Spider-Man: No Way Home has had its second cinematic release with around 11 minutes of extra footage. However, the most important one was the new post-credits scene. Although it may seem like nothing at first it actually explains the entire identity spell situation from No Way Home and answers a few pertinent questions. So let us get into it.
After the events of Spider-Man: Far From Home, Mysterio played by Jake Gyllenhal revealed Spider-Man’s identity as Peter Parker to the entire world. This pretty much ruins Peter’s life as he receives immense public hate and harassment. Eventually, this leads to Peter asking Doctor Strange for help. Doctor Strange casts an identity spell that would make the world forget who Spider-Man is.
However, in typical MCU fashion, Peter interrupts the spell a bit too many times and things go horribly wrong. The spell quite literally breaks the multiverse. By the end of the movie, however, seeing no other option left, Peter tells Doctor Strange to make everyone forget to Peter Parker is. This would mean that MJ, Ned and everyone else would completely forget that Peter Parker ever existed. In the aftermath when Peter enters the cafe where MJ and Ned work, they have no memory of him and fail to identify him. So how does the spell really work?
The new post-credits scene in Spider-Man: No Way Home shows Betty Brant and Jason Ionello hosting the final news segment of Midtown Technical High School as they will be graduating soon. The news segment is essentially a walk down memory lane and it remembers the main events of the seniors in the last two year. This includes pictures of the Decathalon trip to Washington D.C. during Spider-Man: Homecoming and the trip to Europe during Spider-Man: Far From Home. However, the key difference is that Peter Parker is absent from all those pictures. This explains that Doctor Strange’s Identity Spell didn’t just make people forget Peter Parker. The Spell entirely erased his previous existence as Peter Parker and removed him from every picture as well. This becomes even more evident when you take into consideration the scene from No Way Home when Peter runs into Happy Hogan at Aunt May’s grave.
It is essential for fans to note that the spell only affected Peter Parker’s existence and not Spider-Man. The world still remembers Spider-Man and all the events from No Way Home. This is evident in a scene during Doctor Strange: Multiverse of Madness. As Strange is talking to America Chavez, he references that he was busy with some events involving Spider-Man. This shows that Doctor Strange clearly remembers Spidey and all that happened in the movie.
Another scene that is important to this concept is the one where Peter walks into the cafe where MJ is working and asks for a cup of coffee. MJ can clearly be seen wearing the broken Black Dahlia necklace that Peter gave her previously during the movie. This did not get erased by the Identity Spell. Furthermore, this leads us to believe that the necklace will play an important part in MJ remembering Peter Parker and finding her way back to him.