Not Liking Spider-Man Didn't Stop Me From Enjoying 'Homecoming'


#1

I’m not a big Spider-Man fan, but ‘Homecoming’ was still wildly enjoyable.


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://waypoint.vice.com/en_us/article/kza37z/not-liking-spider-man-didnt-stop-me-from-enjoying-homecoming

#2

we pubbed this yesterday then moved it to today which is why it was showing yesterday with nowhere to click through to :sweat_smile: but here’s the REAL THING !!!

EDIT: also these all look like they’re posted from me but they auto-pop from the site (I’m actually a spidey fan) :wink:


#3

Peter Parker is much more than some white guy. He a man who struggles with his life as a teen with relationships and work and life with being a hero. Even if he White he connects to everyone who trying to get through life.


#4

SPOILERS for Spider-Man: Homecoming, Avengers: Age of Ultron, The Avengers, and Captain America: Civil War

more self-aware take on the Avengers universe—excuse me, MCU—that hints, at the very tippy-top surface level some kind of awareness of the mega-privilege of main series heroes like Tony Stark.

I dunno, I feel like Avengers: Age of Ultron (for all of its flaws) and Captain America: Civil War directly demonstrated their awareness of the privilege of the Avengers before Spider-Man: Homecoming and in a much louder way. You get that in AoU with the reason for Wanda and Pietro’s distaste for Stark, the United States, and the Avengers. In Civil War, the very premise deals with the idea that the Avengers need to be restricted and monitored.

Now do those movies handle it well? AoU, not at all (it doesn’t handle anything well lol), and I don’t think anyone would disagree. Wanda and Pietro switching sides makes sense in the context of them learning what Ultron’s eventual plans were (the elimination of humanity), but the film fails to address the very reason they protested and volunteered themselves to gain powers in the first place. With Civil War, the necessity of putting a leash on the Avengers serves as the backdrop but drives the plot, but it never forces the characters to directly face the consequences of their previous actions in terms of the damage they cause and continue to cause. The only exceptions are when woman who confronts Stark about her son’s death at the beginning of the film and when Helmut Zemo reveals the reason for which he causes this internal conflict among the Avengers at the end of the film.

I don’t think Toomes/Vulture adequately addresses this issue in Spider-Man: Homecoming either, and definitely less so than in AoU or CA:CW. Yes, he has a distaste for Stark and the Avengers, but his driving motivations throughout the rest of the film are mostly driven by money and the need to keep up his family’s state of living. Some would argue that his character is undermined by the fact that he himself lives in a pretty nice house and seems pretty wealthy. Of course at the beginning of the film when arguing with the representatives from the Department of Damage Control, Toomes says (once?) that his company needs the contract for his employees, but it’s not like the rest of the film really does anything with that either outside of employing them as his henchmen. Toomes never really goes after the Avengers or Stark outside of the plane transporting stuff from Avengers Tower, but that was out of convenience and not vengeance either.

I’m a bit torn. On one hand, what can the Avengers do if Loki decides to unleash the Chitauri in New York City? The collateral damage caused there and the loss of human lives were unavoidable, and the Avengers did the best they could given the circumstances. They did save the world and continue to do so in the other films. On the other hand, their mistakes can cause the unnecessary deaths of many and so much damage, as seen in the entirety of Age of Ultron and throughout Civil War. I think forcing these characters to acknowledge and confront this stuff can make for really good stories and moments. But I think the underlying assumption for viewers, especially after Civil War, whether it is right or not, is that these superheroes need the freedom to act when and where to address the threats to Earth (or well, any civilization in the universe).

Ultimately I think we’ll see fewer chances for this stuff to be addressed as the near entirety of the MCU’s currently 16-film lineup will lead into Avengers: Infinity War, in which the threat that Thanos and the Infinity Gauntlet poses will make everything prior seem insignificant by comparison. That doesn’t excuse the MCU films for their inability to meaningfully address the privilege of these superheroes, but I don’t think they’re in a position to adequately do that anymore. If anything, the TV side of the MCU is in a better position to do that.

EDIT:

a pretty corny dude, a lucky straight white boy (at least, of what I’d seen, purely from the movies) who gets to be a special athlete-hero and get the girl and all that.

lmao now that I think about it, that’s also the three main white men in the MCU (Rogers, Stark, Thor)

I still love them all though


#5

Boats: still on the shit list


#6

It’s cool that you don’t like Spidey but you might be missing a few things about him by describing him as “lucky”. His marriage being erased from existence and Green Goblin not only basically killing Gwen Stacy but revealing that he slept with her and got two kids out of it are just a few things that pull him away from that word.


#7

Yeah, I found her reasoning for not liking Peter to be rather shallow. I’m by no means an expert on his character, but I know enough to say that he isn’t someone who has everything handed to him on a silver platter. There’s more complexity there. But I can see that if you just go by his portrayal in the films you might miss some of the more interesting things from the comics.


#8

For what it’s worth, I absolutely loathed all of the Spider-man movies before Homecoming despite being a huge fan of the character. I also have no issue with someone not liking Spider-man, everyone’s entitled to their own opinions, etc etc.

But.

I REALLY dislike the characterization of Peter as a lucky straight white boy. I know that comes from the movies which are trying to compact decades of comic book history and character moments into two hours, but it’s just a fundamental misunderstanding of what the character means and represents. Peter is strictly working class in his origin which immediately sets him aside from most of the superhero pantheon. He’s famously UNLUCKY, and is honestly the only character who really represents the duality of being a superhero and a regular person. Superman is a mask Clark Kent puts on. Bruce Wayne is a mask for Batman. Iron Man is just a suit that lets Tony Stark be more Tony Starkish. Peter and Spidey are two people in the same body. And at least from my experience as a minority, that duality really resonated - I had a face for the outside world that was dedicated to just fitting in and a face for my real friends and family.

As “nerdiness” becomes more mainstream, a lot of Peter’s impact is lost, agreed. But to a nerdy Asian kid growing up in a time where owning dice with more than six sides was social suicide, Peter represented the socially awkward, cerebral, nerdy minority. Dealing with bullies, being attracted to people who you considered out of your league, missing the signs when those feelings were inexplicably returned, juggling secrets from your friends, were all things that Peter helped guide me through. And as much as I love Miles Morales, that’s not who he is and what he can do.