Spider-Man: Homecoming

By Shamus
on Jul 26, 2017
Filed under:
Movies

Based on the reviews I see in my social media circles and favorite YouTube critics, Spider-Man: Homecoming seems to be getting a “pretty good, but not great” reception from people. I saw it this Saturday with by brother Dan. Not only did I like it, but I think it’s the best Spider-Man movie. Yes, even better than the Sam Raimi films. Yes, I realize that’s a terribly controversial opinion.

Let me explain where I’m coming from…

I probably got hooked on Spider-Man through the 1967 animated show. You know, the one with the theme song people are always referencingHomecoming actually gives it a nod at the start of the movie, featuring a drastic rearrangement of the famous theme.. Spidey’s first live-action appearanceUnless you want to count the educational bits in the Electric Company. was in the television series that debuted in 1977. I was six, and had just started school.

I remember being really frustrated with the show. I couldn’t put it into words at the time, but I suppose my various child-like complaints could be summed up under the broad heading of “lack of production value”. Spidey didn’t fight anything that could remotely pass as a super villain. The eye holes in his costume looked like swim goggles crossed with horn-rimmed glasses. They didn’t really have the budget to depict his web-swinging, and the whole thing was very, very light on action.

Kids are pretty good at filling in the blanks with their imagination, but the cartoons had already showed me what a Spider-Man show should look like. This was a show with a 27 year old guy who looked 35 and pretend to be a 20 year old while spending 47 of the 50 minute run time wandering around office sets not dressed like Spider-Man. That was not what I expected from my Spider-Man based entertainment. I watched it every week, hoping that this week they would finally focus on the Spider-Man part of Spider-Man stories and not on all the boring “talking” stuff. Adorably, I didn’t understand how television budgets worked. I thought they just didn’t know any better.

Looking back as an adult, the show really was a mess. The writing seemed vaguely embarrassed of the source material, like the writer wanted to make something “for grownups”. At the same time, they took out both Uncle Ben and Aunt May, thus depriving the story of its richest source of drama and personal motivation. If there’s anything an adult audience should be able to sink their teeth into, it seems like “a hero looking for redemption after allowing his father figure to die because he didn’t respect the power that had been given to him” should be the most obvious thing to keep. Without the whole “great power, great responsibility” angle, the character is missing some of his most important building blocks.

So I was a Spider-fan, but I hadn’t fallen in love with the character yet. That didn’t happen until I got this:

My original copy was lost or destroyed, but I got another in the late 90`s. It`s still in very good condition today.

My original copy was lost or destroyed, but I got another in the late 90`s. It`s still in very good condition today.

This. This is what shaped my entire perception of what Spider-Man was and should be. The idea that getting super powers wouldn’t solve all your problems just gave the story so much… well, I didn’t know the word verisimilitude yet, but that’s what I wanted to explain to people in 1979. It didn’t feel like an empty fantasy. Peter’s struggles to be a hero and also please his friends and family felt so very genuine. Yes, there were a lot of contrivances in play to make sure that his superhero life kept intruding into his personal life, but kids are generally blind to contrivance. The story strung me along for all 127 pages, always leaving me wondering if Peter would ever find peace and stability. He usually won, but always at great cost to himself.

The book was a collection of 6 different stories, mostly from the early 70s. It featured fights with Rhino, Electro, and the Green Goblin. It also featured a fight against John Jameson, son of Peter’s infamous boss. (He was an astronaut that got moon-powers. It wasn’t very interestingIt also wasn’t the last time they would pull this trick. In this book, he gained strength to make him strong enough to jump around on Earth the way he was able to jump around on the moon. At some other point in the Spider-Man timeline, the moon turned him into a werewolf. He was two different supervillains, but was somehow still boring.) It ended with Peter kissing then-girlfriend Gwen Stacey and the author chiding the audience for thinking that Spidey never gets a happy ending. If I’d known that in the regular comic timeline she was already dead it would have broken my heart.

The thing is, I didn’t really buy Spider-Man comics after this point. I loved Spider-Man, but when given the choice between spending my allowance on Spider-Man or videogames, videogames always won. So my perception of the character was sort of frozen in time, forever trapped in the angst and melancholy of those early 70s comics. The next time I visited him, he’d married a supermodel and was swinging around town in a black costume made of space magic. The cultural shift we call “The 90s” actually hit Spider-Man kind of early, and the hipper, edgier, sexier, darker version of the character didn’t really resonate with me. I guess I should be grateful they didn’t have Peter grow a stupid mullet.

The Rhino story would be unimportant, save for the fact that it ends with the introduction of MJ.

The Rhino story would be unimportant, save for the fact that it ends with the introduction of MJ.

I admit it would be totally unreasonable to insist that a character remain hermetically sealed at a single point in their personal history. There’s only so many times you can re-tell the same story and hit the same character beats, and if you’re going to follow a character for decades then that character needs to go through some changes. A story with a fixed status quo will eventually fall into a rut. Worse, having a stable status quo tends to kill the tension and stretch credulity, because in real life people change along with their circumstances. I don’t object to the new versions of the character. I got my Spider-Man in 1979. That’s the one I needed, and the next generation of comic nerds can pick through these newer versions and see what suits them.

Having said that, I connected with Homecoming because it manages to hit that 1979 note for me in a way Sam Raimi never did. Sure, the story is pretty different. Peter is in high school instead of being an adult, his crush isn’t Gwen or MJ, his buddy Ned is from some other version of the character, rival Flash Thompson is a taunting prankster rather than a jock, and lots of other bits of established lore have been moved around. But it hits all the notes I’m looking for in a Spider-story.

Mild thematic spoilers from here on…

Lies. This particular thing never happens in the movie.

Lies. This particular thing never happens in the movie.

The movie does a really good job of merging smart-mouth Spider-Man with stammering Peter Parker, and I know that’s an incredibly hard trick to pull off. No other movie has done such a thorough job of making Peter powerless over his own life. He’s smart and he’s fast and he’s strong, but none of those can help him solve the problems that life keeps throwing his way. In the Raimi stories, I could feel the hand of the writer keeping Peter and MJ from being happy. It felt like they could work things out if the two of them could get their act together. But here in Homecoming the exact nature of the character is perfectly captured at the Homecoming dance: He can have literally everything he wants. All he has to do is give up being Spider-Man.

Sure, the movie doesn’t include his “origin story” in the sense of showing him getting bitten by the spider and watching Uncle Ben die, but it does include the moment where he dedicates himself fully to the job. The moment he walks out of the gymnasium is the moment he truly becomes a superhero.

It was also nice to see him taken down a notch or two, power-wise. Here we see a younger, more inexperienced Spider-Man.

Also, Michael Keaton is wonderful as the Vulture. I know Doctor Octopus was pretty good, but his character arc was “nice guy was suddenly driven evil by computer magic”. That’s not wrong, but it did deprive him of a little depth. The Vulture wasn’t computer-crazy. He was a completely relatable villain with clear motives and some great dialog. I love that his allies weren’t a bunch of dull thugs, but were interesting and funny in their own right.

I do have a few tiny gripes. I dislike how Aunt May is now about 25 years younger and extremely attractive, yet a couple of characters make jokes that only make sense if you know she’s supposed to be old and grey. I realize that it would be stupid to cram in yet ANOTHER rendition of Uncle Ben dying, but the story does feel like there’s a little something missing without at least alluding to it. The reveal that Zendaya‘s character Michelle is supposed to be Mary Jane Watson makes no sense, since she has literally nothing in common with that character in terms of looks, personality, behavior, or her role in the story. It’s like revealing that the Coach Wilson character is nicknamed “J.J.” and he runs the Daily Bugle. It’s just like the reveal that Benjamin Cumberbatch is actually Khan in Star Trek: Into Darkness. It’s a reference that can only be meaningful to core fans, but it can’t work for core fans because it doesn’t make any sense.

But these are small gripes. This is the best movie I’ve seen in a while. I get that it didn’t really ignite the fanbase when it came out, but this is exactly what I wanted from a Spider-Man movie.

