This post contains SPOILERS. Seriously, this film contains enough surprises for those who haven't followed any of the media for an entire year's worth of films. EXPECT SPOILERS! DON'T READ IF YOU DON'T WANT SPOILERS!
Q: Will this post contain SPOILERS?
Q: Yes. You may find some SPOILERS in this post.
Clearly, the success of Into the Spider-verse influenced the making of this movie.
Despite some silly and forced plot elements, this movie is a great deal of fun.
Peter's lawyer, Matt Murdoch, manages to clear him of his legal worries. However, his identity remains public and he has become a divisive figure in a way that hearkens back to the old comic while reflecting, disturbingly but not in an excessive way, on the divisiveness within contemporary America.
Peter, alas, interferes with Strange's spell that will erase people's memories of his being Spider-man and breaks things on a cosmic scale. Suddenly, he's dealing with villains from the previous two franchises. But can they be cured by magic science that might as well be magic?
Fortunately, he gets help, since the Toby Maguire and Andrew Garfield versions of the character also cross over from their respective franchises universes.
The comradery among the three Spider-men, Peter's friends, and even a reformed villain proves enjoyable, and their adventures have been enhanced with amazing effects.
Best small spoiler bit: Charlie Cox’s cameo as Matt Murdoch/Daredevil. Rumour has it he’ll appear in She-Hulk, though his character might not be in strict continuity with the Netflix series. Don’t see why not. Disney/MCU can use those characters again now.
Best big spoiler bit: the death of Aunt May was sad, but it gave Peter a “great power/great responsibility” which we’ve never seen with this incarnation. It was more powerful than the source version, because we barely knew Ben in the original comic before he died. This Peter and May have had a credible familial relationship.
By the way, how does someone who no longer has an identity get an apartment? Or does he have one, but just no living, breathing person remembers him, personally? The change raises as many questions that won't be answered as Infinity Gauntlet's snap and resnap.
That aside, I do wish that, on the way to his apartment, Peter had passed by the Bugle's HQ and shot some web-fluid on A. Jones J. Jonah Jameson's chair. Ah, well. Maybe next time.
Low point: Spider-man used to be such a street-level hero. They've set him up at the ending so he could be again, but the MCU may be two big for that now, and I kind of miss it. In any case, this film pretty much assumes you're familiar with the superhero films of the last two decades. I suppose you could just accept "superheroes and multiverse" and enjoy it.
Stay tuned for two credit sequences, depending on your tastes. The mid-credit one is the standard amusing MCU bit that almost certainly is throwing ahead to a future film. The one you have to wait through ten hours of credits for is basically just a trailer for the next Doctor Strange movie, with sorta-spoilers for WandaVision.