WARNING, THE FOLLOWING ARTICLE INCLUDES SPOILERS FROM SPIDER-MAN: FAR FROM HOME!
Spider-Man: Far From Home is the last movie in Phase 3 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, diving into the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame. There are many similarities between Peter Parker and Tony Stark in the film, building towards Peter becoming the successor to Iron Man in the way that Peter’s identity is revealed, the way that Peter is on his way to being a tech genius like Tony, and even the way their mistakes always come back to haunt them.
After the events of Avengers: Endgame, Peter encounters numerous reminders that Tony is gone through paintings on the side of buildings and conversations with strangers and friends. All of these triggers anxiety within Peter, just like reminders of the Battle of New York triggered anxiety attacks for Tony in Iron Man 3. During the beginning of Spider-Man: Far From Home, Peter is seen in his Iron Spider suit, another reminder of Tony, as he takes pictures and answers fan questions at an event coordinated by Aunt May.
When asked if he’s the next Iron Man, the question triggers Peter into an anxiety attack as emotions from Tony’s death begin to overwhelm him. When other fans surrounded Peter asking him several other questions, Peter quickly left the building to calm down. This is similar to the scene from Iron Man 3 when Tony had his first anxiety attack at a bar and rushed outside to collect himself.
Another similarity between Peter and Tony is how their superhero identities were revealed to the world. Spider-Man was the only major hero in the MCU still maintaining a secret identity, yet that all changed at the end of Spider-Man: Far From Home. Peter swings around the city with MJ in his arms and just before he leaves, a news broadcast shows a doctored video incorrectly portraying the battle between Spider-Man and Mysterio.
The video shows Mysterio telling the world that Spider-Man was responsible for the Elementals and drone attacks before it looks like Mysterio killed by the drones raining destruction on London. To make matters worse, Mysterio also reveals Spider-Man’s secret identity to the entire world, even posting a picture of Peter to further expose him. This isn’t the same way that Tony shared he was Iron Man with the world, but it shows that with Peter finally stepping up as the Avenger Tony wanted him to be.
Peter is now ready to step into Tony’s footsteps as the world learns of who he is. Tony has wanted this ever since Spider-Man: Homecoming when Peter and Tony were arguing on a rooftop. In the middle of the argument, Peter said that he wanted to be just like Tony, but Tony revealed that he wanted Peter to become better. Meaning that Tony not only wanted Peter to become his successor, he also wanted Peter to be better than he ever was
During the final act of the film, Peter is on a Stark Industries jet with Happy en route to London for the final showdown with Mysterio. However, before Peter can face Mysterio, he needs a new suit. Happy shows Peter the back part of the jet where there is a machine able to design and fabricate suits for the Avengers.
Happy looks longingly at Peter as he builds his new suit, a sight that reminded him of the many times he watched Tony build suits in his lab. Happy then plays the song “Back in Black” by ACDC, and the rest of the scene plays out with Peter creating the first of potentially many suits just like his mentor.
Sins of the “Father”
While Tony is not biologically Peter’s father, he has served as that father figure. The MCU has slowly been planting the seeds for Peter to become the successor of Iron Man. Just like the actions of Tony’s father caused the villain in Iron Man 2, Tony’s actions throughout his life has resulted in Mysterio.
A theme in the Iron Man movies, except for Iron Man 2, is that Tony has to fix a mistake he made in the past. The battles Peter must fight in Spider-Man: Homecoming as well as in Far From Home are because of Tony’s actions. We see in Spider-Man: Homecoming that Tony caused unemployment and hardship for the common man with his superhero actions and privatization regarding the clean-up of Chitauri related incidences. As a result, The Vulture became a villain for Peter to face. In Spider-Man: Far From Home, we see how Tony’s selfish and narcissistic behavior led to employees feeling undervalued and frustrated.
Now that Tony is no longer alive, Peter is left alone to face these threats without any assistance, just like Tony was left all alone when Howard passed away during Tony’s fight with Whiplash, a fight that Howard’s actions set in motion. We see this as Peter struggles to handle the responsibility of possessing EDITH along with making the mistake of handing possession over to Mysterio.
With all of this pressure being put on Peter, he may decide to be his own person rather than repeat the mistakes and actions of Tony. This is something Tony hinted at in Spider-Man: Homecoming when he tells Peter to be better than he is instead of trying to be like him. We see Peter struggle with being a superhero in general during Spider-Man: Far From Home. All Peter wants to do is take a step back and enjoy being a kid after being thrust into the Avengers lifestyle.
What did you think of Spider-Man: Far From Home? Do you think Spider-Man will remain in Iron Man’s Shadow or will he forge his own path? Leave your thoughts below in the comments!