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Relax, Spider-Man’s Web-Shooters Will Be Mechanical, Not ‘Organic’

Within seconds of the release last week of the first photo of star Andrew Garfield in his Spider-Man costume, eagle-eyed fans pointed out metal discs on the underside of each wrist, suggesting the use of mechanical web-shooters in the Sony Pictures reboot.

Now, however, that’s more than a mere suggestion, as Emma Stone confirmed Sunday to MTV News that “it’s a device.” She wouldn’t elaborate on that or whether her character Gwen Stacy will see any action in the Marc Webb-directed movie. “You’re just going to have to wait and see,” she said in a quick interview from the red carpet of the Golden Globe Awards.

That may seem like a minor, and somewhat obsessive, detail. But the “organic web-shooters” introduced in Sam Raimi’s 2002 Spider-Man film remained a sticking point — if you’ll pardon the expression — for many comics devotees throughout the trilogy. Raimi felt having young Peter Parker invent mechanical web-shooters, as he did in the Marvel comics, would test the audience’s ability to suspend disbelief. (Quibbles about deviation from the source material aside, the idea of “organic web-shooters” is pretty gross.) Presumably Webb views things differently.

Of course, there’s a still chance that the movie’s shooters won’t resemble anything from comic-book continuity. Fans will just have to cross that web when they get to it.

In addition to Garfield and Stone, Spider-Man stars Rhys Ifans, Martin Sheen, Sally Field, Irrfan Khan, Denis Leary, Chris Zylka, Campbell Scott, C. Thomas Howell, Julianne Nicholson and Annie Parisse. The film, which began production last month, will be released on July 3, 2012.


  • JMC

    The fact that there are “fans” out there NOT relaxing, and having anxiety attacks about mechanical webshooters is the funniest, yet saddst thing about this article :)

  • Danny Wetts

    I’d say your spelling is the ‘saddst’ thing about this article.

    So fans are interested in the film interpretation of a beloved character. Why not? Haven’t you ever watched a reboot or remake and thought ‘boy, the original was better’ or ‘why did they have to change that detail up’? Or maybe you just don’t spend a lot of time thinking while you gaze upon the screen, you just sit there and suck it up…how envious I am.

  • Alex

    Considering the comics themselves don’t make any sense, I’m not sure it matters. In the last movie they made about Spider-man, he had organic webspinners. Then they put it in the comics in some magic story and he could now also talk to Spiders or something. They put everything they could think of in the book instead of doing a story and made the character into a terrible person, so they could get him single. Now the old Spider-man was replaced with some guy.

    Then Ultimate Spider-man is going to die…. or something. So, this movie Spider-man is based on which one of these guys?

  • Anonymous

    I prefer the webshooters to be natural and built-into his skin. Wasn’t that how it was in the actual Spiderman comics, starting with the first ever issue in 1961? To my knowledge, they were only mechanical in the Ultimate version comics because Peter was a high school kid that didn’t get bitten by a radioactive spider.

  • Flip Maker

    No — the web shooters were always mechanical in the comics early on. It’s part of Spidey’s origin story.

  • BookhouseBoy

    Nope, you’re way off. Spider-Man’s web shooters were mechanical for decades, starting all the way in the beginning. Here’s artwork from his very first appearance, Amazing Fantasy #15, where you see Peter trying out his new mechanical shooters:

  • Jacob

    Wow… It’s like you don’t read any of the books at all..

  • Jacob

    Raimi felt having young Peter Parker invent mechanical web-shooters, as he did in the Marvel comics, would test the audience’s ability to suspend disbelief.

    And the fans felt that removing the webshooters removed the best example of Peter’s brilliance. The films never replaced them with anything other than “He gets good grades.” I hope he invents them in this movie.

  • Jacob

    The origin of the Ultimate version is VERY similar to the origin of the 616 version. The only differences were minor (genetically engineered instead of radio active, location, et cetera). The major differences wouldn’t come until later (the spider being related to the Green Goblin and Doc Ock, Venom being a cure for cancer and Carnage being… whatever the hell he was; things like that).

  • Anonymous

    I’m all for the idea of a reboot, and changing things to make them different from the Raimi version. I do wish though that they would bring back JK Simmons as JJJ. That’s the one thing that worked that could carry over into a new vision.

  • JMC

    I retract my statement – Danny Wett’s post is the funniest, yet saddest thing about this article :)

  • Alex H

    I suspect people are going to complain, but I really think the organic webshooters are conceptually better. My main issue is that them being mechanical adds another complication to the story without any payoff for doing so beyond Spider-man occassionally being able to declare “oh no, I’m low on web fluid!”

    It also implies he is a world class scientist, and if that’s the case, why doesn’t he just make a few patents in his spare time to solve his money problems? I don’t mind him being a very good scientist, but inventing web shooters just stretches it to a point where it starts creating plot holes elsewhere.

  •!/haversam [A]

    “Raimi felt having young Peter Parker invent mechanical web-shooters, as he did in the Marvel comics, would test the audience’s ability to suspend disbelief.” ~which is rather silly when your main character gets superpowers after getting bit by a spider..

  •!/haversam [A]

    Not only “conceptually better” but 100% coherent.

  •!/haversam [A]

    Easily my favourite casting in a comic book movie. Ever.

  • Jacob

    That was a quote. I just forgot the marks. It’s from the article itself. Nice retention there.

  • Uckerbauguess

    I’ve always wanted to see web shooters in real life

  • Tuckerbauguess

    yeah makes no sence, they should, well this is my opioion they should make 5 movies about 1 spidy or 5 movies about 5 spideys.