take as you traverse this material world.
If you do not pass this test, you will be cast into the Netherrealm, condemned to run from the Devil for the rest of eternity.[...]You are indeed learning at a pace that kills.
- Her Blood Energy Drink◊ promo is a parody of most energy drinks in general.
- Many of her Konquest mode messages in Deadly Alliance are references to different rock bands and songs performed by them. What's more, her alternate costume surely brings to mind KISS. For the curious, said messages include...
- Li Mei's first fatality in Deception is a serious of rapid-fire punches, a few moments after which her victim explodes in a shower of gore...just like Kenshiro in Fist of the North Star.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat: Deception
- Chess Kombat mode is inspired by Archon, while Puzzle Kombat is instead inspired by Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo.
- Darrius's alternate costume is basically Black Belt Jones with Cool Shades.
- His backstory also has shades of Morpheus.
- Kira has a strong resemblance to the main character of BloodRayne.
- Kobra is a mixture of Johnny Lawrence and Ken Masters.
- Shujinko borrows his alternate outfit from the villain of Master of the Flying Guillotine and his visuals from Pai Mei.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat: Armageddon
- In the same vein as Chess Kombat and Puzzle Kombat, Motor Kombat is inspired by another videogame, in this case Mario Kart.
- In Kreate a Fighter mode, available features and accessories (though with some minor modifications in some cases to avoid potential lawsuits) include the following:
- "Cyborg" face: It resembles that of the T-800 from the Terminator franchise.
- "Skull Tattoo" face: A face tattoo that resembles the face paint skull warn by Image Comics character Chapel from Youngblood and Spawn.
- "Eye Stripe" face: Based on face paint worn by Pris Stratton in Blade Runner.
- "Anime 1" hair (female): Based on that of Ryoko Habuki, though the default color is light green rather than aqua.
- "Anime 2" hair (female): Based on that of Sailor Moon's odango-and-twintails (though the default color is blue instead of blonde). In addition under Head Accessories is "Tiara" which strongly resembles those worn by the Sailor Senshi.
- "Anime 1" hair (Male): Based on Cloud Strife's (though default color is light blue instead of blonde).
- "Anime 2" hair (Male): Based on Goku's. In addition, there is also under Torso "Layered Gi" which is based on his and Krillin's most common outfit though without any Kanji on the leftside chest or back.
- "Devil" and "Wave" hairstyles: Based on Akuma and Guile respectively.
- "Feral" hair: Based on Wolverine.
- "Swoop" hair: Based on Kazuya Mishima.note
- "Space Hawk" helmet: Based on Ken Washio's helmet.
- "Space Ninja" helmet: Based on the Red Power Ranger's and Geki's helmet from Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers and Kyōryū Sentai Zyuranger respectively though with some antennae added. The additional antennae also doubles this as an allusion to Kamen Rider, which is Super Sentai's brother show.
- "Crew Neck" torso and "Striped Running" pants: Based on the outfit warn by Bruce Lee's character in Game of Death. Clothing for female characters includes a similarly designed "Track" torso and pants which is modeled on The Bride's whose outfit in turn is based also on the aforementioned Game of Death one.
- "Harness" torso: Based on that worn by He-Man (including lacking any other shirt or clothing aside from the harness) though without any sort of heraldry on it.
- "Suspenders" Torso and Pants: Based on outfit of Vampirella. In addition "Wrap" (also under torso) is also very similar (minus any sort of collar).
- "Daisy" Torso and Pants: A rather obvious reference to Daisy Duke.
- "3 Knives" glove: Based on the claw worn by Mr. Han, the main villain of Enter the Dragon.
- "Utility" belt: Based on Batman's (minus any sort of Bat symbol).
- "Punk Glasses" head accessory: Based on the Visor of Geordi La Forge's and/or that of Cyclops.
- "Shield" chest accessory: The shield is placed on the back and also has a design that looks like a turtle's shell. In addition "Trident" under helmets is a holdover of the helmet of Sub-Zero in Deception, but it was in turn based on that of the Turtles' archnemesis The Shredder.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe
- In the DC side of the Story mode, after learning that Dark Kahn is behind the whole mess, guess which classic scene The Joker parodies upon hearing his name:Joker: KAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHN![Beat]Deathstroke: Shut up, or I'll gut you.