Also, the Captain America gags were worth the price of admission alone.

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Footnotes:

[1] Homecoming actually gives it a nod at the start of the movie, featuring a drastic rearrangement of the famous theme.

[2] Unless you want to count the educational bits in the Electric Company.

[3] It also wasn’t the last time they would pull this trick. In this book, he gained strength to make him strong enough to jump around on Earth the way he was able to jump around on the moon. At some other point in the Spider-Man timeline, the moon turned him into a werewolf. He was two different supervillains, but was somehow still boring.

[4]


A Hundred!2018There are 138 comments here. I really hope you like reading.

From the Archives:

  1. SPCTRE says:

    Well, no you done did it, you referenced Star Trek, now you *have* to review the new movies. ;)

  2. Rivlien says:

    One thing does annoy me about this spiderman. And that is probably only a issue with me since it is my opinion of what the character “should be”: The lack of spider sense.

    That is the main thing that makes him a hero, his ability to react in close to milliseconds. Without that he is just a dude with a bunch of glue. Which could be an awesome hero actually, someone get on that, but that is not spiderman.

    • Shamus says:

      I kind of thought he did have a Spider-sense, he just isn’t calling it that yet. In Civil War, there’s the scene where he catches the vial of web fluid without looking, and then later in the conversation he mentions that his senses have been “cranked up to 11” and that he has “too much input”.

      I’ve been assuming (and the movies may yet prove me wrong on this) that this was part of their low-powered start for the character. The idea being that the strength, reflexes, and senses are there, he just needs to master them. This would give them room to engage in a little power creep going forward. He’s a whelp now, but after Infinity War he’ll likely be an A-lister, and it’s better if it feels like he grows into that position rather than just appearing fully formed.

      There’s probably more hope than evidence in that analysis, but that’s what I’ve been thinking.

      • Rivlien says:

        That is a fair point, I may just be projecting from the normal spiderman onto this wee baby one. He is still a rookie at this whole super person thing so it may very well be that the future will prove me wrong.

      • Lee says:

        This is a workable theory, but the problem is that they did show spider sense in Civil War. It feels like the Civil War version of Peter had better control of his powers than the Homecoming version. Most of the time only in small ways, but so many of the fights in Homecoming involved Peter getting blind-sided by something that his spider sense should have warned him about in time. If Civil War was officially later in the timeline, it would work, but it’s not, so it feels like they depowered spider sense for the sake of making the screenwriter’s job easier.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          They did show it explicitly in once scene in civil war.But in homecoming,he still does some things practically blind during the fights,without going “Spidey sense tingling!”.

          • Chris Wolf says:

            Kevin Feige has said he DOES have Spider-sense, its just intentionally more low key. Also, he is a teenager who in the movie is often surprised when he is distracted. This is just like us, I get startled when I am focused on something even though my senses would normally warn me of approaching “danger”.

            That coupled with the lack of training helps explain how he reacts in the movie.

            Some of the scenes people complain about are sorta of weird in this regard.

            Let’s take the Ned scene…even in the comics Ned could have surprised him because Ned was stationary and not meaning Peter any harm.

            Aunt May, similar situation…and in the comics she HAS clocked him with a vase (knocking him out) because Spider-sense was like AUNT MAY = NOT THREAT 100% of the time. “Amazing Spider-Man” #114. Heck she almost flat out killed him the next issue by shooting him!

            He even walked in on her having sex in “Amazing Spider-Man” #592 and nobody wants to see their ancient mother figure having sex with an ancient dude.

          • Decius says:

            It seems plausible that when Parker is expecting something to happen he can use the Spidey Sense, but when he’s just walking around it’s like having an air horn go off; just enough time to be surprised before he gets hit.

    • Bubble181 says:

      There’s a reference to his spider sense activating in the scene where his mask’s half-submerged in a puddle; similar to the half-Peter-half-mask thing they used to do.

      So, I’d agree with Shamus: the spider sense is there, just not fully developed/mastered (yet).

    • Dreadjaws says:

      If it makes you feel better, the Spidey Sense is at full sight in the Infinity War trailer.

    • Neil D says:

      There was an interview a few weeks ago with the director where he mentioned that they would be downplaying the spider-sense aspect because he felt it was already overdone in the previous movies. The sense is that it is still there, but maybe not as developed and they weren’t going to focus on it in the the first film.

      (Here it is.)

  3. LapnLook says:

    Sorry for being that guy:

    Mark Jane Watson should be Mary, and the Star Trek actor is called Benedict Cucumberpatch… I mean Cumberbatch

  4. Sannom says:

    The reveal that Zendaya‘s character Michelle is supposed to be Mary Jane Watson makes no sense, since she has literally nothing in common with that character in terms of looks, personality, behavior, or her role in the story.

    As an Ultimate Marvel fan, I had a similar reaction to that reveal, the difference being that I expected the revelation that she was Gwen Stacy, whose Ultimate incarnation shares many aspects with Zendaya’s character.

    • Scampi says:

      When I heard of her being cast as a leading female role but there was no name given for her character yet, I wondered whether they were going with Felicia Hardy (the Black Cat) as a love interest for the reboot. The casting didn’t appear to make much sense to me as any other love interests I had known Peter Parker or Spider Man ever had.
      She also doesn’t look very Felicia-ish, admittedly, but I thought Marvel maybe hired a POC-actress to have a (admittedly cheap) rationale for later picking her name for her superhero alter ego.
      I would never have thought she’d be an “MJ”.

    • mechaninja says:

      Like Shamus’ hope re: spidey sense, I’m going with hope that being put in this role of leadership will cause Zendaya’s character to blossom in MJ-like ways.

      I’m going to assume that they’ve decided to skip the really downer moments (Uncle Ben’s death, Gwen’s death) – at least for now – and leave Gwen for potentially a Spider Gwen or something down the road.

      My wife is a redhead, and the icon/avatar she has on my phone is from the Rhino scene above, because “just hit the jackpot” is how I feel about her. As a result, I’m a bit bummed that MJ is apparently not going to be a redhead, but I’m prepared to give Marvel a shot at pretty much anything, because Andy is Star Lord.

      • Steve C says:

        I could never like that version of Mary-Jane because of that specific intro. “Face it tiger… You just hit the jackpot!” Is something that you might say to *yourself.* If someone actually introduced themselves that way it would be a huge red flag. I’d be so turned off it wouldn’t even be funny. I couldn’t even pretend to like her after that.

        • Trevel says:

          But it’s totally something THIS MJ would say to Peter, based on this movie.

        • Joe Informatico says:

          That version of MJ might have been aware Peter had avoided meeting her for several weeks because he’d assumed any girl his aunt wanted him to meet had to have something wrong with her. She was probably just having fun at his reaction.

          • evileeyore says:

            That version is… odd.

            That version had also avoided meeting Pete as her Mom had been in cahoots with Aunt may to hook the two up…

            That version might also have known that Peter was Spider-Man and had spent weeks figuring out if that was something she wanted to even get involved with.

        • Scampi says:

          I’m rather curious if you prefered the 90s animated series incarnation of MJ?
          Just asking, because that introduction actually made it directly into the series.
          Anyways: Which version of MJ would you prefer and which/how many are there, in case you kept track?

          • Steve C says:

            I don’t have any particular MJ preference. I don’t like any MJ* nor do I hate her. I’m ambivalent towards the character.

            In terms of myself, I imagine anyone introducing themselves in such a self-aggrandizing way to me and I’m instantly put off on a dozen different levels. That line is as much an insult to me as it it is undeserved narcissism.

            It’s a bullshit power play. She’s just put herself on a pedestal and said I’m not in her league. In her opinion I am undeserving of her attention. That it is only luck that she is speaking with me. Describing her as “high maintenance” doesn’t even begin to describe it. The fact that she’d lead with such a statement shows a profound lack of tact and character. Someone else might see a spicy redhead. I see more red flags than a soviet parade. It’s not someone I’d want to know.

