We unpacked Spider-Man: Homecoming's new trailer, and find lots of nerdy details...
Spider-Man: Homecoming arrives on July 7th. So far, Marvel and Sony have been careful about not revealing too much about the movie. We got our first trailer way back in December, and it's taken them until now to unveil new footage.
Before we get going, here's the new trailer, that was released yesterday. And then we're going to break it down...
I don't go shot by shot in order. Instead I try and connect the dots in the trailer based on what I think is happening. I'm probably wrong, of course, but that's the way it goes.
Let's get to work...
Forget About the Origin Story!
This doesn't look like the same apartment that Peter and Aunt May were living in when we met them in Captain America: Civil War, does it? My guess? They had to move into that smaller apartment right after the death of Uncle Ben, but now things are a little more settled, and May has moved them back to Forest Hills.
Also, let's take another moment to enjoy the fact that we don't have to sit through yet another Spider-Man origin story. Still, this is early in his career. Based on what we're seeing in these trailers, if I had to guess, the timeline is roughly that Peter has now been active for about a year, figure a few months or so before Civil War, and then roughly a year since then with his new suit. I'm willing to bet that the Vulture and friends are the first genuine supervillains he's going up against.
In the earlier trailer I pointed out all the cool Star Wars stuff in Peter's room, as well as the Mike Piazza decoration (visible again in this trailer) which proves once and for all that Peter is a New York Mets fan.
But what struck me about the above shot is the black and white photo just over Peter's shoulder. Could that be Uncle Ben?
Spidey may be, as Tony Stark quips, "your friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man" and these trailers have had the most New York flavour of any Spider-Man movie I've ever seen. But getting New York specific, Peter Parker lives in Forest Hills, and a bunch of the Queens we're seeing in Spider-Man: Homecoming looks an awful lot like Astoria. Note the Astoria Blvd N/W stop in the above.
I'm just including this shot because it's awesome. Again, so much of the previous Spidey movies felt focused on a kind of nebulous, blockbuster, Manhattan-centric New York City. But to lean on that "friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man" vibe, you've gotta put the kid in Queens.
In fact, the costume is one of my favourite things about all of this, so let's overanalyse that for a few minutes...
The Costume Rules
We learned a lot about the suit in this trailer. It's apparently so lightweight and flexible that it can be used for a quick change and doesn't have to be worn under his clothes. We saw the suit 'deflate' in the first trailer, but here we see it adhere to the body. It's a nice touch and answers a lot of the questions about whether Peter would die of heatstroke if he was walking around with a full costume under his street clothes all day
There's three great things about this shot.
1) This is getting redundant, but holy moley, this costume is the sharpest looking live action superhero suit around right now. It's tough to improve on what is basically a perfect costume design, but that's what seems to have happened here.
2) Spidey appears to shoot a kind of timed web mine here. It sticks to the door of the car, and 'detonates' when that thug is next to it.
3) I'm pretty sure that the black highlights around his shoulders and chest are actually a function of the web shooters. So, the black belt is where the web fluid is stored, but rather than have to change cartridges in the web shooters themselves, the web fluid is pumped from the belt, up to the shoulders and down through the arms. Cool, right?
More evidence here...
Here's a better look at those external webshooters, which I love. See how the far end of it extends up the underside of the arm? That's what I'm talking about.
So the detachable Spider-logo is a drone? Could it be a spider-tracer? We haven't seen much of the spider-tracer in the movies, even though that's an essential piece of Parker technology. Basically, if Spidey wants to tail you to your hideout, he plants a tracer on you, and...well, really this explains itself, doesn't it? You don't need me for this stuff.
Also, since we're on the subject of suit-based tech, you gotta love that this costume comes with a 3D map of NYC so Peter can keep his bearings while web slinging. I imagine Google Maps is less effective when you're not sticking to the streets.
Can we talk about the homemade costume for a few minutes, please? For with Spidey surrendering his Stark suit, it looks like we may get as much of half of this movie with Peter back in his original, homemade Spidey suit.
This brings me perhaps more joy than the situation warrants. Why? I'm a huge advocate of a low tech Spider-Man. We got that fun homemade costume in the first Tobey Maguire/Sam Raimi Spider-Man movie, and it was great, but Peter went from that straight to something that not even a genius could cook up in his bedroom. At least here we know he's got a billionaire tech guru behind the real suit, right?
But from the moment we glimpsed blurry YouTube video of Peter's original costume in Captain America: Civil War, I wanted more of it. It's both low tech and functional, and it's a combination of practical and what a 15-16 year old who idolises superheroes would think looks cool.
