Warning: This story contains spoilers for Spider-Man: No Way Home. “With great power must also come great responsibility,” says Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) before dying in the arms of nephew Peter Parker (Tom Holland) in Spider-Man: No Path Home. For the past Peters played by Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield, these were words spoken directly by Uncle Ben (Cliff Robertson in the years 2002 Spider Man) or a lesson learned in a different sentence (Martin Sheen in The Amazing Spider-Man). For the Spider-Man of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, May’s speech is mixed with a mocking lecture from the Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe): “No good deed goes unpunished.”
The lesson comes after Peter, after asking Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) to make the world forget that Mysterio (Jake Gyllenhaal) ever revealed his secret identity, tries to save multiversal villains Strange says they are doomed to die. while fighting Spider-Man. Returning enemies to their home world means sending them to death, so Peter tries to “cure” Norman Osborn (Dafoe), Doctor Octopus (Alfred Molina), Sandman (Thomas Haden Church), Lizard (Rhys Ifans) and Electro (Jamie Foxx) before Osborn’s goblin character takes over – and hits Aunt May, killing her.
“We were at a point where we felt there had to be a loss, a sacrifice, that Peter had to pay a real price for this decision to try and save the villains,” Erik Sommers, who co-wrote Marvel and Sony’s Spider -Man’s Trilogy with Chris McKenna, narrated Variety. “I think it became pretty clear to a lot of us that losing Aunt May was the thing that would really make the point that we were trying to make it clear: to make it the movie where Peter Parker suffers the loss that the others have. suffered in their first films. ”
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Because the MCU has more or less ruled out Peter’s Uncle Ben, skipping the origin story for a rebooted web-slinger less than a year after his crime-fighting career began at Captain America: Civil War and Spider-Man: Homecoming, Sommers and McKenna knew that Peter needed this impact from his beloved Aunt May.
“He was trying to do what May taught him and it made the sacrifice even more difficult because it blew up in her face and it killed her,” McKenna said. “Then he started to question that morality in a way he never really questioned because he wasn’t tested that way.”
Spider-Man: No Path Home now plays exclusively in theaters.