Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse has a ton of cameos. And the movie is, quite possibly, the best comic-book movie ever! The entire movie is a massive love letter to the character of Spider-Man, not just Peter Parker, but also Miles Morales himself. A new Spider-Man who since has earned the moniker as much as the classic Parker. But there’s a whole history to how Miles Morales came about in the comics, and eventually getting his own animated feature film. And a very specific Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse cameo brings that entire history full circle.
Please note that the following will contain some spoilers about that Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse cameo, and some plot details as well.
The Creation Of Miles Morales
Miles Morales was a character who was originally part of the Ultimate Universe of Marvel Comics. The Afro-Latino young boy provided a new perspective into the classic Spider-Man character, in a way that the writers couldn’t explore with Peter Parker. But how he came about it is a hugely interesting story.
In 2010, after the end of the Tobey Maguire live-action Spider-Man era ended, Sony was looking to reboot the franchise with a new Spider-Man. Donald Glover of then Community-fame, and now the creator of Atlanta, desperately wanted to be the new Spider-Man. Thus began an internet campaign where the actor showcased his desire to be the next live-action web-slinger. The season 2 premiere of Community even saw Glover’s character Troy jump out of bed in a Spider-Man t-shirt.
Ultimately, Andrew Garfield was cast in The Amazing Spider-Man reboot, but Glover became the real-life inspiration behind the creation of Miles Morals. Creator Brian Michael Bendis credits Glover for the idea that made him write Miles Morals, with the character’s look also modelled after Glover.
Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse Cameo Started In The MCU
Years later, there was yet another live-action reboot of Spider-Man with Marvel Studios and Sony’s collaboration in Spider-Man: Homecoming. In that movie, as a tribute to his contribution to the Miles character, Glover played the MCU version of Aaron Davis, Miles’ uncle. Glover’s character even mentions in a scene to Holland’s Spider-Man that he has a nephew, implying that Miles already exists within the MCU.
In the original story of Miles, his uncle Aaron Davis eventually becomes the supervillain, the Prowler. The character and Glover never reappeared in the MCU for that storyline to take him there. But we did get to see that story play out in Miles Morales’s feature film introduction in Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, with Mahershala Ali voicing the character. We know now that Davis was a huge part of Miles’ origin story. And he was also a huge part of the shocking cliffhanger of Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse.
The MCU Live-Action Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse Cameo Connects Universes
The events of Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse sees Miles (Shameik Moore) in the future in Nueva York, where Spider-Man 2099 (Oscar Isaac) safeguards the multiverse from anomalies that threaten to destroy them. Similar to the story of Spider-Man: No Way Home, beings who cross from their universe into another, are dangerous and have to go back. When seeing all the anomalies captured in one place, one of them is a live-action Prowler. But the best thing about that is that the character is played by none other than Donald Glover himself, in an amazing Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse cameo!
While not fully confirmed, this cameo might mean that this is the MCU version of Aaron Davis that we last saw in Spider-Man: Homecoming. Since we know the Prowler is Miles’ uncle, Davis, it makes sense that Glover’s version of the character is the one from Homecoming, who eventually became the live-action Prowler in the MCU.
Spider-Man: Across The Spider-Verse is now in theatres.
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Regardless of the implications of what this cameo means for the MCU or the Spider-Verse, it’s a very cool tribute to the creation of Miles Morales. Seeing Donald Glover, who was directly responsible for the creation of Miles Morales, sharing the same frame with an animated Miles is bringing his story full circle. The inspiration and the creation side by side, having a conversation is a hugely cool meta moment within a movie that already has so much going on!
What did you think about that amazing cameo in the movie? Do we want to see more of Glover in the MCU as the same character? Let me know in the comments below or on Twitter at @theshahshahid.