It’s finally here, it’s real, and it’s spectacular — or should we say, amazing? The first trailer for Spider-Man: Homecoming has finally dropped into the world, spilling the beans on what might be the single most anticipated superhero movie out there that doesn’t have “infinity” or “justice” in the title. Filled with surprises, laughs, and thrilling moments, the trailer gives us our first look at the Vulture, a bigger glimpse at what Spidey’s role in the MCU will be, and at least one Easter egg you definitely missed. It is to Marvel’s credit that they manage to do this while still leaving a lot of plot elements shrouded in mystery (no easy feat!), and in the end, paint an exciting picture of a movie that could easily be one of the biggest releases in 2017.
All of this begs the question: after previously hitting his peak back in 2004, has the time come for Spider-Man to rule the multiplex once again? Based on this exciting trailer, our answer is yes. Here’s our Spider-Man: Homecoming Trailer Breakdown.
15. High School Daze
When he was first introduced by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko, one of the things that first made Spider-Man unique among superheroes was his young age. While prior Spider-Man film adaptations have largely focused on his college years — since it quickly became difficult to pretend that either Tobey Maguire or Andrew Garfield were still in high school — Homecoming is making it very clear here that they intend to put the high school setting front and center. In sharp contrast to the more experienced webslinger that we’re used to seeing, this Spidey is still earning his webs.
Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige has stated before that his aim with a Spider-Man movie is to create a sort of John Hughes-style film, reminiscent of flicks like Sixteen Candles and The Breakfast Club. Now that the trailer is here, we can see what that looks like, and so far, it fits the character of Peter Parker like a glove. There are lots of shots of him walking around his high school, sitting in class, and interacting with classmates like your average teenager. Unlike the slick and high-tech tone of the Avengers movies, the world that Peter inhabits seems very grounded (but also not as dark as the Netflix side of the Marvel Cinematic Universe). It’s a setting that very much fits the poor high school kid from Queens who is suddenly gifted with both great power and great responsibility.
14. This Spidey is Still Very Green – And Eager to Prove Himself
Right from the first scene, after beating up an ATM vestibule full of thugs in trademark Spider-Man style, the web-head stops to exclaim, “That was awesome!” As an up-and-comer in New York’s superhuman community, the young hero himself is still very much surprised by his own abilities. Clearly, this is the same young Spider-Man who expressed enthusiasm and delight at meeting Captain America for the first time, but now, he’s spent some time in the big leagues, come back home, and is eager to make a name for himself.
He’s definitely a work in progress, and he’s trying his damndest to prove himself to all of the adults around him, not unlike most kids his age. So far, this seems like it’s going to be the main arc of Peter’s character in the film. Homecoming will likely be a coming of age story, the tale of a gifted young man fighting to show the world that he’s more than what people perceive him to be. That’s textbook Lee/Ditko era Spider-Man, right there.
13. Liz Allan seems to be the main love interest
There’s been a huge amount of stirring online about Zendaya, and who she might be playing in the film. Though she’s initially been announced as “Michelle,” there’s a lot of speculation out there that she might evolve to become some form of Mary Jane Watson, Peter’s soulmate in the comics.
So far, it’s hard to say. There’s only a brief glimpse of her in the trailer, where she’s seen sitting in the cafeteria with a pile of books, her hair messy (and not-so-red), referring to Peter and his friend Ned Leeds as “losers,” but there’s definitely more going on with this character than meets the eye. We wouldn’t rule out the possibility that she eventually evolves into a more traditional MJ character (despite the actress’ assertions to the contrary).
However, in Peter’s eyes, Michelle is an afterthought in comparison to the girl he’s truly pining for. From what we can tell from the trailer, the object of our young hero’s desires seems to be Liz Allan (Laura Harrier), who fittingly enough was actually his first love interest in the comics, and who has never had any role in the films to date. Though Peter is initially seen merely gawking at Liz, there are a number of implications later on that imply that at some point in the film, they form a closer relationship.
12. The MCU Connection is a Big Part of the Movie
If there’s one thing that Marvel is really selling this movie on, other than the whole John Hughes-style coming of age story, it’s the notion of “Hey, Spidey’s back in the Marvel Universe!” (hence the title). This trailer goes out of its way to make sure the viewer is aware of this right from its opening scene, where the thugs that Spidey beats up are all wearing Avengers masks.
