Ben Reilly Becomes Most Controversial Element Of Across The Spider-Verse

Jun 9, 2023

WARNING: This article includes spoilers from Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.Ben Reilly has become the most controversial element of Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, the character’s biggest media appearance. Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse has finally arrived in theaters, with Miles Morales’ story continuing while also introducing several new heroes from the multiverse. One of them was the Scarlet Spider, who is Peter Parker’s clone, with Andy Samberg voicing the fan-favorite hero.

However, while having a supporting role in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, Ben became the film’s most controversial aspect of the animated sequel. Since the movie’s release, arguments have popped up on social media about his portrayal in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse. Some argue that this the Spider-Verse variant was mistreated as an edgy 90s stereotype while others appreciate the cheeky humor. Check out several excerpts below:

RELATED: How Spider-Verse Connects To Maguire, Garfield & Holland’s Marvel Universes

How Beyond The Spider-Verse & Potential Spinoffs Could Redeem Ben Reilly

As torn as some are about Ben’s depiction in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse, it is not too late for the character to redeem himself. While he only had a few scenes in this installment, Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse is meant to serve as a two-parter, as it ended on a cliffhanger. With the upcoming Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse, the filmmakers may have a larger and far more satisfying role in the 2024 movie.

But even if Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse doesn’t do much for Scarlet Spider, the creative team could always look at the idea of a spinoff for Ben where they could more properly evolve and flesh out the character. Given Ben’s complex background in the comics, there is a lot that the writers could tap into for his own story. With someone of Samberg’s talent, a Scarlet Spider movie would have far more time to spend with Ben rather than be a supporting player like he is in Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.

Hopefully, those who are fans of Ben will get something out of Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-Verse, where he is more than just a 90s joke. It would be a shame if the Spider-Verse franchise wasted a character who has clearly grown a fanbase over the last couple of decades. But for now, fans will have to wait and see what happens to Scarlet Spider after Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse.

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