Spider-Man: Homecoming's Zendaya Isn't Playing Who You Think She Is... Unless She Is

By Dave Meikleham on at

Zendaya plays a quirky classmate of Peter Parker's in the newly released Spider-Man: Homecoming. It's fair to say she kicks a ton of ass in the role, thanks to all those deliciously deadpan quips. Yet there's been some confusion over the identity of the character she's actually playing.

Spidey spoilers follow...

Den of Geek recently sat down with Marvel Studios boss Keven Feige, and the movie exec had some interesting comments to share regarding Pete's academic decathlon chum. More specifically, about that ultra teasing nickname which surfaces at the end of the film.

“In setting up this will be a very different thing, she’s not Mary Jane Watson, that’s not who the character is. But giving her the initials that remind you of that dynamic certainly is intriguing about what could go forward.”

“Peter’s had a lot of friends over the years in the comics, and a lot of schoolmates and characters he’s interacted with. It wasn’t just Mary Jane Watson; it wasn’t just Gwen Stacy; it wasn’t just Harry Osborn. So we were very interested in the other characters, and that’s where Liz came from and that’s where the version of the character Michelle came from.”

So Zendaya is Mary Jane then... um, except she's not really MJ. Clear? Good!

It seems Homecoming has taken The Dark Knight Rises' approach to having its cake and scoffing all the delicious slices when it comes to slyly sneaking a well-known character into its fiction. Remember Joseph Gordon-Levitt's John Blake who kinda turned out to be Robin, but then not really? It looks like Homecoming is playing the same trick; namely, giving a little nod to a beloved character while presenting a radically altered version of them that's entirely different to the comics.