The Marvel Cinematic Universe welcomed Tom Holland’s Spider-Man in the 2016 film Captain America: Civil War as a guest character, and Spider-Man soon landed his own feature film, also appearing in The Avenger: Infinity War. Until now, Spider-Man has been fighting the MCU’s main enemies, such as the mad titan Thanos and his minions.
However, Spider-Man has appeared on screen before the MCU, including the popular Sam Raimi trilogy starring Tobey Maguire, as well as the two films by Amazing Spider-Man from the Andrew Garfield era. Those five movies, plus the current two standalone Spider-Man MCU movies, have a ton of fascinating villains among them, and they’re all worthy of fighting the Avengers.
9 the Green Goblin was a terrifying skateboard
In 2002, Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man faced his first and most diabolical opponent, the Green Goblin, who was the powerful secret CEO Norman Osborn. When the Green Goblin arrived, Spider-Man was still getting used to his own powers, so Spidey had to find out all of this on the fly.
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The Green Goblin terrorized Mary Jane and J. Johan Jameson to pressure Spiderman, until one night they had their final showdown and the Green Goblin lost his life. It was a tragic death, which would haunt his adult son, Harry Osborn.
8 Green Goblin Jr. continued the legacy of the original
On Spider-Man 3, Harry Osborn’s resentment boiled over and he assumed the mantle of the Green Goblin in his junior version. He looked more hooligan than his late father, with wrist-mounted blades, green goggles, and a fancy hovering skateboard device for flying around New York City.
Spiderman never saw it coming, and one night the Green Goblin Jr. caught him off guard and nearly defeated him. Later, Harry / Green Goblin changed his mind and helped Spider-Man fight their mutual enemies. Another version of this character, played by Dane DeHaan, appeared in The Amazing Spider-Man 2.
7 Doctor Octopus is a classic mad scientist
Perhaps Spider-Man’s most popular and iconic live-action villain is Alfred Molina’s Doctor Octopus, the mad scientist who wanted to bring endless free energy to the world. But his miniature sun went berserk and his four mechanical arms became sensitive and brutal.
Doctor Octopus stole a lot of money to fund his second experiment attempt, and Spider-Man desperately fought to stop him. Inspired, Doctor Octopus finally gave up on his impossible dream and apparently gave his life to destroy him in the river. But soon it will return.
6 Sandman just wanted to make his daughter happy
Flint Marko was a prisoner until he was released one night in Spider-Man 3, and while on the run from the police, he stumbled upon a science experiment that mutated him into the Sandman. Indeed, his entire body is composed of sand, and he can harden or loosen it at will, depending on the combat situation.
Sandman was a destructive villain, but he also had a soft spot for his young daughter, which gave him a touch of sympathy. He lost once to the Spiderman in the black suit, and then fought him again alongside his new ally: the vicious Venom.
5 Venom was an alien threat
The strange black liquid known as the Symbiote crashed on Earth early in Spider-Man 3, and for a time, Spider-Man used his powers with his powerful black suit, but it was also eating his soul. He had had enough of this strange and unpredictable power and got rid of it, but the Symbiote was not done yet.
The symbiote soon found a new master, the frustrated photographer Eddie Brock, who reveled in its power. Eddie became the terrifying Venom, and was on the verge of killing Spiderman until his final defeat, aided by Peter’s use of Venom’s only weakness: sound.
4 Electro impacted Spiderman in many ways
On The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Spider-Man had a fan in Max Dillon, an electrical engineer who idolized the hero of the cobwebs. But he was an invisible nobody who couldn’t reach his hero, not until he tragically became the villain named Electro.
Jamie Foxx brought this electrifying villain to life in style, although the original comic book character’s costume was altered to make it look more attractive and fresh for this film. Not all original comic book costumes translate well into live action, as many of them look flashy or goofy.
3 The Lizard bravely faced Spiderman
When actor Andrew Garfield took over the character of Spider-Man, he needed some new villains to fight against, and the Lizard delivered. This cold-blooded monster was once Dr. Curt Connors, an old friend of Peter’s father Richard. Mad science turned him into a beast, which Spider-Man cannot easily defeat.
To fight such an enemy, Spiderman had to make use of all his gifts, including placing sensitive spider webs everywhere to detect Lizard’s movements from afar and thus gain an advantage. The Lizard could also regenerate its body parts when it needed to.
2 The Vulture had a great grudge
Adrian Toomes’s business was closed shortly after the battle for New York City against Loki’s Chitauri army, and in desperation, Toomes turned to crime and villainy to support his family. He even borrowed Chitauri technology to make his signature Vulture wings and fly around.
The Vulture gave Tom Holland’s Spider-Man a serious fight throughout the movie, especially since Peter was still discovering his hero status the entire time. In a way, the Vulture was like a dark Tony Stark, and his rise from nobody to supervillain echoed Peter’s rise from ordinary teenager to superhero.
1 Mysterio had a problem with Tony Stark
Peter Parker and his classmates went on trips to Europe, including Italy and the Czech Republic, and Peter expected to have a perfectly normal time as a high school student. But it wasn’t like that: huge elementals attacked, and Peter learned that they were all holograms projected with advanced technology.
Quentin Beck approached Peter as a friend, but he was actually a disgruntled former Stark Industries employee who wanted revenge on Tony Stark. He assumed the identity of Mysterio and challenged Spiderman with all kinds of illusions and psychological attacks. The challenge of a lifetime awaited Spiderman, far from his family home in New York.
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No Way Home: Every Villain Who Has Appeared in a Spiderman Live Action Movie