- Batman's ending sees him starting an "Outerworld Monitor and Auto-Containment" system.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat 9
- The achievement for unlocking 50% of the Krypt is called Undertaker.
- Another achievement, unlocked by winning 10 King of the Hill matches, is called There Can Be Only One.
- The "X-Ray" effect used in certain brutal moves from the game will be quite familiar to any fan of Sonny Chiba movies.
- The Challenge Tower, being composed of non-canon mini-games, is choke-full of Shout-outs.
- Challenge Nº 10: This Is The Pits!
- Challenge Nº 15: Walking Dead
- Challenge Nº 47: Who Ya Gonna Call?
- Challenge Nº 53: Frankenstein
- Challenge Nº 62: What Is Your Major Malfunction?
- Challenge Nº 86: It's Not Easy (a match between green-clad Jade and Reptile)
- Challenge Nº 95: Soul Glow
- Challenge Nº 116: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
- Challenge Nº 134: New Jax City
- Challenge Nº 183: There Can Only Be One
- Challenge Nº 188: Arise From Your Grave
- Challenge Nº 193: I'm Not Dead Yet
- Challenge Nº 209: Orange you glad I came?
- Challenge Nº 223: An Offer You Can't Refuse
- Challenge Nº 226: Unit 5... Alive?
- Challenge Nº 239: Flying Fists Of Fury
- Challenge Nº 266: The Duel (in which the following exchange happens:)
- Bonus Challenge Nº 34: Isn't This Marvelous (A match where you tap the screen repeatedly to fight.)
- Bonus Challenge Nº 38: Real Skarlet Please Stand Up!
- Bonus Challenge Nº 126: Under Pressure
- Bonus Challenge Nº 142: It's Electric
- Bonus Challenge Nº 143: Bombs Over Netherrealm
- The City Stage Fatality (having the opponent run over by a car) bears a striking similarity to the ending of Final Destination 4, complete with an X-ray view despite not being an X-ray attack, and leaves a twitching beheaded corpse similar to the first death in that movie.
- Also, the Subway Stage Fatality might be a reference to The Matrix, where Agent Smith attempts to kill Neo by throwing him onto the path of an incoming train.
- The new Test Your Strike mini-game has a concept similar to the test given to Frank Dux in Bloodsport, where he had to break one brick out of a pile.
- Freddy Krueger has several Fatalities that are reminiscent of the most infamous kills of his home franchise:
- In one, after stabbing his opponent with both sets of claws, he drags him down into a hole that has just appeared. This is then followed by a geyser of blood, similar to how he killed Glen, Nancy's boyfriend, in the very first movie.
- Another has Freddy throwing his opponent into a boiler to be burned alive. This references both his own origin (Freddy was burned alive by vigilante parents who wanted to make him pay for murdering their children) and how he killed the former Final Girl from the third movie as his second kill in the fourth movie.
- Many of his combos are named after lines from the movies, such as "Now You're Playing With Power" or "Never Sleep Again."
- If Stryker finishes Freddy with his Secret Fatality move, Freddy will have a bomb in his body and will explode, much similar to the ending of Freddy's Dead.
- Kratos's pre-fight quote is taken from his speech to Zeus early on in God of War III (Kratos' words in 9 are in boldface):"The hands of Death could not defeat me. The Sisters of Fate could not hold me. And you will not see the end of this day! I will have my revenge!"
- One of Jax's fatalities is the same as Tak's in Midway's War Gods, which had previously been partially reused as one of Superman's heroic brutalities in MK vs. DCU.
- Skarlet's mid-range fatality in MK11 has her kill her opponent by extending her blood vessels from her body and pumping her own blood into their heart until it explodes.
- Kitana's ending has her, Jade, and Mileena form a Power Trio, similar to Charlie's Angels.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat X
- One of the modifiers for Test Your Luck, which spawns random portals in the match, is called "Portal Kombat". The icon for the modifier is inspired by 300.
