I’ve only ever thought about that in passing until you put it into those words, but now it occurs to me that despite always having hated not experiancing Star Wars in the cinema, the first time I seen ANH, even if it was on a TV, was probably just as much a life changing moment as it would have been. If you’re five I doubt it matters on how you get to see a film. It still doesn’t matter to most adults.
I may be underestimating how many kids are watching old stuff (I know my nephew likes watching old stuff). But it also seems evident to me that in terms of impact, everyone loves best the stuff that is made for “them.” Everything else exists around the edges. So while they know and possibly have even seen the other stuff, anyone seeing Homecoming as their first cinematic Spider-Man will enthusiastically embrace that as their definitive interpretation. It’s the rest of us who are obviously familiar with the other stuff, too, who are debating these things. That’s why they thought it was worth it to omit Uncle Ben, because they were making this thing, very consciously, on two levels.
As I said above, I think they’re giving you credit for knowing this and not needing it spoonfed to you every time they make a Spider-man movie.
They haven’t changed the character.
I still think there’s a certain frisson and extra sense of occasion to going to the cinema. I remember to this day that I saw Empire Strikes Back on New Years Day 1981 (it took a long time for films to reach the UK from the US in those days) in the snow at The Abbey cinema in Neath. I was 7 years old.
I saw Raiders of the Lost Ark at the Castle Cinema in Swansea, Auntie Olive took us as a treat, I had a choc ice and we all covered our eyes when the Nazi’s faces started melting at the end.
You don’t get that from watching on TV but you’ll love a film just as much whatever way you watch it, the ones I watched at home don’t have the memories of the time and the occasion in the same way but you have the same affection for them.
I often ate choc ices at home.
Perhaps too often…
Especially after so many people, including myself and Mr Millar moaned endlessly about how tedious it was to watch ASM go through it all again, to the extent we made jokes that the new version should spit the origin into 3 movies so we can have 120 minutes dedicated to Ben dying, again.
I’m not saying Kevin Feige reads this board but that same criticism went way beyond here.
That’s true. I remember when I got to go to a proper cinema for the first time to see Transformers. We had no cinema in my town and Belfast’s constant bomb scares me days out in it for my parents, with me, very rare. I begged for weeks. I was told no. One day we had to go to Belfast for ‘a message.’ Down the street from the cinema, still in the car, my parents broke the surprise news that I was going to see Tranformers in the cinema. I was so overcome with emotions that I cried from that moment until the film started.
It was a fantastic day.
Edit: I was 22
Edit: Kidding. I was 6 and a half.
The life of the bourgoisie.
I’m pretty sure my first exposure to Spider-Man was in the Electric Company.
Our UK versions of that would have done the same, Saturday morning shows that lasted 2 to 3 hours. They also hosted actual cartoons during them, too.
This would at least explain why fans first exposed to Green Lantern in the Justice League cartoons won’t shut up about John Stewart. They honestly and legitimately believe he’s the true Green Lantern. Even though this has literally only been true in the Justice League cartoons.
But the reasoning is the same. John Stewart in the 2011 movie would not have in itself made that movie popular. Those fans would still have complained about the movie, with slightly different reasons. The problem is that they don’t realize that. They’re absolutely convinced that whatever it is they convince themselves that they want will not only definitely please them, but will please everyone else, too.
The one thing you can absolutely be sure of is that fans don’t know what they want. They love echo chambers most of all. But if something gets “too big” they suddenly are “too cool for the room.” The biggest irony of geek culture, surely…
This is kind of wildly going off the point though that we have had many retellings of the Spider-Man origin and maybe this time we can just work it out ourselves.
It’s not fan demand, it’s let’s just get on with the story. It’s not like every issue of Spider-Man or the first we ever read referred back to the origin. It’s part of the character, we can work it all out.
I mean, Smallville ran for 10 seasons and it never showed Jor-El on Krypton sending Clark away.
So it’s not a matter of time either - just their choice, yeah.
Except Smallville did explain the origin and did revamp it. Eventually Jor-El appeared and he tried to “corrupt” Clark. He was more akin to Zod. The whole idea of Smallville fits what I’m saying Homecoming does for Spider-Man, which is update a classic superhero for a new generation who clearly already knew the classic origin. After all, it debuted just a few years after Lois & Clark ended its run.
Yeah, they explained it.
Which they will have all the time in the world to do in the second movie - where Peter and May’s ideas about “safety” and responsibility are at the very forefront.
I’m really not convinced that the casual audience, which makes up the majority of the box office, really cares about knowing origins or motivations very much in action movies, unless it’s an action movie that really focuses on drama, which I don’t think is something MCU will ever go for.
It amuses me to think there’s a good chance that nerds on comic book forums who could name 40 villains from Spider-Man’s rogues gallery might talk about the lack of Ben and origin more than a layperson ever would, if at all.
Yes, I think the layperson would just assume that this Spider-Man comes from the same place as all the other screen Spider-Men in terms of his origins. In the same way that when the James Bond movies change actor, we don’t all suddenly ask who the hell this new character is and where he came from, and worry about whether he’s really the same as the previous Bonds.
(Although in the case of Daniel Craig obviously they did opt to tell the origin story.)
For the first time. So at least they weren’t rehashing it.
Bond is just a secret agent. He has no higher motivation for doing what he does than patriotism.
There’s no reason in a straightforward adventure movie to be vague about your lead character’s motives. It’s been covered in other iterations but Marvel should be trying to make the definitive take on the character, or else why bother? They should be thinking 5, 10, 20 years in advance.
I’m not saying people can’t follow the plot if they don’t know the origin. I’m not saying we need to actually see the origin, or spend much narrative space in referring to it. But to dance around Spider-Man’s reason for doing what he does moves this take on the character from the specific into the generic. It’s the writers inserting their anxiety over where the movie exists right now instead of thinking about what best serves the work. That’s not how you make something last.
While I think they need to confront it head on in the sequel - if they don’t then this is just going to end up like Cap’s trilogy. Just three movies that don’t feel tightly connected.