No Way Home Secretly Explains Why Spider-Man Is Always Weaker Than Villains

Warning! SPOILERS for Spider-Man: No Way Home

Spider-Man: No Way Home finally provides some insight into why Spider-Man is usually weaker than his foes. The film sees Tom Holland's Peter Parker accidentally pull multiversal visitors into his own reality during a botched spell from Dr. Strange. Many of these visitors are villains who are familiar faces from the previous film versions of Spider-Man: Willem Dafoe as Green Goblin, Alfred Molina as Doc Ock, Jamie Foxx as Electro, Rhys Ifans as Lizard, and Thomas Haden Church as Sandman. However, the spell also pulls in two other versions of Spider-Man, played by Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield, reprising their roles from their own film series.

In all three live-action film iterations of Spider-Man, he is faced with dangerous and deadly villains, all of whom are fully grown adults. Given that Peter Parker is a teenager still attending high school, there is some natural logic to the mismatch of power between Spider-Man and his villains. However, since his superpowers include superhuman speed and strength, youth and inexperience can't fully explain away his weakness. Spider-Man: No Way Home offers an explanation that makes complete sense and deepens the character of Peter Parker.

Related: Doctor Strange Was Evil In No Way Home: All Evidence For MCU-Breaking Theory

In No Way HomeAndrew Garfield's Peter Parker discusses his darker path after the events of The Amazing Spider-Man 2, in which he stopped pulling punches as he dealt with the death of Gwen Stacy. This insight into his character, which he shares to calm Holland's Peter Parker after the death of his Aunt May (Marisa Tomei) at the hand of the Green Goblin, proves that Peter Parker usual modus operandi is to pull back from his superstrength to avoid using excessive or fatal force in a fight. This aligns with the development of all three versions of Parker in No Way Home and makes explicit the canonical reason he often seems weak against his enemies.

The ending of No Way Home puts this new insight on display, as Holland's Peter Parker loses control in his confrontation with Green Goblin and moves to kill him with his own glider. Maguire's Parker stops him, as both the Maguire and Garfield versions of Parker had made it clear that their experiences had shown them they should stick to their true nature of avoiding undue violence. The film's resolution of "curing" each villain underscores this revelation, as each villain had originally been kind and good before something caused them to lose control of themselves. Thus, pulling punches with bloodthirsty and evil enemies makes total sense and highlights Parker's instincts about people.

The future of Spider-Man in the MCU looks bright, especially given the not-so-subtle tease of Miles Morales in No Way Home. The establishment of Peter Parker's true nature helps to not only explain his weakness against villains but also humanizes him further. Spider-Man: No Way Home may be the best Spider-Man film to date, and it's because it fully understands exactly who the hero is and what makes him a hero.

More: Spider-Man: No Way Home Was Right To Cut Iron Man's Daughter

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