Well, great. Morbius is relevant again. You internet kids just couldn’t let it die, could you? You had to make your, “It’s Morbin’ time!” jokes and cause this stupid movie to trend. Some have been afraid that this trend will trick Sony – who don’t fully understand the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s success – to greenlight a Morbius sequel, despite some less than franchise-ready box office results. Such a decision would be as disastrous and wasteful as when New Line did massive reshoots to capitalize on the online popularity of the “Snakes on a Plane” meme.
I still doubt that we’ll actually see a full-on sequel to Morbius, but we definitely haven’t seen the last of Jared Leto’s Michael Morbius. Not if those end credits scenes are anything to go on. It seems pretty apparent that Sony’s master plan is to build up their roster of Spider-Man-based anti-heroes and funnel them into a Sinister Six movie, which in turn will be their version of the first Avengers.
Sony Sinister Six
Sony’s Spider-Man universe, the house that Venom built, is going to town with movies based on Spider-Man-adjacent characters. Venom and its sequel lucked into working themselves out with a dedicated Tom Hardy and a ridiculous gay buddy comedy dynamic that won over the public. The Vulture doesn’t appear to be getting his own solo movie, but he’s an established character from the MCU. Morbius has been given an origin movie and the vaguest of ties to Spider-Man. Soon we’re getting movies for Kraven the Hunter, El Muerto (whose obscurity cannot be overstated), and Madame Web.
Put that together with Vulture’s random team-up with Morbius and Venom’s line about wanting to go meet the MCU’s Spider-Man and Sinister Six is surely the payoff. I don’t see Madame Web as a part of that crew, so we’ll likely see Vulture, Venom, Morbius, Kraven, El Muerto, and one other. Maybe someone like Black Cat, who at least gets namedropped on the front page of the Daily Bugle in Morbius.
Being the Sinister Six, their initial reason for joining would be to destroy Spider-Man. But then again…
Which Spider-Man Exists in the Venomverse?
By default, we’re given four options that will be immediately whittled down to two options.
It could be that Tom Holland’s MCU Spider-Man will make another dimension hop, but I’d doubt that. The ending of Spider-Man: No Way Home pushes the idea that the character is back to basics and is being forced back into more down-to-earth stories instead of multiversal stuff. Plus it feels weird to me that a team of psychopaths would be put together just to take out a visiting kid from another universe who doesn’t mean anyone any harm.
No, I feel that there has to already be a Spider-Man in the Venomverse for this to work. That counts out Tobey Maguire Spider-Man because he’s already taken on an incarnation of Venom/Eddie Brock. No way do these two Eddie Brocks coexist in the same universe.
Andrew Garfield Spider-Man? Now that idea might work. After No Way Home came out, people were more open to seeing more from Garfield’s Spider-Man, who practically stole the show. It felt like the Amazing Spider-Man movies gave him the short stick and he should get another shot. Not only that, but the little we know about his life post-Amazing Spider-Man 2 would go along with WHY there would be a Sinister Six.
According to his dialogue in No Way Home, after Gwen’s death, this Spider-Man became more of a loner and due to his angst, he “stopped pulling his punches.” Considering this version of Spider-Man was a bit unhinged from the beginning, we could be seeing a Spider-Man who is every bit the menace that Jameson and the like suggest he is. He’s a dangerous vigilante who probably should be stopped.
Then there’s the final option that we’re getting a brand-new Spider-Man. It would be a risky choice to be sure, especially since Tom Holland is still out there in the MCU. If they do go with an absolutely new take on the character, this is really one of those situations where they REALLY need to get it right.
Morbius: Friend or Foe?
Sinister Six or not, Morbius is being primed for a conflict with Spider-Man. So far the only connection he has to the guy is that Morbius is open to working with a dude who is in his universe due to a magical anomaly and figures it somehow traces back to Spider-Man. So… what do Spider-Man and Morbius even have in common to put them on a collision course?
If they do go with the Andrew Garfield incarnation of Spider-Man, there is some meat on the bone. Both characters mean well, but are driven to extreme violence due to their lifestyles. Peter Parker can presumably stop being Spider-Man and can stop himself from going too far, but Michael Morbius is stuck with a dilemma that the movie introduced but never concluded: what happens when his thirst for blood overwhelms him?
The ending of Morbius does suggest that he’s become more embracing of what he is, partially due to having lost everything that tethers him to his human life, but considering he’s still measuring the effects of synthetic blood on his system, he hasn’t fully given in. Luckily, with Spider-Man, there’s hope. In the last Spider-Man movie, part of it revolved around Peter Parker and his counterparts not only defeating their enemies, but curing them.
Spider-Man would want to help Morbius. He’d want him to stop being a monster and return him to normal. Then again, who’s to say such a thing is possible? That and throwing in characters like Vulture and Venom might make that incredibly difficult and complicated to even try, but it is at least a goal for our hero.
Regardless, the smart money is that if we do get a big Sinister Six movie down the line, they wouldn’t leave it on a bunch of protagonists we’ve already gotten to know taking on one of the most popular superheroes in the world. There needs to be more to it. There has to be some kind of Doomsday to go with this Batman v Superman setup. The most likely uber threat would be Knull, the God of Symbiotes, who is basically Venom’s own personal Thanos. Or maybe it would be Morlun, a vampire who feeds on Spider-Men across the multiverse. Either way, these are the kinds of stakes they’ll need.
But by then, the Morbius meme would be long gone and the whole movie would make about $7 million over the first weekend.