Spider-Man: No Way Home has been a spectacular… no… an amazing success, both commercially and critically. At the time of writing it’s brought in more than $779 million at the worldwide box office and sat at 94% on Rotten Tomatoes an incredible feat for any film let alone one released in the middle of a pandemic.
A large part of that success comes down to the way the film celebrates not just the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s version of the Wallcrawler but the last 20 years (or so) of big-screen Spider-Men. Turn away now if you haven’t seen the film. Still with me? Good.
No Way Home sees the return of not just Holland’s Spidey but also Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire, who once again don their red and blue pyjamas to fight crime. The action movie’s re-energised the fandom with fans now demanding that Garfield get a third Spider-Man movie with some even suggesting Maguire should get a fourth outing.
Some fans have gone back to the very beginning though rooting out Tobey Maguire test footage, and we won’t lie it’s pretty cool. The short clip shows Peter battling some things, so far so Spidey but it’s the execution that makes the footage so interesting.
Spider-Man (2002) Test footage featuring an absolutely ripped topless Tobey Maguire engaging in combat with a group of muggers. This footage has a much darker tone than presented in the final film. pic.twitter.com/ys1W0V343M
— Daily Raimi Spider-Man! 🎄 (@EARTH_96283) November 8, 2019
Rather than the rather bright colours of the Raimi films, the entire thing is lit very moodily with plenty of shadows and darkness. Not only that Peter fights very differently; he’s far more brutal and focused. Honestly, it looks like something out of a martial arts movie, not a superhero film.