SDCC: Marvel’s Spider-Man: Homecoming Panel

More from San Diego Comic Con: Below check out character descriptions, concept art, possible villain reveals and description of the first footage shown for Spider-Man: Homecoming from San Diego Comic Con’s Marvel panel.

The first official synopsis was provided at Comic Con.  Although Spider-Man has appeared on the big screen in five previous Sony films and as a secondary character in Captain America: Civil War back in May, this will be the first standalone Spidey flick associated with Marvel Studios (the character is still technically owned by Sony but is being “shared” with Marvel through an agreement made over a year ago.  Here’s the official synopsis courtesy of Coming Soon:

“A young Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who made his sensational debut in Marvel Studios’ “Captain: Civil War,” begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging superhero in Spider-Man: Homecoming.”

There have been lots of casting announcements made for Spider-Man: Homecoming in recent months, but Saturday was the first official confirmation regarding who these actors will be playing.  Here’s who Tony Revolori, Jacob Batalon, Zendaya and Laura Harrier will be playing in Homecoming and a brief description of each character (via Screen Rant):

  • FLASH THOMPSON (Tony Revolori) – Flash is one of the most important non-superhero characters in the Spider-Man mythos, and one who has only ever been a bit player in previous adaptations. A popular athlete and bully, the conceit is that Flash mercilessly torments “Puny Parker” but idolizes Spider-Man; never realizing that they are one and the same. In the comics, Flash’s Spider-fandom (and chance encounters with his hero) eventually lead him to becoming a better person, renouncing bullying and becoming a decorated soldier in the U.S. Army. He’s also (later) the third person to host the Venom symbiote, albeit as an agent of good.
  • NED LEEDS (Jacob Batalon) – In the comics, Ned Leeds is a Daily Bugle reporter several years older than Peter Parker who comes into the teen’s life as a rival for his early crush on J. Jonah Jameson’s secretary, Betty Brant. For a time a mainstay of the comics, he’s later brainwashed into becoming the second Hobgoblin and ultimately murdered by the supervillain Jack O’Lantern. Repositioning him as one of Peter’s classmates signals a significant reinvention of the character.
  • MICHELLE (Zendaya) – Speaking of reinventions, it’s widely assumed that Zendaya’s character, currently known only as “Michelle,” will have a full name of Michelle Gonzales. A recent addition to the comics’ continuity, Gonzales is another character Peter meets as an adult; in this case a roommate character who entered the series after the controversial “One More Day” storyline.
  • LIZ ALLAN (Laura Harrier) – Liz Allan was the second regular potential love-interest for Peter Parker after (and for a time alongside) Betty Brant, though the “relationship” is largely unrequited and complicated by her being Flash Thompson’s girlfriend during their High School days. She was absent from the comics for several years after the storyline had Peter graduate High School and move on to College life, but she returned as a more prominent castmember when it was revealed that she was the stepsister of supervillain The Molten Man – and later became the wife of Harry Osborn.

To be honest, when I see Tony Revolori I don’t exactly think of “jock” or “bully”.  Yes, I understand that you don’t have to be huge or muscle-bound to be a bully, they certainly come in all shapes and sizes but his size and appearance were always defining characteristics of Flash Thompson in the comics and any iteration of the character.  While I’m a big Spider-Man fan I don’t really recognize the other character names on this list.

What most people are more interested in hearing about is the villains in the film.  While Michael Keaton has not officially been confirmed as Adrian Toomes/The Vulture (he’s in the movie as the villain but it’s still possible he’s playing someone besides the Vulture), the Vulture is officially in Homecoming.  Below is a piece of concept art released during the presentation.

image source

“Vulture’s the first real villain in the Spider-Man comics. He’s in the second issue. He’s one of the classics from the best rogues’ gallery out there, and we’ve never seen him, he’s never been brought to life.”

The Vulture may not be the only villain in the movie, however.  There was also a Diamond Select Toys panel that made a surprising revelation regarding toys that were being developed based on the movie.  Griffin Newman, who was in attendance at the panel, tweeted that Diamond Select is developing a line of toys based on the movie and matter-of-factly made the statement that toys were being made of the Tinkerer and the Shocker.  To date these characters have not been confirmed or even rumored to be in the movie.

Superhero movies that try to cram in several villains don’t have the strongest track record as those films tend to either feel too busy or leave the characters under-developed.  That said, it’s not difficult to image a movie that incorporates Shocker as a low level villain that Spidey easily dispatches of at some juncture in the movie (possible as a opening action sequence similar to, but hopefully much better than, the Rhino scene in Amazing Spider-Man 2) and the Tinkerer as an engineer who helps modify the Vulture’s winged harness at some point.  Neither would work as the main villain to carry an entire movie, but with so many great bad guys in Spidey’s rogue gallery it’ll be nice to see some of them given minor parts or cameos in these movies.

The biggie during the Spider-Man: Homecoming presentation was revealing the first footage for the movie.  They are currently shooting so most of the footage appeared from high school sequences.  Check out a description of the footage/trailer below, courtesy of Screen Rant.

“The trailer opens with an amusing montage set to Joan Jett’s “Bad Reputation,” showing all of the Avengers’ (including Stephen Strange) high school yearbook portraits to illustrate that all heroes have a beginning. It then cuts to Midtown High to provide a breakdown of Peter Parker’s day. In addition to attending classes and admiring cute girls from a distance, he’s also working hard on maintaining his crime fighting lifestyle. There’s funny bits of comedy when Parker is watching a YouTube video of his battle against Giant Man in Civil War during a science seminar, and when he’s mixing a new web fluid formula at school.

Tom Holland with Spider Man Homecoming Logo Spider Man: Homecoming Comic Con 2016 Footage Description

Since Homecoming has only just begun principal photography, just about all of the reel was dedicated to depicting the high school scenes (with appearances by Zendaya, Angourie Rice, and other teenagers), but there was a portion of costumed Spidey action. Parts of what is most likely the set piece hinted at in leaked set photos (Spider-Man on a truck) was shown, giving the fans the briefest of tastes of classic web-slinging action. It ended with confirmation that the villain would be the Vulture, whose appearance from the comics has been upgraded. The antagonist looks like he’s wearing an Iron Man suit with wings. That may not necessarily be the case, but the outfit was certainly mechanical in nature.”

What do you think about the news so far for Spider-Man: Homecoming?  Do you like the cast and the possibility of three villains in the movie?  Homecoming swings into theaters July 7, 2017.

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