In Wednesday’s Spider-Man #236, writer Brian Michael Bendis dedicates the first two pages to poking fun at Spider-Man: Homecoming in a scene involving Miles Morales’ best friend Ganke Lee and his new girlfriend, Spider-Man vlogger Danika.
Illustrated by Oscar Bazaldua, Brian Reber and Cory Petit, the sequence sees Ganke and Danika discussing the fact that Ganke has to hide his real name from Danika in order to protect Miles’ secret identity as Spider-Man. The name Ganke chooses to go by is Ned, in a callback to Homecoming star Jacob Batalon’s role as Peter Parker’s best friend Ned.
When it was announced that Batalon would star as Ned in Spider-Man: Homecoming, it was received with a side-eye by a portion of fans familiar with Spidey’s comic book history. First, while Homecoming‘s Ned doesn’t have a last name, one of the Hobgoblin’s alter egos is Ned Leeds, a former reporter for the Daily Bugle. Second is the issue of Ned’s physical appearance borrowing heavily from Ganke Lee, the best friend of another Spider-Man, Miles Morales. There was a vocal outcry that having a Ned/Ganke hybrid in Homecoming would diminish any future appearances by Ganke alongside Miles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Bendis looks to have fun with this by having Ganke adopt Ned as the fake name for his relationship with Danika.
Spider-Man #236 is on sale now.
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