Following Iron Man's death in Avengers: Endgame, the second trailer for Spider-Man: Far From Home makes clear Peter Parker will step into Tony Stark's role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. But what exactly does that mean?
Far From Home, rather than Endgame, serves as the end of Phase Three, which means the Spider-Man sequel will bring full circle the Infinity Saga, and function as a combined coda and new beginning. Much of the second trailer focuses on Spider-Man taking over for the late Iron Man. One of the most obvious moments pointing out this change comes when Peter says, "The world needs the next Iron Man." That's followed by Nick Fury asking, "Are you going to step up or not?"
Tony has mentored Peter since Captain America: Civil War. Marvel Studios has used their time together on-screen to set up parallels, as each loves science and has a story that focuses on responsibility. However, Tony emphasizes in Spider-Man: Homecoming that he wants Peter to be better than he was, indicating his role as mentor is to give the world a hero who can surpass him. That in turn means part of Peter's role is to outshine Tony.
There's a lot Marvel Studios can do by having Spider-Man take over Iron Man's role in the MCU. At 22, actor Tom Holland is significantly younger than Robert Downey Jr. was when he debuted in 2008's Iron Man, which means Marvel (and Sony) can get a lot of mileage out of the rising star. It's also clear he'll play a big role in whatever team-up movie comes next, although who exactly will form the successor to the original Avengers is unknown. Regardless, Spider-Man is probably going to be at the forefront of the MCU for some time to come.
Tony was also both a brilliant scientific and industrial mind, and it's entirely possible Peter will continue developing in that combined direction. The next major team will need all the brilliant scientists it can get, and during writer Dan Slott's Marvel Comics run, Peter owned Parker Industries. There's a good chance fans could see Peter follow in his idol's footsteps.
There's no real clear indication of where Peter's arc will ultimately leave him. There's a chance he could meet the same fate as Tony and die, as the Ultimate Comics version of the character does. However, we might also get to see him emulate the mentorship he received from Iron Man when the MCU introduces two key heroes younger than him: Miles Morales and Riri Williams. We know the former exists in this cinematic universe, so we'll likely see him sooner rather than later. But there also would be something poetic in watching Peter train the next Armored Avenger. Perhaps whomever he mentors will also come to surpass him, and eventually lead the MCU.
Opening July 2, director Jon Watts’ Spider-Man: Far From Home stars Tom Holland, Samuel L. Jackson, Zendaya, Cobie Smulders, Jon Favreau, JB Smoove, Jacob Batalon and Martin Starr, with Marisa Tomei and Jake Gyllenhaal. Avengers: Endgame is currently in theaters.