By G.P. Avants
Is there such thing as a cool nerd? One who can rock that brain and still have a way with words and making the best of most social situations? If there is then Andrew Garfield nailed it. This is our second incarnation of Spider man as the Amazing Spider man. Some mourned the loss of his predecessor Toby, but I think Andrew spun a web around Peter Parker that was a fresh new look into the mind and heart of the web-head.
Isn’t it true that the best stories and characters have layers? (Just ask Shrek) Andrew Garfield brought to the screen some layers of Spider-Man that I think made us love our favorite hero even more. We are now privy to his unspoken back story. We know why Peter was an orphan and the legacy his parents left behind for him to fulfill. Their story interweaves with Peter’s and the world he has yet to be discover. He’s already very intelligent and a serious student of the sciences long before the fateful spider bite.
Instead of shooting webs, Peter designs his own web-shooters after numerous malfunctioning attempts. On a humorous note, Peter has a scene where he deftly catches a fly with his fingers, releases it, then licks his fingers. His tastes have changed a bit. Ah, hello of course he is Spider man after all.
This is more of an emotional journey of a hero. Peter nestles his camera as if considering his future, yet freely talks about his regrets and losses. His life at Peter Parker and Spider man are very much a tightly woven net that is often hard to break a hole through. Truly this Spider-man’s journey takes place behind the scenes in the great city of NY. I loved that we got to see hear his wise-cracking East Coast accent and his street wise banter.
Peter and Gwen’s sweet and fiery relationship made you believe in a romance that could endure the trials that your friendly neighborhood Spider man might face daily. Like real life, love can stare down into the depths of impending darkness.
Gwen’s death broke Peter down to his core and Spider-Man went into a silent hibernation like cocoon. However, Spider-Man’s webs still vibrate in the hearts and minds of his fellow New Yorkers. I think of the little boy that Spidey rescued from bullies. He donned his own Spider-Man suit and taking on the rampaging Rhino helping Peter face his own enemies. Isn’t that what a hero does? They bring out the best in others and for the sake of all, create new heroes to face greater dangers ahead.
Andrew Garfield is now the middle child in the Spider-man family. That place comes with its own set if issues, right?
I know that many people hated to see another younger, different personality take up the mantle of the common man’s superhero. But life and circumstances change. We can fight against our hero and his new updated story or we can embrace it. Just as Peter experienced many losses on his life and got back up, maybe we can, too. The bad guys already complain, conspire, cajole, against our hero, why are we making his job harder by helping those dweebs? Trust me, if ever our heroes needed our support it’s now. There may be a new face behind the mask, but the spirit of a hero wears the suit with just as much guts and glory.