Warning: This article contains spoilers for Kingsman: The Golden Circle.
How do you follow up an outrageous smash-hit spy movie like 2014’s Kingsman: The Secret Service? Easy – you go bigger.
The cast of sequel Kingsman: The Golden Circle – including Taron Egerton, Colin Firth and Channing Tatum – were on hand to unveil spectacular new footage from the film today (July 20) at San Diego Comic-Con.
Digital Spy was also in attendance at the movie’s Hall H panel, during which three pivotal sequences were screened, and this is what we saw…
The first scene screened to fans was the film’s opening sequence – The Golden Circle begins with a shot of the Kingsman store front, Eggsy’s soon-to-be-iconic orange tuxedo framed in the window.
Seconds after the man himself (Egerton) steps out onto the street, he’s confronted by an old nemesis – failed Kingsman trainee Charlie Hesketh (Edward Holcroft). And – as we’ve seen in previous trailers – he’s now equipped with a robotic arm!
The pair end up engaged in a brutal close-quarters scrap in the back of a black cab, a dizzying skirmish. Eggsy thrusts Hesketh partway out of the speeding vehicle, the villain’s steel hand dragging along the road as the cab pushes onward – sparks flying!
Hesketh then gets the upper hand – no pun intended – almost forcing Eggsy out of the cab, with the young spy deploying a mind-blowing flip onto the taxi’s roof to avoid another oncoming car.
Eggsy fights his way back into the cab and attempts to stab at Hesketh with his blade-tipped boot, only for his opponent’s blow to knock the blade free from the boot and into the cab driver’s neck. The vehicles slams to a halt, sending Hesketh flying through the windscreen, his robotic arm severed by force.
Eggsy commandeers the black cab, now pursued by three more enemy cars with mini-guns atop. Guided by Merlin (Mark Strong), he speeds through South London towards Hyde Park, where he’s able to deploy three missiles that annihilate his pursuers.
But the police are still in hot pursuit, so Eggsy drives the aquatic cab into a nearby lake (“I seem to remember from your training that you were rather good at holding your breath,” notes Merlin), then guides it into the safety of a secret underwater base.
Having set the scene, the second and third clips introduce us to two of the film’s new characters. First up, we find Eggsy and Merlin in Kentucky, USA at the Statesmen brewery, where they’re confronted by Tequila (Channing Tatum) – a cowboy-hat-wearing, whiskey-drinking, tobacco-spittin’ good ol’ boy.
Displaying immense physical skills, Tequila takes out first Merlin, then Eggsy, with ease. “Who the f**k are you?” Eggsy asks, before passing out.
Finally, we take a trip to “Poppyland” – a wonderland of ’50s Americana, totally incongruous in the middle of a wild jungle. From its centrepiece, Poppy’s Diner, the film’s villain (Julianne Moore) runs the biggest drug cartel in the world, with two robot dogs – yes, really – at her side.
Poppy is the head of an organisation known as the Golden Circle and henchman Charles (Keith Allen) has done something to irk her. “He messed up!” she spits, instructing new recruit Angel (Tom Benedict Knight) to “put him in the mincer”.
Yes, Charles is fed, headfirst, into the diner’s mincer, after which Poppy takes some of his remains, turns them into a burger patty, lightly salts then throws on the fryer.
After Angel takes a trip to Poppy’s salon – manned, of course, by robots – where his fingerprints are burnt off and he receives the mark of the Golden Circle, he returns to the diner where Poppy serves him a delicious Charles burger.
“Welcome to the Golden Circle,” she smiles.
All that and we still don’t know how Colin Firth’s late, lamented Harry Hart returns from the dead…
The panel also included one final piece of footage, created specially for Comic-Con. Ever wondered what it’d be like if Eggsy met super-spy Sterling Archer from Archer? Well, now we know – and it includes a generous amount of British swears…
Kingsman: The Golden Circle is released in cinemas on October 22.