The choice for Sony and Marvel to use Adrian Toomes aka The Vulture as the primary villain in ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ was an interesting one, and even once the decision was made, a lot of work had to be done by the writers to make sure the man remained interesting, and a threat, as well as ensure he was not another run-of-the-mill MCU villain (which has been complained about many times). Recently, writers John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein (two of the FIVE writers on the film) sat down with Yahoo Movies to discuss the choices made with the Vulture, empathizing the struggle in the writers room to make sure the Vulture wa’s a villain that fans could sympathize with, as well as be a little scarier than just your average bad-guy.
WARNING: If you haven’t seen ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ yet, you may want to turn back as we’re going into spoiler territory…
According to Goldstein:
“Once we started talking about Vulture, it was clear that the version in the comics wouldn’t do, where he was this bald old man. It just never felt terribly scary on film to us. So we thought, ‘All right, let’s make him more of a middle-aged guy.’”
Daley elaborated on the personal link they wanted Toomes to have to Peter Parker:
“He was still stealing from Damage Control, but we had a different way into it. [Toomes] was going to be [Peter’s] teacher, and then we were like, ‘No, let’s separate him fully from the school — or at least so it seems.’ And that’s I think when we decided to make it the love interest’s dad.”
Personally, the twist of Toomes being the father to Liz Allen was amazing, and I neither saw it coming nor thought it felt out of place, and it opened the door for some of my favorite scenes of the movie, namely those between Toomes and Peter Parker, with all of the palpable tension as Toomes figures out Peter’s secret identity, and threatens him just outside the dance.
For being an “average” guy, Toomes was downright terrifying in those scenes, and it was great, and I commend the writers for finding a good balance, because even when he was threatening our young hero, you still understood Toomes’s motivations, and saw his humanity, as he was doing it all for his family, to build a comfortable life for them. But, again, that is my opinion, and I would love to hear yours in the comments below!
Synopsis of the movie below (for anyone who still has not seen it, or is on the fence about seeing it):
A young Peter Parker/Spider-Man (Tom Holland), who made his sensational debut in Captain America: Civil War, begins to navigate his newfound identity as the web-slinging super hero in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Thrilled by his experience with the Avengers, Peter returns home, where he lives with his Aunt May (Marisa Tomei), under the watchful eye of his new mentor Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.). Peter tries to fall back into his normal daily routine – distracted by thoughts of proving himself to be more than just your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man – but when the Vulture (Michael Keaton) emerges as a new villain, everything that Peter holds most important will be threatened.