Spider-Man: No Way Home has finally landed in cinemas, and it turns out LEGO is the perfect metaphor for Peter Parker’s journey through the threequel.
The final instalment in Spidey’s first (though not last) Marvel Cinematic Universe trilogy is the apex of a journey that first began in Captain America: Civil War, and has since been written through a web of MCU films that spans three solo movies and two Avengers team-ups.
His latest adventure pulls from not just those movies, but the entire history of Spider-Man on-screen (hey, it’s in the trailers), crafting a more-than-satisfying conclusion to this particular trilogy. And, wouldn’t you know it, LEGO just happens to be the perfect symbol for Pete’s entire character arc in the MCU up to this point.
Huge spoilers follow for Spider-Man: No Way Home. You’ve been warned!
The symbiotic relationship between LEGO and Spider-Man first blossomed in 2017’s Homecoming, when Pete’s best friend Ned Leeds learns Spider-Man’s secret identity. He’s holding a copy of 75159 Death Star at the time (who doesn’t carry their LEGO Death Star everywhere they go?), which he obviously immediately drops and completely destroys.
Little did we know at the time, however, that that 2016 LEGO Star Wars set would become a narrative thread across the MCU’s Spidey trilogy; a piece of connective tissue between Homecoming and No Way Home. That’s because the Death Star shows up again in the latest movie, after Peter and Aunt May relocate to Happy’s condo.
For those of us with our finger on the LEGO pulse, it’s an effective reminder of just who the MCU’s Peter Parker is at this point: he’s not really some broke kid from Queens if he’s got a $400 LEGO set, much like Tom Holland’s Spidey has access to an arsenal of tech, weaponry and gadgets (courtesy of Tony Stark) that’s seen him labelled Iron Man Jr. by some fans.
But by the end of the movie – when the entire universe has forgotten who Peter Parker is, and he’s basically lost everything and everyone – he’s still clinging to that Emperor Palpatine minifigure, which director Jon Watts deliberately focuses on when Pete is setting up his new apartment.
There’s no Death Star to be seen, so we’re left with the conclusion that it was destroyed when the villains started tearing up Happy’s condo – and in that way, it’s just part of the wider journey that Spider-Man: No Way Home takes Peter Parker on. When the credits roll, he’s effectively been stripped back to basics, to the point that he’s even stitching together his own suit.
It’s essentially a soft reboot of the character within the grander scope of the MCU, perhaps keying into the chat Tom Holland’s Pete has with Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s Spider-Men atop the Statue of Liberty: this is a version of a friendly neighbourhood crimefighter who’s battled with aliens in space.
The next MCU Spidey trilogy will likely therefore dial things back for the wall-crawler, grounding him back in New York with a new suit, new baddies and probably way less interdimensional interference. If the scale of the last three films was comparable to a LEGO Death Star, the next three will probably be closer to a single Palpatine minifigure. Metaphor!
Now, if only Electro didn’t call it ‘LEGOs’…