Spider-Man: Homecoming will see the evolution of movie villain Adrian Toomes, also known as the Vulture and played by Michael Keaton. Aside from following Peter Parker's (Tom Holland) life after his initial contact with the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe heroes in Captain America: Civil War, we will also be treated to a build-up story for the film's main antagonist.
Homecoming will be the first time Keaton will be back in the superhero film genre, 28 years since he donned the black cape and roamed the streets of Gotham in Tim Burton's Batman. This time, however, he switches sides from being a hero to becoming the wrongdoer, collecting scraps from Avenger fights and building high-powered weapons from them. And it is up to Peter to stop him from furthering his illegal operations and doing more serious damage.
In a special featurette from the Disney Channel centering on Vulture, executive producer Jeremy Latcham provides more context on Keaton's character:
“The Vulture’s realizing there’s this black market in trading MCU relics that he can sell this stuff on. We’re going to see that guy’s rise in this criminal underworld.”
Director Jon Watts, meanwhile, added that the concept of a person leading a group of people who have been discreetly following Avengers battles and make a living out of scavenging from those sites was interesting:
“The idea that there’s detritus from all the other movies that had settled and that’s hidden and that’s out there, the Vulture, he was just sort of an engineer who built this wing suit to try and collect that stuff and do something with it.”
In hindsight, Vulture's motivation sounds genius. Not only does it continue the current tropes of the MCU acknowledging the consequences of these Avenger battles, it also perfectly ties Peter with the rest of the shared cinematic universe that he has to deal with people who has had a history with the Avengers. It subtly tells the audience that despite other incarnations of Spider-Man, this one is different because this is the first time that the character exists in the same world as Iron Man, Captain America, Thor and the rest.
It is also interesting how Toomes' story kind of parallel Peter's in a way that both started as small-timers in their respective sides. Despite Peter already a being superhero in his own right, he is not an established one compared to the Avengers. He craves to be part of the cool superhero team which makes him very motivated to do something bigger than just being a "friendly neighborhood Spider-Man." Toomes' motivation may be coming from a different place, but he too is looking to upgrade his operations, as he repeatedly says in the trailers.
Marvel movies are not exactly known to having well-defined villains but Keaton's Toomes seems to be more than just a one-dimensional evildoer with his motivation and well-thought background. How Peter will fare with the older and more experienced Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming is yet to be seen.
Source: Disney Channel
- Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018) release date: Dec 14, 2018
- Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017) release date: Jul 07, 2017
- Thor: Ragnarok (2017) release date: Nov 03, 2017
- Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017) release date: May 05, 2017
- Captain Marvel (2019) release date: Mar 08, 2019
- Black Panther (2018) release date: Feb 16, 2018
- Avengers: Infinity War / The Avengers 3 (2018) release date: Apr 27, 2018
- The Avengers 4 / Untitled Avengers Movie (2019) release date: May 03, 2019