            * (Probably the Kirsten Dunst MJ was my favorite portrayal due to her being the opposite of the above. That MJ wasn’t full of herself.)

            • Scampi says:

              Thanks for elaborating. I absolutely agree with your assessment. I had a girlfriend who actually believed she’d be able to KEEP me in a relationship by asserting she was better than me, so I know the sentiment. It’s kind of pathetic to tell somebody he should feel lucky to have YOU and might never be able to find something even equivalent. Even worse: it sounds as if the person saying it seriously needs to sell themselves as overly valuable, which in my book is a sure sign I don’t really want anything to do with them.
              I was just curious whether there was an incarnation that felt more sympathetic than the original or the animated MJ. Personally, I generally didn’t like Kirsten Dunst’s MJ that much better, but my memory might be off. The difference imho was mostly that she and Peter already knew each other, so there was no way to introduce herself in such an overinflated way.

      • Sannom says:

        and leave Gwen for potentially a Spider Gwen or something down the road.

        I would like the Ultimate plot to happen. In that series, she and Peter were friends and kind of like siblings, what with Aunt May all but adopting her after her dad dies.

  5. Daimbert says:

    I think at this point I’m completely and totally burned out on all of this. I see the descriptions of this movie and think “Ugh”. I can’t get interested in watching or buying Rogue One despite my having all of the other Star Wars movies and hearing that it’s good. I’ve forgotten about Doctor Strange and Guardians of the Galaxy 2. I’m even uninterested in buying Logan despite my being a huge Wolverine fan. There’s just too much of this out and too much of it is bad in its own unique way that I just can’t be bothered with it anymore.

  6. Daemian Lucifer says:

    I have literally none of your experiences with spiderman,yet I share your opinion that this is the best spiderman rendition ever.In fact,this is one of my favorite marvel movies,up there with winter soldier.

    And my favorite joke is “What would captain america do?” followed by spidey immediately rebelling.

    • mechaninja says:

      I enjoyed the first Sam Raimi movie a great deal, but found the “webs come from his wrist so we can make the ‘go web go!’ jokes” really dishonest to the character, and very immersion breaking. Some folks say the 2nd movie was as good, but the fact that he lost his powers – and thus his webbing, but then survived the resultant fall – really broke that movie for me.

      • Daemian Lucifer says:

        I always preferred organic shooters to peter being able to invent this miraculous substance on top of being a radioactive mutant.

        • Jeff says:

          Peter not being a brilliant scientist would undermine much of his story arcs, as well as relationships to many of the villains.

          The whole point was that he’s a dorky nerd who had power foisted on him, no?

        • Nate Winchester says:

          Organic webshooters are best in a short-form storytelling format like movies. Heck the first time in movie 2 the webs stopped shooting I assumed it was because Spidey hadn’t been eating enough because of his hard knock life.

          Constructed webshooters are better for the long-form storytelling like comics & tv since you can spend more time examining that.
          (seriously, I’ve always wondered how he forged or crafted the webshooters – did he have a metal workshop in that New York apartment?)

  7. Daemian Lucifer says:

    I dislike how Aunt May is now about 25 years younger and extremely attractive,

    But why should she be 70 when peter is 14?I mean 15,sorry pete.Ailf may makes perfect sense.

    The reveal that Zendaya‘s character Michelle is supposed to be Mary Jane Watson makes no sense

    I dont think she is.It looks more like a deliberate red herring than anything else.

    • Shamus says:

      I don’t have a problem with her being young, it just bugs me that everyone seem so SURPRISED that she’s young. She’s his aunt, not his grandmother, and young aunts aren’t an aberration.

      • Kylroy says:

        Tom Holland is 21. Marissa Tomei is 52. She’s not even a little bit young to be his aunt. Then again, all that really matters is how old an actor *looks*, not how old they *are.

        • BeardedDork says:

          My gripe about the “Aunt May is young” gripe is that, she’s not, she’s almost exactly the correct age. May Reilley and Ben Parker met at the 1930 World Fair and married shortly there after. The average age for a woman to be married in 1930 was 21.3. So when she first appeared on the page in Amazing Fantasy #15 in 1962 she would have been 52~53ish assuming she was average. Marissa Tomei is 52, 50 just looks different today than it did in 1962.

          • Joe Informatico says:

            Our generations (basically Gen X and onward) mostly avoid the smoking and sun exposure that our elders indulged in, and we look a good 10-15 years younger than they did at our age as a result. (And probably a few other factors too.)

      • mechaninja says:

        I thought they were just hanging a lampshade on the fact that 50 is the new 40 or whatever.

      • Son of Valhalla says:

        I mean, Aunt May looked semi-auntMayish in the Spiderman trilogy that came out in the early 2000’s, though now that you mention it, she did look more like a grandma than his aunt.

        I just wish there was more character development in the drama department. If they actually alluded to his Uncle Ben dying, it would have added emotional depth to the story. As it stands right now, Spiderman seems to be a normal high school teenager with powers and vicissitudes above everyone else in said school.

        Still a good movie.

      • Kyte says:

        I don’t recall anybody expressing surprise at how young she was, rather at how hot she was.

        • evileeyore says:

          Considering how many of Spidey’s villains that wanted to hook up with the comic books version of Aunt May… I’m a bit relieved that this one at least looks like she’d make good villain bait.

      • Sven says:

        My wife has nephews that are older than her, so yeah, not an aberration. :)

    • Dreadjaws says:

      I don’t know if it’s a deliberate Red Herring, but they did claim she’s not supposed to be her. The thing is, I don’t know if that’s what they planned from the beginning or they simply backed down after all the backlash that little “reveal” caused.

  8. Daemian Lucifer says:

    but I hadn’t yet fallen in love with the character yet

    Yet there seems to be one yet too many in that sentence.

  9. Dreadjaws says:

    “At the same time, they took out both Uncle Ben and Aunt May, thus depriving the story of its richest source of drama and personal motivation. If there’s anything an adult audience should be able to sink their teeth into, it seems like “a hero looking for redemption after allowing his father figure to die because he didn’t respect the power that had been given to him” should be the most obvious thing to keep. Without the whole “great power, great responsibility” angle, the character is missing some of his most important building blocks.”

    Funny you mention that, because such thing is completely absent in this movie. I’m sorry, but I have to disagree on this one. This movie is miles better than two of the last three, but it pales in comparison to Spider-Man 2. I think it’s a really fun superhero flick, but it doesn’t really do much for me as a Spider-Man film.

    For one, there’s the subject of motivation. There’s nothing about “responsibility” here, Peter Parker’s only motivation is to impress Tony Stark. Perhaps a bit more relatable for teenagers, but it takes away great part of what makes the character so compelling. Life pushes him down constantly yet he always gets back up and all of it is because of the determination caused by his earlier experiences. There’s nothing of that here. They reproduce a scene from the comics in this movie. In the comics, his motivation is to survive for his family and friends. In the movie, it’s “Oh, what would Mr. Stark think of me if I failed?”.

    Worse, there don’t seem to be any consequences. Oh, Spider-Man has to abandon the party, maybe next day everyone will call him a loser. No, it doesn’t happen. Oh, Peter is going to be out of the contest, they’re gonna lose and blame it all on him! Nope, they win and they forgive him. Oh, he has to abandon the dance and fight Liz’s father. If he survives, Liz is going to hate him. Ah, no, she’s perfectly fine with him, even though he left her right before she found the truth about his father.

    And Tony Stark’s presence detracts a lot. I’m not talking about his physical presence, that’s mercifully short, but he’s all around the movie in spirit. The villain is created because of him. The entire stuff with Peter’s suit is him (so instead of watching Spider-Man be Spider-Man we have to watch Spider-Man be Iron Man Lite). The villain’s final plan is to rob him. Spider-Man is traditionally a loner who has to learn everything by himself and here he has a mentor and a talking suit that are constantly telling him how to do things.

