We need to talk about Spider-Man
With the new Spider-Man movies creating new buzz in the superhero universe, a very important question has been raised: Who will be the next Spider-Man? Of course, we’ll all miss Andrew Garfield, but it’s exciting to think of what a new leading man will bring to the story. For months, several names have been thrown around, like Asa Butterfield—star of Hugo and Ender’s Game—and Tom Holland from Billy Elliot the Musical. Today, we got confirmation that Holland will be the lucky actor suiting up as Spidey next.
I have no doubt that Holland will be perfectly adequate as Spidey, but I also can’t help but think he’s a sort of, well, boring choice. How many times do producers want us to sit through the same stories over and over again with the same type of hero we’re supposed to be rooting for? The Spider-Man series needs something different to keep the fandom interested. The Internet has been whirling with disappointment over the noticeable white-washing of superheroes over the past few years, and casting a Spider-Man that defies that trend would have really sent a message to the fans of the Marvel universe. There are plenty of actors of color that would be perfect to take on the challenge and sling some webs around NYC. So, even though I’m happy for Tom Holland, here are some actors I would have loved to have seen as Spidey in the next movie.
Donald Glover of Community has a pretty big following among Spider-Man’s diversity-seeking fanbase, and it’s easy to see why. His comedic timing is ideal to deliver Spidey’s snarky lines. He has already loaned his voice to Ultimate Spider-Man: Web-Warriors as Miles Morales, so he has superhero experience under his belt.
Stephan James, hot off of his success in Selma, is another great candidate for the job. He’s young, talented, and a fresh face to the world of action. We could expect a more serious Spider-Man with James behind the mask, but with a smolder like that, his performance would be welcomed with open arms.
Alfred “Alfie” Enoch
And then there’s Alfred “Alfie” Enoch from How to Get Away with Murder. Besides being British—which obviously gives him a leg up on the hotness meter—Alfie’s killer charm and wicked acting skills would make for a Spidey that’d make us all swoon. Just look at that face! He’s even got his hand ready to shoot some webs. Oh, and he played Dean Thomas in the Harry Potter series. NBD.
Another worthy contender is Dayo Okeniyi, better known as Thresh from The Hunger Games series. Okeniyi has experience with the various stunts needed to master Spider-Man’s signature moves. The Hunger Games kept him busy in the action department and let him showcase his many combat skills on the battlefield. Okeniyi would promise a truly action-packed set of movies that are sure to thrill.
It’s all fun and games to wish for a Spidey audiences have never seen before, but it’s something else for that wish to become a reality. Marvel needs to stand up for what the fans want to see, and a carbon-copy of Andrew Garfield is not the lead many of us were hoping for. Another Marvel comic franchise has taken a step in the right direction. The Fantastic Four, set to release August 2015, includes Michael B. Jordan on its cast list. Jordan will play Johnny Storm a.k.a. the Human Torch, a role that was previously played by Chris Evans. Why not add some diversity to another, even more popular, franchise?
Since Marvel has decided to cast Holland, I fear we’re not going to add anything to the Spider-Man story this time around, and that we might be headed toward yet another reboot of the same story we’ve already seen told by Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield before. Since the Spider-Man franchise seems to get a reboot every few years, here’s hoping that with the next round, Marvel will cast a person of color as Spidey.
Rumor has it Spidey is going to be introduced in the newest Captain America movie, Captain America: Civil War, when it is released in 2016, while the new Spider-Man franchise is set to kick off in 2017.
Jordan is currently a college student trying to learn as much as she can. She can reference Harry Potter like no other, and is always down for chocolate chip waffles. You can follow her Tumblr if you want to know more about what her mind looks like.