For many fans, the choice to cast Tom Holland as the MCU's #SpiderMan has been one of the best decisions Marvel has made in the past few years.
His introduction in Captain America: Civil War laid the foundation of what we will see from this character in the future and from what we've seen of his upcoming movie, Spider-Man: Homecoming, it looks like the wall crawler's future in the massive franchise will be bright.
However, recasting Spider-Man was not the only great decision Marvel has made in recent years. The growing roster of #TV shows aimed at an older audience on Netflix has expanded the #MCU in welcome ways. Characters like #Daredevil, #LukeCage, #JessicaJones and the #Punisher have brought new depth to Marvel's shared universe and the platform for which they were developed (Netflix) has allowed them to showcase these characters without watering them down.
All of Marvel's Netflix shows have embraced the grim and gritty side of the MCU; a nice contrast from the studio's brighter and family-friendly films that populate the franchise. This juxtaposition has worked well for Marvel. In fact, it has worked so well that fans have demanded that the characters from the Netflix shows be incorporated into the movies in the MCU to finally tie these two sides of shared universe together in a satisfying way.
Many have are holding out hope that we my see the Netflix-featured heroes showing up in the upcoming MCU mega-crossover movie Avengers: Infinity War, but rather than be a part of a film overflowing with cameos, The Defenders' big-screen debut would make the most sense if it happened in Spider-Man: Homecoming and these are the reasons why.
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The Avengers deal with worldwide threats, the Guardians deal with threats in space, and Doctor Strange deals with mystical enemies. So that just leaves threats at the street level. And who just so happens to deal with those threats? The Defenders and Spider-Man.
As seen in the trailer for Homecoming, Spider-Man is on a mission to help clean up the streets of New York, as he has always done. As for the Defenders, each show as been centered around saving different parts of New York from Hell's Kitchen to Harlem.
Protecting the city is what each of these superheros does best and there's no better way to fight the forces of evil in the Big Apple than for Spider-Man and The Defenders to team up.
When it comes to quality superhero stories, heroes are only as good as their villains, and one of the best big bads we've seen on any of the Marvel Netflix shows is Vincent D'onofrio's portrayal as Wilson Fisk, A.K.A. The Kingpin. His performance brought a dimensionality to the character that we had not seen before, as well as a brute strength that was absolutely terrifying. Thankfully, Marvel didn't kill him off at the end of Daredevil's first season, leaving many more opportunities for him to show up in the future.
Kingpin is just as big of a villain for Spider-Man as he is for Daredevil, which means there's ample opportunity here for Marvel to give fans a real treat by bringing the webslinger to Netflix for a crossover episode or two with Daredevil. It's a guest appearance that wouldn't just be an amazing moment in the MCU, it makes total sense. Daredevil and Spider-Man teaming up to take on Kingpin would be a great way to adapt several fan-favorite comic book storylines for TV.
History With The Characters
Out of the current heroes on Netflix that have been spotlighted with a series of their own, Spider-Man has worked with three of them on several occasions. Those heroes would be Daredevil, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist. However, the character that Spider-Man has the best, or worst, history with would be the Punisher.
As seen in the comic above, the Punisher started off as an assassin set out to kill Spider-Man. But while he started off as more of a villain, over time he grew to be more of an antihero, and quickly became one of the most popular characters in the Marvel Universe.
With the recent appearance of The Punisher in season 2 of Daredevil, which resulted in Netflix giving the green light for a solo Punisher series, it's not hard to imagine the awesomeness that would be a Spider-Man/Punisher crossover on the small screen, and there's plenty of Marvel history from which to draw inspiration.
Establishing The Defenders' Dominance
The Marvel Netflix shows have been a breath of fresh air for the MCU. Going from fun movies to gritty and violent is part of what makes the growing franchise great.
While they have shown their dominance on the small screen as separate capable characters and will soon combine their might for the crossover series The Defenders, it's time for the Defenders to show how great they can be on the big screen too. Daredevil showed that superheroes can be darker in the MCU, and we just saw from Logan that a superhero movie can be just as dark. While it seems impractical to make a darker R-rated movie for the MCU, it would show that the MCU is willing to change expand even further.
More Marvel Crossovers
If there's one thing Marvel knows how to do, it's a crossover. This was first seen in 2012 with The Avengers, followed by Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War, and will happen again with The Defenders and Thor: Ragnarok. But if they want to continue making large crossovers, they're going to need more characters. That is where The Defenders come into play.
As time goes on, the contracts for actors like Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, and Scarlett Johansson are set to expire. That is why they've introduced new heroes into the mix to continue the franchise with such characters as Spider-Man, Doctor Strange and Black Panther. But what the Defenders can do by joining this roster is give it more of the star power that it needs. With the addition of fan-favorites like Daredevil and Luke Cage in the MCU the roster of MCU movie heroes would grow stronger.
Prep for Infinity War
Now look, I understand that adding this one is a bit of a stretch. After all, the theory of any of the Defenders joining the Avengers has been all but shut down. However, that doesn't mean that they should be counted out quite yet.
Per all of the stars of the Netflix shows contracts, if any of them are requested to be in any MCU movie, then they have to join it. That means that not only is it possible for a Defender or two to show up in Spider-Man: Homecoming, but that also means that it is possible for one or all of The Defenders to show up in Avengers: Infinity War. If they aren't in Infinity War, then there is still a chance for them to make an appearance in Avengers 4. Such a crossover whould bring a new level of depth to the Marvel TV shows and further ground the entire MCU by combining some of its best-developed characters in one project.
Not Just Defenders
With the common similarities that the Defenders share with Spider-Man, there is every reason to hope that at least one of them are bound to show up this summer in Homecoming. Not only would this be a great crossover, but it would lay down the foundation for what the Defenders could become.
With amazing characters in Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist, and even the Punisher, it seems wrong to keep them isolated from the biggest events in the MCU. After all, you can only do so much in the MCU before running into someone like Captain America or the Hulk. But if the Defenders were to make their way from the small to big screen, not only would it do wonders for the characters, but for Marvel as well.
So what do you think? Should some of the Defenders show up in Spider-Man Homecoming? Which Defender would you like to see join a movie in the MCU? Let me know your thoughts down in the comments below!