    Not to mention, it’s missing the crucial “Hero with bad publicity” thing that Spider-Man has. Everyone loves him here. Again, as a generic superhero movie is great. As a Spider-Man film, though, I find it painfully weak.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      There’s nothing about “responsibility” here

      Not explicitly,no.But the core is peter accepting the consequences of his actions,taking the responsibility of his powers and not relying on others to tell him what to do with them.

      In the movie, it’s “Oh, what would Mr. Stark think of me if I failed?”

      In the first half,yes.But in the second half he is alone,and he comes back up not for mister stark,but for himself.

      Oh, Spider-Man has to abandon the party, maybe next day everyone will call him a loser. No, it doesn’t happen.

      Thats precisely the thing that happens.Thats precisely what he hears when he finally calls ned back.

      Oh, Peter is going to be out of the contest, they’re gonna lose and blame it all on him! Nope, they win and they forgive him.

      They dont forgive him,but like liz said “Then I almost died and that puts things into perpective”.Some things are more important than winning some competition.

      Oh, he has to abandon the dance and fight Liz’s father. If he survives, Liz is going to hate him. Ah, no, she’s perfectly fine with him

      She is not perfectly fine with him.She explicitly tells him that he is messed up and needs to get his shit together.Thats the last thing she tells him before leaving.

      Spider-Man is traditionally a loner who has to learn everything by himself and here he has a mentor and a talking suit that are constantly telling him how to do things.

      Yes,that is the first half of the movie.The second half is him being alone and learning to do things for himself instead of the approval of others.

      Not to mention, it’s missing the crucial “Hero with bad publicity” thing that Spider-Man has.

      There are plenty of spidey stories where that is not crucial.

      • Dreadjaws says:

        In the first half,yes.But in the second half he is alone,and he comes back up not for mister stark,but for himself.

        They literally show you Peter thinking of Tony Stark when he comes back up. You can’t possibly have missed that. In the comic, you can see him thinking of his loved ones. Here, it’s just Tony.

        Thats precisely the thing that happens.Thats precisely what he hears when he finally calls ned back.

        No, no, no. That’s what you’re told happens, but clearly not what actually happens. That’s just Flash making fun of him as he always does. He’s the only person who does it, and that doesn’t change at all one way or the other.

        They dont forgive him,but like liz said “Then I almost died and that puts things into perpective”.Some things are more important than winning some competition.

        And isn’t that entirely convenient? It also doesn’t change the fact that they still won. Plus, I wonder if she’d have the same thoughts once she learned the entire reason she was in danger was that Peter and his friend were carelessly carrying around alien tech in a backpack. Yes, clearly “responsibility” is Peter’s motivation here.

        She is not perfectly fine with him.She explicitly tells him that he is messed up and needs to get his shit together.Thats the last thing she tells him before leaving.

        Again, a ridiculously convenient way for her to forgive him. She’s not actually mad, and the entire reason she leaves is the situation with her father. Yes, very realistic teenager behavior right there.

        Yes,that is the first half of the movie.The second half is him being alone and learning to do things for himself instead of the approval of others.

        You can’t just slice a film at a random part and call it a “half”. That thing you say happens is not “the second half”, is the darn climax. And he still gets help from his friend.

        There are plenty of spidey stories where that is not crucial.

        Yeah, after several years of the character having been established, when it didn’t make sense anymore. This is the character in its infancy, you can’t just ignore stuff like that.

        • modus0 says:

          They literally show you Peter thinking of Tony Stark when he comes back up. You can’t possibly have missed that. In the comic, you can see him thinking of his loved ones. Here, it’s just Tony.

          It wasn’t WHO said the line , but WHAT the line was that was the important bit here. That if he couldn’t be Spider-man without the suit, then he wasn’t cut out to be Spider-man, period. And he used that thought as motivation to prove that he was Spider-man, special Stark-made suit or not.

          And it wouldn’t have made as much sense to have him thinking of his loved ones, as none of them were directly endangered like in the comic, while it was similar to the comic version, it happened through different circumstances.

          • Dreadjaws says:

            That if he couldn’t be Spider-man without the suit, then he wasn’t cut out to be Spider-man, period.

            Perhaps but, come on, he needed Stark to realize this.

            And it wouldn’t have made as much sense to have him thinking of his loved ones, as none of them were directly endangered like in the comic

            How couldn’t they? They Vulture knew who he was. How hard would be for him to think they were in danger because of his actions? Because he was careless enough to let the Vulture know his indentity?

            • Daemian Lucifer says:

              Perhaps but, come on, he needed Stark to realize this.

              No,he needed a ton of bricks on his back to realize this.

              How couldn’t they?
              .
              .
              .

              He is a kid who doesnt really get the adult world.Thats why it was so easy for the vulture to identify him while his friends remained clueless.Why should he think about an adult idea such as “If criminals know who I am,they may hurt my loved ones”?

            • modus0 says:

              They weren’t directly in danger like in the comics, because no one needed any immediate medical help, and the villain was more interested in pulling off his “set-for-life” plan than taking revenge on the hero (who at that point was merely annoying, and hadn’t really foiled his plans).

              • Jeff says:

                Said hero had also literally saved his daughter’s life, and she’s one of the primary motivators for the villain.

                Even at the end, he’s more interested in taking off with the goods than finishing Peter off. Then he also recognizes that Peter saved his life, and doesn’t give him away when he could easily have taken revenge by proxy.

                The villain’s less cartoonish here, more nuanced and developed.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          I wont repeat what modus0 said,just move on the other stuff:

          That’s just Flash making fun of him as he always does. He’s the only person who does it, and that doesn’t change at all one way or the other.

          And the whole party chanting what flash wants them to chat,that wasnt shown?

          And isn’t that entirely convenient?

          Just how vulture chooses the exact night to stage his robbery.Everything around peter rests on stuff he has no control over,both good or bad.

          And yes,I guess she would be mad about the bomb.But also glad that he saved her.Balance once more.

          Again, a ridiculously convenient way for her to forgive him.

          She doesnt forgive him.She just has more important stuff to think of.Whats unrealistic about that?That you can forget about some silly dance when your whole life is in turmoil like that?

          You can’t just slice a film at a random part and call it a “half”. That thing you say happens is not “the second half”, is the darn climax.

          Its not just the climax,its everything after the ferry scene.Half of the movie.

          And he still gets help from his friend.

          Some help against the henchmen,yes.But the main villain,he is all alone.

          Yeah, after several years of the character having been established, when it didn’t make sense anymore. This is the character in its infancy, you can’t just ignore stuff like that.

          Didnt spiderman start at high school in the comics as well?With all the newspaper stuff added later.A superhero not trusted by the people does not strike me as those early days of comics,but I admit my ignorance on the subject.

          • Shoeboxjeddy says:

            Spider-Man doesn’t start becoming hated and feared until he sells pictures of himself to the Bugle for cash. It’s a classic Spider-Man story where something he both wants and needs to do (have money to live) comes back to bite him (he is making stories about how terrible he is MORE popular through his exciting photography). In Homecoming, Spider-Man is just starting out and the MCU has many more things to be concerned about. Like the Inhumans from the Agents of SHIELD. Or alien invaders. Or rogue Avengers who apparently no longer respect the rule of law. A random vigilante helping people with stolen bikes is not something that would gain much notice, it would be a human interest story on the local news, if that.

            The better Spider-Man does, the more likely this storyline is to appear, Dreadjaws, you’re just being super impatient about it, to an illogical degree.

            • Dreadjaws says:

              Spider-Man doesn’t start becoming hated and feared until he sells pictures of himself to the Bugle for cash.

              Factually wrong. He doesn’t start making money out of his own misery until he starts selling pictures. He’s hated and feared long before that.

              And, again, it’s integral part of the character, you can’t call me impatient for wanting to see it. It’s not like I’m asking to see his wedding to Mary Jane.

              • Shoeboxjeddy says:

                You’re being pedantic (and incorrect). Peter starts selling pictures to JJJ in ASM #2. The popularity of Jonah’s take on Spider-Man is not existent or apparent in #1. A story about “a mysterious vigilante who we don’t have pictures or a good description of” would not have taken off. Once Peter starts providing good action shots to the Bugle, he gives them the rope to hang himself, which was my whole point.

