Why Fans Forgave Tom Holland for Spoiling ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

It’s all too easy to understand why fans forgave Tom Holland for spoiling Avengers movies not once but twice recently.

First of all, he’s Spider-Man, who’s still arguably Marvel’s biggest hero, though the original Avengers — Iron Man, Thor, the Hulk, Captain America, Black Widow, and Hawkeye — seem to get all the glory these days. Spider-Man’s movies were grossing over $100 million on their opening weekends when an Avengers movie was just a gleam in Marvel chief Kevin Feige’s eye.

Second of all, it’s Holland. He’s 22 but looks a good five years younger, so he’s still quite believable as a teenaged Peter Parker. He’s too charming to get mad at for long.

Third of all, did anyone really and truly believe Spider-Man was going to stay dead? C’mon, now.

How Tom Holland spoiled ‘Avengers: Infinity War’

Tom Holland
Tom Holland | Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images

The first spoiler came during a surprise appearance before a screening of Avengers: Infinity War. Holland was brought before the audience, to whom he cheekily announced: “I’m alive!” Technically, this was a spoiler because when we last see Spider-Man at the end of that movie, he clutches Tony Stark, saying, “I don’t feel so good … I don’t want to go,” as Thanos’ snap reduced him to ash.

It was a genuinely surprising moment. Although audiences knew in their heart of hearts that the MCU would never kill off Spider-Man, it was still wrenching to see it happen, especially to the youngest live-action Spider-Man we had ever seen. Here was a frightened kid doing his best to save the world, when the cruel hand of fate (in the shape of Thanos’ thumb and finger) reduces him to nothingness.

Part of the reason his “demise” was so effective was it wasn’t entirely scripted. Directors Joe and Anthony Russo confirmed that Holland, a seasoned professional, ad-libbed his lines, making for one of the most memorable scenes not just in the MCU, but in any superhero movie.

Not that unplanned moments are foreign to Marvel movies. There have been others, probably the funniest of which was Starlord “dropping” the infinity stone in the first Guardians of the Galaxy. It was a genuine fumble by Chris Pratt, but director James Gunn liked the take so much, he kept it.

In the end, it’s hard to blame Holland for saying “I’m alive” at the Infinity War screening. It was a funny joke, and the man was just doing what he was told. Still, to be on the safe side, Marvel didn’t give Holland a script for Endgame, according to reports.

The ‘Spider-Man’ sequel is almost here

Part of the reason fans knew that Spider-Man wasn’t really dead was that the Spider-Man: Homecoming sequel had already been announced even before Infinity War. Indeed, a trailer for that sequel was released before Endgame, so unless Marvel was playing fast and loose with time, as they did in Endgame, Spidey’s return was a foregone conclusion.

After Endgame came out and made two mints in only its first weekend, Marvel released a new trailer for Far from Home which included Tom Holland warning viewers about spoilers if they hadn’t seen Avengers: Endgame. There went Holland again! At least the kid was nice enough to warn us up front.  

How the ‘Spider-Man’ sequel will be different

The trailer makes it very clear this is a world without Tony Stark, who had been a mentor and something of a father figure to Peter. And since Peter Parker’s father figures have a habit of untimely demises (Uncle Ben, anyone?), perhaps Tony’s fate wasn’t such a surprise.

Marvel won’t announce its next phase of movies until after Far From Home. Holland has at least one more film in his Marvel contract, so it’s very likely we’ll see him in a third solo Spider-Man movie. Besides, the eager Holland has already said he’d like to make several more Spider-Man movies.

“I definitely have the mindset of, if you want to make 20 of these movies, then I’m down because it’s really fun. It’s, it’s been a real privilege and so much fun. Maybe even more fun this time around than the last one. It’s been great,” he said.

Who can refuse that?