Spider-Man: No Way Home leaves Peter Parker’s future open-ended. Thanks to Doctor Strange’s second spell, not a soul in the universe knows who Peter Parker is, not even his girlfriend MJ. Without family, friends or Stark funds to support him, Peter skips college and moves into a darkly-lit New York apartment. He stitches together a low-tech Spider-Man costume and takes to the streets.
Tom Holland is not yet sure about whether he will return as Peter Parker in future films. The ending plays like a soft reboot that could lead to another, more mature Spidey trilogy featuring Holland as Peter. Or they could recast the role and start the story afresh.
Whether that Spidey would appear in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is also up for debate: Sony and Marvel Studios (which is owned by Disney) produce the Spider-Man films together. But now that all the Marvel Studios characters like Doctor Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Happy Hogan (Jon Favreau) have forgotten who Peter Parker is, they may never see him again.
Still, the end-credits scenes do offer some hints about Sony’s Spider-verse, which includes movies centered on Spidey villains like Venom and Morbius, and the MCU.
Venom gets zapped back to his universe
Fans of the Venom movies may have expected to see Eddie Brock (Tom Hardy) and the alien symbiote with a taste for human brains, Venom, show up in No Way Home. In an end-credits scene for Venom: Let There Be Carnage, Eddie and Venom are transported from their universe into the universe where Tom Holland’s Spider-Man resides. Spider-Man appears on TV, and Venom salivates.
No doubt, Doctor Strange’s spell that accidentally opened up a pathway between parallel universes sucked Venom from his world into that of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
But Eddie and Venom never quite make it to New York to chat with and/or eat Peter Parker. During an end-credits scene, we see that Eddie has only traveled as far as a bar on a tropical island. There, the bartender tells Eddie about the Avengers, Thanos and the Snap (all events that took place in Peter Parker’s universe but not in Eddie’s). Finally, Eddie figures it might be time to find Peter. But just as he gets up to leave, he’s sucked back into his own universe by Doctor Strange’s second spell that restored the multiverse.
But Venom does leave a drop of black goo behind. That symbiote could attach itself to anyone and create another Venom. So we may yet see Holland’s Peter battle the carnivorous creature.
We do know that another Spider-verse movie, Morbius, starring Jared Leto as the vampire character, is set to debut next year and exists in the same universe as Parker’s Spider-Man. (Michael Keaton’s Vulture, the villain from the Holland movie Spider-Man: Homecoming, will appear in Morbius.) Sony looks to be building towards a Sinister Six film centered on Spider-Man’s greatest foes with this growing cohort of antagonists.
Doctor Strange will fight his evil doppelgänger
The second end-credits scene is not so much a scene as an entire trailer for the next Doctor Strange movie, Multiverse of Madness. Doctor Strange plays a pivotal role in No Way Home. When a bad guy reveals that Peter Parker is Spider-Man, Peter turns to Doctor Strange for help. Unfortunately, Peter and Doctor Strange mess up the first spell that they cast to hide Peter’s secret identity, inadvertently opening up a chasm between parallel universes.
Doctor Strange eventually sets in motion another spell that will wipe the entire world’s memory so no one knows that Peter is Spider-Man. While it seems as if Doctor Strange successfully sealed the various multiverse portals, it’s unclear what damage he might have wrought. The trailer for Multiverse of Madness suggests that Doctor Strange’s sorcery may have disrupted the multiverse permanently.
At the end of the first Doctor Strange movie, Chiwetel Ejiofor’s Mordo came to the conclusion that the problem with the world was “too many wizards” and began a quest to take back the gift of magic from those he deemed unworthy. He seems to have stuck to that philosophy in the sequel. In the very first moments of the trailer, Mordo tells Strange, “Your desecration of reality will not go unpunished.”
Strange replies, “It was the only way,” which is debatable. Did Peter really need to hide his identity?
Anyway, Strange goes on to say, “I never meant for any of this to happen.” We see a version of New York, dark and collapsing on itself. We then get a brief glimpse of The Baby-Sitters Club breakout star Xochitl Gomez, who will make her Marvel debut as superhero America Chavez in this movie. And we get a glimpse of Rachel McAdams’ Christine Palmer in a wedding dress walking down the aisle as Doctor Strange watches from a pew.
Doctor Strange then visits Elizabeth Olsen’s Wanda Maximoff. She is picking flowers in an idyllic field (possibly of her own creation). Last we saw Wanda in the show Wandavision, she had brainwashed an entire town in order to build a fantasy life with her dead partner, Vision. She realized the error of her ways and let the people of that town go, but not before she discovered that she was a powerful wielder of chaos magic and adopted the name Scarlet Witch.
“I knew sooner or later you’d show up,” she says. “I made mistakes and people were hurt.” Strange replies that he isn’t here about the fact that Wanda held an entire town mentally hostage. (Forgive and forget! They have bigger problems to deal with.) He asks for her help with the multiverse. We get a quick shot of Wanda in her new Scarlet Witch getup.
Mordo then says, “I’m sorry Steven. I hope you understand. The greatest threat to our universe is you.” Cut to Doctor Strange standing across from…a very evil looking Doctor Strange doppelgänger.
Earlier this year, the animated Marvel series What If…? asked, what if Doctor Strange abused his powers to try to save someone he loved? Predictably that version of Doctor Strange turned into a villain and (spoiler alert) destroyed his universe. In a disturbing turn, the good Doctor Strange fought his evil twin on that show and lost.
It looks like a similar face-off between two parallel universe versions of Strange will take place in this movie. “Things just got out of hand,” villainous Doctor Strange says.
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