          • Dreadjaws says:

            And the whole party chanting what flash wants them to chat,that wasnt shown?

            Yeah, in the middle of the party, where everyone’s just mindlessly fooling around. The next day, when Peter is actually present everyone forgets about it.

            And yes,I guess she would be mad about the bomb.But also glad that he saved her.Balance once more.

            That implies she’d know about his identity as well, which I never said. In any case, it’s really not that easy to forgive someone for solving a problem they themselves caused.

            She doesnt forgive him.She just has more important stuff to think of.Whats unrealistic about that?That you can forget about some silly dance when your whole life is in turmoil like that?

            That’s not what I meant. You’re talking about in-universe explanations, I’m talking script level. It’s very convenient that everything happened the same night so Peter wouldn’t have to deal with the consequences of leaving her. Ignore the twist, let’s pretend Peter had to leave her and go out to deal with an entirely different problem. Then he’d have to deal with the consequences. But now, thanks to convenient writing, he doesn’t. That’s my entire problem: the script is designed to make Peter’s life easier by conveniently removing all consequences.

            Its not just the climax,its everything after the ferry scene.Half of the movie.

            You really need to get yourself a watch if you believe the ferry scene marks the halfway point. In any case, no, it’s not “everything after the ferry scene”. It only starts at the dance. Until that point, all Peter does is mope.

            Some help against the henchmen,yes.But the main villain,he is all alone.

            That’s not really much of a defense. He still has help for most of the movie.

            Didnt spiderman start at high school in the comics as well?With all the newspaper stuff added later.A superhero not trusted by the people does not strike me as those early days of comics,but I admit my ignorance on the subject.

            The high school subject means nothing. Yeah, he started in high school, but J. Jonah Jameson himself started to make Spider-Man’s life miserable right at the second issue ever of the comic (actually, Spider-Man #1, his first story being published in Amazing Fantasy #15). And that was part of what made the character so popular. It was rare back then to have a hero that wasn’t celebrated (in-universe) by the population.

            • Daemian Lucifer says:

              Fair enough,Ill concede that point.

              Yeah, in the middle of the party, where everyone’s just mindlessly fooling around. The next day, when Peter is actually present everyone forgets about it.

              This happened to me a bunch of times.Id do something stupid,my friends would tease me on the spot,but tomorrow it would be ancient history.So yeah,I dont see it as unbelievable for everyone to forget about it after the party.

              That’s not what I meant. You’re talking about in-universe explanations, I’m talking script level.
              .
              .
              .

              You mean how convenient it is for his villain to find him out like that?Yeah,peters life is full of conveniences like that.Why should all of them be extra bad for him?But also,why is “this girl I like is not yelling at me because her life is falling apart” a good thing?Her yelling at him wouldnt be any worse than someone he cares about having to radically change her life because of the shit that just fell on her.

              You really need to get yourself a watch if you believe the ferry scene marks the halfway point.

              The halfway point of a movie does not have to fall squarely in the second that marks the half of the runtime.Its the point where half of the movie was told and the other half begins.First half,spider man messes around in the uber suit,second half spidey does not have the uber suit.

              And no,peter doesnt just mope until the dance,he gets his life back together,school and everything,and asks the girl out.It shows that he is not defined by being spider man.The only reason he comes back to the suit is because criminals are doing bad stuff and he has to intervene.

              • Dreadjaws says:

                This happened to me a bunch of times.Id do something stupid,my friends would tease me on the spot,but tomorrow it would be ancient history.So yeah,I dont see it as unbelievable for everyone to forget about it after the party.

                You’re missing the point here. There’s a difference between you being teased by your friends by a silly thing and a character being bullied and treated like dirt for it. I’m not saying it’s unbelievable, I’m saying it lessens the impact. Yeah, the same kind of boring crap happens to me all the time. Do they make movies about my life? NO!

                You mean how convenient it is for his villain to find him out like that?Yeah,peters life is full of conveniences like that.Why should all of them be extra bad for him?But also,why is “this girl I like is not yelling at me because her life is falling apart” a good thing?Her yelling at him wouldnt be any worse than someone he cares about having to radically change her life because of the shit that just fell on her.

                Not “extra bad”, but how about bad enough for us to care and in respect of the character’s source material? Also, again, I’m not complaining about Liz not yelling at Peter because she has other problems, I’m complaining about the fact that the scrip`t, very conveniently puts Peter into a position in which he doesn’t get yelled at.

                The halfway point of a movie does not have to fall squarely in the second that marks the half of the runtime.Its the point where half of the movie was told and the other half begins.First half,spider man messes around in the uber suit,second half spidey does not have the uber suit.

                I’m sorry, but you’re making stuff up now. A movie is traditionally set in three acts. If it’s divided in three, and certain things happen only in the third act, you can’t just call that “halfway point”. Not when it’s very obviously and deliberately two thirds in.

                And no,peter doesnt just mope until the dance,he gets his life back together,school and everything,and asks the girl out.It shows that he is not defined by being spider man.The only reason he comes back to the suit is because criminals are doing bad stuff and he has to intervene.

                Yes, literally the exact same thing Spider-Man 2 did, only by actually removing Peter’s powers. Here he doesn’t lose them, so he’s not actually forced to stop being Spider-Man. He’s doing it because uncle Tony took away his special toy. He’s moping.

                • evileeyore says:

                  You’re missing the point here. There’s a difference between you being teased by your friends by a silly thing and a character being bullied and treated like dirt for it. I’m not saying it’s unbelievable, I’m saying it lessens the impact.

                  No it doesn’t.

                  He learned that everyone*, probably even Liz, was chanting along and making fun of him. He learned what he suspected, that everyone thought so very little of him. He learned what was in their hearts.

                  Which is of course not true. But to a teen who doesn’t have a strong sense of self-awareness (no teen is really that self aware, they are all pretty self absorbed), those would be his thoughts. “Everyone hates me, they all think I’m a loser, even the people who never act that way to my face“. That kinda stuff is heartbreaking and informs the emotional tone that follows.

                  * Everyone but Ned.

    • modus0 says:

      Nothing about responsibility?

      What about the fact that he keeps going after the Vulture and his men, by himself? He may have initially done it as part of the “I have to prove myself to Mr. Stark”, but after he discovers how dangerous the tech they’re using/stealing is, and Happy starts ignoring him, he keeps on trying to take down the bad guy because he feels that HE is the only one who can do so.

      He even chooses to do that instead of enjoying the Homecoming dance because he feels that he is the only one who can stop the Vulture (Notice how Iron Man doesn’t show up during that fight, AT ALL?).

      • Pyrrhic Gades says:

        What’s with calling what’s-his-face “the Vulture”? He’s not riding Jim Raynor’s bike, and at no point in the film was he ever referred to as “the Vulture”. Didn’t he have like this whole speech about how that they’re trying to keep a low profile and that you shouldn’t go about calling yourself “the Shocker, because I shock people with my shocky shock thing of shockington.”. Seems pretty out of character for him to be known as “the Vulture”.

      • Dreadjaws says:

        …after he discovers how dangerous the tech they’re using/stealing is, and Happy starts ignoring him, he keeps on trying to take down the bad guy because he feels that HE is the only one who can do so.

        Up until the very end, where he’s forced by the circumstances, Spider-Man could have easily web-swinged to Stark tower or wherever and call Stark’s attention personally if he kept being ignored by Happy. Or try to contact absolutely anyone else. How about showing that alien tech he took from the thieves to someone as evidence, in case they decided not to believe him? No, he kept going on his own because of his insistence on proving himself to Stark.

        Notice how Iron Man doesn’t show up during that fight, AT ALL?

        Yeah, like I said before, the fact that it takes until the climax until Spider-Man has to do things alone really isn’t what I’d call a “positive”.