The external web shooters on this are huge and clunky, and I will forever think of this as a nod to the 1970s Spider-Man TV series. I love that show.
And the fact that the 'boots' are just red gym socks pulled all the way up with the bottoms tucked in is just a total joy. None of us have ever done that. Ahem.
You can see that the gloves are fingerless, which makes sense for someone who needs to get a feel when climbing.
I'm trying to figure out what the white lenses in the mask are, though. I guess it would make more sense if these were basically like reflective sunglasses, for two reasons...
1) I just want to stick to that 'found stuff' vibe as much as possible.
Vulture and the Villains
The choice of wording here can't be accidental. It seems like Tony Stark himself might be doing some 'damage control' for bad PR brought on either by Spider-Man or some Avengers-centric misadventure. But it does bring up another possibility...
An article in USA Today described Michael Keaton's Adrian Toomes as running a company that cleans up after superhero/supervillain battles. That sure sounds like Damage Control, a fun Marvel comic from the 1980s.
The thing is, Damage Control was in development as an ABC TV series. Has that been put on hold? Or is Spider-Man: Homecoming going to launch Damage Control the way that Avengers ended up launching Agents Of SHIELD?
One thing about Spidey's early comic book battles with the Vulture, is that he was always portrayed as being completely out of his element in the air. Anything that puts Spider-Man at a disadvantage is on message as far as I'm concerned. But using the Vulture here is great because even though they've gone the whole 'high tech animal themed menace' route, this battle isn't about brute force (the way it could be with, say, Doctor Octopus), it's about putting Peter in a situation that he has absolutely no clue how to deal with.
This is a great shot, and probably the single most menacing image of the Vulture I can remember. Usually you associate these beat-up, defeated, limp Spidey images with Doc Ock or Green Goblin. So this is a great supervillain moment from a guy who is kind of a second-tier Spidey villain. Glad he's getting his moment in the sun here.
I can't imagine this shot is accidental. Compare Adrian Toomes "suiting up" with his Vulture armour to...
...this bit with Tony emerging from the Iron Man armor. Expect them to lean pretty heavily on the similarities between those two characters. Unfortunately, I wouldn't be surprised if that bit with Toomes talking to Spidey in the warehouse is also a 'come to the dark side' speech. Michael Keaton can make anything work, of course, but I feel like we've already been down that road in Spidey movies.
Check out Bokeem Woodbine as The Shocker! That's...that's all I've got right now. He's part of Adrian Toomes' crew, though, so he's...part of Damage Control? Also, my speculation from the previous trailer analysis that this scene and others like it with Peter in the old costume take place in flashback can pretty much be thrown out the window now.
We still don't know who Donald Glover is playing in this movie. Somebody offer me some theories, please!
Captain America Fitness Challenge
Okay, I kinda howled at the "Captain America fitness challenge." This is hilarious, and the fact that he's wearing his Avengers costume from 2012 speaks to a few things...
1) This is an old video, recorded before Cap went anti-authority in The Winter Soldier and Civil War.
2) This version of the costume was always mostly intended to be a kind of 'public relations' suit, and the darker one he's wearing on missions at the start of The Winter Soldier is the more practical version.
3) You have to love that they're showing this video to an entire gym class on a tiny, old ass TV.
Speaking of that gym class...
Mary Jane! Right? No?
Hey look, it's Zendaya as 'not Mary Jane Watson!' To give you an idea of how out of place her character is supposed to be in a school full of science students, she's sitting there reading W. Somerset Maugham's Of Human Bondage.
Hey, look! It's Zendaya as 'not Mary Jane' again! Any idea what's on her shirt? I'm trying to figure this out.
Also, she's totally Mary Jane Watson, right?
I like that there's a lot of Jacob Batalan in this trailer, but while he was introduced in the first trailer, this is the first time we hear him addressed as "Ned." So, once and for all, he's playing Ned Leeds.
What are Peter and Ned workshopping here? The colours seem to indicate that maybe it's a discarded piece of Iron Man tech?
My least favourite thing about both of these trailers has been the Staten Island Ferry sequence. It just seems like the obligatory over-the-top piece of blockbuster action, when the rest of the tone is so much more low key and 'neighbourhood'. On the other hand...
...this is a cool shot. And I like the idea that Spidey isn't just holding it together himself (not to mention the assist from Iron Man), but that he's had to basically spin a web to try and get this to work.
I'd like to think that this bit at the pool party is part of a sequence like the very end of Ferris Bueller's Day Off, when Ferris is hustling to get home by taking shortcuts through everybody's backyards.
It says a lot about how exciting Spider-Man: Homecoming looks when a full blown Iron Man action sequence seems like the least interesting thing about the movie, doesn't it?