Panel 2: Thugboy is referring to the Empowered vol.1 action scene in which Emp, for probably the first time in the series, kicks ass whilst rescuing him.
Panel 3: Man, lemme tell ya, trying to draw food is quite the pencil-rendering challenge. Glad I don’t have to draw a full-on food-based comic, such as the manga Delicious in Dungeon or Food Wars. Then again, nowadays even manga that aren’t wholly food-based still go explore riffs about cooking, such as the Ainu cuisine in Golden Kamuy or Korean food in Sun-Ken Rock on Crunchyroll. (In fact, certain food items do become a bit of a plot point later in this very volume.)
Panel 4: To repeat something I mentioned earlier regarding the title page, here Thugboy is recalling the Empowered vol.1 scene in which Emp explains that her supersuit can turn invisible... but then shows that she herself can't.