The references don’t end there, however. In addition to implications that at least some parts of the movie may take place before and/or during Civil War, there’s also multiple scenes shared between Tom Holland’s Peter and Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark, thus cementing the notion that Tony is, for now, Peter’s somewhat-less-than-sage-like Yoda. At one point, Peter seems to be wearing a shirt that Pepper Potts previously sported in Iron Man 3. This was obviously the key reason that Sony made its deal with Marvel in the first place, so it’s not hugely surprising, but it’s nonetheless delightful to see it all come to life, and to see where Spider-Man fits with everything that has happened before.
11. Science Class is Boring, Even with Bruce Banner
When you’re a science wiz like Peter, sitting in a freshman science class can be a tedious affair. Particularly if you’ve recently been bitten by a radioactive spider and become the amazing Spider-Man. Oh, and you just so happened to have the extraordinarily unlikely fortune of Tony Stark sending you on a plane to Europe, designing a new costume for you, and pitting you against Giant Ant-Man. Considering all of this, it’s not such a surprise that Peter is busy watching cell phone footage from Civil War instead of focusing on his studies.
What is surprising, though, is the blink-and-you’ll-miss-it cameo from Bruce Banner — not in person, mind you, but as a part of MCU history; a noteworthy scientist that would merit study in any high school science class. In the image above, you’ll notice a few recognizable faces amongst the pictures of famous scientists above the teacher’s head, including folks like Nicola Tesla and Albert Einstein. Follow that train all the way to the right, and you’ll see an image of Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner.
10. There’s Going to be Some Conflict Between Peter and Tony
It looks like there’s some trouble in paradise, folks. The trailer clearly sets up Tony Stark as Peter’s big brother/mentor/father figure, which is a natural fit, since we can assume that this version of Peter probably lost his Uncle Ben quite recently. Like we saw in Civil War, the trailer shows Peter feeling a lot of affection and admiration for Stark, going to him for advice and even misperceiving Stark’s attempt to boot the young hero from his car as an attempt at a hug.
However, it looks like Peter’s rebellious streak is going to break out at some point, probably early on. Though Tony previously brought the web-slinger along to go fight half of the Avengers (which definitely isn’t the most responsible move for an experienced adult), Tony is now trying to get Peter to keep his head down, stay out of trouble, and stick to small-time heroics.
That doesn’t go over well with the teenaged crimefighter, who says he’s sick of being treated like a kid all the time. Peter might be singing a different tune, however, when he defies Tony’s warning to, “stay away from the flying monster guy…”
9. Enter the Vulture
Compared to other Spider-Man villains, Adrian Toomes, aka the Vulture, has had a pretty arduous road to the big screen (especially considering the fact that he was the first supervillain that Spidey ever faced in the comics). He’s probably one of the wall-crawler’s most underrated villains, and he’s one of the most deserving for a juicy cinematic role. Sam Raimi wanted to use the Vulture as one of the main bad guys in Spider-Man 3, before Sony talked him into using Venom instead. He then really wanted to use him in Spider-Man 4, back before it got cancelled, even going so far as to cast John Malkovich in the part. The Vulture’s wings were later seen in Amazing Spider-Man 2, and he undoubtedly would have appeared if that series had continued.
But never mind any of that, because the Vulture has finally made his way to the big screen… and, good news for the fans, he’s pretty awesome. And he’s scary as hell.
While we only catch a few brief glimpses of what the Vulture can do, what is clear is that this is no geezer in feathery bird wings. Instead, his “wings” appear to be more along the lines of a small aircraft that he’s strapped into, his gear further enhanced by metal foot talons, a fighter pilot helmet, turbines, and probably more that we haven’t seen yet. This guy would be a serious threat even for an experienced Spider-Man to handle, much less Tom Holland’s freshman superhero.
8. Vulture Is Backed By A High Tech Crew
Though we don’t yet know for sure just how connected all these sinister-looking fellows are to Toomes, it would make sense that they’re somehow tied in to whatever scheme the Vulture is putting together. There’s a whole lot of laser weapons on display at various points throughout the trailer (including one that the big bad himself is wielding), and there’s even one more that didn’t actually pop up in the first preview for the web-head’s MCU solo debut.
