The currently untitled Spider-Man 3 has been pushed back to November 2021, due to the unforeseen COVID019 crisis. However, that hasn’t stopped people from speculating what’s next for our favourite web-slinging Avenger. Though, does that mean one of his closest allies will find themselves in the firing line?
Peter Parker (Tom Holland) is about to find himself in even bigger danger in his next solo outing. After his adventure in Europe sees him not only get the girl (Zendaya), but a new enemy in Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal), Spider-Man Far From Home shows the young hero’s struggles as he deals to come to terms with the death of his father-figure and mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr). However, Spidey’s journey is about to get even more complicated as he was outed in the mid-credit scene by a meant-to-be dead Quentin Beck and J. Jonah Jameson (J.K. Simmons). Essentially, they’re putting the teenager in the firing line for ridicule!
With his identity under threat and the lives of his girlfriend MJ, best friend Ned (Jacob Batalon) and May (Marisa Tomei) in the firing line, how will Peter navigate saving those closest to him?
Villains Come Out To Play
With Peter being revealed as Spider-Man, it will be open season for anyone who wants him dead. This will put May, MJ, and Ned in the firing line if any villains look into Parker’s associates. So, who do we know could go after his family?
Well, it’s been rumoured that Kraven the Hunter and/or Norman Osborn could appear in the film as the villain. We’ve been given a few hints to this in Far from Home. One of the mob members from the short, Peter’s To-Do List is seen wearing leopard print. Meanwhile, Oscorp could be one of two buildings that takes the place of the old Avengers Tower.
We’ve already seen Vulture, and two versions of the Shocker. It’s unclear if Mysterio is actually still alive, which hopefully will be answered in the film.
Who Is Most Likely To Be In The Firing Line?
Now, we need to ask ourselves how much leverage May, MJ, and Ned might be to whoever the villain is. If you look at it from a third person perspective, the three people closest to Peter are pretty easy pickings. However, we need to look at it in most logical manner possible.
The most important person in Peter’s life is his Aunt May, his sole guardian and family member. She was left to raise him after the death of her husband, Ben. It makes total sense for her to be a target on any villain’s hit list. If this were to happen, it wouldn’t be the first time a Spider-Man villain has taken the loveable Parker relative.
In 2004’s Spider-Man 2 Aunt May (Rosemary Harris) is kidnapped by Doctor Octopus (Alfred Molina) and its happened several times in the comics. If this were to happen, it would hit Peter extremely hard because from what we can gather, he blames himself for what happened to Uncle Ben. It’s never been stated what happened to him, but it’s obvious he’s dead.
If May does end up in the firing line of Spider-Man 3‘s villain, then it might end up as dévà vu for Peter, given what happened in the past.
By the time Far from Home ended, Peter had gotten the girl. MJ had a not-so-subtle crush on our favourite web-slinger that dates back to Spider-Man: Homecoming. However, he was crushing on Liz (Laura Harrier).
However in the comics, MJ’s counterparts Mary-Jane Watson and Gwen Stacy were always getting kidnapped. In one case, Stacy was murdered after being thrown off a bridge by Green Goblin. When Parker tried to save her, he contributed to her death by accidentally snapping her neck.
Gwen (Emma Stone) even died in the Amazing Spider-Man 2 after Harry Osborn (Dane DeHaan) becomes the Green Goblin and swears revenge on Peter when he discovers he’s Spider-Man. He throws his former BFF’s girlfriend off a clock tower to her death.
Now, the MCU has seen a far few grisly deaths in its time. However, the Spider-Man films are seen as more light-hearted unlike the Avengers movies, which are much darker in tone. If the writers of the Spidey flick do put MJ in danger, it would have to be for a pretty good reason for them to do it.
Another person on our villain firing line list is Ned, Peter’s best friend. These two are basically brothers and are always looking out for each other. However, what if Leeds is put in danger and Parker has to save him?
Being involved with superheroes is nothing new to Ned as he discovered Peter was Spider-Man by accident. Despite geeking out over his best friend’s heroics, he has always been supportive and is the ‘man in the chair’. So, let’s think about what might happen if our favourite BFF got captured by the enemy. What are the chances something terrible might happen?
Well, if we’re honest here, we’d say Ned being kidnapped or hurt by the antagonist of the next Spider-Man movie is pretty slim compared to May or MJ. Now, why would this be when he’s equally as important to Peter as his aunt and girlfriend are? The writers of the MCU films have a habit of going off script when it comes to the backstories of most characters.
We all know in the comics that Harry Osborn is Peter’s best friend and that Parker gotten bitten by a radioactive spider. However, in the MCU, we don’t see the bite happen and it’s only referenced in a conversation between Peter and Ned. Also, Leeds being a friend to our hero also goes outside the mythos of the character, not that we’re complaining. We ADORE Ned as a character!
