In case you missed it from the new trailer for “Spider-Man: Homecoming”, a young Filipino actor has been cast as Peter Parker’s high school buddy. While a minor character, it marks a step forward for Asian representation in the Marvel cinematic universe.
Jacob Batalon, a Filipino-American actor who recently made his debut in the film “North Woods”, is playing Ned Leeds, a classmate and best friend of Peter Parker. Batalon’s character is supposedly an amalgamation of Leeds, Peter Parker’s Daily Bugle co-worker in the original comics, and Ganke Lee, a supporting character of Miles Morales’ Spider-Man series, Entertainment Weekly reported.
In the trailer, Batalon, is shown as an effective comic relief and convincing confidant to young Peter Parker. While his character’s name is a known supporting character in the comics, Batalon’s portrayal looks a lot closer to Ganke Lee’s persona.
Such similarities, however, have led some fans to wonder why Marvel did not have popular Miles Morales play the new Spidey instead.
— David Atchison (@DavidNAtchison) December 9, 2016
Is it just me or is the Spider-Man Homecoming trailer heavily influenced by Miles Morales story? Should’ve just went with Miles.
— Billy Pelayo (@fLiP_nosis) December 9, 2016
honestly tho, it feels pretty fuckin sleazy that homecoming looks like a miles movie starring peter
— emma houxbois (@EmmaHouxbois) December 9, 2016
@AlishaGrauso We have black people on screen, except we whitewash the main character. It ruins Parker and Morales for me. It’s like Why?
— Sponge Worthy Shimbo (@NeverDauntedNet) December 9, 2016
Miles Morales is better than Peter. Not to mention they completely ripped Miles Ultimates story for Homecoming
This was Miles’ Movie
— Quentin Ross (@ArtofArkayne) December 9, 2016
So Spider-Man Homecoming is giving Miles Morales’ sidekick to Peter.
We couldn’t just have Miles instead of Peter why …?
— Nash (@Nash076) December 9, 2016
If Batalon does end up playing the original comics’ Leeds, we might expect more from him in the future movies as the character eventually became a version of Hobgoblin in the comics.
“Spider-Man: Homecoming”, which is scheduled to hit theaters July 7, 2017, stars Tom Holland as the titular web-slinging hero, Michael Keaton as the Vulture, Tony Revolori as Flash Thompson, Laura Harrier as Liz Allan and Zendaya as Michelle, Peter’s love interest.