- Another of the modifiers, which spawns puddles which cause Kombatants to slip, is called "Slippery When Wet".
- Another modifier is called Kick Dive. Sure enough, you cannot block, and can only jump and perform divekicks, which do 33% damage.
- Intro dialogue references:
- Johnny Cage vs. Ermac:Johnny Cage: The mummy returns.
Ermac: You annoy us, Earthrealm fool.
Johnny Cage: That supposed to make me feel bad?
- Johnny Cage Mirror Match:Johnny Cage 1: Is this for real?
Johnny Cage 2: How many of us are there?
Johnny Cage 1: "There can be only one!"
- Johnny Cage vs. Kitana:Johnny Cage: Hello nurse!
Kitana: You're gonna need a nurse!
Johnny Cage: Hot, but can't trash talk!
- Kano vs. Cassie Cage:Kano: Over here, sweet girl.
Cassie Cage: Grandma, what big teeth you have.
Kano: Here's how the story ends.
- Kano vs. Kung Lao:Kano: I love a good hat.
Kung Lao: Do not provoke the Shaolin.
Kano: You toss your shoes as well?
- Kung Lao vs. Johnny Cage:Kung Lao: Why are you here, Cage?
Johnny Cage: To tell you Zorro's mom wants her hat back.
Kung Lao: Any hope for mercy is lost.
- Bo Rai Cho vs. Reptile:Bo Rai Cho: I sensed a Zaterran.
Reptile: The last Zaterran.
Bo Rai Cho: No, there is another.
- Tanya vs. Kung Lao
- Johnny Cage vs. Ermac:
- The Alien has a fatality called Killer Queen, which also serves as a Mythology Gag to Bishop's bisection in Aliens.
- Having either Alien perform the "Alien Baby" Brutality or letting it go to the default win-pose against Predator will result in a Predalien coming out of the latter's chest.
- One of the Xenomorph's fatalities, the Alien Queen impaling the opponent from behind and then bisecting them, is directly taken from the scene in Aliens where it dispatches John Bishop.
- Cassie Cage by way of being the Pop-Cultured Badass she is:
- Issue #3 of the MKX prequel comic calls her match against Frost a "Celebrity Deathmatch".
- Issue #5 has Cassie being dominated by Frost in the aforementioned match. After a comeback, Cassie calls her rival Elsa.
- Issue #12 has her calling Mavado Captain Hooks.
- Her "Selfie" Fatality has her posting the selfie on an obvious expy of Facebook called "Friendships". Many of the cycling comments on the picture feature popular Internet memes and phrases such as "How can she slap!" and "rippin and a tearin". A trollface can even be seen on one of the profile pics.
- One of her intros against Erron Black in 11 references Tinder and other similar dating apps and websites, where swiping left is the indication that you're not interested in someone:Cassie: This your idea of flirting, Erron?
Erron Black: Easy, sugar! Just bein' friendly...
Cassie: This is me swiping left!
- One of her pistol designs is called LFG-9000.
- D'Vorah has several cues towards Sarah Kerrigan. She commands an army of insects (mutated insects in Kerrigan's case), many of her attacks involve some kind of Body Horror, two of her variations are called Brood Mother and Swarm Queen, the Comics show how she was killed, with the implication of being resurrected by an evil force, mirroring the ending of the next-to-last mission of the Terran campaign in the original Starcraft, the Story Mode has her starting in the "good" side and then showing her true colors (mirroring Kerrigan's actions in Brood War) and her ending has her declaring herself Queen of an insectoid species who conquers every other realm and slaying a powerful being, similar to the ending of Brood War.
- Erron Black, anachronistic Wild West gunslinger, is a blatant Expy of Clint Eastwood's character in A Fistful of Dollars, and has several cues towards John Marston. He also has a combo string named Firefly and a Brutality named Serenity.
- His gun twirling is reminiscent of Ocelot. Considering his voice actor in MGS V...
