Actor Andrew Garfield has suited up to play Spider-Man for the second time, and it just occurred to him: Why isn’t Spider-Man gay?
Though the character of Spider-Man has flirted with minority status in the past (see: Donald Glover as Spider-Man campaign, Miles Morales from the comics), Garfield might be the first person to actually suggest Peter Parker go for Flash Thompson instead of Gwen or Mary Jane.
“I was kind of joking, but kind of not joking about MJ,” Garfield said in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly.
“And I was like, ‘What if MJ is a dude?’ Why can’t we discover that Peter is exploring his sexuality? It’s hardly even groundbreaking! […] So why can’t he be gay? Why can’t he be into boys?”
Well, to offer a totally-up-for-debate-and-non-committal reason, I suppose you could argue that it would just be too complicated. This isn’t like hypothetically casting a black actor in a “traditionally” white role, because these “traditionally” white characters don’t have a single story line (so far as I know) that has everything to do with their skin color. They could be played by anyone.
Characters like Spider-Man, however, do have a number of stories that have something to do with their sexual orientation. It’s hard to get away from the defining moment that was Gwen Stacy’s death, or Peter’s marriage to Mary Jane, or the MC2 universe with the couple’s biological daughter … it would be messy.
Though I suppose it could be done so long as it’s not forced or for its own sake. I don’t think I was the only one sensing some sexual tension between Tobey Maguire and James Franco in the first Spider-Man films.
But if Garfield’s Parker was going to play, he knows exactly who his playmate would be. “I’ve been obsessed with Michael B. Jordan since The Wire. He’s so charismatic and talented. It’d be even better—we’d have interracial bisexuality!”
Director Marc Webb sounds like he’s heard it all before. “Michael B. Jordan, I know,” he said when asked about Garfield’s announcement.
Do you think Spider-Man could be gay?