Spider-Man: No Way Home – plot, release date, trailer, cast, theories and all you need to know about the MCU’s latest showstopper

Title treatment for Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, directed by Jon Watts.

© 2021 Sony Pictures Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.

Spidey swings into action on 15th December to battle a fistful of big bads from his backstory.

Here’s everything you need to know about the MCU’s Christmas cracker, Spider-Man: No Way Home.

Spider-Man: No Way Home release date: 15 December 2021

What’s the backstory to Spider-Man: No Way Home

For Spider-Fans, the ‘Home’ saga has been essential viewing. First came 2017’s Spider-Man: Homecoming, which found Peter Parker juggling his battle against mech birdman Vulture with the agonies of high school. Next came 2019’s Spiderman: Far From Home, in which New York’s chirpiest vigilante hit Europe’s tourist trail, butting heads with Mysterio and the Elementals, while dreaming of a shot with snarky love interest, MJ.

With both films walking the tightrope between web-swinging action and hormone-soaked teen drama, there’s nothing else in the MCU quite like it.

Now, with the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer promising seat-edge action, plot zigzags and enough clues, conspiracy theories and Easter eggs to feed a fan forum for weeks, we couldn’t be more glued to this saga if you webbed us to the wall of the local ODEON.

“It’ll be a lot of fun, and there’ll be debate about it, for sure,” says Benedict Cumberbatch, who co-stars as Doctor Strange in this third instalment.

“It’s a daring, brilliant concept…”

What’s the Spider-Man: No Way Home plot?

The finale of Spider-Man: Far From Home was kind of a big deal, with Peter Parker unmasked as Spider-Man and plastered across every billboard in the world. You’d think that being outed as a superhero – and an Avenger to boot – would be the best day of a teenager’s life. Instant kudos. Unimaginable fame. High-fives from the jocks. Attention from the cheerleaders. But with the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer picking up the story, it doesn’t take long to see the terrible price of becoming interplanetary public property.

(from left) Peter Parker (Tom Holland) and Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) in Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, directed by Jon Watts.

© 2021 Sony Pictures Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.

Never mind the click of cameraphones in the school halls and the placard-waving hate mobs. Parker’s real problems start when he’s hauled into a government interrogation room, accused of killing Mysterio with a drone army and forced to watch MJ, Aunt May and best friend Ned put through the wringer. No wonder he wants his old life back.

“I’ve been thinking,” Parker tells us in the No Way Home trailer, “about how to fix all this…”

How indeed?

(from left) Peter Parker (Tom Holland), MJ (Zendaya) and Ned (Jacob Balaton) in Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, directed by Jon Watts.

© 2021 Sony Pictures Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.

Well, as the old saying goes: when in doubt, visit an egomaniac neurosurgeon turned fire-juggling sorcerer.

Parker books an appointment with the good Doctor to beg for an anonymity spell that even Strange’s sidekick, Wong, warns is too dangerous. And when the recipe goes disastrously wrong, fracturing the barriers between our world and the infinite parallel dimensions known as the Multiverse, there’s no telling what big bads from Spidey’s past could slip between the cracks.

As Strange reminds us in the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer: “We tampered with the stability of space-time. The Multiverse is a concept about which we know frighteningly little.”

Who’s in the Spider-Man: No Way Home cast?

He’d already conquered the West End in Billy Elliot the Musical and captured hearts in 2012’s powerful tsunami drama The Impossible, but from the day he debuted in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War, it was obvious Tom Holland was born to be Spidey – nailing not only the leap ‘n’ swing of the MCU’s most dynamic character, but also the cringe ‘n’ squirm of adolescence.

“I worked for five months,” Holland told Radio 1 of his preparation. “Training every day, reading all the comics, doing all the research for this role…”

Spider-Man (Tom Holland) in Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, directed by Jon Watts.

© 2021 Sony Pictures Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.

The actor might be 25 now, but Holland has only grown into the role, retaining the webslinger’s youthful energy while shouldering the character’s growing responsibilities. Meanwhile, much of Parker’s emotional depth comes via his chemistry with the Spider-Man: No Way Home cast. There’s the tender bond with Aunt May, played with a twinkle by Marisa Tomei and the surrogate-father dynamic with Stark Industries fixer ‘Happy’ Hogan (Jon Favreau).

Whenever Spidey’s world gets too dark, you can rely on nerd-with-attitude best friend Ned (Jacob Batalon) for a dose of everykid comedy. Best of all, the romance between Parker and Zendaya’s smart-tongued MJ is more spiky than slushy.

"When I did the first movie, I was 19,” she told Daily Pop of the pair’s edgy chemistry. “It's pretty special to have grown up all together.”

Allies are all well and good, but every superhero needs an adversary or two.

We’ve seen from the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer that Chocolat’s Alfred Molina will reprise his role – first seen in 2004’s Spider-Man 2 – as eight-legged mad scientist Doctor Octopus. It’s a cautious welcome back, too, for Jamie Foxx’s one-man power station, Electro.

And if the clues in the No Way Home trailer are to be believed, that’s just the start.

(from left) Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland) in Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, directed by Jon Watts.

© 2021 Sony Pictures Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.

What have we learnt from the Spider-Man No Way Home trailer?

Of course, there’s the stuff you’ve come to expect from the MCU.

Whip-smart dialogue. Characters you’d jump in front of a bullet for. Not to mention action sequences that include collapsible skyscrapers and runaway trains.

(from left) Peter Parker (Tom Holland), Ned (Jacob Balaton) and MJ (Zendaya) in Sony Pictures Entertainment’s Spider-Man: No Way Home, directed by Jon Watts.

© 2021 Sony Pictures Entertainment. All Rights Reserved.

But then, this being Marvel, there’s also a whole load of theory fuel.

Most of us clocked the pumpkin bomb and maniacal laughter that practically confirms the Green Goblin will be back (probably played by Willem Dafoe).

But he might not be the only big-name returnee.

Eagle-eyed fans are convinced that the moment when Parker ducks an attack from behind at 2:26 in the trailer shows a momentary flash of The Lizard.

Meanwhile, the return of Molina’s noughties-era Doc Ock has been seized upon by the MCU hardcore as evidence that the villain will face off against Tobey Maguire’s incarnation of Spider-Man, and that Andrew Garfield (who wore the spider suit from 2012 to 2014) will also return to battle his old foe, Electro.

Our lips are sealed – but in the Multiverse, all bets are off.

Why should I see Spider-Man: No Way Home at ODEON?

You wouldn’t get off a rollercoaster when you’re two-thirds through the ride. And with the world counting down the days to the big Spider-Man: No Way Home release date on December 17th, you won’t want to miss the climax to the ‘Home’ saga, complete with supersize sound and vision.

But don’t just take our word for it, take it from Tom Holland, who had a message for fans after the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer dropped: “It only gets crazier…”

 


 

Spider-Man: No Way Home only in cinemas from December 15

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