- When he uses his X-Ray on the Predator, the bullet he fires has Ugly Mofo written on it.
- In the comic, he mentions that the rescue operation feels more like a Suicide Squad.
- His Swashbuckler costume in 11 resembles Indiana Jones.
- The duo of Ferra/Torr have a very Master Blaster-like dynamic going on, something that has not gone unnoticed by fans or commentators at E3 2014. Johnny Cage goes so far as to call them Master Blaster in pre-match intro dialogue.
- Jason Voorhees' alternate palette gives him blue marks on his hockey mask after the copycat killer from Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning.
- Jason's "Unstoppable" variation allows him to resurrect via a lightning strike, which was how he was revived in Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives. Said variation also gives him a chain on his neck that stuck with his appearances from that film onward.
- Jason's Relentless variation gives him a chrome mask.
- His second fatality is reminiscent of the numerous sleeping bag kills in the franchise, according to the developers.
- One of Jason's Brutalities has him punching the head off of his opponent, similarly to how he killed Julius in Jason Takes Manhattan.
- His Arcade ending features him killing Liu Kang after he brings him to the Netherrealm, making it a literal case of him being in hell.
- Kotal Kahn in 11 has an intro against Geras where he tells the construct that he will fight him to the pain.
- Kung Jin has a costume which makes him the game's version of Green Arrow.
- Leatherface displays an attraction to Cassie in his ending similar to his interactions with Stretch in The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 while Drayton is mentioned.
- Predator has six human skulls hanging in his trophy room during his win outro. The skulls of the six members of Dutch's team that the Predator killed in the first movie.
- Takeda's name is a reference to the Mortal Kombat: Conquest version of Scorpion whose real name was Takeda. MKX even makes its Takeda Scorpion's apprentice.
- One of Tremor's brutalities involve him turning the opponent to gold (While also impaling them in the chest with a spiked gold ball,) is called "It's Me." This is a reference to both the phrase "It's me" and Golden Freddy from the Five Nights at Freddy's series, as the two are commonly linked together by fans.
- A brutality for the Cyber Sub-Zero variation of Triborg shoots a continuous stream of ice, freezing his opponent in an ice block with only their face, hands, and knees poking out.
Characters and stuff introduced in Mortal Kombat 11
- Jacqui Briggs' second fatality has her vertically bisecting the opponent with an energy wall, the same way that Ben Moss is killed in Thir13en Ghosts.
- Johnny Cage has a brutality version of his new sunglass toss move that causes the victim's head to explode after the shades land on their face, referencing the self-destruct sunglasses from Mission: Impossible II.
- Geras controls two different elements. Namely, sands and time.
- Some of Scorpion's augments reference famous Japanese wrestlers, such as Kazuchika Okada, Jushin Thunder Liger, Mitsuharu Misawa, Minoru Suzuki and others. Another one is named "Hellfire Walk With Me".
- One of Raiden and Sub-Zero's clashes is a direct reference to Injustice 2, where they were both Guest Fighters. Sub-Zero also references this in an intro with Cetrion.
- One of Geras and Johnny Cage's pre-fight dialogues quotes the "Tears in the Rain" monologue from Blade Runner.
- Raiden remarks to Johnny Cage in one of his pre-fight dialogues that they are standing on the stage of history.
- Cassie Cage's Groin Attack Fatality is taken straight out from American Gods (2017) where Laura Moon kicks a mook between his legs so hard, everything directly above the testicles comes flying out.
- In one of Cassie's intro quotes with her father, she wonders if she'll eventually be able to dodge bullets and Johnny assures her that when the time comes, she won't have to. For bonus points, Andrew Bowen (Johnny Cage since MKX) voiced Neo in The Matrix: Path of Neo.
- In another where she faces another copy of herself, one of her says "Dude, you're totally me," while the other refers to the first as "evil robot me".
- Frost's mirror match fight intro paraphrases "Let It Go" from Frozen, and her fight intro with Cassie Cage has Cassie mockingly call her Elsa.