    • Matt Downie says:

      By “the last three” you presumably don’t mean Spider-Man 3, Amazing Spider-Man, and Amazing Spider-Man 2…

  10. Knut says:

    I always liked the Ramones version of the theme song best

  11. PoignardAzur says:

    Yeah, the Captain America gags were the best.

    “Well, now he’s a terrorist on the run, but we’re still legally bound to show you these.”

    The Vulture was easily the best part of the movie. His scenes are all incredibly well written, incredibly well acted, and made so much sense to me.

    I especially liked the part where he sort-of-accidentally kills his irresponsible henchman. This is a great take on the cliché “villain kills his henchman to show the audience he means business”, because it had so much verisimilitude. Vulture acted exactly how you’d expect an angry boss to act when an employee does something completely reckless and refuses to even acknowledge it.

    • Shoeboxjeddy says:

      The accidental murder was great. He doesn’t break his tough guy act because he’s trying to make a point/ an example, but it bothered him a bit. He’d meant to threaten the guy, not vaporize him.

      • evileeyore says:

        But it’s one of the ‘turning points” for his character arc (from downtrodden underdog to super villain).

        He’d never killed before. Acted tough. Thrown punches when he wasn’t faced with real consequences. Stolen when he could get away clean.

        But killed someone. Acted in a risky manner that could get him all the trouble? Nope.

        So he kills a guy and then ‘blows it off’. But you can also see that it affected him.

        “I just killed a guy and there were no consequences. My crew isn’t running away. They aren’t pulling weapons. They’re a bit frightened… but huh. Yeah. I could get used to this new level of fear and respect.”

        You can see that cross his face. Surprise, a moment of shock, and then just chill acceptance of the new order and the new way things would work.

    • Steve C says:

      The worst part about the Vulture in Homecoming is he’s the reason why we didn’t get a Spider-Man 4 back in the day with Sam Raimi. Raimi decided the next movie had to have Vulture for the arc he was building. The studio refused. They said the Vulture was a terrible villain and couldn’t be used.

      I hope whatever exec said that got turned into Torgo’s Executive Powder. The Vulture in this movie was great.

      • PoignardAzur says:

        Honestly, I don’t know if Vulture would have worked as well in a Spiderman 4 movie. A lot of the elements that make Vulture great in this movie (the whole ‘stealing Chitauri tech from Tony Stark’ thing, him being a loving father figure to Peter’s friend, the constrast between Tony’s ‘end of the world’ scale and Peter and Vulture’s ‘the little people) probably wouldn’t work as well, or had already been done in 1 with the Green Goblin.

    • Redrock says:

      The cool thing about Keaton’s Vulture is that he has a really low bodycount for a villain, which makes him all the more complex and relatable. He didn’t mean to kill the henchman. He doesn’t try to finish Peter off when he has the chance. The whole ferry thing was an accident. I actually can’t recall a single time he directly tried to actually murder a person. His main goal is always to protect his business and his family. The Vulture is not cruel or sadistic, which, when you think about it, is quite rare in movies.

      • evileeyore says:

        Keaton’s Vulture is a complicate figure. He has real motivations, grounded motivations. Love.
        Survival. He has honor, or at least he holds himself to a code, a line you don’t cross.

        And then he crosses it. And realizes… “Okay. We can still do this. I’m still a loving father. I still have my code. I’m still the good guy here…

        It’s a beautiful villain arc and I’m not sure there are many actors that could believably pull it off.

  12. Joshua says:

    I thought it was a much better movie than the previous Spider-Man films, but I’m also not a Comic Book reader.

    I thought the plot-twist was also delightful. Wait, what is the Vulture doing here? Did he know Spider-Man was going to…….oh Crap!

    I’ll agree that the Michelle twist was kind of stupid. I also wasn’t keen on the AI of the suit telling him how to flirt. Those were my only gripes though. I did really like how they didn’t try to retell the origin story that we’ve seen too much in the past few movies, but alluded to it here and there.

    Not sure how you would have included the Uncle Ben story in there to make it a character motivation without also having audiences going “Oh, that again?!?”. Maybe make some more referencing comments with May? Speaking of which, I thought the “Hot Aunt” references were much worse in Civil War than here. It’s a “wink, wink” joke when Tony Stark makes the comment, but it makes no sense for him, as he’s constantly around glamorous people.

    My wife and I also saw Baby Driver last week as well. Amazing how similar both movies were as far as structural concept, but very different in execution. For the record, I thought that movie was fairly overrated and fell apart after the first act. Spider-Man: Homecoming was a lot sweeter, and well-scripted.

    • PoignardAzur says:

      I realized what the plot twist was going to be halfway through the movie (there’s only so many named teenage characters whose parents Peter could plausibly not know), so I wasn’t really shocked when it happened. Although I liked how little foreshadowing the reveal had; it was both very sudden and very natural.

      The following scenes were pure gold, surprised or not surprised (my ribs hurt during the part where dad asked “You okay? You look a little pale” while waving his knife around).

  13. Darren says:

    I liked this one a lot, too. Peter is the right kind of annoying–energetic and well-meaning–unlike the Tobey McGuire version who could veer easily into outright douchebaggery.

    If you haven’t seen it, The Onion review of the film is incredibly funny, and also doubles as a take-that to some reviews of Wonder Woman.

  14. Jack V says:

    FWIW, I’ve still not seen it, and never really saw any spider man stuff before the Macguire movies, but from what people have said, there’s a definite current of “this is great, it’s *fun*, and shows spiderman being spiderman-y, and we don’t need another whole movie devoted to origin story”, and that sounded good to me.

  15. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Homecoming actually gives it a nod at the start of the movie, featuring a drastic rearrangement of the famous theme.

    My thoughts during that one was that it was a nice rendition of the classic theme.Unlike some other instances.

  16. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Based on the reviews I see in my social media circles and favorite YouTube critics, Spider-Man: Homecoming seems to be getting a “pretty good, but not great” reception from people.

    Heres a thing to ponder:The current standard of movies is such that a really good action movie with superheroes in it is criticized for not being even better.2010s is an awesome decade for movies.

  17. Redrock says:

    I don’t really like the idea that Peter’s costume comes from Tony Stark and has quite so many gadgets – in the comics Peter Parker is a scientific genius in his own right, just a notch below Otto Octavius. And the physical comedy, while fantastic as a cinematic instrument, really makes Spidey a bit too ineffectual in Homecoming even compared to Civil War, where he took down Falcon and the Winter Soldier without too much of a hassle. In “Homecoming”he fails at stopping a couple of gangsters and basically loses most fights he gets into.

    And I just want to note that while the final reveal about Zendaya’s character is just silly and unnecessary, she easily steals every scene she is in. Such a wonderful character. I suspect that they are hinting that she is in love with Peter, who is completely oblivious of the fact, which would also be a relatively fresh twist on his love life.

    And Keaton is just all-around fantastic. All in all, a great movie, although I worry that they have nerfed Spidey a bit too much. We’ll see what happens in Infinity War, of course.

    • Shoeboxjeddy says:

      Spider-Man loses fights to the Vulture… which is exactly what he does in Amazing Spider-Man issue 2. That’s just being accurate to the source material. I also feel like expecting high school Peter to match up to adult Tony Stark would be ridiculous. He IS clearly a smart kid, since he invented the web and the web shooters, which impresses Tony. This starting point gives him room to grow and experiment.

      • Neil D says:

        But that’s the problem — they actually removed the room to grow and experiment. Maybe he could have developed some things on his own, but now he doesn’t need to. Spidey-beacon? Stark. Umpteen different web styles and shapes? Stark. Spider-tracer? Stark. Web-glider wings? Stark. All taken care of right there on day one.

        And if a need does arise for some new technology or solution, sure he could stay up all night with his chemicals and primitive hand-tools to cobble something together. Or he could just mention it in passing to Tony and within a half-hour a super-high-quality production unit will be Amazon-primed directly to his bedroom, apparently within the hour.

