Who expected Willem Dafoe to reprise his role as Norman Osborn, better known as the Green Goblin in the upcoming Spider-Man: No Way Home? Then again, who expected Jamie Foxx to reprise his role as Electro? And what about Alfred Molina returning to the role of Doctor Octopus? Oh boy, just when you thought Marvel couldn’t get anymore ambitious, they attempt to pull off the unthinkable. I can’t talk about this movie without brining up the two elephants in the room. Yes, we can safely say that Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield are indeed returning as the first two live-action Spider-Men. That is seriously awesome news and I can already hear the reactions from the audience when I see it December 16. Yes, neither one of them is in the trailers, but why spoil the surprise? Well played, Sony. But for now, I just want to talk about the multiple villains that we’ll be seeing in No Way Home. Is it too much? We have seen Sony attempt this before. Actually, they’ve attempted it twice and we all know how it turned out. It resulted in Tobey Maguire never getting his fourth Spider-Man movie and Andrew Garfield not getting his third Amazing Spider-Man movie. That’s very unfortunate for both of them, because I feel like both of their Peter Parkers still had stories to tell.
But evidently, it looks like fortune once again favors the patient. Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield lost a chance in the past, but Sony and Marvel are once again giving them another shot. But they’re not the only ones returning to the comic book movie world. The men who played their villains in the past are coming back to once again challenge them. Man, what a time to be alive. One of those actors returning is the legendary Willem Dafoe as the first enemy Spider-Man has faced on the big-screen. Norman Osborn, better known as the Green Goblin, is without a doubt, Spider-Man’s greatest enemy. He’s responsible for killing Gwen Stacy, Peter Parker’s first love, and just causing him more harm than any of his villains ever did. For Willem Dafoe to bring this character to life the way he did in the first Spider-Man was one of the first times we saw a truly mentally unstable comic book villain in a movie. Just rewatch that incredible mirror scene where he’s talking to the Green Goblin alter ego and you’ll understand.
Needless to say, the Green Goblin is a comic book villain we need to see again. That is, the right way. Chris Cooper played Norman Osborn in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, but not the Green Goblin. That role went to Dane DeHaan when he was playing Harry Osborn. As we all remember, it was very short and not very menacing. He did kill Emma Stone’s Gwen Stacy like in the comics, but his version still didn’t even hold a candle to Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin. It’s no competition. Willem Dafoe is hands down the best Green Goblin we have had and probably ever will get on screen. Will he be around to stay? I remember when fans were pulling for Gary Oldman to take over for Norman Osborn as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s Green Goblin. If not Willem Dafoe, then how can you possibly turn down Gary Oldman? He would be the best guy to do it, but Willem Dafoe was so great. How can Sony and Marvel pass up the opportunity to bring him back? The answer is, they can’t.
Well, with No Way Home approaching, the trailers and TV spots are emerging, revealing many interesting things. For instance, the new character posters gave us some very awesome looks at three of the movie’s villains. We saw Doctor Octopus, Electro, and the Green Goblin up close and ready to kill Spider-Man. Electro and Doctor Octopus look menacing as ever, but Green Goblin was a real eye-popper. Just like in the trailer, we saw the villain in full gear, riding his glider, and preparing to throw pumpkin bombs. We even got to hear his voice in the trailer, including a villainous little speech directed at Tom Holland’s Peter Parker. That was clearly Willem Dafoe’s voice, but fans are wondering if that’s really Willem Dafoe underneath the Green Goblin helmet. Is Sony trying to pull a little bait-and-switch by not showing us his face? The speculation is brewing that the Green Goblin we’ll be seeing in No Way Home is a variant from another world. That’s actually not too crazy to think, especially with the approach the MCU is taking now. We’ve already seen several Loki variants, not to mention the multiple variants of different characters in the What If…? show. I mean, Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield’s Peter Parkers are technically variants of Tom Holland’s, so I can bite to this speculation.
The Green Goblin in No Way Home could be anyone if it’s a variant. It could be Dane DeHaan or James Franco for all we know, or if Sony really wants to throw us a curveball, it might not even be Norman or Harry Osborn. That is a serious stretch and we can make a list of who the candidates can be. The thing is, I truly think that is Willem Dafoe behind the Green Goblin helmet once again. Aside from the fact that it’s the same costume and the same voice we’ve heard before, Sony just can’t leave Willem Dafoe out of the picture. That would be just criminal. Now in the second trailer, we caught a brief glimpse of the same Green Goblin riding his glider. However, he wasn’t wearing the same costume he was wearing in the beginning. Should that raise some questions? I really don’t think so. I think Norman Osborn somehow got his first Green Goblin costume damaged in his first encounter with Spider-Man. His next outfit is what he probably found afterwards to battle Spider-Man a second time. If you’ve seen the concept art, it’s basically Willem Dafoe’s face revealed, except he’s wearing some goggles and a hood. He’s also wearing what seems to be a run-down version of his original costume. If that’s accurate, then it’s a cool new look for Willem Dafoe’s Green Goblin. No matter what he looks like, I can only appreciate that Willem Dafoe is returning. What are your thoughts, Spider-Man fans? This Green Goblin is still probably Willem Dafoe, but if it isn’t, who can be the mysterious variant? Just something else to think about.