Happy Hogan is really low on our list for the following reason: he’s more of a go-between for Peter. What do we mean by this? Well, when Tony was alive, Parker would have to report to Happy whenever he was out on petrol and it bugged Iron Man’s BFF. The head of security for Stark Industries is also no stranger to getting caught up in superhero affairs. he was almost killed by Alrich Killian and ended up in a very bad way because of the villain’s war against Stark.
Also, very few villains would know of Happy’s link to Peter. Okay, well, he did have a summer fling with May, but that had nothing to do with her nephew. If we’re honest, being associated with Spider-Man through May and Tony doesn’t make him that much of a target given they don’t interact that much.
We cannot believe we’re actually putting Eugene ‘Flash’ Thompson on this list of people who might be in the firing line. He and Peter are far from friends, but he is a Spider-Man fanboy. Or at least, he was until the Daily Bugle destroyed Peter’s life. For now, we don’t actually know what Flash’s reaction will be to his adversary also being his favourite superhero. There’s a couple of scenarios that we can think of that might happen, but that’s for later.
The reason Flash is so low on our list is that he’s not exactly friendly with Peter. He enjoys bullying Peter, but if the scene in Far from Home where MJ tells off Brad for spying on Peter in the bathroom is any indication, he also doesn’t like anyone picking on his nemesis who isn’t him. Will he protect Peter if questioned? Maybe.
The last person on our list is Betty, Ned’s ex-girlfriend. The only connection that Brant has with Peter is her former boyfriend and MJ.
It’s not known how much the pair actually interact but it’s clear they know each each other fairly well as Peter is seen helping Betty out of the boat when the it crashes during the water elemental’s attack in Venice.
What Villain Would Have A Big Enough Grudge To Go After Peter?
Now that we’ve covered the firing line suspects, we need to go over which villains would have a big enough grudge to go after a vulnerable Peter and for what purpose. We’ve already mentioned the rumoured Kraven the Hunter and the Norman Osborn version of the Green Goblin.
As of Spider-Man Far from Home, we don’t know the statuses of the villains who survived Homecoming. For all we know, Adrian Toomes/Vulture is out walking around with the Shocker. Since the MCU Spider-Man films also tie in Sony’s Marvel universe of Spidey characters as Toomes is seen being transferred in the trailer for Moribus, there’s a few antagonists who would want Peter dead.
The first person we wanted to talk about here was Mac Gargan better known as Scorpion. The guy was a member of Adrian Toomes’ crew and was a violent criminal as he’d killed people. This is mentioned by Peter’s AI Karen that resided inside the first suit Tony made for him.
During the mid-credit scene of Homecoming, Toomes is about walk to the meeting area to meet with his family when Gargan intercepts him. He then asks if he knows Spider-Man’s identity. The Vulture lies and says he doesn’t because if he did, he’d be dead by now.
Michael Mando who played Gargan said to “stay tuned” in regards to him popping up again in the MCU. It should be noted that Scorpion could easily form a version of the Sinister Six if it happens alongside Vulture, the Shocker, Mysterio (if he’s alive) and whoever the other two might be. We’ve got our fingers crossed for Doc Ock.
The antagonist of Spider-Man: Homecoming is Michael Keaton’s Adrian Toomes/Vulture. However, we learn he has a beef with Tony because he took away his opportunity to salvage alien technology from the Attack on New York in 2012. So, he took to being a criminal, a fact his wife and daughter didn’t know until he got arrested and tried to kill Spidey in the process.
Since he’s already been a villain to Peter, it’s unlikely he could play a role in another film. However, if there was a Sinister Six team up movie, it’s likely he’d probably be in that. Though, he is slated to appear in the Moribus flick as a way of lining up the MCU universe with the one being established by Sony.
We know Toomes is still pretty wounded internally over being bought down a few pegs by Peter. He even lies to Mac Gargan about whether he knew Spider-Man’s civilian identity. Could he be vengeful enough to try and take on Parker again?
We’ll dive into how Mysterio might come back in a later post, but for now we’re going to focus on his team of fired Stark employees. What do all these people have against a teenage superhero with spider-like abilities? Probably nothing but they’ll blame anyone for their own predicaments, including anyone associated with Tony and that includes Peter.
Though, we need to ask why didn’t they go after some of the people directly associated with Tony like his wife, Pepper or his two best friends, Happy or Rhodey? Wouldn’t they have been easier targets than a kid who was an ‘intern’ at Stark Industries?
Individually, these guys and ladies are nobodies and can cause no real damage. However, when they’re together, they make a load of noise, though they remain in the shadows. If we had to really think hard about it, they were overshadowed by their leader’s huge ego and thirst for thinking he’s better than the one and only Tony Stark.
What if by some strange coincidence, one of the members of the group hated what Beck stood for? How weird would it be if this member – whoever it is – became the new Mysterio and lies that they were the one responsible for framing Peter and that Beck had nothing to do with it and was just using him as a scapegoat? Anything’s possible at this point.