HUGE SPOILERS are ahead for Spider-Man: No Way Home. Seriously, you’re going to want to see this moment in a theater before reading about it here.
Okay, we need to talk about the best scene in Spider-Man: No Way Home. You know what I’m talking about. It’s the moment when the Spider-Men of cinema’s past unite in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While Jacob Batalon's Ned and Zendaya’s MJ are hanging back at Ned's place while Tom Holland’s Spider-Man deals with the multiverse, they make a few massive startling discoveries. And amidst all this, Marvel crafted a beautiful and memorable scene that already means a lot to the Filipino community.
First of all, we learn Ned Leeds can conduct magic a la Doctor Strange. Peter Parker's best friend then decides to test his powers and open a portal to see Peter Parker. But the Peters he calls upon end up being the previous film incarnations of the character, marking the return of Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire as their respective Web-Slingers. As audiences sit in shock of the long-running rumors being legit, our Spider-Men are interacting with Ned’s Lola, who speaks in Tagalog throughout the scene. The online reactions to this aspect of the scene are especially emotional.
When Ned’s Lola spoke Tagalog in #SpiderMan pic.twitter.com/ERfWVBzHu3December 17, 2021
Filipino Americans quickly took to Twitter to share the pride and gratitude they felt for Marvel for making arguably the most shocking and iconic scenes from Spider-Man: No Way Home a moment of rare representation for the community. As one fan shared:
Not only was Tagalog spoken in the biggest Spider-Man movie ever, but it happened in the most anticipated Spidey scene ever. As a Fil-Am who's been obsessed with Spidey since I was a little kid, I can't even express how moved I was at that moment. Thank you, Marvel!#NoWayHomeDecember 19, 2021
In the scene, Ned’s Lola speaks to both Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man in Tagalog without translation, and Jacob Batalon’s Ned translates. One particularly great moment is when she instructs Garfield’s Peter to crawl up on the ceiling and clean up the spider web in the corner of the room. Here’s another great reaction:
When Ned's lola scolded everyone in Tagalog, it suddenly wasn't Spiderman: No Way Home... no no, it was Spiderman: Already Home for my Filipino ass. #SpiderManNoWayHome pic.twitter.com/m38JrE8jxcDecember 17, 2021
The scene becomes more incredible because of the fact that Spider-Man: No Way Home is already a record-breaking box office hit after its first weekend in theaters. The Marvel film scored $260 million domestically, $7 million more than what was initially reported.
The Tagalog in Spider Man made me feel like I was part of some inside joke I love Filipino representationDecember 19, 2021
The movie had the third-biggest worldwide opening of all time, second-biggest domestic debut of all time and the biggest December opening of all time; all this amidst a pandemic. Oh, and it’s just about universally loved, as evidenced by the great reviews and a rare A+ Cinemascore. Tons of people have seen the scene, and amongst them many Filipino people who now feel represented on the big screen.
ned’s lola speaking tagalog with no subs & me laughing in a packed theater, only one understanding, is the only filipino Representation i ever needed #SpiderManDecember 17, 2021
You can check out CinemaBlend’s exclusive discussion with Jacob Batalon for Spider-Man: No Way Home and follow along for more Spider-Man coverage.
YA genre tribute. Horror May Queen. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.
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