Peter Parker’s Spider-Man is one of the most famous and beloved superheroes of all time. He has had almost a billion movies (rough estimate) and more cartoons than Mickey Mouse. Now, after years of cinematic separation, he’s finally being brought back to the fold — joining the Avengers in the MCU. However, while we all love Spider-Man (after all, he does whatever a spider can and that includes release pheromones that make you helplessly devoted), we’re not quite sure this particular Spider-Man should be in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
In fact, there’s an argument to be made that the movies would be a whole lot better if he just dropped dead and allowed a different Spider to take his place. Of course there are also a lot of reasons that most likely won’t happen. Still, Marvel Executive Producers, if you’re reading this, just think about it, okay? Because despite there being sound reasons for it not to happen, we firmly believe that Peter Parker’s Spider-Man should take a dirt nap right about now and let someone who hasn’t had three different franchise series into his big webbed tights. (Someone like Miles Morales, for instance.) Anyway, this one’s for YOU, true believers!
15. MUST DIE: DEATH STORIES ARE BEST STORIES
Let’s face it, there aren’t a ton of stories to tell about Spider-Man. His villains? Sure, but Spidey himself? He’s unlucky in love, his uncle dies, everyone he knows is actually a villain. That’s pretty much it. It’s hard, of course. You can tell an origin story and a pretty good villain story, but after that you’re left treading water. What can you do next? Well, you can kill him.
See, Spider-Man’s best stories of the last few years have been when he died — most notably in Amazing Spider-Man #700 and in Ultimate Spider-Man #150. Both of those stories involve Peter fighting to do his very best and in the end falling and leaving another Spider-Man behind in his place. They’re powerful stories that show Peter is true to his word, and that he knows with great power does come great responsibility… no matter what.
14. MUST DIE: WE NEED MILES
Look, we love Peter, you love Peter, but we need Miles Morales. It’s a different world out there than when we were kids, a world which has six different Peter Parker movies with a seventh one on the way. Peter Parker is cool and all, but we’re pretty sure most audience members would be fine if he had less movies than Harry Potter. Okay, exactly the same amount?
Fine, put him in Avengers: Infinity War and kill him off then, letting a younger, mixed race Spider-Man take the foreground. Miles, honestly, is just a bit more interesting than Peter. His first reaction wasn’t, “Oh joy, Spider Powers!” it was, “Oh no…” He has a different background, different friends, and a different story — one we haven’t seen on-screen almost 10 times. Give Miles a shot, gang.
13. MUST DIE: COMICS DID IT
Okay, look, we hear you. You don’t want Peter to die and stay dead, so we can just do what the comics did — bring him back. Heck, the comics have already killed him and brought him back a bunch of times! Ultimate Spider-Man was the first series to make a thing of it and it’s the series that Spider-Man: Homecoming most resembles. But while he’s dead, we can explore a different and cooler Spider-Man; one we haven’t seen before.
Maybe we can even bring Peter Parker back and the two could have competing Spider-Man movies — one at Marvel and one with Sony. It’d be a fun idea if nothing else. But the point is that the comics have killed Peter Parker off before and it worked out wonderfully… and then he was brought back. The movies can do it too. Please?
12. MUST DIE: NO MORE PARKER
We might be belaboring the point here (we can already hear you typing your Facebook comments now), but Peter Parker has been the star of two different trilogies in the span of 10 years (though one was mercifully cut short). That’s not counting the six dozen or so television shows we’ve seen him in or the 18 bajallion (a technical term) games we’ve been able to play as him.
There’s no shortage of Peter Parker content out there. Plus, he’s not like Batman where there’s a bunch of interesting characters for him to play off of. There’s basically just Spider-Man and his enemies… and all those girls he’s too poor and/or nerdy and/or too devoted to his aunt to date. Oh, and Jameson. That’s it. And we’ve seen literally all of that already. There are too many Peter Parker movies already; don’t give us seven more.
11. MUST DIE: RAISE THE STAKES
Hey, you know what makes audiences think twice? When you kill off a main character. Remember Phil Coulson’s death back during The Avengers? It was amazing, it was shocking, it was memorable, and it’s a big part of why that movie was better than a lot of other MCU movies — because it had actual stakes. We all genuinely cared about Phil Coulson, as we watched him in all of the different movies.
In the same way, we all genuinely love Peter Parker, and seeing him — especially such a young and hopeful him — dying on-screen would be super devastating and prove that the stakes are real in the MCU. None of the heroes have fallen yet — the closest has been Rhodey getting his back hurt — but at some point one of them is going to have to — why not the one you’d least expect, and the one you might love the most?
10. MUST DIE: SELF-SACRIFICING
Peter Parker is more or less regarded as the heart of the Marvel Universe. He’s the youngest, the one most down on his luck, and the one who sacrifices the most to be a hero. He is the most heroic of all of the heroes in the Marvel Universe and nothing would prove that better than to show him sacrificing himself. Being the true hero.
What would work better to establish him as the beating heart of the Marvel Cinematic Universe than to show that — above everyone else — he is the guy to make the sacrifice play. With all of those others standing so tall, he could stand as the true embodiment of what it means to be a hero. In fact, killing him would show just how much of a hero he always was.
9. MUST DIE: RALLYING CALL
When Phil Coulson died, it was a rallying call for the Avengers to get back together and take the fight to Loki and help save New York. It was pretty cool but if the Avengers are going to come back together after being so heavily divided, then it’s going to take something big. Maybe something like the youngest Avenger, the one all of them met for a short time, dying in battle.
Maybe then the heroes will realize that something needs to be done and the Avengers will… well, you know… Avenge! Spider-Man’s death could be a call for the Avengers to become bigger and greater and cooler than they’ve ever been — and as we know, the Avengers got their name from avenging Phil… why not continue the tradition and avenge Spider-Man?
