Was there ever a real chance Spider-Man would leave the MCU so soon?


After weeks of mourning over the sudden loss of Tom Holland’s Spider-Man in the MCU, fans now wonder if there was ever really anything to worry about.

Spider-Man is back in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, which means we don’t have to say goodbye to Spidey or Tom Holland in this beloved franchise anytime soon. And honestly? This isn’t all that surprising.

If Tom Holland’s Spider-Man wasn’t a beloved addition to the MCU, it would have made total sense, from a business standpoint, to just let him go. At the end of the day, studios need to make back the money they spend on projects, and if the character and his films weren’t bringing in the profits, Marvel would have happily shipped him back to Sony without hesitation.

But Spidey has become a staple in the film franchise, especially in the eyes of the fans who pay to see these movies in theaters, often more than once in a single opening weekend. To let him go before the conclusion of his character arc wouldn’t just cost Marvel money. It would cost them the trust fans have in their ability to not only tell good stories, but — for the most part — finish them.(We’re not going to talk about Hulk. Just… let it go.)

Marvel isn’t great about letting most characters go until their stories reach a rightful end. Even Natalie Portman’s Jane Foster, who most of us had already accepted would never set foot in the MCU again, is making her grand return as Mighty Thor.

Based on this fact — and the success of Spider-Man’s standalone films to date — there was no way Marvel was going to let Sony take him away before finishing his story and giving fans time to say goodbye. The most devastating part of the whole Marvel vs. Sony disagreement was that Spider-Man might not get a proper send-off in the MCU.

The studio might not have even been able to mention him again in future movies, meaning it would have felt like his character just disappeared. It’d be like The Snap all over again, but so much worse.

The MCU is known for carefully planning out every detail, movie to movie, to tell one giant continuous story. If they had already planned out Spidey’s role in future stories, giving him back to Sony so soon would have unraveled everything.

Sony has agreed to lend Spidey to Marvel for two more films. One will presumably conclude his solo arc as the third and final film in his trilogy, set to release in 2021, and an additional film that will likely have him teaming up with the Avengers one last time. (Which means that we, once again, have to prepare ourselves for saying a tearful goodbye to one of our favorite heroes.)

What will likely happen now — at least based on what we know so far — is that we will see Spider-Man in the final installment of his trilogy, plus one more movie in the MCU. At that point, his character will be written out of the MCU with the respect our dearest Tom Holland deserves.

What will the end of Peter Parker/Spider-Man’s story in the MCU look like? Your first instinct is to assume he’ll die. It’s not like Peter Parker’s Spider-Man has never died before in other timelines, and even in recent Spider-Man movies outside the MCU.

The MCU doesn’t have to kill him off, though — and maybe they’d be better off if they didn’t. Similar to the end of Steve Rogers’ run as Captain America, Peter Parker could end up walking away from the superhero life for good.

This, at least, would leave the door open for Tom Holland to return someday if Marvel and Sony ever reached another agreement in the distant future. A death would most likely mean Holland could never return, though this is Marvel… people come back from the “dead” almost as often as they die.

However Marvel chooses to close the book on Spidey’s story (for now), they won’t do it without paying tribute to Holland’s work, as well as his character’s impact on the franchise. They’ll do everything they can to give fans the closure they need now that they know they have one last chance to do so when one didn’t exist even a week ago.

We’re not ready to say goodbye to Peter Parker (or Tom Holland). But this does potentially open up new opportunities for us to fall in love with a brand-new MCU character — and, of course, a new opportunity for a mostly unknown yet brilliant actor or actress to gain Holland-level fame. If anyone of his generation will ever be able to rival him, that is. (They won’t. And that’s OK.)

Next. Kevin Feige says Spider-Man 3 will feature a storyline never seen onscreen before. dark

How do you think Spider-Man’s MCU story should end? Are you happy he’s back, or were you relieved to see him gone?