As the next installment in the animated world of Spider-Man prepares to hit screens this weekend, it sounds like Marvel’s Spider-Man will see a new side of Peter Parker, growing up as a more mature version of the wall-crawling hero.
Losing your parents and then your uncle in equally catastrophic circumstances isn't easy for anyone, but Peter Parker's tragic plight has always been part of what makes the character unique. Forced to keep his identity a secret, and with no one to mentor the young hero, Spider-Man has been a solo savior of New York City. However, as Disney ushers in a new era of the character with Marvel's Spider-Man, Peter will be bringing some fan-favorite characters along with him to teach them the ways of the web.
Fans already know that the cast will include characters like Gwen Stacy, Doctor Octopus, and Miles Morales, but Cort Lane, Senior Vice President for Animation and Family Entertainment at Marvel revealed in an interview with Screen Rant that the role of Peter Parker will be more than just goofy science kid who plays vigilante after doing his homework:
"As other characters get powers, that complicates Peter's life and that's the story that we want to tell. When Miles gets his powers, Peter has a sense of responsibility for him because he's younger; he doesn't have the lessons from Uncle Ben. He wants to do good, but he's a little more reckless and enthusiastic."
If dealing with puberty and your own radioactive spider bite powers isn't bad enough, it sounds like Peter's journey in helping his other super friends won't be plain sailing. Even though the show won't have a "villain of the week" formula, Lane's words imply that Harry Osborn could be taking on the Green Goblin persona to emerge as an early villain on the show:
"There's a sense of responsibility as other characters develop powers, and as Harry, in his own way, develops powers... not so nice powers. It's really just about how Peter deals with it, and also to create the contrast with how responsibly Peter uses his abilities and how others, even when they are well meaning, don't necessarily do so as responsibly. The mantra that Peter has about great power and great responsibility is something that truly he seems to understand better than anyone else."
Thankfully, the wise words of Uncle Ben and that whole "with great power comes great responsibility" will still be ringing true in Spidey's ears. The show features Patton Oswalt as Uncle Ben, but with Peter seemingly alone in leading his friends, don't expect Spider-Man's de facto father figure to be sticking around long term. Given that this year's Spider-Man: Homecoming featured Tony Stark as the mentor to Peter, it is great to see that Disney is showcasing an older Peter who is ready to take some familiar faces under his wing in Marvel’s Spider-Man and a new imagining for the world of web-head.
Marvel’s Spider-Man premieres Saturday, August 19 on Disney XD.