As the words of Doctor Strange echo through the Spider-Man: No Way Home trailer saying, “Be careful what you wish for, Parker.”, it is clear that many of the rumors that fans have holding onto for months are starting to come to fruition. We already had confirmation that Alfred Molina would be returning to the Spider-Man world as Doc Ock, and the trailer did not disappoint in revealing him at the end of the trailer, but it was another reveal prior to this that brings confirmation of another, even older Spider-Man villain returning to the franchise: Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin.
While Molina’s involvement, and that of Jamie Foxx as Electro from Andrew Garfield’s time in the Spidersuit, is something that has been common knowledge for some time now, we have not had any actual confirmation of those Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield whispers, or the other great villain of Sam Raimi’s original Spider-Man movie, the Green Goblin. While there is still no sign of those previous Spider-Men, the teaser trailer did give us our first official sign of the Green Goblin and Willem Dafoe’s return.
Just prior to the appearance of Molina’s Doc Ock, we see a small round pumpkin bomb bounce across the tarmac and explode causing carnage. Heard in the background during this short scene, we hear the unmistakable sound of Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin cackle. While Marvel have been known to throw a number of curveballs at fans in their trailers, and all may not be exactly as it appears in this cut, it is as sure a sign of Dafoe’s return as we are going to see for now.
In recent interviews, Dafoe has been happy to talk about his upcoming movies, including one which he would rather not discuss. Many immediately assumed that this meant he is reprising the role he last played two decades ago, but Marvel secrecy being what it is, there was no-one willing to break rank and give an answer no matter how many different interviewers asked it. With that cat now out of the bag, attention is likely to turn back to the other great mystery – what about Maguire and Garfield.
As we have seen with both Shang-Chi and Eternals, the second final trailer release has revealed much more about those movies than the initial teaser. It could be the same with Spider-Man, and a couple of months down the line, we could finally be given a glimpse of three Spider-Men sharing screen time in a bid to bring down some of their biggest villains from across the multiverse. Recent supposed leaked images have shown both previous actors of the role on a blue-screen set together, but so far there have been no confirmations whether these are genuine or have been manipulated like so many fan-trailers and artwork.
Whatever the outcome, it is clear to see that as strange as the Marvel Cinematic Universe has already become, it is about to get a whole lot stranger as we head at pace towards some of the darkest times for the greatest hero’s Earth has to offer, with Spider-Man: No Way Home arriving December 17, to pave the way to Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness in March – a multiverse that we now suspect he may have helped create.