Electro is not a new villain in the Spider-Man universe, but he is often one that is overlooked when compared to more prominent villains like Doctor Otto Octavius or The Green Goblin. Despite this, however, he often makes an appearance within the Sinister Six, a team of villains brought together usually with the primary goal of taking Spider-Man out of the picture permanently. Every now and then though he gets a depiction as a solo villain that keeps the neighborhood web-slinger on his toes. So, who is Electro, what does he do, and why is he important to Spider-Man: No Way Home's newest trailer?
Electro was first introduced into the Spider-Man universe in The Amazing Spider-Man #9 comic, released in 1964. The original story behind the development of his powers comes from when a burst of lightning hit a power line that the former electrical engineer was repairing. This incident caused a mutation to occur in which he became a walking capacitor for electricity. He sported a look that only comic book characters in the 1960s could really pull off, a skin-tight green and yellow suit with a mask that had lightning bolts jutting out in every direction. Later incarnations have since resigned him to be a little more "with the times" but the green and yellow combination often still remains. His powers primarily include the ability to generate and discharge electricity. He can also absorb electricity from any equipment that uses it, and there have been varying degrees to how much electricity he can hold. This discharging of electricity makes him a deadly foe if his opponent is not prepared, but a properly insulated suit or drenching him in water usually ends with his defeat in the end.
One of the villain's most recent appearances came from Marvel's Spider-Man for the PlayStation 4. In this game, he joins up with Octavious and the rest of the Sinister Six to defeat Spider-Man, an arc that has been done in other iterations of the Sinister Six as mentioned previously. In this version, Electro utilizes exoskeleton gear to help enhance his abilities as well. This was a new take on the villain that is used commonly within the more modern depictions of the character, but it wasn't the first time such an idea was implemented for him. Electro had another big appearance before his iteration on the PlayStation 4, and that was on the big screens in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, released in 2014.
In this movie, Electro is played by Jamie Foxx, redesigned from the ground up. In this iteration, Electro gained his powers not from lightning hitting the power line, but from a tank of genetically-engineered electric eels that he fell into while repairing said power line. The most distinct change in this iteration is perhaps the choice to make Electro blue from head to toe. This change immediately separates him from other people, and it becomes impossible for him to blend in with the crowd. From that point on, he would be unable to hide his identity, and this only strengthened his feelings of being an outsider and a nobody. Electro also idolizes Spider-Man in this version, or at least he does until Spider-Man stops him from charging up in Times Square. Electro is temporarily captured and studied until Harry Osborn (Dane Dehaan), another major character in the Spider-Man universe, helps him to break out of containment and gives Electro a suit to control his powers in exchange for his aid in infiltrating Oscorp, but he is once again stopped from taking New York City's electricity by Spider-Man with the help of Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone).
The 2014 movie iteration of Electro is perhaps the most important when it comes to the latest in the Tom Holland saga of Spider-Man movies. In the newest trailer for Spider-Man: No Way Home, viewers can see multiple shots of Electro, once again played by Foxx. However, there is one critical difference: the lightning he is shooting out is a bright yellow reminiscent of the other depictions of Electro. In addition, shots of Electro show that he doesn't look mutated, unlike the version we see in The Amazing Spider-Man 2. Instead, Electro takes on a more muted look and seems to be wearing a mechanical suit. So, what does this mean for the electricity-spewing villain?
We already know that Spider-Man: No Way Home has to deal with different universes. So, there is likely a chance that this Electro isn't necessarily from the same universe that contains Andrew Garfield's iteration of Spider-Man. Regardless of the answer, we see a lot of him in this trailer when compared to other villains like Sandman and The Lizard, meaning there's a good chance he has a larger role to play overall. Other scenes from the trailer depict Electro fighting Spider-Man one on one, and an audio clip of him saying "you're not gonna take this away from me" can also be heard. In one of the final scenes, viewers can see Electro amongst other Spider-Man villains such as the aforementioned Sandman and The Lizard. This goes on to confirm Electro's involvement in some sort of villain team, most likely the Sinister Six, though the exact composition and purpose of this alliance has yet to be confirmed. Audiences can only hope he is getting the redemption many wished he could have had after his portrayal seven years ago. We don't know exactly how much of a role Electro is going to play, but we do know he's looking refreshed and recharged for what is sure to be the biggest Spider-Man movie in the Tom Holland trilogy.
Spider-Man: No Way Home releases exclusively in theaters on December 17th, with tickets going on sale on November 29th.
That plus the full Q&A from the trailer launch fan event!
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