Tobey Maguire returns in Spider-Man: No Way Home, but the movie made a wise decision in not focusing on his unseen adventures after Spider-Man 3.
Tobey Maguire returns as his version of Peter Parker in Spider-Man: No Way Home, but the film wisely doesn’t dwell on his unseen adventures. In No Way Home, the Multiverse is accidentally opened when Peter Parker (Tom Holland) disrupts a spell by Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) intended to make the world forget his identity as Spider-Man. Instead, it pulls over individuals from other universes with knowledge of Spider-Man’s identity, such as Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe), Doc Ock (Alfred Molina), and a few others.
The spell also brings over Maguire’s Peter from the Sam Raimi Spider-Man films and Andrew Garfield’s from The Amazing Spider-Man movies. As the three Spider-Men join forces, the audience hears some details about Garfield’s Spider-Man, specifically about how he became “rageful” and “bitter” after the death of Gwen Stacy. Maguire’s Spidey, on the other hand, doesn’t give many details about his adventures since Spider-Man 3. This is reportedly per the wishes of Maguire himself, and this works in the movie’s favor.
Though having the three big-screen Spider-Men unite in No Way Home is a sight that has delighted countless millions, Maguire and Garfield are still supporting characters in the film. On top of multiple villains and Multiverse elements, No Way Home is a continuation of the story of Tom Holland’s Peter Parker. A movie as packed as No Way Home could easily become overstuffed, so keeping the past of Toeby Maguire’s Spider-Man to a minimum holds it back from doing so.
Maguire’s Peter Parker himself, being the elder statesman of the three, is also the one audiences were first introduced to. Meanwhile, Garfield’s Peter had been seen the least, having his story cut off after The Amazing Spider-Man 2. This left more of a need for No Way Home to fill audiences in on what’s happened to him since Gwen’s demise, while Maguire acts as more of a veteran guiding the three.
Since No Way Home‘s record-shattering release, there’s also been significant talk of Maguire and Garfield’s Spider-Men continuing. While the movie gave an update on Garfield’s heroic career since The Amazing Spider-Man 2, the only blank filled in for Maguire was that he and Mary-Jane (Kirsten Dunst) managed to patch things up after Spider-Man 3. For both Maguire and Garfield, less is more, but particularly in Maguire’s case, holding back on what his life has been like since he was last seen leaves plenty of room for that to be explored in a potential Spider-Man 4.
Thanks to the Multiverse, Maguire, Garfield, and Holland’s Web-Slingers were able to fight side-by-side. The former two seem increasingly likely to continue in their own worlds, but Spider-Man: Now Way Home also did a fine job of not over-exposing their unseen backstories. Tobey Maguire’s returning Spider-Man especially benefitted from this, giving audiences a taste of his return. With a lot still left unseen about the post-Spider-Man 3 life of “Peter #2“, the possibility of Spider-Man 4 can feel more like a completely new chapter in his story.
NEXT: Why Maguire & Garfield’s Spider-Man Universes Never Had Avengers
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Tobey Maguire Was Right To Keep No Way Home’s Focus On Tom Holland