- One of Noob Saibot's intros with Cetrion has him invite her to his "darkness world" and rebukes her calls of virtue with "Everything is Evil!", referencing EVIL of Los Ingobernables de Japon.
- One of Kano and Jade's pre-fight dialogues has Kano say the famous "I could eat a peach for hours" quote from Face/Off.
- One of Erron Black and Sub-Zero's pre-fight dialogues makes Erron rather want to face "a goddamned space cowboy" than the Grandmaster. Bonus points for Actor Allusion.
- One of Erron Black and Johnny's pre-fight intros has Johnny making fun of Erron's name, pronouncing it "A-A-Ron".
- One of Kabal's mirror match dialogue parodies "Life is like a box of chocolate" and "Run, Forrest, run" quotes from Forrest Gump.
- One of Jade and D'Vorah's pre-fight intros references the "Oh? You're approaching me?" dialogue between Jotaro and DIO in Stardust Crusaders.
- One of Jacqui's intros with Shang Tsung has her threaten to "turn him fifty shades of black and blue".
- One of Johnny Cage's intros with Shang Tsung has him quip "Every man dies, not every man really lives".
- Noob's mirror match dialogue has one of them refer to himself as "He who must not be named" to which the opponent responds with "Return to your deathly hallow."
- One of Cassie Cage's "Social Media" intros has her state she's not worried because "He's no samurai, Jac."
- Barakas Mythic victory pose, where he crosses his arms in front of his chest, is called "Tarkata Forever".
- One of the customizations for Jax's arms, a paint job resembling the American flag, is called "This Is America".
- Frost's default intro shows her head and spine being lowered into her body, similar to the introductory scene of the Borg Queen.
- One of Frost's winposes is similar to Fulgore's in the 2013 Killer Instinct reboot.
- In one of Sonya Blade's intro quotes with Frost, she calls her a "Do Nothing Bitch." Yet another Actor Allusion.
- In one of Frost's intros with Sub-Zero, she mentions how the circle is now complete and that she is now the master.
- In one of Kotal Kahns intros with Shao Kahn, he says that oceans rise, empires fall, and that Shao wont be back.
- Shang Tsung references The Rocky Horror Picture Show in one of his intros with Geras, informing his opponent that "I can make you a man in just seven days." He also references Dr. Frankfurters line about "shivering with anticipation."
- Shang Tsung also offers to make Baraka "better, faster, stronger" in one of their intros.
- During one of Cetrion's intros with Kitana, she tells Kitana that "Your lack of faith disturbs me.".
- During the Terminator's arcade ending, Cassie narrates that the war between man and machine is a losing game that ends in mutually assured destruction no matter how many times the Terminator restarts time, and the only way to win is not to play.
- The Terminator gets a ton of Actor Allusions to Arnold Schwarzenegger's career; for example, in one intro dialog he asks if Johnny Cage has ever killed anyone, and Johnny responds "Yeah, but they were all bad."
- Tying in with Raiden being based on Lightning from Big Trouble in Little China, one of his end-of-round taunts is lifted verbatim from Lightning's arrival in that movie, riding down from a bolt of lightning before engaging in a similar kata.
- An exchange between Liu Kang and Johnny Cage also references dialogue from the movie.Johnny Cage: Nothing or Double? God bless you.
Liu Kang: My mind and my spirit are as one.
Johnny Cage: Then let's shake the Pillars of Heaven.
- An exchange between Liu Kang and Johnny Cage also references dialogue from the movie.
- The French version of the game has the Joker call Jax RoboCop in one of their intros.
- One of Spawn's intros has him tell the Joker "Your Angel of Death awaits" — a phrase he heard from another violent anti-hero with a billowing cape.
- Speaking of, Raiden says that Spawn reminds him of "another dark knight". Spawn replies "The billion-dollar crusader? He's a friend", referencing the two Crossovers the pair had in 1994.
- And continuing the thread, Spawn recognizes that Scorpion has been to other dimensions. Hanzo says "Each has had its own injustices", and Simmons replies "Maybe that's why my soul still burns."
- Spawn's "Angel of Mercy Skin" gives him red skin and black markings on his face akin to Deadpool.
