Early to mid December of 2018, Marvel and Sony animation released “Spider-man: Into the Spiderverse” in theaters, which opened to a very solid opening weekend. Along with the good ole Peter Parker, the movie showcases a few different renditions of peter, including spider ham(a talking cartoon pig) and spider-noir (a black and white, 1930’s spider detective). Despite these character introductions, the lead protagonist is a little different then what were used to in spider-man movies.
Meet Miles Morales, a half black, half Puerto Rican teenager who suddenly finds himself bitten by a radioactive spider. His existence shows up in the spiderverse story arch and since then he’s been gaining popularity.
Apart from the standard spidey powers, wall crawling and spidey since, he has a couple abilities Peter doesn’t have. He can charge short burst electrical shock to stun enemies, he also can turn completely invisible to sneak up on enemies.
As far as the movie goes, it honestly does him a lot of justice. He has his own personality that sets him apart from the other spider-man. He is black, but he isn’t a stereotype. Yes, he wears Jordans. Yes he listens to Post Malone. Those things don’t drive his entire way of thinking. He’s really smart, kinda clumsy, really awkward, but overall a good person.
How they portrayed Miles is very important for what could happen in the world of comics to come. While he of course is not the first black superhero, but he is the blackest face among the current generation of marvel comics. Not only that, he’s been handed an already established title, and a very iconic one at that. It’s one thing to create a hero ah hope they catch on, but to also give him a title that’s already established is risky in its own way.
While the previous generation is not going anywhere, its important to acknowledge the new blood among the superhero gallery. In no way are we saying we have an issue with white superheros, it’s just nice and to see characters that look like us but aren’t treated as “the black superhero”.
From Falcon earning the title of Captain America, and Miles becoming not only spider-man, but a canonical spider-man, to Riri Williams becoming Iron-man, or Kamala Khan becoming Ms. Marvel,this moment in time could signify the changing of the guard in the world of Marvel.