For folks who were in the know, the drop of a second trailer intended for international audiences didn’t come as much of a shock; that was saved for a cameo appearance from the new film’s take on Herman Schultz, aka The Shocker. The D-list Spidey villain (as played by Bokeem Woodbine) has been rumored to appear for a while now, and this alternate trailer all but confirmed it.
Another major trailer surprise was the brief appearance from Donald Glover. It seems that Glover won’t be playing Miles Morales — the other Spider-Man — after all, and will instead be a villain of some sort. For now, we still don’t know exactly what his motivations are, how he may be connected to the Vulture, or really much of anything. But he and his laser gun-toting pal sure don’t look too friendly in the photo above.
7. Vulture Seems Like One Bad Dude
The casting of Michael Keaton as the Vulture is one of the biggest marketing points for Homecoming, and for good reason. If you’ve seen Birdman, or for that matter, Multiplicity — where he played multiple clones of the same character — then you know that Keaton is a gifted actor with some serious chops. The cinematic iterations of Spider-Man’s vaunted rogues gallery have been populated with many amazing actors over the years, from Willem Dafoe to Alfred Molina, but the personality of Keaton’s Adrian Toomes looks to be a major departure from what we’ve seen in the past.
While almost all of Spider-Man’s previous big screen villains have been fairly sympathetic figures, the Vulture appears to be a truly menacing baddie with no concerns about taking innocent life. It’s hard to imagine that this guy is doing what he’s doing for the right reasons. Though it may have been a clever bit of intentionally misleading trailer editing, Toomes seemingly sends Peter a pretty loud and clear message: “Don’t mess with me, ’cause I will kill you, and everyone you love.” And when he says it, he clearly means it.
This is pretty accurate to the comics, where the Vulture was always a bitter character, only becoming more sympathetic when he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. The movie’s director has noted that he wants the film to be populated with regular people, so we can expect that the Vulture has reasons for doing what he’s doing. And with Michael Keaton in the role, we expect that he will end up being one of the most interesting MCU villains to date, and a worthy successor to the lineup of great Spider-Man foes that the previous films have adapted.
6. Spidey is terrible at keeping his secret identity
The kid who Peter spends much of the trailer hanging out with is Ned Leeds (Jacob Batalon), who looks to be the young web-slinger’s best friend. This is something of a departure from the comics, where Ned has traditionally been portrayed as an experienced journalist that Peter meets at the Daily Bugle, who goes on to become framed as the true identity of the Hobgoblin.
However, the Ned Leeds in this movie seems set to play an entirely different role in Peter’s life, particularly with the surprise revelation that he stumbles upon Peter Parker’s secret identity. Though Peter fumbles for excuses, Ned’s no dummy, and it looks like he’s going to be Peter’s main confidante and ally throughout the film. Because this is such a significant departure from the comics, there’s no telling where this relationship will go in the future. As the series unfolds, will Ned become a journalist? Will he become the Hobgoblin? It’s too early to say.
What isn’t too early to say is that, even at this early state, Tom Holland’s Peter has shown immensely poor skills at keeping his identity a secret. Geez, Pete. Iron Man and Ned Leeds have already got the drop on you, and you’re not even 16 yet…
5. New Characters For A New Universe
Spider-Man is famous for having one of the biggest and most developed supporting casts of any superhero. If you want to get an indication of how big that cast is, just consider how few of the major players from previous Spider-Man film incarnations are making their way into Homecoming, and how new characters are being drawn from the comics for the first time.
For starters, we obviously have Ned Leeds subbing in for the role traditionally picked up by Harry Osborn (and sometimes Flash Thompson); that of Peter’s best friend. This is most likely to differentiate from the previous two Spider-franchises, where the Osborns played a big role. When it comes to that family, there’s a Goblin legacy that must be followed, and since we’ve seen that play out twice now, it makes sense that Marvel has elected to give Oscorp a rest for a bit. Liz Allan looks to be the love interest in this one, while Gwen and MJ are nowhere to be seen (unless Michelle ends up being MJ, but that’s a whole other story). J. Jonah Jameson and his merry band from the Daily Bugle haven’t really appeared on film since the Sam Raimi days, and the latest Spider adventure has (wisely) even elected to leave Uncle Ben on the sidelines.
