Predicting the Relationship Between Spider-Man and Doctor Strange in the MCU
Benedict Cumberbatch’s Doctor Strange will join Peter Parker in the upcoming web-slinger installment, Spider-Man 3 (actual title has yet to be announced). What is the plan for the two primary superheroes? Both Doctor Strange and Spider-Man boast independent arcs and cinematical franchises all their own. So, how will they interact, and what will define their dynamic?
In Spider-Man: Homecoming, Peter Parker received a mentor and a father figure in Tony Stark. Their relationship developed throughout the Infinity Saga, as Tony allowed Peter to break down his fortified walls of emotional defense (before which only Pepper Potts had struck to the ground).
In Spider-Man: Far From Home, Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury showed Spidey the way, keeping him in line with his Avengers-based responsibilities. Doctor Strange and Peter Parker’s dynamic will likely fall somewhere between these prior relationships.
No one will ever be Tony to Peter (which should go without saying). There will likely be two primary characteristics inherent to the Strange-Spidey relationship — a mentorship quality will presumably come head-to-head with some combative, intellectually sparring.
A pupil-professor relationship between Doctor Strange and Spider-Man will likely come forward
Doctor Strange is a prior neurosurgeon — a scientist who has been forced to erect a bridge connecting his ideas of Western medicine with his sorcery. He is an all-seeing intellectual with powers beyond comprehension.
Strange’s self-assured omniscience will likely make way for a professor-pupil dynamic between him and Parker. Parker is often looking for guidance. As he continues transitioning out of adolescence, Parker yearns for older Avengers to guide him; thus, he may flock to a man who he worked alongside in Infinity War. He may flock to a man who so effortlessly presents himself as a leader.
Yet, their relationship will be less emotionally fortified than Peter’s dynamic with Stark. Parker will not see Strange as an emotional crutch, but rather as a guiding hand. Thus, as Parker continues to age, coming into his own technological prowess and scientific mastery — as he is historically one of the smartest kids in school — he may challenge Strange (in funny ways).
Strange and Spidey seem destined for some intellectual sparring
As Peter Parker ages, he will continue to develop his combat skills, his stealth skills, and his approach to heroism. Thus, there may come moments when he has an idea equal to or better than Strange — there may come moments when his “Spidey senses” outpace or prove just as useful as Strange’s seemingly unbridled clairvoyance.
Their relationship seems destined to rely on mental acuity over emotional bondage. And, in that case, the upcoming Spidey installment will likely make way for some funny arguments, and a little bit of argumentation as they kick butt side-by-side. In this way, the relationship will pay homage to Stark and Parker’s dynamic, yet the underlying source of the bond will be more educational than familial.