How 'Spider-Man: No Way Home' revitalizes the MCU

“Spider-Man: No Way Home” is tearing up box office records, despite the pandemic and without the China market. (Sony Pictures/Marvel Studios/TNS)

Last month, my friends and I went to see “Spider-Man: No Way Home” on opening night. It was the most packed I had ever seen the Terre Haute AMC in all my years as a local, and I’m also counting the time I saw “Avengers: Endgame” on its opening night.

We were lucky to get tickets when we did because they sold out quite fast. Some people who got their tickets scalped them for ridiculous prices, some soaring over the $10,000 mark.

Of course, that’s extremely idiotic, but it just goes to show that a lot of people wanted to see this movie.

There will be spoilers ahead, so just a forewarning if you haven’t got the chance to see the movie yet.

Most of the hype came from the trailer for “No Way Home,” which showcased Doc Ock from the 2004 movie “Spider-Man 2,” directed by Sam Raimi, along with other villains that appeared in the previous live action “Spider-Man” movies.

 Many people dubbed his movie “Spider-Man: Endgame” regarding the amalgamation of characters from the past who would be returning to interact with Tom Holland’s iteration of the friendly neighborhood Spider-Man.

With the villains from the other “Spider-Man” films showing up, the heroes were obviously soon to follow.

Tobey McGuire’s iteration of Spider-Man in the Sam Raimi films has been a fan favorite since its conception.

Andrew Garfield of “The Amazing Spider-Man” series of movies does have an avid fanbase even though his series has an incomplete story.

That leaves Tom Holland’s character, our current web slinger. Tom has had the biggest shoes to fill, and I think he’s worked with the character greatly.

What sets this movie apart from the rest of the MCU is how ambitious it was.

With the “Avengers” movies, notably “Infinity War” and “Endgame,” they were the climax of a 10-year-old story that featured characters that were a part of the franchise finally coming together for the biggest fight in the series.

“No Way Home” works with that same concept, just with the character of Spider-Man. This movie was Peter Parker’s ultimate shine in the spotlight.

It was a love letter to the people who grew up with Tobey McGuire’s Spider-Man.

It gave validity to Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Man, rounding out his character and giving fans the conclusion he deserved.

For Tom, this was the moment he really became Spider-Man. He learned from the past Spider-Men, leveled with the tragedies they faced, and didn’t give in to the darkness when tempted by the Green Goblin.

In fighting alongside the other heroes, Tom was able to make his Spider-Man stand out from the rest. The bittersweet ending we saw in the film could lead us anywhere for his character.

With all this talk about multiverses, and with “Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness” releasing soon, big changes are in order for the MCU. In “The Multiverse of Madness,” the trailers have already shown us another version of “Doctor Strange” who looks to be an evil version of him.

We’ve already seen this type of Doctor Strange before in Marvel’s animated series “What If…?” dubbed Strange Supreme. However, I think it’s a different version of Strange Supreme, one that wasn’t shown in “What If…?”

Other variants of Doctor Strange are confirmed to be showing up in “Multiverse of Madness,” and with “Secret Wars” already being confirmed, my best guess is that we’ll be seeing many other variants of many other MCU characters.

For those who don’t know, “Secret Wars” was where multiple marvel characters came together under The Beyonder’s will for them to fight each other and featured the debut of Spider-Man’s black suit.

In the recent 2015 reboot, they combined the “mainline” Earth-616 continuity with the Ultimates timeline and thus created a bunch of other universes.

I think the MCU “Secret Wars” will do something similar, and all this buildup around multiverses will pay off either before “Secret Wars” or right after.

Either way, I expect “No Way Home” isn’t the last we’ll see of Tobey McGuire and Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Men in the MCU if “Secret Wars” pans out the way I hope it does.