Really, it seems that the only returning major characters are Peter and Aunt May. We’d expect that this will probably change when Homecoming lands a sequel, and some more of the classic supporting cast comes back into the picture. J.J., for one, has been particularly missed.
4. Holland’s in Superhero Shape
Tom Holland might look like a kid — though he’s actually 20, which still makes him the youngest Spidey to date by a healthy margin — but he’s definitely been working out, and it shows. In the one shot where Peter hastily removes his Spider-Man costume so that Ned won’t see it (even though his pal has already gotten an eyeful of the red and blue tights), it seems like Holland’s intense training regime, which he has said involved having electric belts strapped on for 20 minutes a week, has paid off.
Don’t be too surprised by that last part; he did film his audition tape at the same time as the Punisher, AKA Jon Bernthal, and if there’s anything that has ever sounded like a Punisher-style workout, well…
In any case, Holland is mirroring the sort of lean, muscular physique that the comic book Peter traditionally has, particularly when drawn by Mark Bagley. This is good, since he will need to believably lift cars without it looking silly. No radioactive spider-blood necessary.
Ah, the infamous armpit webs, the most on-and-off feature of Spider-Man’s costume. So many have said that they’d never be done, that they couldn’t be done, and that they’d look ridiculous in live action. And yet here we are, the web-wings have been brought to glorious life, and they’re featured front and center as one of the money shots of the trailer.
We only get one shot of the web-wings, as Spidey leaps from the top of the Washington Monument, spreads his arms out, and lets ’em rip — but it’s a beauty. It definitely appears that they aren’t there for purely aesthetic reasons, since he doesn’t appear to be donning them in any other scenes. They could even be being used to grant the wall-crawler some sort of gliding capability. Just as Marvel came up with a way to give Spidey’s moving lenses a functional reason for existing, it seems that the web-wings should serve a useful purpose as well.
2. A Spider-Man 2 Train Scene Callback?
Back when Spider-Man 2 was the biggest superhero event in history, the one scene that everyone couldn’t stop talking about was the train sequence. We’re not just talking about the brawl with Doctor Octopus, which was amazing enough, but also what immediately followed it. After Doc Ock sets the train on a path to destruction, Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man exerts himself nearly to the point of death in order to perform a feat that should be far beyond his capabilities — namely, stopping a high speed train through sheer force of will — and thus saving hundreds of people. It’s a breathtaking moment of pure heroism, a scene that encapsulates everything that makes Spider-Man such a great character, and an epic homage to the similarly-themed scene that took place in the comics, during the Master Planner storyline.
There’s a reason that the train scene is the most remembered moment in any Spider-Man movie to date, and there’s no doubt that Marvel is well aware of this. So we shouldn’t be so surprised by what we witnessed in the final moments of the trailer. Right before the title card is played, Spidey is placed in a similarly catastrophic situation, trying to accomplish the impossible; this time, he’s pulling two halves of a sinking ship together. Considering that even the pose is similar to the one in Spider-Man 2, with webs stretched out to both sides, the homage is clear.
That said, it’s hard to imagine that this sequence doesn’t take place in the final act of the film. Did Marvel reveal a bit too much too soon by including such an insane moment in the very first trailer? Probably. Was it still completely and entirely awesome? Absolutely.
1. And Yes, Spider-Man and Iron Man Team Up
Oh yeah, there was one final scene after the title card, too, and it’s one of the big ones everyone’s been waiting for: Spider-Man and Iron Man, side-by-side, flying through the streets of New York. We all kind of knew that this was coming, but that doesn’t make it any less epic. Seriously, just a few short years ago, the idea of seeing these two iconic characters team up on the big screen was nothing short of fantasy, and now, it’s only a few short months away.
That brief shot leaves a lot of questions to be answered, however. Why have the two teamed up? When does it happen, at the conclusion? Do they team up to stop the Vulture? There is a lot still to be learned, but for now, this is the time to revel in the joy that Iron Man is actually making a guest appearance in a Spidey movie, (nearly) all of the Marvel characters can intermingle, and Spider-Man is finally back home where he should be.
What other great moments and revelations did you catch in the Spider-Man: Homecoming trailer? Let us know in the comments!
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