Warning: SPOILERS for Spider-Man: No Way Home are in play. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, you definitely should turn back to avoid learning the twists ahead.
It should be said that Spider-Man: No Way Home is absolutely a Christmas movie, for two huge reasons. Not only does this latest Marvel movie take place during the holiday season, giving it most of the evidence it needs to land that case, but it’s also kind of an MCU spin on It’s A Wonderful Life. We say that because Peter Parker (Tom Holland) made a wish for everyone to forget his existence, and unlike George Bailey, it came true. This leaves Spider-Man’s new MCU status following the events of No Way Home in a rather interesting place.
Most Of Spider-Man’s History Is Still Intact
The kinda/sorta good news pertaining to Peter Parker’s wish is that while the world doesn’t know who he is, Spider-Man is still very much in the public consciousness. In fact, we really don’t need to worry too much about most of what happens before Spider-Man: Far From Home outed Parker as the webhead himself. It’s a double-edged sword though, as the complicated life that Peter once led just became even more out of sorts, despite his costumed alter ego being unaffected by the massive ending to his latest adventure.
That’s going to be a very complicated situation, as Mr. Parker’s heroism lives on, despite his personal life being a blank slate. But hey, at least Spider-Man will be the sole party responsible for Mysterio's death and not Peter Parker, right?
Spider-Man Still Exists, Peter Parker Does Not
What happens when the hero you’re using as a cover exists, but you technically don’t count as a person? Well, as we saw in Spider-Man: No Way Home’s bittersweet ending, Peter Parker needs to rebuild his life. Thanks to some GED materials sitting in his backpack as he settles into his new apartment, Tom Holland’s MCU hero is going to have to rebuild his personal history.
Even worse, he’s going to have to get a job, as the condition of his new digs only reflects the worst part about his current situation. For someone who was learning about how hard it is to juggle being Spider-Man and Peter Parker, our friend now depends on his high flying antics to help him feel like he even belongs in this corner of the multiverse.
Our Friendly Neighborhood Spider-Man Has No Resources
When Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) died in Avengers: Endgame, Peter Parker lost a valuable mentor that gave him resources beyond his wildest dreams. This was something we weren’t used to seeing Spider-Man take command of, especially throughout his MCU solo efforts.
Now, with Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) dead and Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) not having a clue who he is, Peter’s future past Spider-Man: No Way Home is going to look a bit more familiar. Now living in a run down apartment and only steps away from working for The Daily Bugle, gone are the days of the Iron Spider suits, the Stark Industries labs and even having The Avengers to fall back on as a support group. Speaking of Earth's Mightiest Heroes...
The Avengers Will Eventually Have To Rediscover Who Spider-Man Really Is
At the moment, all of the Avengers must be having a hell of a time trying to remember who Spider-Man was. Again, they’ll remember the adventures they had with him from his introduction in Captain America: Civil War all the way through Avengers: Endgame; so the major events will still be there. But imagine fighting alongside a costumed superhero in a group full of those types of people, and yet you don't know this individual's true identity.
Things are going to be a lot of fun for Peter Parker/Spider-Man, as he’s going to have to reintroduce himself all over again to his friends. Peter’s resourceful, but even he can’t hide from The Avengers; or anyone who really wants to “know” him in the field.
All Of Spider-Man’s Enemies Are Probably Trying To Kill Him Again
Spider-Man's foes are going to be yet another problem when it comes to Peter Parker’s new lack-of-identity crisis. For instance, take Adrian Toomes (Michael Keaton), as once he realized Peter Parker was the costumed vigilante that was foiling his personal operations in Spider-Man: Homecoming, he was more likely to keep his secret.
While he may still remember Spider-Man sparing his life, the fact that he doesn’t know it was a teenager who once tried to date his daughter could become an issue and lead to a messy reunion. Provided, of course, that his future appearance in Morbius doesn’t somehow complicate that situation further. The multiverse only increases the caveats any events we witness in the MCU will come with, as it feels like Peter Parker has only been forgotten in this particular universe.
Peter Parker Will Probably Be More Guarded About His Personal Relationships
Right as he was ready to reintroduce himself to Michelle (Zendaya) and Ned (Jacob Batalon), Peter Parker made a last minute decision to spare his former girlfriend and previous best friend the burden of knowing him. Continuing to bear the great power and responsibility of Spider-Man, we’re probably going to see a Peter that’s even more guarded about having personal relationships after No Way Home. He might not even try to make new friends or love connections for some time after seeing what his life as a hero almost cost him and those he loved.
Saddled with the moral lessons of Spider-Man: No Way Home, as well as the loss of Aunt May haunting him, Peter Parker’s status in the MCU looks like it’ll see him living as a phantom. Staying under the radar so he doesn’t kill anyone by mere association, but still swinging into action when his police scanner dictates, this new era of Spidey looks to get closer to the traditional incarnation that people know and love. Maybe there will come a day when Mr. Parker will feel comfortable around people again; but knowing him, it’ll take a big event to force his hand into trusting anyone new in the future.
Should you be someone who likes to read up on spoilers before heading out to the theater, there’s no shame here. However, we would still recommend that if you if you have't seen Spider-Man: No Way Home yet, you should absolutely do so whenever you feel comfortable. The twists and turns described above are all the better to see play out in a huge, blockbuster context; and you’re missing out on a ton of new Michael Giacchino music on a premium sound system if you don’t.
CinemaBlend's James Bond (expert). Also versed in Large Scale Aggressors, time travel, and Guillermo del Toro. He fights for The User.
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