        I know screen time is limited, but if they’re going to go with the mentor/mentee relationship between Tony and Peter, then I’d have liked to see a scene or two of them sciencing it up together and collaborating on some of this stuff, highlighting Peter’s contribution.

        • Shoeboxjeddy says:

          “Everything won’t happen the exact same way in the movies that it did in the comics” isn’t a flaw. Also… Tony probably won’t survive past Infinity War or the sequel to that one, so this quick and easy stuff will not last.

          • Neil D says:

            “Everything won’t happen the exact same way in the movies that it did in the comics” isn’t a flaw.

            I completely agree, and am not sure why you’re throwing that at me. It also isn’t automatically an improvement. By the way, it’s also pretty rich coming from the guy who just finished saying “that’s just being accurate to the source material” to defend something that happened in the movie. But that isn’t what we’re talking about.

            See, it’s great that they had Tony recognize Peter’s scientific brilliance, but instead of him saying “let’s see what else this kid’s got” and working with him like he did with Bruce Banner, he just bulldozed over him. Like, “Yeah, that’s great, now step aside. I can do much more than you, better than you, and quicker than you. Don’t even bother.”

            Again, it isn’t that it is different than the source material, it’s that it was handled in a way that minimized the character’s abilities instead of showcasing them, in his own movie. It didn’t ruin the movie for me, but I do think it was a mistake to not include him in the development process of his own stuff.

            • Redrock says:

              I’d say that by depowering him they actually managed to make a better movie – Peter’s fumbles and clumsy antics are pure comedy gold. But yeah, as a Spidey fan I’m just a little bit annoyed at how much he comes to depend on Stark. On the other hand, it does keep things fresh, so why the hell not.

    • Syal says:

      For the record, it annoyed me how well he handled himself in Civil War, since he was introduced as having almost no experience. I haven’t seen this Spiderman (Non-Gotg Marvel movies have fallen into “maybe if it’s on Netflix” territory) but if they depowered him from Civil War I think it’s for the best.

      • Joshua says:

        It probably would have made more sense for him to act clumsy and inexperienced in Civil War, but that would have horribly detracted from the story. It’s easier to view Homecoming as where he *should* be, and that Civil War was a plot-assisted power-up so he actually contributed something in the fight against his experienced opponents.

        • evileeyore says:

          It’s lampshaded in Homecoming by Stark: “Kid, Cap could have pasted you if he wanted to, they were going easy on you.” (Or some such line)

          Which is kinda reflected in the Civil War fights. They mostly chased him and tried to take him down gently, not realizing Spidey was punching only few pounds below their weight class. They underestimated him, didn’t know what he could do, and tried to use minimal force to protect the kid Stark drug into the fight.

          Also… Pete was wearing the Tony Suit so it may have been cranked up unobtrusively by Tony to assist Peter more in the battle with out being a distraction.

        • Syal says:

          He could have made a fine hit-and-run style support role; someone throws a punch at Stark, Spidey webs their arm and pulls them away. Someone takes a run at Spidey, Legion floats down and blocks them. He could still be a factor without beating professional superheroes in their own movie series.

  18. Pyrrhic Gades says:

    Lize was supposed to be Mary Jane? That never occurred to me when watching, under account of none of her names being “Mary” or “Jane”. Maybe her friends call her “MJ” because she is secretly Michael Jackson, and is one hella of a moonwalker.

    • Shoeboxjeddy says:

      Not Liz, Michelle. Aka, the sarcastic one who said she wasn’t friends with Peter (despite always wanting to hang out with him), not the girl he was crushing on.

    • Steve C says:

      Michelle Jones = MJ. Note that that is a different character from Mary Jane Watson also called MJ. Different character with the same initials. It’s certainly annoying how they did it. But let me repeat for a 3rd time: Michelle Jones is a different character from Mary Jane Watson.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Aos6mtAYjSw

      • Matt Downie says:

        Why would they call her MJ if not to tell us she’s their version of the other MJ? It seemed like it was shot in such a way as to say, “Surprise! It’s MJ, his real love interest”.

        True, she has virtually nothing in common with Mary-Jane, but you could say that about their Flash too.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          From what I read about the whole thing,people were going around saying how she is mj long before the movie was released,even though everyone was denying it.So that last scene seems more like a capitulation to those fans than anything else.

  19. Pyrrhic Gades says:

    Watching the credits was a weird experience for me. I was watching it with a bunch of friends, and they were all just sitting there waiting for the credits to finish rolling, which is weird because normally I’m the guy that sticks around for the credits. As I try to prod them up, Jack’s like “It’s a Marvel movie, there’s always something. after the credits.”

    Which was just… wrong. Like, you shouldn’t go into a credit sequence knowing there is something good following it. Staying for the credits should be its own reward as you digest the meal you just watched, all the while giggling at the silly or oddly appropriate names of the cast members (Rogue One’s space mexican was named “Diego Luna”, and in the Hobbit Films there was a guy named “Sword”), and if there is a little bit extra at the end then that’s all the better.

    But if everyone stays for those extra bits, then who am I better than?

  20. Ryplinn says:

    The movie does allude to Uncle Ben’s death, very briefly, when Ned finds out that Peter is Spider-man. Peter nearly breaks down when he says he doesn’t want Aunt May to know because it would be too much “with all the stuff that happened.” It isn’t explicit, but it is consistent with a teenager (or anyone, really) not wanting to talk about death.

  21. Zak McKracken says:

    This article shows in full length on the home page — somebody forgot the “Continue Reading” link again…

  22. I also really enjoyed this movie. I like how they fit it in to the MCU. I enjoyed the characters. I really liked the story and how he went from “kid with cool new toys” to “I’m going to do what I need to do”.

    I’m not wedded to comic books stories–I find most of them badly-written and stupid, even the very best ones. I enjoy the movies, and it was a good movie.

    • MelTorefas says:

      Glad I am not the only one here who feels this way about comic books. Spider-Man was the only superhero I ever got into, but that was mainly because I thought Venom/Carnage were ‘cool’ as a teenager. Even *as* a teenager though I thought the stories were so bad I gave up comics pretty fast.

  23. Cinebeast says:

    Great write-up, Shamus. I agree with you on basically every point, too.

    Which might actually be kind of weird, because for me, the Sam Raimi movies were my introduction to Spider-Man. I didn’t see any of the cartoons until I was a teenager, and I’ve never read any of the comics.

    I mean, I remember renting the N64 game back in 2000, but other than that I didn’t have any knowledge or experience with the mythos until the Raimi movie popped up. And I loved it at the time. We would watch it every Thanksgiving for about a decade after it came out.

    I’m honestly not sure how or why my perspective changed. I still like the Raimi movie, for the record — but this one kind of blew me away. It just left me so, so happy, and I’m really pumped to see where they take Peter in the future.

  24. Christopher says:

    Spider-Man Homecoming was pretty frustrating for me. I agree it’s the greatest Spider-Man movie, but as a fan it was rough to watch so many aspects of his supporting cast, his familial relations and everyone’s characters changed. It’s not that I can’t get into different adaptations of Spider-Man besides his main comic. I wear heavy nostalgia comics for the 90’s animated series and I’m a big fan of the Spectacular Spider-Man cartoon today. But they changed too much for me to feel like I was watching Spider-Man’s world. Besides the man himself, everyone else was replaced, leaving me with the Iron Man cast as the most familiar people in there. And that was a bummer. It’s just difficult, I’m having a good time and I think the movie largely works and I really enjoy the main character, but then he suddenly unlocks a Cortana in his head and has detective vision and Iron Man is his dad. It works fine on its own, but I’m always missing my familiar Spider-Man setting.

    Ned is weird, man. I think the name is from Ned Leeds, but the guy looks exactly like and acts much like Ganke Lee, who’s Miles Morales’ best friend and I don’t think Peter ever met on account of being dead in that continuity. I’m a year or two behind the current comic, though.

