With The Amazing Spider-Man 2 now in theaters and Sony announcing an intention to not only keep making Spider-Man movies but also wanting to spin him off into his own Spiderverse, I have heard the weeping and gnashing of the collective internet wanting Sony to have a change of heart and hand the rights back to Disney/Marvel like they did with Ghost Rider so that we can see him swing into the Avengers. I, on the other hand, think that barring a massive Batman and Robin caliber bomb I want Sony to keep going as long as they possibly can with what they are doing.
A bit of history when it comes to me and Spider-Man, between Amazing, Ultimate or Superior and related spin offs and off shoots I have read well over 400 hundred issues and counting. A good quarter of my "fun" shirts and belt buckles are related to him. So I think it's a fair estimation that I have something invested in how he is perceived by the public at large, and in today's world most of that starts with the big screen. That is what was the basis for this next year's toys and clothes that all the kids will want take as "their" spider-man.
So why don't I want him to join the rest of the Marvel Universe? The problem is that when it comes to the Marvel Cinematic Universe I will watch everything they put out, and I believe in their big plan, but right now they are playing it safe. They are putting an insane amount of effort into launching their live action T.V. universe that ties directly in with the cinematic side starting with Agents of Shield, with a recently announced Sharon Carter show joining the mix.
Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a financial and critical success, and now owns the crown for the highest grossing April release. With the highly anticipated release of The Guardians of the Galaxy coming in August things are looking great. Marvel has announced that there are movies planned all the way to 2028. Then, on the more experimental side of things, we are getting three new Netflix exclusive series that are being filmed in New York about Luke Cage, Jessica Jones and Daredevil, with the eventual goal of a separate Defenders team-up Netflix movie which gets me extremely excited. But it does highlight a problem that would have to be solved before Marvel brings any of their heroes back, which is Daredevil.
Don't get me wrong, I can see what they would do with him on his own non-network show with a good budget and really great writers. I see it being small and dark and gritty, keeping him street level, like he should always be. But I would rather seen a big screen movie instead. Marvel had well over a year's notice that Fox was going to be giving up the rights to Daredevil, since they couldn't crack the right team to get a movie going. Marvel has the rights back and they let it sit for a year and a half, and then they announced a T.V. show instead. I don't think it's for a lack of trying, I think it's due to the difficulties of working in new major heroes outside of the plan from five years ago. Not saying that there won't be a Daredevil movie in phase four, but that's not any time soon. The problem is that they have access to too many heroes and not enough outlets for to use them. Avengers: Age of Ultron alone, as far as we know, in a standard size movie, will have the introduction of two brand new villains, including the big bad of Ultron, while also trying to give a cohesive introduction to two new Avengers in Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. That alone is enough for two movies, but it is going to be crammed into one.
The final, and biggest, reason for me is that despite his reserve status Spider-Man is not an Avenger to me, and I am glad that recently they have kicked him out of the team. It goes against the fundamental struggle of who he is. Peter Parker's life is a constant struggle of having to let people down because of his responsibilities as Spider-Man. He is, at heart, a street level hero, more like Daredevil or Heroes for Hire. It doesn't take a major villain to get him to suit up like it does with Iron Man or Captain America. Every chance Peter Parker gets you see him swinging around town looking for any sign of trouble. That is why even with giant events he wouldn't add enough to the team to justify the loss of a separate, expanded Spider-Man universe, and, yes, despite how much people hate the clones, I want a Kain Scarlet Spider movie teaming up with Venom against Carnage. If that will eventually come to pass, only time will tell, especially with Avi Arad talking about how much he hated the clone saga. But a geek can always hope. Don't forget to join me next week when I present a spoiler filled retro review of Spider-Man (2002) where I will get into the good, the bad, and the ugly of it, and how it ranks for me as an obssesive Spider-Man geek.