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‘Spider-Man: No Way Home’ Trailer Weaponizes Millennial Nostalgia

"Hello, Peter..."

Remember when the most famous actors on the planet were Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst? In the summers of 2002 and 2004, most of us could not get enough of the Sam Raimi-directed Spider-Man films. And although I personally gave the 2007 flick Spider-Man 3 a pretty scathing review on my Myspace blog, we can all admit that emo-Peter Parker dance holds-up. And now, if you’re longing for the days when you were slightly, only slightly younger than now, there’s good news! The first trailer for Spider-Man: No Way Home is bringing back everything you loved about the old Spidey flicks in a big way. Watch it above, and then take a deep breath to process your early aughts flashbacks.

Following the events of Spider-Man: Far From Home (which, if you can believe it, came out in 2019) Peter Parker’s identity has been revealed to the general public by another character we last saw in the old-school Spidey movies, Jonah Jameson (J.K. Simmons.) Peter’s life is in shambles, so he goes to Dr. Strange for help. Apparently, Dr. Strange can’t just say “obliviate” and cast a simple memory charm — and also that would be bad for plot. But Strange agrees to cast a spell for Peter, it goes wrong, and the multiverse is opened up. We y hear the laughter of the Green Goblin, we see the rising sand of the Sandman, and at various points, the tentacles of Doctor Octopus. At the very end of the trailer, Spider-Man 2’s Doc Ock, Alfred Molina himself, appears, saying “Hello, Peter.”  (Also, if you think Molina looks shockingly identical to how he looked in 2004, you’re not wrong. He’s been digitally de-aged.)

There have already been indications that No Way Home will feature the return of both Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield as their respective spider-men, but it looks like the early-2000 nostaglia will begin with the villains. In fact, before the Andrew Garfield films were rebooted following The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014), a film centered around the “Sinister Six” was thought to be in the works. In the comics, the Sinister Six consisted of the baddies: Green Goblin, Doctor Octopus, Sandman, Electro, Vulture, and Mysterio.

To be clear, we’ve actually seen every single one of those baddies in different iterations of various Spidey movies.

  • Willem Dafoe played Green Goblin in Spider-Man (2002)
  • Thomas Haden Church played Sandman in Spider-Man 3 (2007)
  • Jamie Foxx played Electro in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2014)
  • Michael Keaton played Vulture in Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
  • Jake Gyllenhaal played Mysterio in Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)
  • And, of course, Alfred Molina played Doc Ock in Spider-Man 2 (2004)

Basically, it looks very likely that this movie will probably end up having Doctor Strange and (multiple) Spider-Men face-off against all of these villains. And because the nostalgia multiverse has been cracked-open, no recasting is needed. At this point, the only question is whether or not we’ll get a scene in which Kirsten Dunst and Zendaya meet, and complain about James Franco’s lackluster omelet skills.

Spider-Man: No Way Home hits theaters on December 17, 2021.