Without spoiling the epic cameos and surprising events of Spider-Man: No Way Home, there is one thing that is totally true: The first post-credits scene (or mid-credits scene) is either a massive game-changer for the MCU or it’s a flippant joke that means nothing whatsoever. As Marvel post-credit scenes go, this feels like the one that is openly screwing with the audience. Is there really something that will come of this? Spoilers ahead for ONLY the post-credits scene of Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Okay, so after all the people and things (no spoilers there) go their separate ways in No Way Home, we get a post-credits scene featuring none other than Tom Hardy as Eddie Brock. That’s right, this is the same guy from the Venom movies, which up until now, have existed in an entirely separate film continuity. But, because No Way Home is all about the multiverse, and characters from other Spidey film franchises (that’s not a spoiler, you saw Doc Ock in the trailer) it now appears that the Venom movies have officially crossed over into the MCU. In fairness, this happened before. Earlier this year, the post-credits scene of Venom: Let There Be Carnage featured Eddie seeing an image of Tom Holland’s Spider-Man. So, are we really dealing with a moment in which Tom Holland will cross paths with Tom Hardy?
The answer to this question is unclear because the post-credits scene seems to screw with the audience so thoroughly. Either No Way Home is saying there’s now a chance for some version of Venom in the MCU, or it’s not saying that at all.
Can Venom crossover with Spider-Man movies?
The answer to this question, strictly speaking, is yes. Venom and Spider-Man are both characters that come from Marvel comics, and, at present, are owned by Sony, not Marvel Studios. This means that when Tom Holland’s Spider-Man appears in MCU movies, he’s basically on loan from Sony. (This is also why these movies don’t stream on Disney+ along with the rest of the MCU.)
But, this kind of crossover is odd. In some ways, it might be much easier for Tom Holland to appear in a Venom movie than it is for Tom Hardy to appear in an MCU movie, at least from a legal standpoint. And, the way No Way Home leaves things is fairly clear: Eddie Brock goes back to his universe and leaves a little bit of Venom symbiote good behind. This seems to imply that some version of Venom could latch on to someone in the MCU since it seems like Eddie got zapped back to the Venom-verse pretty quickly.
Essentially, the Venom post-credits scene feels like a tease since it’s so non-commital in both directions. On the one hand, it feels very unlikely Tom Holland is crossing back over from the multiverse to the go-see Venom. And on the other hand, it also feels like we’re not getting a rebooted MCU version of Venom anytime soon.
The Morbius Twist
Here’s the only weird thing in all of this. On January 28 (kind of soon!) we’ll get the film Morbius, starring Jared Leto as the titular living vampire character, also someone who originates in Marvel comics, but with film rights at Sony. Generally speaking, it feels like Morbius would exist in the Venom-verse, but the first trailer had a reference to Spider-Man and the film itself features the return of Michael Keaton as the Vulture, a villain who first appeared in the MCU movie Spider-Man: Homecoming. So, what’s the deal? Is Morbius in the Venom-verse or the MCU? Is there another version of Spider-Man, who lives in the Venom verse? And if so, is he also played by Tom Holland?
New Doctor Strange In the Multiverse of Madness trailer
In the second post-credits scene for No Way Home, we basically just get a trailer for Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness, which establishes the return of Wanda following the events of WandaVision, as well as the idea that in some universe, there’s an evil Doctor Strange. This small detail seems to reference the notion of “the variants” we learned about in Loki and really makes you wonder if that concept could be carried across to these movies that don’t even exist in the MCU. In other words, is the Michael Keaton/Vulture in Morbius the same Vulture from the MCU, or a variant?
Thanks to Spider-Man: No Way Home, the MCU has managed to subsume the continuity of various adjacent superhero franchises, whether those movies were ever connected to them, to begin with. At this rate, it really makes you wonder how many years until we get a Marvel-DC crossover movie in which Batman and Spider-Man team up. It may sound impossible, but the basic notion of Spider-Man: No Way Home would have been absurd just five years ago. And yet, now, always and forever, we’re living in a cinematic multiverse, and the next crossover is just a blink away.
Spider-Man: No Way Home is out in theaters now.