8. WON’T DIE: HOLLAND WANTS TO WORK THERE FOREVER
Unfortunately there are a lot of issues that go against our entirely cool plan to kill the Spider, such as Tom Holland saying he has plans that he’s put forth to keep playing Spider-Man until the character is in his thirties. To wrap your head around that, the Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War is about 15 years old. Holland wants to play this character for 20 freaking years.
That’s… well, that’s longer than it takes to conceive a child, raise it through high school, and send it away to college! Holland is going to play Spider-Man so long that children born right this second will be able to drink by the time he stops. So, unfortunately, it seems like Spider-Man — as Peter Parker — isn’t going anywhere for a very long time indeed.
7. WON’T DIE: JUST INTRODUCED
Okay, this is the most prominent reason why Pete won’t die. Parker might at some point end up biting the dust, but if he does, it won’t be until a long, long time from now. He was just introduced. It would be like introducing Hank Pym only to have him immediately… oh wait, that actually happened. Anyway, what we’re saying is that grabbing the rights to Peter Parker for the MCU is one of their biggest scoops of recent years — Guardians of the Galaxy big — and to take that gift horse and then immediately shoot in the back would be a bit of an odd move for Marvel Studios. Besides, he’s got to spend some time with the Avengers and building his brand in his own movies before killing him. It’s just best for business, and honestly, we do like Tom Holland. Dude is downright adorable as Spidey!
6. WON’T DIE: MISTER POPULAR
Yes, okay, while Peter Parker is incredibly prolific across every single form of media, there’s a pretty fair reason for that. The dude is popular. He’s one of the best-selling comic characters (arguably the best selling) of all time. He’s basically a license to print money, and while Miles Morales is pretty awesome and super popular in his own right, he’s not Peter Parker popular. Yet.
Peter Parker as Spider-Man makes Marvel over a billion dollars all by himself. There’s no way Marvel Studios would look at that amount of money, look at Miles Morales and go, “Eh, let’s try him out for a change.” While it might be a great creative move, when it comes to money, Peter Parker’s the safe bet. (Which would probably amuse the permanently poor character to no end.)
5. WON’T DIE: NO NON-WHITE LEADS
While this is arguably the most controversial argument, it’s also incredibly true. Marvel has a bit of a white-dude-as-lead problem. As in, all of their movies thus far have had a white dude main character. Sure, Black Panther is coming later but, look, if there was another version of Black Panther that was a white dude… let’s just say Marvel most likely would have gone for that version.
Heck, Ant Man and Wasp is going to be the first movie to have a woman even co-headline! While Marvel makes good movies, they’re also a bit regressive. Suddenly making a movie about a young mixed race kid whose uncle is a thief seems like a bit of an inauspicious start for the company. Give them time, and Miles will appear onscreen. Eventually.
4. WON’T DIE: FIEGE HEARTS HOLLAND, TOO
Kevin Feige — the dad of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — has said that Marvel Studios has a clear plan for where Spider-Man’s going to go: and it’s to college. He’s said that he wants to make the Spider-Man movies work similarly to the Harry Potter movies, where each one documents one year of Peter Parker at school. And Feige has said he wants to do at least seven of them, carrying Peter Parker all the way through high school and almost all of the way through college. While Tom Holland’s enthusiasm makes the prospect of Miles Morales appearing as the prime Spider-Man a bit dubious, Feige’s claims make the prospect pretty much dead. Maybe he’ll change his mind, but until then, get ready for years of Peter Parker. Years!
3. WON’T DIE: NO LEGACIES
One problem with replacing Spider-Man is the fact that it hasn’t happened yet — ever. There haven’t been any legacy characters yet, so introducing the idea with Spider-Man would be a bit of an odd step. It would make more sense to have Bucky take over Captain America or War Machine take over as Iron Man. These characters are already set up and their legacies make a bunch of sense.
Once that’s done, audiences would be more used to the idea of legacy characters — those who take up the mantle of another, older superhero who isn’t operating for some reason. Once Steve Rogers or Tony Stark aren’t the men behind their respective masks, the idea of Miles becoming the Ultimate Spider-Man would be a lot more palatable for somewhat squeamish audiences.
2. WON’T DIE: PARKER COMICS STILL SELL
You know what comic books are great for? Advertising. Each comic basically works as an advertisement for all of the toys and movies and video games. That’s how Marvel actually makes all that sweet money from these characters. The money they get from the comics isn’t shabby, but it’s mostly a really well-written commercial.
Thinking of comics that way, you can see which products that Marvel values highest: and the winner is Peter Parker, who stars in (at last count) three books, with cameos in many more. As for Miles Morales? He has his own and an occasional crossover. Marvel’s concern is clear: stick with the cash cow as opposed to maybe moving Miles into being a marvelous money maker. Maybe it would work, maybe it wouldn’t; wither way, it seems we may never know.
1. WON’T DIE: THE MILES MORALES MOVIE
The nail in the coffin for all those wanting a brand-new, live-action Miles Morales movie is a bit bittersweet. Bitter because it means that we’re definitely not getting one anytime soon, but sweet because it means we are getting a Miles Morales movie. Granted, it will be a cartoon. Hey, it’s by the people who made The LEGO Movie, so that’s good news, right!?
But the fact that Marvel is fine with Miles Morales appearing in a cartoon movie means that, most likely, our hopes for him to appear in the flesh are going to have to lay on the wayside… at least until the inevitable happens and the Spider-Man series is yet again rebooted with a newer, fresher lead. Maybe then we’ll get Miles. Maybe then…
Do you think Marvel should kill off cinematic Spidey now that they finally have him in their web of films? Let us know in the comments!