It’s just a few weeks until Captain America: Civil War and the element which continues to generate excitement for the movie apart from starring almost all of the Avengers and Cap going toe-to-toe with Iron Man is the return of Spider-Man to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Everyone probably stood up and screamed when Spidey made his appearance in the Civil War trailer. Now to further the hype around the movie, Marvel and Sony finally revealed the title of the web slinger’s upcoming standalone movie—Spider-Man: Homecoming. That’s the title Marvel Studios and Sony came up with. I don’t like it, but I don’t hate it either. Though I wish they’d change it soon.
Spidey still has plenty of unused comic book titles such as Web of Spider-Man, Spectacular Spider-Man, Peter Parker: Spider-Man, Sensational Spider-Man, Ultimate Spider-Man and Superior Spider-Man. Or How about Spider-Man: The New Avenger, The Definitive Spider-Man, The Awesome Spider-Man or even The Real Spider-Man. If they want it R-Rated, The Sexy Spider-Man. Well, those would be some good titles. But again, I don’t hate the title because Sony and Marvel probably want to stress that Spidey is back home. Back in Marvel’s hands and supervision.
Sure. Thanks to Sony, Spider-Man is now part of the MCU. But if that’s the only reason, the title is a bit uncanny, out-of-place or totally useless. Some porn outfits might find it useful. But Marvel better be careful since the title also helps sell a movie. Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants? Gigli? Those movies ring a bell? But since the world knows that Marvel Studios can do no wrong (most of the time), fans should let it pass especially if Spider-Man’s participation in Civil War beats the bar of cinematic excellence set by Captain America: Winter Soldier. Whatever the title, I’d watch it anyway. But there are several Spider-Man comic book issues entitled Homecoming that might be related to the new movie’s story, such as the comic book character’s return from the original Secret Wars storyline in 1984 or Mary Jane Watson’s Homecoming dance in 2005 both of which are unlikely.
Homecoming might also allude to Spider-Man’s return from whatever transpires in Captain America: Civil War or whatever adventures he participates afterwards. He might end up in some critical condition like his comic book counterpart when he was almost killed after defecting from Tony Stark’s side in the Civil War comic books. Whatever the case, the title definitely points to his return to the MCU.
Anything else to the story? Will Marvel and Sony re-tell his origin? Not a chance. We’ve seen Uncle Ben get killed when a thief stole his car. We’ve seen Uncle Ben get killed trying to be a hero despite his old age. The audience is already confused. The closest Uncle Ben death was during the first Raimi movie. It was done faithfully to the comic book that is until Spider-Man 3 retconned it to involve Flint Marko, the Sandman. That was disappointing. No. In the Batman movies, they just did it through flashbacks. But seeing Thomas and Martha Wayne dying again and again has really gone stale. Helped a great deal though in Batman V Superman turning both heroes from adversaries to besties. It was also good to know that Thomas and Martha were played by The Walking Dead stars Jeffrey Dean “John Winchester” Morgan (Negan) and Lauren Cohan (Maggie). Peter Parker will be seeing Uncle Ben again and again in flashbacks reminding him that “with great power comes great responsibility”. Hopefully not too much.
About Spider-Man 3, what made the movie a disaster according to many (still okay to watch on cable), is studio interference. Cram Venom in, they said. Slap Mary Jane, they said. Have Flint Marko kill Uncle Ben they said. Harry Osborn’s weird goblin would be fun they said. Will Marvel Studios and Sony always be on the same comic book pages? Will Sony’s directors and crew not bat an eyelash during the Marvel Cinematic Universe seminars sharing seats with ABC, Netflix and Freeform? The MCU needs to be cohesive, and we fans don’t like plot holes. That’s quite a difficult feat unlike DCs franchises taking the easy way out where Flash and Green Arrow are in Earth 1 and Supergirl is in Earth 2 and Gotham is wherever. The difficulty is, unfortunately, growing apparent in Agents of SHIELD. The whole thing would probably be okay if Marvel Studios takes full control of the production as long as Sony retains franchise ownership, gets a significant cut and probably get to produce for additional Marvel heroes. It’s a shame for them letting go of Blade and Ghost Rider. Marvel is fine without them for now but I’d like to see a good Ghost Rider and Blade movie in my lifetime provided the MCU movies remain great, and nothing derails their decade-long future plans. The reception of the Batman V Superman film screwed up Warner’s timeline and gave the upcoming Suicide Squad a little less Nolan and a little more Miller.
The clock is ticking, Civil War is coming and let’s give our favorite webhead the homecoming he deserves. May Sony do right by him this time or he’ll become the masked menace in the MCU that J. Jonah Jameson paints him out to be.