Tom Holland’s portrayal of Spider-Man has received huge recognition. But does he match with the Peter Parker we have known for so many years?
Tom Holland has played the role of Spider-Man in 5 movies as of now and will be reprising his role in Spider-Man: No Way Home. And people have received Tom with open arms. There couldn’t have been a better Spider-Man for the MCU. But there’s more to Peter Parker than Tom Holland.
WATCH: THE REAL REASON 3 ACTORS HAVE PLAYED SPIDER-MAN IN 10 YEARS
SPIDER-MAN ON THE BIG SCREEN
Since the beginning of the 21st century, three actors have played the role of Spider-Man on the big screen. It all began with Sam Raimi’s directed Spider-Man (2002) where Tobey Maguire put on the mask of the web-slinger. He reprised his role in the following two movies made by Raimi, namely Spider-Man 2 and Spider-Man 3. Next up, we had The Amazing Spider-Man movies directed by Marc Webb. The franchise had 2 movies with Andrew Garfield as Peter Parker. Finally, we got the Spider-Man of the MCU played by Tom Holland. We first saw him in Captain America: Civil War followed by Spider-Man: Homecoming, Avengers: Infinity War, Avengers: Endgame, and Spider-Man: Far From Home. Thus Tom Holland holds the record for the most number of portrayals as Spider-Man.
Before we begin, let us first agree on the fact that Marvel may have given us the best cast for many superheroes. But it has not been successful every time. Brie Larson as Captain Marvel doesn’t make the mark. Chris Pratt as Star-Lord? Not really. Moreover, to say that nobody else could have played the characters better is not right. This is because we didn’t get the chance to see any other actors play Iron-Man or Captain America or Thor.
We do not doubt Marvel’s choice of actors. We are also not saying that it chose only famous actors and actresses. But to hold Marvel as the sole authority of the best cast of superheroes doesn’t make sense. And this is where we bring in Tom Holland as Spider-Man.
THE CHARACTER OF PETER PARKER
Peter Parker is a sweet nerdy guy. And even when he takes off the mask, and is without his specs, he looks this way. No matter how broken he is after a fight, one can still make out the nice guy that resides in him. This was evident in both the previous cases of Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield. A sweet awkwardness that was visible in them added layers to the character of Peter Parker. And this was made clearer by the choice of the actors.
Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield don’t have the chocolaty-boy image. And this is what gave them the edge to play Peter Parker. He blends in the crowd. Nobody recognizes him or even turns to look at him. He looks just like a regular guy, good at studies but late for his classes.
TOM HOLLAND AS PETER PARKER
But MCU decided to choose the most good-looking “child actor” for the role. And probably this is where they went out of the way. Tom Holland’s appearance doesn’t go with the character of Peter Parker. Maybe because we already have it ingrained in our minds that he is British or maybe it’s something else. But he just doesn’t fit in.
We need to understand that playing Spider-Man and playing Peter Parker are two different things. Only when there is a true-to-form Peter Parker can we accept a true Spider-Man. But MCU does not get the chance to develop the character of Peter. And this might be the reason why Tom Holland’s portrayal of Peter seems incomplete and somewhat weird. Marvel could have added some history of Peter in Spider-Man: Homecoming. This would have allowed Tom to merge with the character in a better manner.
Another important thing that we need to “see” is his looks. Peter Parker isn’t handsome, and not even close to Tom Holland. Moreover, Tom doesn’t look like a 17-year old Peter Parker (his MCU age) at all. He looks more mature and hence even when he expresses like a 17-year-old kid, it appears unusual and over-the-top.
Tom is great at being Spider-Man but we have not seen him much as Peter Parker. However, his role as Peter might be tested in Spider-Man: No Way Home. After all, we all have heard rumors of both Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield being in the film as Peter Parkers from different universes. Spider-Man: No Way Home arrives at the theatres on December 17, 2021.