    Good post, anyway. I’m always happy to see some Spider-Man here, and I agree on the good points despite being pulled in two directions personally. It’s nice to finally hear about your introduction to him too.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      Isnt there a whole comic about spider man having a suit for him made by iron man?So that is what this one is drawing inspiration from.Also:

      leaving me with the Iron Man cast as the most familiar people in there

      The whole of iron man was heavily tweaked as well,even tony himself.He starts his superhero carrier by revealing his identity,which is something practically no one does in the comic.So yeah,mcu characters are way different from their comic counterparts.All of them.So you should watch mcu as an elseworlds story.

      • Christopher says:

        It’s all about what I personally care about. Iron Man made him a suit during Civil War, as far as I recall. But I never read Civil War, because the impression I’ve gotten is that it’s an awful story. Tony making Spidey a suit during that thing means in no way that I’m interested in him being Peter’s new dad and hand him an advanced suit with an AI instead of Peter just being able to sew something good looking on his own and make his own gadgets.

        Similarly, that’s why I care about this shit with Spider-Man but don’t really care about it with the rest of the characters: I have so little experience with any of them from comic books or cartoons. I get mildly annoyed when colorful villains like Zemo and the Mandarin get changed into regular-ass dudes, but it doesn’t annoy me like it does with Spider-Man’s cast. This stuff can work retroactively, too. I liked Thor 2 a lot more before discovering that the boring, humorless alien villain was a fun, shapeshifting, bishie shadow elf in the comics.

        Naturally it’s more fair to judge this film on its own merits, but an adaptation that changes everything is a very frustrating thing to have as the main, most widespread version of a character I like. Imagine someone made an adaptation of Lord of the Rings where Frodo is exactly the same, but Gandalf is an attractive middle-aged man, Aragorn is Frodo’s adoptive dad, Sam’s role is replaced by a new character and Legolas is fat. Keep this up for everyone involved.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          Naturally it’s more fair to judge this film on its own merits

          Its…about half and half.Like you said,tony made the suit for pete in civil war,which is where this spidey gets introduced.

          Like I say,its an elseworlds thing.It has some ties to the source material,but plenty of it is changed.

          • evileeyore says:

            Its…about half and half.Like you said,tony made the suit for pete in civil war,which is where this spidey gets introduced.

            Christopher is talking about the comic book story Civil War… which is really very, very different* than the movie Captain America: Civil War.

            However… funny enough… in both stories Iron Man does make Spidey a suit.

            * The main similarities are which sides people chose. In the comic the plot is that Spider-Man reveals his identity following a terrible tragedy, which sparks a bunch of heroes also doing so and the US government creating an anti-vigilante/super hero law requiring all heroes to register (ala the Sarkovia Accords) or stop being heroes or face being declared criminals. Cap sides with the “Nope, not gonna put my loved ones at risk or stop being a hero” crowd. This leads to the ‘civil war’ among the heroes.

            • Chris Wolf says:

              Actually Stark made Peter the suit BEFORE the Civil War. It was part of the characters growing closer together, which led Spider-man to side with him in that conflict, before Tony going down a path Parker would not follow. Spidey does give up the suit during the storyline and returns to his black threads.

  25. Matt Downie says:

    The comedy mostly worked for me, but otherwise it made me feel old.

    Peter, why do you think you have to do this yourself? Just call the police. They’ll probably pass it on to someone who’s actually qualified. You’re not particularly competent – if you try to fight this guy on your own, you’ll only end up trashing boats and buildings and dropping airplane engines on to cities from a great height.

    And Tony, why isn’t this kid being trained? Isn’t half the point of the Sokova accords that you think crime-fighters should be professionals, not enthusiastic amateurs? You even put a ton of potentially life-saving equipment in his suit and then disabled it all.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      And Tony, why isn’t this kid being trained? Isn’t half the point of the Sokova accords that you think crime-fighters should be professionals, not enthusiastic amateurs? You even put a ton of potentially life-saving equipment in his suit and then disabled it all.

      Haha,the thought of tony stank actually learning from his mistakes.Hilarious.

      • Matt Downie says:

        In Avengers 2, Tony learned that if he does something stupid like making a robot using advanced technology he doesn’t understand, and it goes horribly wrong, and then does it again, the second robot will turn out OK for some reason.

        So he’s learned from experience that he shouldn’t try to learn from his mistakes; he should just repeat them and hope for the best.

    • evileeyore says:

      Peter, why do you think you have to do this yourself? Just call the police.

      Yeah… that’s kinda my only WTF moment. The suit had a Nanny Cam. Stark should have known the Vulture’s ID, once he had the suit he should have had the AI give him a quick briefing.

      Or.. failing that, when he was dressing Peter down, that would have been a perfect moment for Pete to say “Hey, I saw all their faces, at least use that footage to catch them!”

      But I let it go. It’s one of those “hollywoodisms”, you just have to accept it for “plot” to occur.

  26. SharpeRifle says:

    I almost don’t have the heart to do this but…..linkee to Spider Mullet
    https://www.comicbooked.com/top-5-sexiest-super-hero-mullets/

  27. methermeneus says:

    Sorry if this should go in an existing comment thread, but there’s a bit too much to read it all right now.

    I’m actually fine with Aunt May being younger; it always seemed weird to me that a teenager’s aunt would be grey and hunched over. Even if she’s fifteen years older than Peter’s parents, she should be, what, 55, 60 tops? She should be late middle age, not a little old lady.

    I haven’t seen Homecoming yet, but now I’m really looking forward to it. I had the same problem with the Raimi movies you mentioned, about the problems seeming contrived. I also didn’t like that even in costume, that version was more angsty than snarky, which always struck me as an important part of the character: Being meek as Peter and sarcastic as Spidey is part of his disguise. I really appreciated the snark of the Garfield version in contrast, even if he was a little too similar out of costume, and if he balances the two in Homecoming like you said, I’m really looking forward to it.

  28. evileeyore says:

    Based on the reviews I see in my social media circles and favorite YouTube critics, Spider-Man: Homecoming seems to be getting a “pretty good, but not great” reception from people. I saw it this Saturday with by brother Dan. Not only did I like it, but I think it’s the best Spider-Man movie. Yes, even better than the Sam Raimi films. Yes, I realize that’s a terribly controversial opinion.

    PREACH IT FROM THE MOUNTAINS BROTHER SHAMUS!

    HALLELUZOD!

    Ahem. I mean, yes, I agree but more so. I found it to be the best MCU to date. Maybe. The Guardians movies are real stiff competition for “best” in my book.

    The reveal that Zendaya‘s character Michelle is supposed to be Mary Jane Watson makes no sense, since she has literally nothing in common with that character in terms of looks, personality, behavior, or her role in the story.

    Ahhh… see, for me it didn’t just work, it worked brilliantly.

    But then I believe in a bit of a conspiracy story concerning MJ’s character from the comics:

    That she knew who Spider-Man was basically from the start. That she was extremely perceptive and had figured it out before even meeting Peter (her bedroom window faced his, just like the Raimei movies), that her initial reluctance in meeting him (she had also ditched out of several arranged meet-ups the meddlesome Aunts*) because she hadn’t decided if she wanted that level of difficulty in her life.

    Is this true… eh… I kinda doubt it. A lot of things fit, but the way that Stan Lee flirts with non-answering this question makes me believe it wasn’t meant. It might have been left open as a possibility… but then also I doubt they were that good of a writing team back then. And it’s heavily implied in the comics since that she never knew (it may even be outright stated… i stopped reading in the early ’90s).

    So when Michelle says “I’m very perceptive” it all clicked for me. I knew at that moment that this would be MJ and I predict that they are going to flirt with her knowing who Spider-Man is in following movies.

    * I erred in an above post/response when I said it was MJ’s mom setting up the couple. It was Aunt May and MJ’s Aunt Anna, neighbors and co-conspirators in the plot to hook up Peter and MJ.

  29. Volvagia says:

    Now, I haven’t seen it yet, so I don’t know what my reaction to it would be, though I’m guessing at least positive, but based on the reveal that the Captain Marvel movie is set in the 90s? I’m really expecting Kamala Khan to show up somehow in the sequel.

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