According to census estimates, there are currently 325.3 million people in the United States, which means there has to be dozens — maybe even hundreds! — of people who remain blissfully unaware that a new Spider-Man movie is hitting theaters this summer. The rest of us, however, have lived through the past several months of production rumors, trailers, teasers, teaser trailers, toy reveals, interviews, commercials, specials, features, articles, social advertising, news items, and just about any other form of audio or visual media that Marvel could commercially or organically slap a Spider-Man: Homecoming logo on. In fact, we’ve reached that point in the hype cycle where most fans are completely exhausted with marketing. Can’t we just start talking about the movie itself?
In case you somehow didn’t know (do you even have the internet? How are you reading this?), Sony wants to make it perfectly clear: Spider-Man is pals with the Avengers now, and thanks to the participation of Marvel, the latest reboot of everyone’s favorite web-slinging superhero features a few familiar faces from the MCU. The new (and extended) TV spot for Spider-Man: Homecoming leans pretty heavily on that element with some serious shout-outs to Spidey’s super-friends.
The prevailing message of the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming has been that of novelty. This will be a fresh take on the Peter Parker mythos, making him younger than ever, sticking him in the treacherous social minefield of high school, and assigning him a lovably bratty irreverence more in-step with the comic-book original. Plus, Aunt May is young and hot now! But while Marvel and Sony’s advertising has gone to great lengths to assure audiences that this will not be their father’s Spider-Man (and it definitely won’t be the Andrew Garfield one we’re all psychologically working to repress), there is one respect in which this production is business as usual.
One of the peculiar things about the current slate of superhero movies it how thoroughly they nail the big moments and sometimes slip on the small ones. Take Iron Man, for example. The films have routinely nailed Tony Stark’s arrogance and desire to protect the world from all threats foreign and domestic, but some of the underlying reasoning behind that drive — Stark’s history as an alcoholic and addict — have routinely been shoved to the background of the movies. The same could be said of Spider-Man. While the last five films have given us epic moments of slingin’ webs, they’ve often lost the high-school camaraderie that explains so much of Peter Parker’s superhero worldview.
The calendar may have four seasons, but Hollywood’s calendar only really has two at this point: summer and awards, and summer seems to last longer and longer ever year. Though the start of May has long been the unofficial kickoff of the S.M.S., 2017 has already seen a King Kong movie, a ghost in a shell, and the fate of Fast & Furious franchise. The change from April to May is something of a formality in 2017. Once the Oscars are over, the summer begins.
USA Today recently ran a new interview with Jon Watts, director of the upcoming re-re-reboot Spider-Man: Homecoming, far in advance of the film’s July 7 release date. Watts got the chance to explain the fundamental differences between his foray into the Marvel universe and the films that came before, stating that the fundamental regular-guyness of Peter Parker will set him apart from the likes of Thor and Iron Man: “My whole approach for this movie is that we’ve seen the penthouse level of the (Marvel) universe. We’ve seen what it’s like to be a billionaire inventor and to be a Norse god. We’ve seen the very top of this world. But we’ve never seen what it’s like to be just a regular joe.”
2017 promises to be the biggest year yet for superhero movies, with eight confirmed major studio releases between February and November --- and a still unconfirmed ninth release expected from Fox. Highlights of the year include the first solo superhero movie with a female lead in over ten years, the first Spider-Man movie set in the extended Marvel Cinematic Universe, and an inexplicably gritty reboot of Power Rangers.
There's a lot to look forward to, and a few movies to be skeptical of, so the editors of ComicsAlliance have decided to rank this year's eight confirmed releases in ascending order of excitement. We've tallied our editors' individual votes to arrive at a definitive list of the most (and least) anticipated superhero movies of 2017.
2016 is almost over! Hallelujah! With everything that’s happened in the last 12 months, we can’t wait to rip the last page of our 2016 Spider-Man wall calendar and hang up our 2017 Spider-Man wall calendar.
Marvel’s Netflix Defenders has yet to reveal much about Sigourney Weaver’s main villain, though one imagines the eight-episode teamup series will feature a number of smaller big bads. Don’t expect Vincent D’Onofrio’s Wilson Fisk to menace anyone other than Daredevil, however, as the actor says there’s “no chance” of a Defenders appearance (or a Spider-Man: Homecoming role).