- Kotal Kahn's Matinee Skin resembles Conan the Barbarian.
- Jacqui Briggs' Space Marine Skin heavily resembles the outfit worn by Ellen Ripley in Alien.
- On one of the Joker's intros, he cuts his thumb with his own knife and then smears all that blood onto his face to create his smile. All of this is obviously referencing the scene in Joker where Arthur smears the blood on his nose and mouth into a smile on his face.
- In one of RoboCop's intros with Terminator, the former insists they have met before despite Terminator claiming to not have records of it.
- In another of RoboCop's intros with the Terminator, RoboCop declares that machines are either a benefit or a hazard, and that beneficial machines aren't his problem.
- The Retrocade level has arcade machines for old Midway titles in the background- such as Primal Rage and Rampage: World Tour.
- Frost's Friendship involves her whipping up her own ice rink and doing a rapid two-foot spin while her head remains motionless and fixed in place, much like the Snow Miser.
- One of Fujin's cosmetic items slicks back his hair and makes it pointy, during his gameplay reveal the devs noted he was motivated.
- One of Johnny Cage's intros with Skarlet references Gone with the Wind. Skarlet says "I'll never go thirsty again", and Cage replies with "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."
- Rain's "Power Washer" Fatality has him perform a Bohemian Parody pose (referencing the cover of Queen II) with Smoke, Ermac and Reptile.
- In one of Noob Saibot's interactions with himself.Noob Saibot 1: Who are you, ghost?Noob Saibot 2: He who shall not be named.Noob Saibot 1: Return to your deathly hollow.
- In his reveal trailer, after executing his opponent, Shang Tsung points directly at the camera and recreates the opening scene of Mortal Kombat by proclaiming: "YOUR SOUL IS MINE!"
- One interaction between Rambo and Cassie has the latter say "Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot".
- One match between Mileena and Cetrion has her complaining that Kronika altered a deal she had with her, to which Cetrion responds by telling her to pray she doesn't alter it further.
- When setting Johnny Cage as the game's announcer, he might instead refer to a fighter by a nickname. The shout outs include:
- Big Troublenote
- Mr. Roarkenote
- 1.21 Gigawattsnote
- Real Steelnote
- Guns and Bruisesnote
- Fright Nightnote
- Once Bittennote
- Skarlet Jo-Mansonnote
- Sting note
- Grim Shadynote
- Moby Ghostnote
- Chilly Willynote
- Citizen Kanonote
- Kicky Longstockingsnote
- I'll buy that for a dollarnote
- Hey there, Buckaroonote
- Mama Roachnote
- Creature Featurenote
- Captain Hooksnote
- Busta Timesnote
- Nowhere Mannote
- Purple Painnote
- The Artist note
- Windy Citynote
- Kotal the Barbariannote
- One of the variants of Rain is called "Formerly known as" (yet another Prince reference).
- One of Rain's combos is called "Prince of Pain", the same ephitet given to Goro in the Malibu comics series.
- The water cutter Rain forms in his "Eye-Solated" fatality looks a lot like a Destructo Disc.
- In one intro Geras and Kotal Kahn of all people end up referencing The Princess BrideGeras: If you kill me I will only become stronger.Kotal Kahn: Then we shall fight this battle To the Pain.Geras: I'm not familar with that phrase.
- Johnny can give the impression that one of his powers is compelling movie quotes:Geras: I have seen things you can imagine/Johnny Cage: Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion?Geras: Time to die.
- The 29th stage of the Gauntlet is one big one to Captain Planet and the Planeteers. You first have to fight five opponents representing each of the Planeteers with powers that fit the element, and finally Centrion, who represents Captain Planet himself.
- One of Sindel's variation names is "YOU... will die", a shout out to the most infamous line in MK Annihilation.
- In one intro between Johnny and Liu, Johnny tells his friend that he admires Sonya's strategic mind. Liu retorts that "it's not her mind you're admiring." Johnny simply replies "It's true..." This is an almost exact word for word recreation of dialogue the two shared in the first movie.