A movie like Spider-Man: No Way Home wouldn’t exist in a perfect world. NWH featured three different Spider-Man actors from three other franchises. These characters have spanned nearly two decades in addition to diving headfirst into the Multiverse. Furthermore, five villains from Garfield & Maguire’s previous Spider-Man films made appearances in the Tom Holland-led threequel. Not to forget to mention Doctor Strange from MCU.
Even with the magic, the Multiverse, and the various Spideys, the film provided fans with both fond memories of Tom Holland’s Spider-Man. The movie further gave fans a glimpse into the future of Andrew Garfield’s former web-slinger. The Multiverse is a concept we know frighteningly little, as Doctor Strange said, and this left fans wondering if the Spider-Man films starring Garfield & Maguire are now part of the MCU canon?
There is no denying that the Spider-Man characters Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield appeared in an MCU film, as did their respective villains. Because of Strange’s spell, the people of Holland’s Peter cannot recall these events, but they took part in canonical ones.
As a result, the MCU recognizes them as canon. A recent Marvel website update shows this valid, with new Peter Parker/Spider-Man pages for Garfield & Maguire. Maguire’s iconic Spider-Man suit from his trilogy is on full display, and the site now describes Maguire’s web-slinger as saying:
“Our friendly neighborhood hero swings into the MCU in his iconic suit.”
Although Garfield’s Spider-Man was appropriately listed as “The Amazing Spider-Man,” His description, which includes an image of his outfit, demonstrates that he is canon in the MCU:
“The one and only Amazing Spider-Man webs his way into the MCU.”
The canonical status of Maguire and Garfield in the MCU is unquestionable. However, what about their films? The entire Spider-Man trilogy by Tobey Maguire was released before the MCU’s inception. On the other hand, Spider-Man 3 was released in theatres in 2007, while Marvel’s Iron Man and the MCU didn’t debut until 2008.
When Sony released Andrew Garfield’s The Amazing Spider-Man in 2012, the same year as Marvel’s The Avengers, it followed up with 2014’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Those two Spidey films were clearly and purposefully separate from the MCU’s overall narrative arc. Even if No Way Home’s spider-men weren’t Variants (as many had expected), the fact that they actually referenced their own MCU stories lends credence to their canonical status. Moreover,
However, the way Sony’s Spidey films shaped the MCU’s Peter Parker in an MCU film demonstrates their newfound status. They were the ones who showed Peter Holland that his Aunt May’s death had meaning, and they also helped him understand “what we do”, and the message of “with great power comes great responsibility.”Holland’s Peter would not have become the hero that audiences saw before the credits if it weren’t for them and the lessons they learned in their films.
The villains in the film would not have been cured if the MCU’s No Way Home hadn’t acknowledged the experiences of those former Peters in their movies, and MJ might not have been saved by Garfield’s Spidey or stopped Tobey’s Peter from killing Holland’s Peter, who was played by Osborn’s Gobby in the MCU. Because of the work of Maguire and Garfield, Tom Holland’s Peter Parker has become what he is today.
Sony’s Spider-Man trilogy and The Amazing Spider-Man films are now MCU canon. Nonetheless, they are not included in the MCU timeline. Separate timelines and universes separate them from each other. Events that occur in the MCU timeline and those that happen in an alternate timeline are both considered canon.
A similar comparison can be drawn to Tom Hiddleston as Loki in the Disney+ series between Maguire’s, Garfield’s, and Holland’s Peter. The only difference is that NWH used films and characters from a different studio. This, of course, is the only difference.
This, on the other hand, has more advantages than disadvantages. Since the beginning of the MCU, Marvel fans have been pleading with Marvel Studios President Kevin Feige to include shows like Daredevil, Agent Carter, Agents of SHIELD, and more in the canon. This is now possible thanks to the Multiverse, and it won’t impact the MCU’s current timeline.
If the rumours surrounding Doctor Strange 2 are correct, Marvel Studios intends to incorporate Fox’s X-Men and Fantastic Four into the MCU. As long as the Multiverse allows both the studios and the fans to have their cake and eat it too, why wouldn’t Marvel continue?